beautiful asian woman in scented bathStress has been a companion in my life for some time.  Many times I cannot avoid the sources of stress, so it has become important for me to look for medium of relaxation, from the surroundings, using all my senses, wherever I go.

The scents, from the skin care and hair care products we use, from perfume, from nature, from people around us and places we go to,… as I’ve noticed more and more lately, play an important role in soothing or irritating our moods.

Aroma Therapy Body ScrubLast month I bought a “Aromatherapy Eucalyptus Spearmint Stress Relief Sudsing Scrub” from Bath & Body Works.  The scrub contains eucalyptus essential oil and spearmint essential oil.

When using it, I just naturally want to breath the scent in, deeply, and I feel relaxed instantly.   The coarse salt particles also help to give a massage like effect when rubbed against skin.

Last week I took showers mostly in the gym and didn’t bring my scrub with me.    I wasn’t feeling the same level of tenseness-reduction after shower.    That’s the point when I realized how effective the good aroma, or scent, could be, to our inner system.

Now coming to the memories of bad scents. I from time to time would run into someone, who, based on the smell you could tell, doesn’t take shower often or who doesn’t change after sweating in a hot day or in a workout. I needed to control my breathing to a slower motion, and spending longer time breathing out than breathing in through the cycle.

And sometimes the disturbance of breathing comes from supposedly “good smell”. Yesterday I checked out a newly open massage center right next to my residence. The massage lady who worked on me was pretty good, loosened up my tight muscles on my back and neck, and stepped on me to work on my hips and legs.

But I couldn’t completely relax, because of the strong smell in the whole facility. It’s an artificial scent that was strong yet unnatural. I bet the owner intended for it to help the clients enjoy the sessions but what I did was to hold my breath frequently. What’s more, the scent was still with me after I left and returned home, and it was irritating.

I don’t know exactly how scents work through a person’s body but they seem to work in a way that connects the body/sensing, mind, and mood. A popular source of scents, essential oils, are extracted from the plants in the nature, and are known to benefit people for their emotional states and have physically healing properties.

Each person has a different favorite when choosing the scent. But probably the best always imitates what we can experience in nature. For a woman, finding a signature scent for herself to carry (through using the perfume, e.g.) is a fun thing.

I only started to try perfume from a year ago. I had bias against perfume because of the strong scents I smelled from some women I ran into, at the malls or at workplace. There were not natural, but strong, I didn’t like it. Some time ago when a friend put a bit of it on me, I also noticed that over time the smell changes, to less and less pleasant.

It was out of curiosity last year when I was shopping for skin care products I tried samples of some perfumes that are “not cheap”. They felt natural, and after a while the smell didn’t change. More curiosity came after I watched an TV episode on Travel channel, where the hosting lady visited a perfume factory in Europe, and found the one bottle that’s “just made for her”. I was then interested in finding out whether there is one scent for me.

Antonia's Flowers Floret PerfumeI eventually found it and got attached to it. It’s “Floret Eau de Parfum” from Antonia’s Flowers. The creation of this perfume was inspired by a garden with sweet peas, and combined with lily of the valley, marigold, apricot, rose and tuberose. When I smell it, I can “taste” the sweetness, which brings me to childhood memory, when in summer, I and friends liked to pull the tube shaped petals out of Salvia splendens flower, and suck the honey out of them……

Do you have a favorite scent, whether it brings you instant calmness or brings you to sweet memories? If you are a woman, do you have a scent that you feel comfortable to use as your “identity”? If you are a guy, what’s your favorite scent from the woman in your life?