The Secret Of Scent

THE SECRET OF SCENT

Today we are turning our attention to Summer, it is filled with wonderful fragrances, each one imbued with the ability to transport us back to sun-filled days and hedonistic relaxation. Even if being a grown up now means the endless summers of youth are distant, wonderful memories and sunny days are now just warmer work days, and living for the weekends of summer fun activity, we can still fill our homes with those fragrant reminders of freedom thanks to these summery scented candles.

Any true candle lover knows that lighting up is a year-round addiction. During the summer months, we switch from cosy fragrances to bright scents that bring the feeling of sunshine into our homes. From fresh citrus to the clean smell of sea breezes, candles are a great way to refresh your indoor spaces, even on the muggiest days.

It is incredible the power fragrance has on us, it can transport us directly to a memory, a moment, a person in an instant exactly the way music can take us back in time.

But why does this happen?

The answer is due to brain anatomy. Incoming smells are first processed by the olfactory bulb, which starts inside the nose and runs along the bottom of the brain. The olfactory bulb has direct connections to two brain areas that are strongly implicated in emotion and memory:  the amygdala and hippocampus. Interestingly, visual, auditory (sound), and tactile (touch) information do not pass through these brain areas. This may be why olfaction, more than any other sense, is so successful at triggering emotions and memories.

Unlike animals, we humans have evolved to rely most on our sense of vision—but your sense of smell may be more important than you think. I hope your summer is full of good smells, good feels, and good memories!