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Jun 30

Travel Tip – Have a Vacation Scent to Help You Remember

Midnight pomegranateYour nose is a good way to make a memory.  Think about it, you walk into somebody’s house when they are baking cookies and you might think of home.  If someone waves a peppermint stick under your nose you might think of Christmas.  It happens all the time so why not give your vacations a scent.  I never thought of this until Karen and my first trip together.  Karen went out and bought shampoo, lotion, and bodywash all of the same scent.  I did not think anything of it at the time.  The scent was Bath and Body Works “Midnight Pomegranate” and it has now become a scent that triggers our memories of the Hawaiian Islands.  We have been to Oahu and The Big Island of Hawaii.  On both trips we have used the same type of shampoo, lotion, and soap, and now about a couple of times a year she will put on some of the lotion or wash her hair with “Midnight Pomegranate” and I am taken back to Hawaii.
Flight to Hawaii

The reason that your sense of smell can bring back such strong memories is the fact that the nose is directly linked to brain’s olfactory cortex.  The olfactory cortex is rooted within the brain’s limbic system and amygdala.  I know… sounds like a bunch of medical jargon, but here is the kicker- it is where emotions are born and emotional memories are stored.  So, create a scent for your vacation and the next time you smell it you will be taken back there.
Schell 2010 Black Sand

Giving a particular area a scent is pretty easy to do.  The next time you are planning a vacation and are out and about getting a few things for the trip, try picking up some sort of soap or lotion that appeals to your nose.  Make sure it is unique, preferably something you have not used before or do not use regularly.  If you go with the same old thing then you will not be able to attach it to your trip you will just be reminded of home, and who wants to be reminded of home when they are on vacation.   Remember not to use that scent very often once you are home, save it for the next time you are in that area.  Or on special occasions when you want to be reminded of your excursion.

Tips for making your own vacation scent work
1. Make sure the scent is strong enough for the your vacation party to smell, some people have stronger abilities to smell things than others.
2. Make sure the scent is unique, not one you already use.
3. Buy different products with the same scent – shampoo, lotion, soap, etc…
4. Use the same scent if you ever go back to that area.
5. Break it out a couple of times a year and let your nose take you back.

top photo via bathandbodyworks.com

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