How a scent can trigger a memory

We’re looking at (or rather breathing in) some popular scents that can evoke powerful memories.

If you’ve ever been to Italy or Greece, the scent of lemons might remind you of holidays. It’s also often used in cooking, cleaning and perfumes, so there can be fresh, citrusy reminders wherever you turn – from homemade lemonade and lemon meringue pies to the zesty aroma of roast chicken.

Lavender can make many people think of their grandparents but there’s also a powerful link to holidays in places like France or southern England, where lavender plants are commonly grown. Lots of people find the scent of lavender relaxing, too.

Green scents, like freshly cut grass, often recall sociable summer memories. Many people associate the scent of cut grass with cricket season or lazy afternoons in the sun with family or friends.

Starting at the turn of the twentieth century, there was a trend for using lily-of-the-valley in perfumes which continued until the 60s. So if your mum or grandma are of a certain generation, you might remember the gorgeous scent of lily-of-the-valley from their perfume. Woody scents like cedar, pine or sandalwood tend to be quite masculine – you might think of your dad or uncle, as a lot of men’s colognes from the 60s, 70s and 80s used sandalwood. Pine has a fresh, crisp tone and is often associated with Christmas – so if you have happy memories of festive family fun, the likelihood is a sniff of pine will bring it all flooding back!

Of course, memories are lovely but it’s even nicer to recreate them. And because scent is so strongly linked to memory, it’s easy to do with Ambi Pur with a touch of Febreze.  It works  in two ways. First it eliminates any unpleasant odours, then it replaces these with something altogether more pleasing to your nose. There are loads to choose from too. So if lemons made your mouth water, think about Refreshing Citrus Twist. If Lavender is more your thing, there are three lavender choices, including one – new Moonlit Lavender – specially designed to lull you to sleep. Fresh outdoor fragrances include Bright New Morning, Coastal Escape or the more exotic Himalayan Heights, and White Petals, Thai Orchid or Floral Innocence are just three of a bursting bouquet of florals.

So while we carry on sniffing fragrance samples and remembering the good times, we’d love to hear from you. Which scents have powerful memories for you? Are there any unusual fragrances that mean a lot to you?