Mid-summer days can get really exciting with all the sun. However, we have to be cautious of intense heat waves and heat strokes!! (Especially in Japan now) these words are making headlines in the daily news. Just hearing these words can make you exhausted. We have a tendency to stay inside under the AC, but this will make your internal organs cold and your whole body to weaken, resulting in summer heat fatigue.
The other day, I heard wind chimes at a café I walked into. The sound of the bells gave a pleasant feeling in this hot weather. It’s very important to use your five senses to truly experience the coolness during the sizzling summer. As a continuance of previous blog post of aroma during the rainy season, I’d like to introduce the aromas for the summer season.
Summer Aroma Recommendations
This exhilarating aroma known to be used in gum and candy gives a sensation of freshness resulting in a cooling effect. It relieves any fever and swelling of the muscles. It works on the central nervous system and stimulates inspiration, concentration and memory. Thus, during this hot season when you’re feeling drowsy with the heat, this is the perfect aroma.
It’s scented like lemon and is used in herbal tea. It’s just the smell that is very similar and the actual lemongrass has nothing to do with the lemon family or citrus family for that matter. It’s part of the grass family known as gramineae. It works to stimulate better blood circulation and digestive system. It’s usually used in my favorite food, Thai food, such as Tom Yam Kung. Bugs dislike this scent, which works perfect for outdoors this season!
A very gentle floral scent. It is said to have over 150 different positive effects. Even when you mix it with other aromas, it doesn’t diminish the effects. We can call it the aroma all-star. It has relaxation effects, regulates the autonomic nervous system, relieves muscle and nerve pain, has antibacterial effects, and is good for your skin. It can help your skin after being damaged from UV rays this summer.
It’s so easy to skip bath and just stick with shower during the summer. I’ve always liked taking a bath so it’s become my ritual throughout the year. Let me add that summer baths are the best and highly recommend it!
You’re always under the AC, drinking cold drinks, eating cool food. Although your outer skin layer may seem heated, the inside is usually chilled. By relaxing in the bath tub, it will not only warm up your body but also stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system, which will help with your sleep.
If hot bath is not your thing, you can lower the temperature or do a half body bath. Another suggestion is to add refreshing aroma. You can mix the 3 aromas mentioned above.
If putting the aroma directly in the tub gives skin irritation, you can either blend it with carry oil (mentioned in the previous blog post), or mix it with your bath salt. You can also put warm water in a container and drop the aroma oils in there to enjoy the scent!
Sweat out your fatigue and enjoy the aroma scent, feeling refreshed this summer!
The rainy season is about to start. Although it is said that rain is a blessing, it may become a burden for some as it gets very humid and sticky. You start to feel woozy and melancholy as well.
During times like this, I use aroma therapy to refresh myself. The scent has a huge impact on how our body or feelings react. I’d like to introduce you to some of my favorite oils for the rainy season.
Essential Oil Recommendations
Rosemary has a very sharp, clean scent. Along with loving the name, it is also one of my favorite essential oils. It heightens concentration and motivation. The wooziness from this season will definitely be eased with this oil.
Tea tree also has a very sharp, clean scent. It is said to have a strong antibacterial effect and can be used for cleaning the kitchen and keeping the bacteria and molds away. We also use it in our studio to clean our yoga mats! When you’re feeling down and low, this oil will help.
Lemon has a citrusy, fruity scent. It has an antiviral, antibacterial effect as well as purifying the air. This aroma will help ease your mind.
How to Use
We have all been acquainted with diffusers and aroma light as they are being sold in a variety of stores these days. By using these items, it will help purify the air in your room and prevent bacteria from spreading. Also, during the rainy season in Japan, we hang-dry our clothes inside the house, welcoming mold to grow. The use of these items and oils will remove the unwanted smell of mold.
No worries if you don’t have diffusers or aroma lights. You can also do the following to enjoy the same benefits:
・Pour hot water in a mug and add a few drops of oil
・Add a few drops in you bath
・Add a few drops on a towel or handkerchief and place it next to your pillow before sleeping
When using aroma oils for massage, always dilute them with carrier oils. Carrier oils are derived from vegetarian sources and have a neutral scent. The concentration of essential oil in this mixture should be less than 1%. Jojoba oil and grapeseed oil are a popular choice usually sold in aroma stores.
Aroma and Yoga
You can also enjoy yoga with aroma. Essential oils are made by extraction of flowers, leaves, resin and peels of these plants. It is a blessing of nature. It’s like a form of perfume that people have been using from long ago.
Not only can scents be physically absorbed through the skin or inhaled into your lungs. You can also breathe in and activate the sense of smell stimulating the nervous system and the brain. The body systems such as autonomic nervous system, endocrine system and immune system are affected though the oils and can result in relaxation and balancing of the hormones.
・Do not use undiluted oils directly on the skin. Always dilute them with carrier oils before applying
・Do not apply directly on skin for pregnant women and small children
・Use up the bottle within one year of opening (or 6 months for citrus oils)
You can enjoy aroma therapy by choosing the essential oil that suits your needs or constitution. By blending the oils, there are infinite ways of relishing it. Try finding your combination that best suits you!
Japanese Book 『Aroma de Fuchou wo Iyasu Hon』（Author Miho Sonoda）Daiwa Shobo Publishing Company