Our sense of smell can do amazing things. Scents and smells play a huge role in how we process the world. Many have heard of the olfactory response, where a certain smell can trigger a memory. Also, one’s sense of smell is as unique as they are. There are some smells that are universally comforting, but still some people may not enjoy these scents. Our hormones can affect how we process smells as well, making them “good” or “bad” to our nose.
Specific scents have been used throughout history during celebrations, ceremonies, and everyday life. In 2017, the air freshener market was valued at over $9 billion worldwide. So, it’s safe to say that people have enjoyed making things smell specific ways for a long time and are also willing to do so.
Your nighttime routine can also be enhanced by specific smells. There is no shortage of these smells in any grocery store, drugstore, or beauty supply store. Lavender, chamomile, vanilla, jasmine, and valerian are the most common scents that are marketing to help you relax and de-stress. While some of these are more pungent than others (we’re looking at you, valerian), you can often find them combined with other smells that offset the strong scent. Sprays for your pillows, oils for diffusers, and lotions are some of the ways people choose to use these fragrances in the bedroom.
One scent not mentioned above is your favorite scent. Whatever that may be, any scent you love can help you fall asleep. It goes back to the olfactory response of linking a scent to a memory. Usually scents you enjoy will also bring up happy memories, which in-turn helps you relax. Going to your “happy place” is a great stress reducer, which in-turn allows you to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
What are some of your favorite scents to use to promote sleep?