Body & Soul: Scents and Sensibilities

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Choose relaxing rose, uplifting peppermint, sensual cinnamon or any of a variety of other scents.

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People react both physiologically and emotionally to a wide variety of fragrances, and these reactions can be put to good use on a massage table.

Here is a brief list of herbs grouped according to the effects associated with their fragrances. These scents may be added to massage oils as essential oils or as fresh or dried herbs harvested from your garden.

Note: Use only pure essential oils derived from plants. Since they are very potent, always dilute them before use. Be especially careful with hot oils, such as cinnamon, clove, ginger and peppermint, as they can burn the skin.

Relaxing:
Lavender
Marjoram
Bergamot
Neroli (orange blossom)
Rose

Sensual:
Cinnamon
Jasmine
Patchouli
Rose
Vanilla

Uplifting:
Basil
Cinnamon
Clary sage
Eucalyptus
Peppermint

Kathi Keville is director of the  American Herb Association and author of 12 books, including Aromatherapy for Dummies (IDG, 1999) and Herbs: An Illustrated Encyclopedia (Friedman/Fairfax Publishing, 1999).

Click here for the original article, Body & Soul: Recipe for Relaxation.