Why Do Scents Matter?

The use and enjoyment of fragrances have endured throughout the centuries, from the rituals of ancient cultures to the diversity of today’s lifestyles. Even today, fragrances continue to play a beneficial and purposeful role in adding to the quality of life— a tradition as old as mankind. A subtle splash of fragrance— when mixed with the power of the sense of smell—can spark cherished memories and a wealth of emotions that can lift spirits, enrich romance, improve one’s mood, and lead to an overall feeling of happiness. Fragrances help make life complete. They highlight the importance of our sense of smell, an often-forgotten human attribute. Like sight and sound, it adds a priceless vibrance to the tapestry of life.

When you see, hear, touch, or taste something, that sensory information first heads to the thalamus which acts as your brain's relay station. The thalamus then sends that information to the relevant brain areas, including the hippocampus, responsible for memory, and the amygdala, the powerhouse of emotional processing. But with smells, it's different. Scents bypass the thalamus and go straight to the brain's smell center, known as the olfactory bulb. The olfactory bulb is directly connected to the amygdala and hippocampus which might explain why the smell of something can instantly trigger a detailed memory or even intense emotion.

Since scents and fragrances are so important, it can be challenging to find a fragrance that most resonates with you or one you could consider your "signature scent". After all, there are hundreds of scents. If you’re not familiar with the different fragrance notes, the process of finding out what scents you like can feel daunting. That’s why it’s helpful to know about the scent families before you start. You have likely smelled each of the scent families at some point in your life, whether it be out in nature, in the kitchen, or elsewhere!

This fragrance classification system was developed by fragrance expert Michael Edwards to help retailers suggest perfumes to consumers more efficiently. Each family consists of a prominent scent, while the subfamilies are blended versions of these fragrances. Scent families are broken up into four main categories: Floral, Oriental, Woody, and Fresh, each with its own subfamilies. A scent family has distinctive characteristics and often individuals will gravitate towards one scent family over another when choosing personal fragrances.

The scents families are as follows:

Floral - Scents that usually smell like fresh-cut flowers or have a powdery note to them. The subfamilies include Fruity (sweet, edible, and tropical like peach, pear, and apple), Floral (fresh-cut flowers — imagine rose and lily), Soft Floral (soft, powdery, and sweet with a hint of cream), & Floral Oriental (florals with subtle spice notes). 

Oriental - The oriental fragrance family consists of rich exotic scents. Scents like herbs and spices or dry, powdery, resin notes. The subfamilies include Soft Oriental (soft, floral notes mixed with incense and warm spices), Oriental (sweet, warm notes like cinnamon, vanilla, and musk), & Woody Oriental (earthy notes like patchouli and sandalwood mixed with spicy and sweet notes).

Woods - Woody scents are usually warm and opulent, mixing incense-like fragrances like sandalwood and patchouli with drier notes like cedar. Notes in this family can be described as coniferous or woody and bitter. The subfamilies include Woods (romantic scents like cedarwood, sandalwood, and vetiver), Mossy Woods (Sweet, smooth and earthy scents like oakmoss and amber), Dry Woods (Smoldering and smoky mixed with leather aromas).

Fresh - The fresh scent family encompasses clean bright scents. Herby, citrusy and oceanic scents all fall into this category. Aromatic, tart notes can also be found mixed with zesty or fruity scents. The subfamilies include Aromatic (clean and fresh herbs mixed with lavender or woody scents), Citrus (zesty or tangy notes like mandarins or bergamot), Water (aquatic scents that smell of sea spray or rain mixed with oceanic notes), Green (smells of freshly mowed lawns and crushed green leaves).

After you’ve decided which scent categories you like best, it’s time to start browsing which fragrance is the perfect scent for you! Finding your signature scent will take time; it's a trial-and-error process that people have been embarking on for hundreds of years. Here at Blunteffects®, we try to make this process as easy as possible by providing you with over 100 different fragrances, including a scent description on each of our products. Consequently, we're confident we have the fragrance for you. Discover the collection here and find scents that bring you joy, trigger good memories, and help you create new ones. 

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