01 Dec A Sucker For Smells
I’ve always been a sucker for smells. I love the way it triggers emotions and memories. Fresh baked holiday cookies at grandma Teetie’s house, the salty smell of the ocean waves on Bethany beach, or cut lilies blooming on the kitchen countertop. There is nothing like our senses to take us back to those beloved things so dear to our hearts.
Like so many in today’s turmoil, I am constantly trying to find the joy in the journey, something, anything to take my mind off my own personal struggles and the struggles of so many as we navigate through this pandemic and its devastating impacts along the way. I grasp at finding personal joy and joy in our business and those we serve.
These tough economic times have made many business owners like mere-evaluate or reinvent how they operate day-to-day. In doing just that, I was reminded of how we began our business and its importance on so many of our clients when we got started. Ironically, we started MaidPure in one of the worst economic times in our nation’s history, the stock market crash of 2007. When we first started out cleaning houses and later thinking of creating an actual business, people said we were crazy it would never succeed. But despite people’s market portfolios plummeting and fears of losing their homes, a clean home felt safe. I think people felt more in control when their homes were decluttered, organized, and clean. As crazy as it is, many clients we asked said they would rather give up their hairdresser than their housekeeper. And so it was; we succeeded when many other businesses failed. I can’t help wonder if our senses and our memories played a part in that success.
When we decided to open up MaidPure, I wanted to create an experience that evoked our senses. I wanted people to touch their bare feet to clean the floor, feel the softness of their clean bedsheets, see how organized their living room was with books perfectly stacked and toys perfectly stored in baskets, hear the misting of the air purifier and diffuser, and smell the organic aromatherapy and fragrant natural cleaning products and taste our fresh baked cookies left atop their perfectly made beds. I wanted to create a housekeeping experience like no other. I guess you could say that passion for smell and desire to take clients back to a happy place still drive our company’s purpose today.
I’ll never forget working with a marketing firm in downtown Charleston and those telling me that when surveying our clients, most if not all said they loved using our housekeeping, kitchen, and bathroom cleaning services because they loved the way the house smelled when we were done. Oftentimes, other people would come in a home when we were done cleaning and when the smell/aromatherapy was fresh, and they would instantly know who had been there to clean.
I have been asked a lot over the past 15 years how we pick our signature fragrances or how they can create the same aroma in between cleanings. Here are some tips to make your home smell magical:
1. Pick a good diffuser. I love all things Young Living (youngliving.com). Their essential oils are the bomb, and so are their diffusers. My personal favorite is the Rainstone Diffuser (it has a remote control which I love). The company has diffusers for everything! They have a ring to put on your light bulbs, one to put in your car; they even have a USB diffuser for your home office.
2. Pick the right essential oils. You want to pick top-grade oils that are 100% naturally derived. You can’t cheap out on essential oils, or you won’t get the same natural vibe you do when you are in a store or at a friend’s house whose smell you also LOVE. I buy most of my oils from Young Living and Whole Foods because I know the quality is good, and I can also sample the smell in the store.
3. Once you have picked the oils you like, you can get creative and mix them to make different blends. I love tangerine and lemon and basil and lavender. There are many different places you can use essential oils. Some of my personal favorite spots; homemade baking soda sachets in clothing drawers or linen cabinets, dabbing on home filters as well as car filters (this is a pro move J), placing a couple of drops behind the toilet, and of course, lavender spray on my pillows before bedtime and room spray before I mop.
4. Candles, candles, and candles. I must have 20 candles all over my house and another 20 in my cabinet as a backup. As much as I am a sucker for smells, I am a bigger sucker for all things candles. Curio/Aspen Bay is my all-time favorite brand. I love the Volcano, and I love all of their designs, especially around the holidays (curiobrands.com). The Christmas selection is so strong and potent you can smell it before you even light the candle!
5. Cleaning Products? Essential oils are, in my opinion, the main reason why natural cleaning products have made such a splash. Don’t get me wrong most people have switched from bleach and ammonia because of the environment and health risks, but who doesn’t love the smell of good/natural all-purpose cleaner? I’ll have another blog on DIY natural cleaners (they are so easy to make!) but for now, I am loving Method and their new colorful product line. They are not only to die for smell-wise, but they are super cute on any kitchen or bathroom sink. Another pro tip, use Mrs. Meyer’s all-purpose concentrate on your floors. You will thank me when you are done!
Okay, now that you know all my personal favs and have a good idea about the power of smells and their triggers on memory which is ready to bake holiday cookies and light up a Frazier fur?