By Siri Kudaravalli,
Certified Natural Perfumer, owner of the brand Xila Apothic and student in Olfaction Training
Based on one exercise in the Olfaction Training Course, my inspiration for the week is from the Mighty Himalayan Mountains in India.
My travels to these Majestic and Sacred Mountains reconnected me to nature. The aroma of pine trees, teak and cedar woods, Birch, Junipers, and indigenous shrubs was enchanting. The same soil smelled different at differently times of the day. Morning dew brought out a different aroma in the soil compared to the afternoon's sun-baked soil.
The stillness of the mountains, the silence and solitude surrounding it calmed my mind and this inner peace sensitised and connected me to smells that would have normally eluded my olfactory sense – of clouds, fog, dew, various smells emanating at different altitudes of the Himalayas ranging anywhere between 1000 to 6000 meters, based on the climatic conditions, soil, water, rocks, flora and fauna.
Some areas had the smell of fresh rain, some grassy, some smoky, some woody, some floral, some fruity, some metallic and that of the local animals at various heights – cows, wild yaks, Himalayan tahrs, marmots, wild dogs and musk deers.
The various lakes at different heights also had their own distinctive smells based on the glaciers they were fed from and the hyperlocal flora & fauna surrounding them.
The trip was a feast to all my senses, but this time I was more attuned to the Olfactory one and discovered novel and wonderful smells. I was thoroughly rejuvenated and enriched by the whole experience and have a new appreciation for the splendid smells the mountains have to offer, which I will delightfully capture in my Creations.
By Creezy Courtoy, IPF Founder and Chair,
Anthropologist, Historian and Olfaction Trainer
No Sense is More Important than the Olfactory Sense!
I really want you to understand that a perfume is not only a smell, it is much more than that and everyone should really know this before learning to become an olfaction trainer, an aromatherapist or a perfumer.
When you smell a perfume:
-going through your brain, it creates memories and sensations.
-it has an action on your nervous system, regulating organs.
-it is also a gas and what we breathe has immediate access to our blood. While penetrating through the thin membranes of our lungs, fragrances and perfumes reach the bloodstream much more quickly than the absorption of matter by the digestive tracts.
-it influences your hormonal system
-it acts on your organs through your nervous system
-in the bloodstream, it participates to the irrigation of your organs
-it can also modify your DNA and your cell's organization
Digestion and the breaking down of solids, like medicinal pills, take much more time reaching the bloodstream, as the absorbed solids must be digested and pass through the thick intestinal wall.
These are the reasons making a perfume or blending essential oils has responsibilities.
When you teach olfaction training, when you train yourselves, when you create natural perfumes or when you blend essential oils, always study the particularity of the oils. Do not use products without knowing their origins.
Olfaction can be dangerous. With essential oils, you can always find data and talk to the person in front of you.
With synthetic substances you have no historical data like we have for flowers and plants. Natural Perfumes are more expensive but it is worth to consider !
Perfume, by simple olfaction, sends messages to the nervous system, especially, to the area called "the big sympathetic" which plays a very important role in the maintenance of the health balance of humans.
The nervous system is the supreme organizer of matter, where life emanates. Its actions spread to all the organs where it regulates the different functions to achieve this harmonious whole that is the human body.
Besides, it assures the defense of the organism in protecting the body from external attacks.
”The big sympathetic” is made of a double chain of joint ganglia, situated at each side of the backbone. From these ganglia emerge many nerve connections terminating at the vegetative life organs: liver, spleen, lungs, heart, blood vessels, etc.
In some regions of the body nerves also form real networks, and insure the communication of the big sympathetic with the central nervous system.
The nervous system presides in exchanges, warns of failings, provides the various organ needs and rescues those that are threatened.
It directs the natural defenders: the white blood cells or leukocytes, also called phagocytes.
The stronger the microbial attack the stronger the defense.
Different conditions, by their suddenness or duration, can cause an abrupt disruption in the balance of the nervous system and also on the entire organism. A failing nervous system can occur in different ways: tiredness, insomnia, unaccustomed emotional stress, sudden weight loss, or an uncharacteristic tendency to exaggerate or discourage. If, at this moment, a bacterial attack occurs, the nervous system would not have the necessary strength to fight it.
Within the nervous system is the autonomic nervous system, which then contains the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.
These two systems are involuntarily, meaning our body does not have control over what it is being performed.
The sympathetic nervous system is known as “fight-or-flight”, while parasympathetic is known as “rest and digest”.
Even though they are different, these systems still work hand in hand with one another to help control the way our body works.
Sympathetic is almost like an alarm clock, as it arouses the body and stimulates the nerves to start working. On the other hand, parasympathetic helps calm the body down, as it brings the body back to its normal state.
Natural essential oils can rebalance your nervous system, therefore it is important to learn aromatherapy and olfaction training before learning natural perfumery.
If you want to learn more about the importance of your olfactory sense, if you want to learn how to train, preserve or restore your olfactory sense, enrol for Creezy Courtoy's 8 weeks Olfaction Course.
THE POWER OF THE RAW MATERIAL AND THE ART OF REDISCOVERING THE ORIGINS OF NATURAL PERFUMERY.