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What You May Want To Know About Bakery Scents

Dawn Mayo

What better way to create a welcoming, cozy atmosphere in your home than to replicate the scent of a bubbling cherry pie, or a fresh cinnamon doughnut by lighting a simple candle? These days, there are many options when you want to fragrance your home without all the sticky mess and hard work of baking! In fact, there is an enormous inventory of sweet-smelling, bakery-inspired products among many candle companies. Maybe a vanilla cupcake suits your mood? Or crisp apple strudel? Cubes or ‘tarts’ of wax that sit snugly (and safely) in a ceramic warming device, are another popular way to diffuse bakery scents throughout the home. Realistic ‘cookie melts’ in delicious scents like oatmeal and gingersnap make a wonderful treats for the home. If the appearance of your scented products matters to you, there are so many sweet-smelling products from which to choose. I love the banana nut bread candles with sweet bananas and sweet bread notes, and it’s only normal that I have to keep myself from licking my fingers when I’m making them!

 Banana Nut Bread Candle

 

Not Just Candles!

Candles aren’t the only place you’ll find delicious home-baked scents; many new perfumes and body lotions also boast tummy-teasing fragrances, and with good reason. Research has found that scent can be a powerful trigger for memory, and in turn can affect our moods. Who doesn’t recall the comforting, inviting smell of fresh bread cooling on Grandma’s kitchen counter? Or maybe you remember that special chocolate cake set down before you on your seventh birthday? Happy memories and our sense of smell are linked. Also, did you know that our sense of smell is necessary for experiencing the flavors of food? Try eating your favorite cookie with your nose plugged. You’ll get texture, but not much else. Without scent, our taste buds can’t recognize flavor differences in food. Even more compelling is the connection between passion and scent. In his book, "Scentsational Weight Loss," Dr. Alan R. Hirsch, MD, explored the connection between scent and weight loss. His findings revealed that exposing individuals to fragrances such as mint, and chocolate chip cookies to “facilitate weight loss”. In a more popular book (affiliate link) by Papel Georgievich, further study on the topic was performed, and Hirsch's book was cited as a reference (amongst many others).

Thinking of testing the hypothesis? The online shop, For Goodness Grape, an Etsy success story, will ship an Almond Biscotti Lip Balm, or a Cake Batter Body Mist to you, no matter where you are in the world. If you really want to indulge yourself, or someone special, we recommend Laura Mercier’s Crème Brulee Honey Bath, a sweet treat for any deserving loved one. At $50+, this treat will be remembered for a long time to come.

 Many bakery-scented beauty products also have mouth-watering design elements. Just have a look at the delectable soap cake pops we found at Etsy’s AJ’s Sweet Soap. Priced at a more frugal $14.50, these soaps will put a smile on any face.

 

 

 

Even hair products and laundry detergents are turning up with bakery-scented fragrances. Bed Head has hair products that smell like candy, while The Tyler Candle Store will give your laundry the smell of warm sugar cookies. Fragrances are readily available in craft stores for creating your own soaps (affiliate link) and scented novelties, making synthetic fragrances a widely available choice for just about anybody

 

Do they smell like the real thing?

How authentic are these bakery fragrances? The truth is that they vary – and the more complex the promised scent, the more room there is for interpretation. One gal’s lemon meringue pie might smell more like dishwashing liquid to someone else. Here are a couple of things to note. Chemically engineered fragrance oils, are in abundance and cheaper than essential oils, and can often give a stronger, and longer lasting fragrance. However, synthetic fragrances can also emit an unnatural, or unpleasantly chemical or medicinal fragrance when not properly used and tested by the crafter or manufacturer. Not properly blending fragrances and testing them can also result in customers ending up with very misleading scents in their products.

 A small word of warning; some people are very sensitive to fragrances and can even have serious allergic reactions, not only to products that come into contact with skin, but also to scents in the air as well. In 2011, the Canadian Medical Association found little in the way of hard science to support claims of extreme fragrance sensitivity, but they do acknowledge that there may be an emotional or neural component that we don’t yet understand, and suggest caution and considerate use of fragrances, particularly in the workplace. A good rule of thumb, in public at least, is to wear only enough fragrance to be detected within an arm’s length.

 

While realtors have always advised home sellers to fragrance their houses with fresh baking on the day prospective buyers are coming, now other industries are following the lead, and using a variety of scent ‘systems’ to infuse their businesses with mood-triggering fragrances. Have you ever noticed the smell of flaky, buttery croissants drifting through a boutique or bookstore? That’s no accident. Marketers know that fragrance can tease out pleasant memories, resulting in more sales. With so many opportunities to experience the pleasures of bakery-scented products, it really comes down to personal preference. You won’t have to look too far, as many major brands including Glade, Airwick, LUSH, and philosophy, now feature bakery scents in their products.  As famous American food writer M.F. K Fisher once wrote: “The smell of good bread baking, like the sound of lightly flowing water, is indescribable in its evocation of innocence and delight...” and now we have even more ways to experience this delight.

 

 


2 comments

  • Yes, Mary. The fragrance oils can be used in a hot water bath as long as it’s watched closely and not left burning when the water has evaporated.

    Dawn Mayo

  • Can your fragrance oils be used in hot water that sits in a kettle on top of my fireplace stove where it gets to the boiling point sometimes? I know some oils are flammable, but I do not know how to tell?
    Thank you so much.
    Mary

    Mary Gingg

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