Aromatherapy has been popularized enough that it’s not just the stuff of crystal shop conversation, but what is it really? It draws from long cultural histories of utilizing plant extract fragrances to help ease and modify the nervous system. It’s why spas use diffusers and partially why herbal teas can soothe or energize. But in a busy world, we have some hacks on how to get the benefits of aromatherapy through simple little moments in your day.
4. A morning shower with tea tree or peppermint-scented shampoo to energize.
These two scents are known to invigorate the senses and also leave a clean tingle on the skin. Tea tree extract is known to really clean and rejuvenate, so a good shampoo lather can set you on the right track for the day. They both have a cooling effect, which jumpstarts the body and mind. Peppermint is known to have a slightly sharper scent that awakens your senses and can also be great for clearing any congestion. Some may also just have a personal preference for peppermint over tea tree which can be slightly more on the herbal and astringent side.
3. Light a rosemary-scented candle or take a whiff of the real thing when you need some focus.
Need to crank out that big report or carefully worded email? Rosemary is an herb with extracts known to help with mental clarity. Herbal and fragrant, it sharpens your attention and has an earthy quality. Rather than giving you a full energy boost like peppermint, rosemary gathers your focus and keeps you grounded. You can achieve this focus by lighting a rosemary-scented candle, letting some fresh rosemary simmer on low in a saucepan of water (but keep an eye on that!), or rub the herb in your palms to then cover your nose and breathe in deeply.
2. Soak in a lavender bath or inhale the scent as you lather up with hand soap.
Perhaps the most widely known essential oil, lavender is a recipe for instant calm. It can soothe anxiety, ground your energy, and even ease you into a restful sleep. The herbal scent is distinct and floral. Don’t have the time or a bathtub? Get a mini dose of this when you’re over the sink washing your hands. Mindful moments can be exactly that, a small but enjoyable few seconds of your day.
1. Sandalwood lotion before bed.Nourishing for the skin, this plant extract is also known to induce calm and relaxation. The warm notes have a lulling quality. Derived from trees, it’s no wonder it has a rich forested scent. A staple of traditional Indian and Chinese herbal medicine, it is long thought to help reduce inflammation and muscle tension. Smooth on some hydrating sandalwood lotion, cozy up under the covers with a book, and get some well-deserved rest.
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The TL;DR: Both are good for killing pathogens like Covid-19 so just keep washing your hands for 20 seconds with a good, luxurious lather.
Now, for the rest of the class who’s still here. Let’s dive in.