EXPERTISE FROM A SELF-CARE SPECIALIST – Samantha Irving, Aromatherapist

Posted by on May 4, 2020 in Self-Care
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I Sense Spring

By far my favourite time of the year, spring brings with it a sense of joy, of wonderment and hope, freshness, warmth and light. We start to feel a little more energized as we begin to emerge from the (often long!) dark depths of winter and shake off the sluggishness that often comes from being cooped up indoors eating heavier foods and enveloping our bodies in central heating.

Spring is a clearing transition and in Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) it’s ruled by the organs liver and gallbladder, which are the main organs needed for cleansing and processing toxins. It’s no wonder then that we feel the urge to detox and eat lighter, healthier foods. As with foods, our other senses start to change and slowly transition into spring-mode.

Winter scents such as spiced orange, nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger start to smell heavier and out of place as our bodies naturally crave lighter fresher fragrances. Now that’s not to say that they weren’t needed over winter; these warming, spicy and heavy scents were the perfect blend for aiding our cocoon-like feeling but now, in a time of spring cleaning and new beginnings, we crave something that brings our bodies and minds back to life.

My spring scent staples are citrus, floral and herby and quite often a blend of all three. Think light fun, fresh scents like mandarin, lemon and bergamot, delicate florals of geranium, chamomile and lavender and zingy herbs such as basil, peppermint and rosemary. I also love to use woody essential oils too like cedarwood atlas and sandalwood and these can be beautifully blended with the likes of grapefruit, bergamot and sweet orange to create a more refreshing, less heady blend.

If you’re going to start your spring clean soon why not add a few drops of peppermint and grapefruit essential oil to your diffuser and see how the mood of the room just lifts? Not only will it change the atmosphere of the room but it’ll also make you feel more alert and focused on the job in hand!

You can make wonderful bath and massage blends by adding a couple of drops of essential oil to a carrier oil such as organic sunflower or sweet almond oil (2-3 drops in a 10ml dilution of oil) My go-to blend at the moment is bergamot, chamomile roman and sandalwood. It’s deeply relaxing but also has a gorgeous uplifting quality to it. It’s also perfect if your body isn’t quite out of the winter hibernation mode yet as it very gently eases you in.

We all have our signature smells that we love and some of us will, for example, stick with the citrus and avoid herbs and there’s definitely nothing wrong with that. What I would suggest though is try a blend and see what you think; you might well be pleasantly surprised. I outright detested basil essential oil when I first smelt it but blended with eucalyptus, black pepper and lemongrass gave it a whole new dimension and it’s a blend I adore. Have fun mixing things up or simply sticking with that one beautiful scent that brings you joy.

Welcome to spring, it seems like the scent possibilities are blooming at your fingertips!

Sam is a holistic therapist based in Beaconsfield, Bucks. She’s a qualified reflexologist, massage therapist and reiki practitioner as well as an aromatherapist. You can find her therapies at www.sjwellbeing.com.

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