A sweet-smelling home just lifts your spirits as soon as you walk in the door. Although aroma is not always top of the priority list when it comes to creating a welcoming home, it’s something we instantly notice when things don’t smell quite as sweet.
Fresh coffee or vanilla are often recommended by estate agents to appeal to buyers looking around a property. Supermarkets use the psychology of smell to waft the scent of freshly baked bread over you as soon as you walk in the door. It gives the impression of home-made food, encouraging you to feel a little hungrier and maybe spend a little more.
There are simple ways to make your home smell good but the simplest is the most effective. Just open the windows to let fresh air in and stale air out. Then you can add your favourite aroma to create the perfect ambience. Some of the top hotels and spas have a certain fresh fragrance that instantly creates an impression of luxury.
Professional beauty therapist, Jenny Brown, recommends using similar products at home such as those from Temple Spa. The range is only available to buy through Harrods or directly from spas or independent consultants but it’s widely used in hospitality. The Temple Spa range was founded in 2000 by Mark and Liz Warum in Littlehampton and the Sussex brand has since spread across the UK and beyond.
“Everyone has certain scents they’re drawn to,” says Jenny. “Some people feel very strongly about others, for example, lavender which they love or hate. Personally, I love it but I know it’s not for everyone. There are so many scents to choose for your home to reflect your personal style.
For that sense of a luxury spa at home, choose a slight Mediterranean essence with relaxing, aromatic scents. In my treatment room, I use the “Siesta Forever” aromatherapy range which is infused with a blend of essential oils that includes chamomile, geranium, frankincense and a hint of lavender. One of my clients recently said that she instantly relaxes as soon as she walks in because of the aromatherapy smell. It’s about the strength of feelings or memories that scent evokes. They really can have physiological and psychological effects so it’s worth taking the time to find the ones that suit you best.
If you’re working from home, though, you won’t want anything too relaxing by your desk, so choose a more stimulating scent, such as peppermint, ginger, citrus or bergamot. These are among the essential oils used in the “Light my Fire” candles which are made with natural wax. Temple Spa doesn’t test on animals and has a high level of natural ingredients to create its spa strength formulas. Even an unlit aromatic candle will still release a light scent. Once lit, it gently diffuses the scent into the air so choose good quality candles that burn evenly and slowly for around 45 hours,” says Jenny.
“For those who don’t like to burn candles or who want to layer the scent, a reed diffuser is an ideal option. They work especially well in smaller rooms such as bathrooms or studies, whether you choose a fresh, floral smell or something more woody and calming. There’s no need to use more than five sticks in the diffuser at a time and turn them every few days to refresh the scent. It’s worth paying a little more for a good quality reed diffuser as it will be releasing its fragrance into your home for much longer.”
“A third option is a room spritz,” adds Jenny. “It’s something I spray into the air and let it settle, or you can mist a relaxing scent over cushions when it’s time to chill out or straight onto pillows to aid sleep.”
Jenny has used the Temple Spa skincare range in her treatments for 10 years since she started up her own business, Pinks Beauty Therapy in Maidenbower.
“It was always my dream to be an air stewardess which I was lucky enough to do for more than seven years. I then took a number of courses in beauty therapy, working at Alexander House in Turners Hill where we used Temple Spa in our treatments. When I set up my own business, I knew I wanted to use the range. There are hundreds of products with different scents and textures so there’s plenty of choice to suit everyone and I’ve never looked back.”
To create your own small “spa at home”, Jenny suggests first choosing an area where you feel most relaxed and then enhancing it to achieve a comfortable, calm environment.
“It may just be a corner of the living room or the bathroom, it doesn’t have to be a large area. For me, it wouldn’t be the kitchen as I don’t like cooking and it’s such a busy area, so when I want to destress from a challenging day, I’ll just go into my beauty treatment room and take a couple of deep breaths to take in the aromatherapy scent. Once you’ve chosen your spot, add favourite cushions or blankets and a relaxing scented candle. A houseplant or two is a good idea as they add colour, reduce anxiety and clean the air.
You might like to have some spa or classical music playing gently and turn the lights down low. Finally, remove distractions. Put your phone somewhere else for 10 minutes and take the time just to sit and relax. Even a short break in your own spa area feels like genuine downtime, so you’re refreshed ready to get on with the rest of your day. If people could do this every day, they’d feel so much better. It’s very grounding to do nothing even for just a few minutes and wellbeing is something we all need to be mindful of these days.”
Siesta Forever candle, up to 45 hours burning time £25
Light My Fire candle, up to 45 hours burning time £25
Keep The Peace diffuser £40
Quietude spray £25
Contributed by Bridget Cordy.