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The Art Of Smelling

The professional 'noses 'employed by perfumers and essential oil houses go through many years of training before they are able to identify which coponents are in a particular product, but apparently any healthy human nose can be trained to distinguish between 10,000 different aromas.

It does take experience and practice to develop a nose capable of distingushing between essential oils, and determining the country of origin and quality of them but, also, one needs to know something about the art of smelling.

Take an open bottle of essential oil, or perfumer's smelling strip simply a thin strip of blotting-like paper on which a smear of essential oil has been put), in your hand and swing it around in a circle about six inches under your nose.

This creates a vortex, in which the aroma molecules become 'excited and more easily detectable. Then move the bottle or strip, under your right nostril and sniff, and then under both and sniff. When you sniff inhale the aroma so you can fel it, at the very top of your nose, then take it (visually) to the crown of your head, and through the whole body.

To do this, you must have a fully conscious intent about what your'e doing. Really concentrate to experience the aroma. If you do it correctly, you can feel the aroma in the back of the mouth, and feel its effect on the brain. After trying four oils, take a rest from the concentrated sniffing-olfactory overload will reduce the ability to perceive accurately. The smelling strips can be used afterward as book marks or put in drawers to fragrance clothes.

How much?

Less sometimes is best. It is not the case that by doubling a quantity of essential oils being used, double the effect is achieved. Also, If you are looking at a choice of blends in a particular section and you see that the first blend has 30 drops, say, and the second has 28 and the third 26, do not assume that the one with 30drops is the stronger.

Each oil has its own potency, so fewer drops of certain oils may be required in particular blends. Also, when essential oils are mixed with each other, an energetic potency is achieved, through the synergistic effect. If you stick to the proportions used in any one blend, you'll be fine whatever quantity you make up.

Unless you are a qualified practitioner, do not use essential oils neat (undiluted) massaged on the skin. There are a few medicinal circumstances when essential oils are used neat-lavender on a burn, for example - but this is a particular situation.

There is no need to use essential oils neat, on the skin for emotional problems, no matter how desperate you may be feeling. Don't worry - the problem can be sorted out - just be patient and stop panicking! 


There are no hard and fast rules about how long a particular blend or essential oil should be used for a particularly purpose. It all depends on the person, the problem and the root cause of that problem. For the purposes outlined in these paragraphs, try a blend or oil for a couple of days and if it doesn't work, simply switch to another. 

Reference: The Fragrant Mind: Valerie Ann Worwood

Sanctum Raphael Organics


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