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How fragrance zoning your home can boost your mood, focus and energy

Enhance your interior space with the ultimate guide to fragrance zoning with expert tips from perfumer Ruth Mastenbroek


Our sense of smell intrinsically links to our emotions and memory, so implementing fragrance zones within our homes, depending on how we want to feel, is incredibly empowering. Fragrance zoning is the term coined for using different scents for different parts of your home or moments of our daily life. Creating your own aromatherapy scent scape enables you to manipulate your journey throughout the home and, by allocating different scents across different “zones”, you can influence mood, poductivity and even your emotional state.  


In her book, The Scent of Desire: Discovering Our Enigmatic Sense of Smell, Dr Rachel Hertz explains how scent has “the ability to alter our emotions and moods more than any other sensory experience" because of "the unique connection in the brain where scent, emotion, memories and associations are processed.” 


So, it's fair to say implementing layered scents within the home, when composed correctly, can play an essential role in setting the ambience whilst also boosting personal wellbeing. With the help of expert perfumer Ruth Mastenbroek, here are our top functional tips for how to fragrance zone your home along with some specific scents to perfectly layer each zone to make each day more intentional and mindful.   


Rise and shine  

The moment we wake up, our brains activate, including our sense of smell. Enhance your morning routine by including an electronic diffuser set to infuse your bedroom with a cascade of scents. Opt for “zesty citrus oils like sweet orange and lemongrass oil to stimulate the brain and kickstart your day,” explains Mastenbroek. The spicy yet sweet fragrance of sweet orange boosts your mood and energy levels for those foggy early mornings when you need a little stimulation and motivation.  


Bathroom routine 

An obvious choice for your bathroom would be to add a candle or room spray, but fragrance zoning can come in all forms. “Perfumers have long tried to create fragrances that don't just function as a nice smell, but also fragrance the room while using it – like a shower gel fragrance that is invigorating,” says Mastenbroek. Fresh scents like peppermint in the forms of body lotion, hand soap and shower gel can enhance memory and stimulate increased alertness, according to a recent scientific study 


Alternatively, when looking to wind down in the evenings, it's best to incorporate bathroom essentials that contain lavender oils and woody fragrances to clear your mind for a restful night's sleep. The Ritual of Jing Shower Oil is the ideal accompaniment during your warm evening bubble bath or hot shower. 


Feel energised 

Our energy levels have peaks and dips throughout the day, making it essential to nurture our energy through scent naturally. You can sharpen your mind and enjoy a concentration top-up with eucalyptus, an aromatic tree oil. Eucalyptus oil is known for energising and clearing the mind, according to a 2017 study. “To make your fragrance zone even more effective, it is possible to layer two fragrances by lighting a candle whilst also incorporating a diffuser within a home office space,” says Mastenbroek. Try an uplifting eucalyptus-scented candle with rosemary too, known for its memory boosting benefits, the scent will assist you in powering on through the long working days with the unique layering of two scents. You can always compliment it with The Perfume Genie 2.0 electronic diffuser.


Cherish memorable moments 

Mastenbroek notes how “as humans, we subconsciously associate the scent in a room and the memories we create there. Of course, the choice of fragrance is key and is very personal". We all have those lingering fragrances we can't forget; it may be the seasonal smell of autumnal leaves, friends cooking or a mother's perfume. A study concluded how scent-triggered memories are more evocative and emotional than recollections induced by other sensory stimuli, such as sight or sound. Scents focused around communal areas where memories come to life, such as a sitting room or kitchen, should be memorable and everlasting. Sandalwood is a perfect option. Prized for its woody scent, it symbolises the stimulation of consciousness and will ignite joyful moments within the home. To consistently enhance the living space opt for a diffuser with a refillable design, The Ritual of Happiness Fragrance Sticks are ideal when regularly hosting to give you that consistency in the most popular zones within your home.  


A daily dose  

Entryways are always tricky when creating a fragrance zone. However, they are essential as they have the most footfall and are the first and last space you use daily. Whether your entryway is big or small, a room spray is a universally good investment in fragrance zoning. The sensual notes of patchouli, with musky, earthy tones, can instantly switch up your mood to make you feel completely at ease whilst also creating a uniquely invigorating scent within the home. Spritz The Ritual of Oudh Parfum d'Interior to give your entryway an inviting ambience you won't forget.  


Wind down  

Flood your bedroom with the calming scents of jasmine and lavender to relax your nervous system and ease a busy mind before sleeping. This fragrance zone is all about letting go of the day's activities and unwinding your rushing thoughts to create the perfect sleep sanctuary. A pillow mist is ideal for creating a fragrance zone within the bedroom. Before carrying out your daily skincare routines or brushing your teeth, spritz a lavender-based pillow spray such as The Ritual of Jing Pillow and Body Mist onto your pillow and bedding, this will allow the mist to permeate your bedroom substantially. Alongside this fragrance, jasmine encourages relaxation by stabilising centre nerves and removing the feeling of stress, making it the perfect pairing with lavender. Try the Private Collection Sweet Jasmine mini fragrance sticks.


As you can see, fragrance zoning is an easy way to create scented areas within the home to help you get the most out of every moment.   

Emma Becque

Emma Becque is our in-house editorial writer from the UK who made the move to Amsterdam after working for Condé Nast, The Telegraph and many art publications in London. With a love for writing about all things wellbeing and interiors, she is delighted to be part of the Rituals family, where she comes up with innovative ideas and informative articles on how to live your best life through The Rituals Art of Soulful Living.