In 2020, our homes have shifted from personal spaces to the centers of our universe. Instead of just being places to rest, they have become multi-purpose destinations to work, learn, educate, and restore ourselves. To make these environments really comfortable, however, it takes more than adding pillows or shuffling the furniture according to Feng Shui. it requires careful consideration of all the senses. Here, experts explain how to center the mind, body and soul by curating spaces and revolutionizing our everyday lives … with a stylish slant, of course.
Setting a positive tone for the day can begin with the smallest of rituals. The sink is often the first stop on our amroutin, and the contents of our medicine cabinets can offer more than just a clear complexion.
“Skin care is actually based on the skin’s response to stress, regardless of the stressor,” says neuropsychologist Sanam Hafeez. “The ritual effect of skin care calms itself down because it cares for itself but contains certain ingredients [like lavender or chamomile] can help calm both the skin and the mind. “Even exfoliating, like a quick buff with an aromatic body scrub or a stimulating dry brush, can evoke the feeling of a fresh start. But finding a morning routine that brings focus isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. It’s about curating your personal oasis.
“You have to find out what appeals to you from a sensory point of view,” says Hafeez. “A visual person may enjoy looking at fresh flowers, or an olfactory person may prefer a candle or a cup of coffee. Proper exercise can wake you up or help you relax so you can work more productively. “Hang a sprig of eucalyptus on your shower head or sprinkle a stimulating spray into the water to transform your morning rinse into a spa-inspired steam session.
If your living room is both your movie theater and home office, preschool, and your child’s nap, changing the code can be tricky. Olivia Jezler, the founder of Future of Smell, says fragrance is a concrete way to invisibly transform a shared area.
“Your space reflects you and your needs in that moment, but think of something that evolves: as the day progresses, there are elements that are accentuated or compromised,” says Jezler, whose company uses scent and technology to transform environments and experiences. “Given that we are stuck in our homes more than ever, this is an interesting way to modulate and change the space.”
The combination of fragrance and function is an easy way to transform a room through any of its endless associations. Beautify cleanliness. For example, after visiting the grocery store, rinse your clothes with a rose-scented detergent or spritz on a woody hand sanitizer. Combine fragrance and design with an incense object. Or light a candle that will take your subconscious to another place: “Add a scented candle that will take you to a beach, in nature or on vacation,” suggests Jezler. “It will make your surroundings look more exotic, change your mood, and help you travel emotionally.”
For a calming afternoon:
Main diffuser in magnolia
Cythera Aromatique room spray
Signature detergent with Rose 31 fragrance
The Laundress & Le Labo
Limited Edition Cheirosa ’62 candle
The Egg Abd el Kader diffuser
Aperitif on the candle terrace
L’Air Barbès Eau de Parfum
If your sleep / wake cycle feels bad and your dreams have been feverishly intense, you are not alone. Don’t let the pressure to get centered distract you. “It can help eliminate the clinging to falling asleep and the drama of tossing and turning,” says Ellen Vora, a holistic psychiatrist who specializes in insomnia and anxiety. “We’re all stressed out from battling a pandemic, so it’s okay that our subconscious needs a little more time to process what we’re going through.”
That said, maintaining a dreamy environment to drift away in can help you readjust. The human body is receptive to contextual cues. At the end of the day, give yourself a series of new glamorous rituals to help the brain understand that it is bedtime. Remember to coat your body with decadent lotion or cover your eyes with a luxurious silk mask.
“Associations are really important, so it’s about making thoughtful decisions about what activities you do in bed,” says Vora. “These things will connect the brain to this space. Create rituals that will slow the body down and help you find the right attitude towards sleep. “Scent is a particularly powerful tool: scents have a direct line to the limbic system, where our emotional states are determined, while images and sounds have to travel through our conscious brain. Pick a fragrance that brings you peace – rose, white musk, or chamomile can do the trick – and vote with candles and hand creams. These tireless sheep never stood a chance.
This story will appear in the Fall 2020 issue of Marie Claire.