Many people don’t realise how powerful aromatherapy can be. You may be thinking aromatherapy is like folk medicine, and not backed by science. However, many studies have shown that certain scents can activate parts of the brain which make us happier, more productive, calmer or trigger certain memories. So, finding the right scent for the job is a must, this is where scented candles come in.
*There has been some concern recently about the ‘toxins’ paraffin candles release when they burn. Choose candles made of soy or beeswax which burn more cleanly, and you’ll be all set*
Be more focused
Surrounding yourself with candles while you work can actually increase your focus and make you more productive. If you’re working on a project, studying or really need to get something done look for the following scents:
Have you ever been out and about and caught the scent of a stranger’s perfume, the smell immediately made you think of a specific person or time & place? Well, we can use the link between smell and memory to our advantage. If you’re having a bad day try lighting a candle which smell reminds you of a happier time. There is a particular body wash that my partner uses, every time I smell it, I’m reminded of our trip to Spain and instantly feel a smile creeping onto my face.
You can also create new behavioural patterns using this link. Pick one of the scents above and light it when you sit down to work. After a while, both the act of lighting that candle and the smell will tell your brain it’s time to focus! I currently have some cinnamon candles leftover from Christmas on my desk, the ritual of lighting them before sitting at my PC really helps me get in the mood to be productive.
Boost your mood
Some scents have been shown to increase feelings of happiness, reduced symptoms of anxiety and depression and even boost your immune system! Try:
Relieve stress & aid relaxation
And when the work is done, the kids are in bed and its time to relax, there are candles that can help with that too! When we imagine a relaxing night in or a soak in the bath we often imagine being surrounded by candles. The soft glow emitted by candles mimics the low light of the sun setting and tells are brain its time to start winding down. A lot of people, me included, also find the flicker of the flame to be soothing and can help you focus on the present (being more mindful can help you reduce stress levels). I’ve listed some relaxing scents below. So, grab a cuppa, light a candle or five and bring on the #hygge
Why not make your own? You can buy candle making sets with everything you need to get started. You can buy special oils to scent your candles, and dye to make them any colour you want. Making your own candles may be a cheaper alternative to buying them, plus it’s a fun relaxing activity that’s so satisfying because you get to use the end product!
If making your own candles is not for you, Amazon has a fantastic selection. One of my all-time favourites for relaxation is Woodwick Fireside. This candle smells like bonfire smoke, the smell combined with the crackling wooden wick makes me feel super relaxed. Or you could go one step further and buy a scented oil diffuser. These little machines are sometimes heated with a tealight underneath the bowl of oil which helps the scent diffuse throughout the room, but plug-in diffusers have become more popular recently. Some even look very pretty and you can choose one that fits in with your home décor!
Have you bought any candles lately? What’s your favourite scent? Let me know in the comments.