Many people put a great deal of effort into creating a perfect atmosphere for Valentine’s Day. But why not extend these good feelings further, while enjoying love-evoking aromas for a whole week--or more? Apart from the immediate effects of essential oils, scent has the ability to trigger memory. There are some creative aromatic ways to keep the happy memories alive and encourage more to be made.
Essential oils can be used to create a lingering fragrance on linens, clothing, cards and the wrapping or box a gift comes in, too. Along with essential oils, cotton balls, a gallon size sealable plastic bag and/or larger plastic bag with a twist-tie, and a colorful (red, or other) felt square that can be cut into heart shapes will be used.
Fragrant greeting cards: If you have a few days before mailing or giving a Valentine’s card, place the card (include loving follow-up cards for added measure) into the gallon size sealable plastic bag. Take a small cotton ball and place three drops of the chosen essential oil or blend on one side. Insert this into the bag, making sure that the side with the essential oils on it faces away from the cards. Keeping the essential oils away from the paper avoids creating a messy spot, or an overpowering scent. Seal the bag and let the cards absorb the fragrance for a day or two.
Fragrant lingerie: A few days will be necessary to ensure that the aroma will be absorbed by lingerie. For this technique, two or more cotton balls or heart-shaped felt pieces can be used. Add 5 or 6 drops of the essential oil or blend to each and place, essence side up, into the lingerie drawer. Keep the drawer tightly closed when not in use.
Fragrant gift box and wrapping: Add a cotton ball into the empty paper gift box and close the lid and allow the box to infuse with aroma for a day or two. Following the advice above, use a larger plastic bag that you can twist tie closed for scenting wrapping paper.
Fragrant linens: There are two ways to fragrance linens: 1) The same method used for lingerie can be used, but if the linens are kept in a large closet, either isolate them in a large plastic bag with twist tie or create 3 felt hearts and use 10 drops of the essence or blend. Place the hearts as close to the linens as possible, without letting the blend touch the fabric. Towels can also be scented this way. 2) Create a fine-mister spray with distilled water. A one ounce spray can require up to 20 drops of an essence or blend. Shake well and lightly mist the aroma over pillow cases and top sheet, spread or duvet before going to bed. With this method, the aroma will fill the room, as well.
The mister method for linens can be used for clothing, and other fabrics, too. Don’t use the mister method on a fabric that would show water spots, like silk or suede. And it’s important to remember that certain essential oils leave a color behind. Those should not be used in blends that will touch the fabric directly. Patchouli, for instance, is perfect for use in a blend on a cotton ball or felt pad and holds the aroma for a very long time. But it can stain linens, lingerie or clothing if it is in contact. Others that would leave color are sweet orange, chamomile, cedar, rose, jasmine, angelica, yarrow and some spices, like cinnamon. If in doubt, test by putting a drop of the essence on a piece of tissue before using.
Here are suggested blends for all methods:
Cards, boxes, wrapping paper
- 3 drops Rose Geranium*
- 2 drops Patchouli
- 1 drop Rose
- 1 drop Cinnamon
*Rose Geranium is often used to enhance the rosy aroma, requiring fewer drops of the flower essence.
Linens, lingerie, towels, fabrics on cotton ball:
- 4 drops Cedar (Atlas or Himalayan)
- 4 drops Petitgrain*
- 2 drops Neroli
- 1 drop Ginger
1 oz mister linen/fabric spray:
- 8 drops Lavender Spike
- 8 drops Petitgrain
- 4 drops Neroli
*Petitgrain is often used to enhance the aroma of Neroli, requiring fewer drops of the flower essence.