Valentine’s Day, that annual worldwide celebration of love, comes flirting every February 14th. With countless quixotic novels, sappy romcoms, and office break room narratives to feed the fervor of Cupid’s big day, the romantic hype of V-Day can quickly transform into pressure to show up in new and exhilarating ways.
This year, we suggest you consider inviting an oft-overlooked ally to your romantic rendezvous. Which ally, you ask? It’s right under your nose. Like, literally.
Your olfactory system. More specifically, your sense of smell.
Scents have long been known to trigger emotions and memories. Interestingly, the amygdala (the part of the brain where emotions and memories react to specific stimuli) is directly affected by scents in the world around us. Have you ever smelled something that immediately conjured memories you haven’t thought of in years? Perhaps the cologne of that pimply guy you dated in high school? Or homemade rhubarb pie that shuttles you right back to Granny’s kitchen? Yep. That’s your amygdala at work. And those memories trigger emotions, both good and bad.
A recent study by Rockefeller University showed that participants remembered 35% of what they smelled, only 5% of what they saw, and 2% of what they heard. That makes your nose an Ivy League overachiever compared to its visual and auditory counterparts!
So how does your nose help ramp up the romance this Valentine's Day?
Consider the possibilities. With the subtle strength of an aphrodisiac scent on your side, you have the power to create memories and emotions that will spin circles around past amorous interludes. Here are a few scents to get you started:
Cinnamon—Research has shown that the scent of cinnamon increases physical pleasure.
Lavender—Such a unique scent! Lavender has been shown to both relax and arouse at the same time.
Orange—Research states that orange increases blood flow at a rate of 19 percent, increasing physical sensation.
Peppermint—Several studies found that peppermint increases alertness and skin sensitivity.
Pink Grapefruit—“Studies show that women who wear the scent of pink grapefruit are perceived to be six years younger on average.”
Vanilla—Sweet and invigorating, the scent of vanilla warms the senses and stimulates the brain.
Ginger—Chinese folk medicine claims that ginger is a circulatory stimulant, increasing physical sensation.
Jasmine—A study of fragrances for aphrodisiac properties found that jasmine was the “winner”!
This Valentine’s Day, create a new tradition by engaging the sense of smell into your romantic repertoire. Essence Nose Rings come in many different appealing and stimulating scents, including lavender, orange, peppermint, and pink grapefruit. Your nose (and your beloved) will thank you!