Welcome to the Scented Company Aromatherapy Series.  On select Sundays, we will post blog entries about specific natural scents and their health benefits. We would like to start our first entry with some education and a quick disclaimer. Aromatherapy is the practice of using fragrant oils for therapeutic benefits. When inhaled, scent molecules travel from the olfactory nerves directly to the brain and especially impact the amygdala, the emotional center of the brain.

Holistic aromatherapy promotes the use of natural ingredients. As such, candles made with components that emit toxins when burned (e.g. paraffin wax, toxic fragrance oils, lead-core wicks) are not suitable for aromatherapy. Most aromatherapy research focuses on essential oils–compounds that are derived directly from their plant source, often through a process of extraction known as distillation. We at Scented Company use various essential oils, such as lavender, neroli, bergamot, and nutmeg in our fragrance blends. We also use all-natural fragrance oils as well as premium grade fragrance oils that contain synthetic properties. Premium grade fragrance oils have been thoroughly tested and met all criteria for IFRA’s standards of use in skin and body care applications, including direct topical use. During our fragrance design phase, we took extra steps to ensure that all of our oils, from essential to premium grade fragrance oils, would seamlessly blend together and would not emit toxins when burned. We are proud to say that our candle products are safe for routine use and exposure, including aromatherapy. However, the jury is still out on whether the benefits are as significant with candle aromatherapy as they are when the oils are diffused.

Now let us talk about our first fragrance, lavender. The name of this plant derives from the Latin root “lavare,” which means “to wash”. Its first recorded use was in ancient Egypt during the mummification process and, later on, as a bath additive in many regions of the world. Many ancient cultures believed that lavender could purify the body and mind. Lavender also has a long history in herbal medicine and has been used for centuries to address anxiety, insomnia, headaches, hair loss, acne, skin irritation, and nausea. Its most commonly used for aromatherapy, where lavender has been shown to help promote calmness and reduce stress, anxiety, and even mild pain. It is a great soothing fragrance but be advised that some people are allergic to it. If you are interested in trying one of our products that contain lavender essential oil, check out Storm, Honey B (Nature Collection), or Jam Session (Lifestyle Collection).