A beginner’s guide to aromatherapy and basic scents


Anyone who has ever lit a candle knows ­­the power that scent can have on your mood, and while aromatherapy isn’t an exact science, there’s more to essential oils than simply nice scents. They can dramatically change your mood; improve clarity and we use them extensively here at Museo to promote serious relaxation during our signature day spa treatments. So, we are going to share with you today a beginner’s guide to aromatherapy and basic scents to help you get the most out of essential oils and how you can use them to your advantage.


Ready? Let’s go.


What are essential oils

Essential oils are highly concentrated plant extracts that are distilled from the plant matter through different extraction methods, like steam distillation. Popular oils include Eucalyptus oil, lavender oil, and tea tree oil, but believe it or not, there are actually thousands of known essential oils with about 300 available in a commercial way, and all promote a range of health and lifestyle benefits.


Where does aromatherapy come into it?

Aromatherapy has been used for thousands of years to encourage relaxation, healing, a sense of wellness and as part of a beauty routine. When essential oils are inhaled, the molecules rise to the top of the nose and sent through to the olfactory bulb, which acts as an amplifier, through the olfactory nerve into the limbic system of the brain.

It’s about creating a strong experience that triggers a reaction in our limbic system from the scent of the oil that connects to both emotions and long-term memory. How you feel about a scent is deeply personal and can often be brought about because of association.


What Makes Essential Oils Effective?

Some essential oils are soothing, toning, and grounding, while others are energizing, warming, and renewing—but all essential oils are natural. The variety of essential oils allows you to naturally and effectively maintain health and address your specific health concerns.


Different scents can promote different responses in the body and mind –

For easing stress and anxiety: Lavender, cedarwood, lemon, bergamot, orange, and sage and chamomile.


For skin care: Lavender, carrot seed, rose, rosehip, frankincense, geranium, tea tree, ylang-ylang, and patchouli.


For cleaning: Eucalyptus, pine, and lemon.


For a pick-me-up: Lemon, orange, grapefruit, rosemary and peppermint.


For muscle tension and inflammation: peppermint, eucalyptus, chamomile, Myrrh and rosemary


For immune-boosting: Lemon, lavender, tea tree, eucalyptus, oregano, thyme, orange, and cinnamon.


These are just general recommendations though. Often our clients come into Museo with a memory of a particular smell, like their mum always using lavender oil at home, that they find particularly relaxing.



How are essential oils used?

Essential oils can be used from your diffuser to your cleaning products and depending on which oils you choose they may be more suited for some applications over others. I love a bit of lemon essential oil + white vinegar for a simple surface cleaning spray, but that’s definitely not a scent I want to be incorporated in my beauty treatments, for instance. Adding eucalyptus to a steam inhalation if you’ve got a cold or flu is a great way to clear the sinuses and flush out your nasal passage, but hardly relaxing or calming. It’s all in choosing the right scent for the right moment in my mind!


I ensure when flying that I take On Guard with me, which is a mix of Wild Orange Peel, Clove Bud, Cinnamon Leaf, Cinnamon Bark, Eucalyptus Leaf, and Rosemary Leaf/Flower essential oils. I make the family inhale through a tissue as we hop onto the plane to protect against environmental pathogens and seasonal cold and flu threats in the cabin and a little dab under the nose throughout the flight works well too.


At Museo, we use essential oils to create your own distinct blended scent that guides you through your treatments with us. By associating a gorgeous blend of oils with a relaxing treatment like our Aromatherapy Massage, you create a connection between that scent and relaxing, gorgeous treatments – which allows you to then replicate that relaxed feeling at home when you smell that same scent. Our Mindfulness Facial starts with a scent journey, suiting your mood for the day and follows with guided meditation paired with the senses for a deeply relaxing experience. Your Museo Wellness Warrior will sit with you and guide you through a range of scents to find the ones that encourage a relaxing and restorative feeling in you and use those throughout your treatment. Whether it’s in an aromatherapy massage, candle meditation, or mindfulness facial, we will use these powerful scents to create a truly sensory experience for you.


If you could use an escape and a moment to yourself, now is the time to try an Aromatherapy Massage or Mindfulness Facial with the Museo team. We are ready to whisk you away from your day-to-day and take you on a sensory journey that is all about you and reducing stress and exhaustion. Book your appointment with us online and come ready to be transported into a space of deep relaxation. We can’t wait to welcome you inside Museo.