Romancing the Scent

 

flower essenceSeduction by scent is at least as old as Cleopatra, who was said to have scented the sails of her barge with rose water to attract Mark Anthony. Today, Indian women traditionally wear garlands of jasmine flowers in their hair and Mediterranean brides adorn themselves with orange blossoms on their wedding day. Scent has historically contributed to romantic power.

The reason is found in the olfactory lobe of the brain, which is part of the limbic system, the same area that produces sexual desires. It’s why essential oils may be found in health food stores and specialty shops in personalized blends used to scent a room and as ingredients in massage oils and seductive perfumes.

Sweet orange, neroli, rose, jasmine, coriander, ylang-ylang, patchouli, ginger or sandalwood may be selected to enhance the mood of a romantic encounter. If used directly on the skin, essential oils should be diluted in a base, such as jojoba or almond oil. A few drops of these potent oils go a long way.

Adapted from Essential Oils for Body and Soul by Anne Simons.

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