The power of scent

19 Jun

They say that your sense of smell is the sense most closely related to memory. It’s truly incredible how a smell can take you back to a place and time, even more than a great song on the radio. (There are certain colognes I will forever and always association with a boy or two from my past. It’s eerie.)

So last night, I’m perusing a local Victoria’s Secret for some Semi-Annual Sale madness. I picked up some completely unsexy but wildly comfortable undies and then made a beeline for the beauty section, turning into a crazy person as I tried to smell everything.

When I picked up this small body spray called Sheer Love, it was like entering a time warp. The scent is very feminine and floral. It says it’s made of pink lily and cotton (it could have said it’s made of Rice Krispie Treats and garlic, I can never tell!)

This travel-size spray is $4 on the site. I got mine for $2. Score!

The scent transported me back to sixth grade. I was at the mall with two friends, Halina and Katie. We walked into Bath & Body Works, a store I had never stepped foot inside. And immediately my little 12-year-old mind was blown. I had NO IDEA stores existed where you could by nothing but lotions and potions that smell good. Hell, I had no idea that kind of lotion and potion even existed!

For the first time in my life — but not the last — I turned into that crazy person who tries to smell everything. And I came upon a lotion that Bath & Body no longer carries, something with a talc in it. It was insanely soft, and I loved the feel of it on my hands. I only had like $5 on me, so I put it down.

That’s precisely when Katie offered to buy me the lotion. I didn’t know her too well — we were both friends with Halina — and I told her no way, she didn’t have to do that. She picked it up and bought it for me anyway, and I was insanely giddy at my new purchase.

This new body spray has something in it that the talc lotion from 17 years ago had, I’m sure of it.

What scents take you back?

OK, naturally I turned to Google to see if I could figure out what that Bath & Body Works lotion was. It was called liquid talc, and I think the scent was Flowering Herbs. It had to have pink lily in it. I can’t find a photo that’s larger than an inch across.

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6 Responses to “The power of scent”

  1. PhaseThreeOfLife June 19, 2012 at 11:44 am #

    I love how smells can take you back! Actually, I totally have a suggestion for you for your wedding. When I was engaged, I read somewhere that you should buy a brand new perfume to wear for the first time on your wedding day. Years and years from now, that scent will always take you back to that day. I did this and then brought the new perfume with me on our honeymoon and wore it the whole time we were there. I now only wear it once in a while for special occasions, but every single time I put it on, it transports me back to Cabo.

    • Jaclyn June 19, 2012 at 11:47 am #

      Oh, my gosh, I LOVE THIS. What a fantastic idea! I got a sample of Miss Dior in my last month’s Birchbox and fell in love with it. I don’t like spending that much on perfume though. Soooo … maybe I splurge and make it a wedding scent. Hmmmmm. Does it matter if maybe I wore the sample a few times?? Will that break the test?

      • PhaseThreeOfLife June 19, 2012 at 3:05 pm #

        I think it will still work if you only wore it a few times. Just don’t wear it again until that day. Or wear it just for all wedding-related events (rehearsal, ceremony, honeymoon). I bet it will work. If not, you still got to spoil yourself with a pretty perfume. Win-win!

  2. meranduh June 19, 2012 at 12:31 pm #

    “Blushing Cherry Blossom” from Bath & Body Works. My favorite scent ever. It’s so soft and girly, floral without being overwhelming. I’m super sensitive to scents and a lot of B&BW products give me a tummyache they’re way too strong or the wrong kinds of notes. (Gardenia or Vanilla, for example, make me physically ill.) Their regular cherry blossom scent is, meh, nothing special. And their Japanese Cherry Blossom scent is way too strong. But Blushing Cherry Blossom smelled like neither and was perfect for me. Plus, I was wearing it as my main lotion/fragrance when I started dating Ryan three years ago. I remember reading the back of the bottle one day and it mentioned it “smelled like falling in love” or something along those lines, and that totally represents that period in my life. Then, they discontinued it a year or so ago. It’s like $40 for a bottle of lotion online on ebay. 😦 I still have it as a perfume with some left that I conserve for special occasions or when I really miss the smell, but I had used it as my body wash and regular body lotion for several years. It definitely takes me back.

    Another “takes me back scent” is this really gooey strawberry lip balm in a plastic twist-off jar that my mom bought me at CVS when I was about 12. I have no idea the brand, so haven’t been able to find it. But every now and then something will have a whiff of that strawberry scent and take me back to childhood.

    Finally, a perfume called Jontue. It was the only perfume my maternal grandma ever wore and she was always wearing it. It’s a beautiful, mature scent. It smells like grandma (who died about five years ago) to me.

    Thanks for the jog down scent-memory lane 😉

    • Jaclyn June 19, 2012 at 12:36 pm #

      I totally remember Blushing Cherry Blossom!! That was my fav of the cb scents there, too. I found a bottle of the lotion at an outlet like a year ago and I’m totally still using it. I don’t understand why the two cb scents they still have are so yucky.

      If you like light, floral scents, I do recommend some of the floral ones at V’s Secret. Especially in the body sprays, a lot of them are very light.

  3. Rebecca June 20, 2012 at 4:23 pm #

    I had a totally random bottle of lotion that did exactly this! I was cleaning out my bathroom one day and found a little dab of lotion left in the bottle, and it was unbelievable–I was sitting in front of my computer with my little sister singing our hearts out to the Beatles. I could actually remember the feel of the chair underneath me. SO weird!!

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