We unveil how to experience the dynamism and versatility of nature's rawest materials.
Part of our mission at Poetica is to show the natural richness of nature’s palette and infuse this into daily living. Drawing out this vibrance starts by selecting the raw materials nature avails us: essential oils, the highly concentrated essences of plant cells found just beneath the surface of leaves, branches, peels and petals.
But a rose is not always a rose. The quality of the aromatic encounter depends greatly on the source. The composition of an essential oil's own micro-ingredients is deeply influenced by the region the plant grows in and the health of the local ecosystem, especially soil quality. In our experience, the aromatic essences from plants that are grown in healthy agricultural settings present smoother, fuller-bodied aromas. The mindful distillation of oils, unadulterated processing, and appropriate storage throughout the supply chain also positively influence scent character.
The sensory experience is also determined by the way in which the essential oil’s organic materials move together over time. As volatile aromatic compounds, the captured essences begin to express themselves only once they meet the air, and from there they take their own journeys, dissipating and revealing themselves at different rates and temperatures based on their unique organic structures. This means that the first sniff of a bottle only reveals the opening moves of the scent, and it should be diffused over a longer period to show its full complexity and depth.
Form with function
The thousands of micro-ingredients in plant essences also serve beneficial and nuanced purposes beyond scent – for example, cineole in eucalyptus is believed to contribute to its rich cleansing profile, and linalool in lavender supports relaxation. Different botanical varieties grown in different regions will also have varying amounts of specific properties. Oils become biologically active when the airborne molecules are inhaled, stimulating olfactory nerves which in turn switch on different centers of the brain, believed to influence our health and wellbeing in a myriad of ways.
With these learnings in mind, here's a few of our favorite ways to bring the natural vibrance of pure plant essences into daily life.
Add a few drops of essential oil to bath water, doing so just as you step into the bath to avoid losing the notes to the hot steam too early. Limited time for baths? Place a diffuser in your bathroom to enhance daily shower ceremonies.
Essential oils are the perfect partner for meditation or relaxation practices, setting the mood and acting as a focus point to gently escort the mind back to the breath whenever it wanders.
Add a few drops of essential oil into your diffuser or burner as preferred.
We find water-based diffusers are an optimal match for larger spaces, as the diluted nature of diffusion helps the oil to fill the room and last longer. By contrast, essential oil burners use heat to disperse oil for a more concentrated and subtle experience that also requires more oil to last as long.
We adore burners for smaller, intimate settings, where the flicker of candle light can further elevate the mood of the surrounds.
It's worth noting there may be a subtle differences in the scent experience when oils are heated, which comes down to personal preference.
At the end of the dryer cycle, add a few drops of essential oil to 3-4 wool dryer balls, return them to the dryer, and tumble with laundry for the last 10 minutes of the cycle on the no or low heat setting. In this application, heat can silence the scent.
Further infuse linens and clothes with aromatics by placing a few scented wool dryer balls between pieces in your drawers and cupboards.
You can also add 1-2 drops of essential oils to the water compartment of your steamer or iron. Unlike regular lipids, essential oils do not stain due to their volatile or fast-evaporating nature, though darker oils may leave color deposits – so always check blend transparency.
These are just a few ways we enjoy nature's rawest form of art. To play with essential oils is to discover their myriad of uses in daily life, and we look forward to deeper explorations together with you.