But don’t panic! Luckily, there are some smart cookies out there documenting the real health risks of perfumes (and other scented products with the insidious ‘fragrance’ listed in their ingredients), and they’re asking more questions and giving us more reasons every day to go back to nature and ditch the toxins in our synthetic perfumes. And there are some even smarter cookies (if we do say so ourselves) who are refining and wildcrafting health-giving blends of gorgeous natural ingredients into transcendently aromatic fragrances—so you can benefit your health while you smell like a million bucks.
HOW DOES NATURAL FRAGRANCE IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH?
Smell is an important sense. You’ll probably already know that, when you think of an occasion where you caught just a whiff of a familiar scent on the wind and it took you back to a memory as vivid as the day it happened.
We don’t yet fully understand all the ways different scents impact on our receptors and our brains (including psychologically), but we do know that the impulses they cause can influence our basic bodily functions like heart rate, breathing, and hormone balance. And for as long as we’ve known, people all over the world have been harnessing the aromatherapeutic power of natural fragrance to stimulate the brain’s pleasure centres, to make associations with sleep and positive thoughts, and even to promote synaesthesia and dreams!
Fragrances from natural sources can have a big, positive influence on our bodies.
Researchers have found evidence through medical scans and scientific studies that lavender and jasmine can act as sedatives, measurably inducing calm feelings and promoting sleep. Scents also anchor us into certain feelings and emotions. Smells we associate with home, childhood and holidays allow evocative, comforting memories to be accessed in an instant through a familiar scent. Our brains are so good at creating these links we can even use this to our advantage and encourage access to certain states of alertness, calm or success by practicing associating these feelings to a specific scent. Increasingly research proves ancient wisdom correct showing the natural world to be full of scents that also provide healing and stimulation for our body at the same time. Rosemary improves alertness, apples treat migraines, and lower blood pressure, lemons reduce stress, peppermint improve speed, strength and accuracy, oranges reduce anxiety and cucumber can reduce claustrophobia.