Smells Like Sunshine! (Joy in January Project)

There’s no denying that each season has its own distinct smell. In winter, the defining aromas may be of smoke from wood fires, hot cocoa, cold air and, in my neighbourhood, jonquils. In summer, the scents are more lively – maybe the smell of salt air from the beach, citrus trees, iced tea and frangipani trees in full bloom.

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Since this is technically a perfumery blog (of sorts), I’d like to brighten your winter spirits with a little aromatherapy talk.

Whether or not you are a believer or cynical regarding the powers of aromatherapy, everyone would agree that our sense of smell has a powerful effect on our minds and emotions. It has been suggested  that “some benefits that have been linked to aromatherapy, such as relaxation and clarity of mind, may arise from the placebo effect rather than from any actual physiological effect” (, but even if that is the case, does it really matter? Science or no science, we know that some smells just make us feel better.

There have been many clinical trials in which aromatherapy treatment has had a positive effect on patients’ mood, anxiety levels, and even immune system. As part of a treatment regime for depression (including SAD), the benefits of aromatherpy cannot be underestimated. This may include using essential oils in a burner, bath or massage, but don’t forget about the mood-enhancing benefits of your favourite natural perfume!

One Seed Freedom eau de parfum

One of my blog followers commented yesterday that he prefers to wear his favourite summer scents in winter, and what a brilliant idea! Who says you need to get all dark and moody and amberish just because it’s cold outside? Is there any better way to defy the cold weather than in a sillage of citrus and summer blooms?

So put down your wooly blanket, throw open your cupboard and fish out those lively summer scents! The ones with notes of frangipani or pink grapefruit, or cotton candy or salty sea air. Sure, you can embrace the winter. But if that just doesn’t work for you, then defy it!

(Anyone else feel the need to stand up and shout and applaud right now???)


As part of the Joy in January project, we are offering a 5ml vial of both our Frangipani and Freedom eau de parfums each day. To be in the draw, just post a comment or your story in response to this, or any of the other blogs participating (listed below). Don’t forget to include you email and name if you want a chance to win.


34 thoughts on “Smells Like Sunshine! (Joy in January Project)

  1. I like what you said,
    i saw a lady walking by yesterday, she was dressed in VERY bright colors, and many different colors. all those colors were so nice to see
    as part of defying the down effect of winter, I feel it is very important for me to be surrounded by bright colors, not the kind that they die western cultured clothes with, the kind of die you only see on ethnic people.
    in the winter the sunsets are much wilder too

  2. a botanical perfume is an art. a healing art. and it calls to the soul through the body, healing and assuaging as it rushes through the within to answer the without.

    einsof in the sunny but frosted black hills

  3. I love your list of defining scents of the seasons. The winter ones are currently my favorites, but even I can find the appeal in a summery scent in January. Thanks so much for the draw!

  4. I really like your blog post, and it really got me thinking. The idea that scent and wellness are a product of a placebo effect… I agree. Even if one takes a position like that, there’s no denying that everyone reacts strongly to scent; and, if scent is a kind of communication, it should stand to logic that positive communication by scent is as uplifting as getting good news, or hearing someone way that they love us. Few people reach for a bottle of scent or an essential oil when they know they dislike the smell, just because ‘it’s good for them.’ This is an interesting irony I’ve found in so many medicines… people turn to aromas and perfumes because they want to… they are drawn to them, the KNOW they will find something uplifting there. In this way, even at the most basic level, it’s easy to see why people naturally turn to their sense of smell to balance their mood and mind.

  5. I’m standing, shouting, and applauding! I have a bright orange down jacket because I got sick of dragging out my New York standard black coat every winter. I was depressed enough. Now when I put on my bright coat it picks me up a bit. I guess I need to find some bright scents to go with it! lol

  6. I feel the lack of sunshine in the winter and am always looking for ways to lift up my spirit in the dark winter days. And aromatherapy is such a great way to do that. Thank you for the great blog post!

  7. I have always been drawn to perfume as a form of “instant happiness in a bottle” I am very much impressed with Hope. I love what you do with natural essences and would very much love a chance to win Freedom or Frangipani.

  8. This sounds so lovely and I’ve been doing just that applying happy warm weather scents as the warm weather fades away…. although here in N. California they weather is a bit “who knows what it’s going to be like”….

    Thanks for the draw!

  9. Frangipani definitely invokes the sunny rays of Summer! I am going to have to go dig out the little vial I have tucked away now.

    Thanks for the inspiration,

  10. I’m with the other commenter Sujaan about bright colors in the winter! Fragrance-wise I find I sometimes feel compelled to wear a tropical coconut-ty white floral for some scented warmth. Your Frangipani sounds particularly alluring.

  11. To combat winter (and dr visit) blues today I dressed up in a nice dress, got out and was social with friends and strangers alike all day! Looking good, helps confidence, which helps social interactions that make good SAD fighting serotonin 🙂

  12. I’ve found that the best way to counteract the mild winter SAD I experience living in California is with the smells I associate with spring & summer – both the ones from my childhood back east (lilac, violet, mock orange, peony, hyacinth) and the smells I’ve learned to appreciate in later years: vetiver, tuberose, citrus, coriander, lemon verbena, labdanum, sandalwood, and jasmine.

    Your Frangipani sounds blissful – such a complex mix of florals, woods, seeds and resins – and Freedom sounds so cheering and green – I love the combo of citrus, floral and spice. I’d love to try either of them. (My nickname at gmail will reach me if you need to.)

  13. This is such a loving and generous project for all involved – thank you. I use coconut scented body wash and coconut oil in the winter both for my horribly dry skin and for the tropical scent. Keeping pictures of past summer vacations on my home screen helps, too. I also like the idea of wearing bright colors in winter; think I’ll do that today.

  14. Scents have the power of invoking memories and emotions linked to them, even if we can’t pinpoint the exact scent or memory it stirs. I think that using scents we relate to spring, summer or just positive memories is great way of lifting ones spirit in winter or whenever we are feeling down!

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