Monthly Archives: February 2020

SYNESTHESIA: What it’s like to smell colours?

Imagine taking a sip of regular Cola, you experience a purplish fuzzy felt. Or imagine seeing a city’s skyline and you taste marshmallows.

If you have experienced this joined perception of your senses simultaneously, it basically means you might have synesthesia. This condition is when an individual experiences one sense simultaneously perceived by one or more additional senses. To better illustrate, a synesthetic person might see the word door to be in the colorred or the number 9 to be in color purple. Any combination of these senses – like touch, smell or sight – is possible.

Image result for who is lorde

Lorde – a New Zealand singer and songwriter – recently raised awareness on synesthesia, which inspired to the birth of her new album called Melodrama. She reported that a particular color flashes into her mind when she plays a note on her keyboard.

The different types of synesthesia vary from Grapheme-colour synaesthesis (seeing letters or words in colour) to the more unusual Lexical-gustatory type (tasting words).

What is the cause?

Synesthesia is said to be a result of crossed-wiring in the brain. Scientists believed that crossed connections exist in the brain of everyone since birth but are then refined. This process is called Axonogenesis, which is a process that allows brain cells to wire to their counter parts. The hypothesis remains that these cross connections are normal in children, however adult who have synesthesia may simply have maintained the crossed connections as they grow old.

40% of individuals with synesthesia are related to a relative who has the same condition. Hence, scientists hypothesize that synesthesia is genetic as there is a solidarity on the genetic conditions of these people. Studies have found that families with synesthesia have different DNA variations but they all had enhanced genes involved in cell migration and axonogenesis. Hence, the result eventually proves that genetic transposition can alter and buffer our sensory experiences.

Unisex is the new Black

It is undeniable that unisex trend has been growing for a while now. Starting off with CK One by Calvin Klein in 1994, the fragrance industry began distancing itself from the 2 extremes of gender and approached the neutrality instead. But even after that, certain fragrance notes tend to remain gender-specific (floral being feminine, fougere being masculine, etc.) Many brands and perfumers have attempted breaking the pattern, but it is not an easy task to change the stereotypes that have been ingrained in the minds of consumers whether subconsciously or not.

If you take a step back from the unisex wave, perfumes were essentially made for women back in the 19th century. In France, the bourgeois men consisted of 2 types: businessman or dandy. The dandy ones had refined tastes in styles, which led them to use perfumes which were actually meant for women. For instance, Jicky by Guerlain was a popular choice among men. Only in 1934, Caron, a French perfume house, released the first ever male fragrance in history, named Pour Un Homme (meaning ‘for a man’ in French). This was the start of the perfumes for men, and intentionally or not, the segregation of perfumes in gender-specific manner.

Calvin Klein’s CK One was definitely a sensation with its provocative campaign images and marketing movement, becoming the bestselling perfume in US in the mid- 1990s. The concept was clearly embracing both genders, with its citrus top notes, floral middle notes and amber-musky base notes. The scent itself is not anything crazy, personally. However, it is indeed magical that it goes well with any sort of gender orientation.

Fast-forwarding to the current generation, many unisex perfumes have been released to date. Well-known brands like Jo Malone, Diptyque and Le Labo focus on creating fragrances that are wearable regardless of the gender or age. More established and fast-commercial brands like Estee Lauder, Lancome, Givenchy, Giorgio Armani, Dior, Chanel and Guerlain release unisex fragrances from time to time but are still more inclined to target a specific gender when promoting their fragrances. When such huge players act on the market, stereotyping seems unavoidable. Majority of fast commercial perfumes are still labeled and classified under their respective gender which is like a glass wall, something that the contemporary indie brands are attempting to break down.

It is also an interesting point that women are more willing to explore male fragrances. For instance, Eau Sauvage of Dior, supposedly men’s fragrance, gained more popularity among women since its release in 1966. Not only that, albeit it differs from region to region, women generally use or purchase fragrances more frequently than men. Naturally, fast commercial brands target the more lucrative audience: the women.

Nonetheless, with the rise of metrosexuals and acceptance towards such lifestyles, more unisex products are expected to be released into the market. However, the movement to completely neutralize the gender-specific industry like fragrances are yet to be known if it is going to be successful, with its history of being female-centric, and the long-established belief that fragrances are too ‘feminine’. From a personal standpoint, such cultural aspect should be questioned and altered before the true unisex fragrance market can rise.


Smell Good, Feel Good?

There’s something about scent that can be a real game-changer. Amongst many other functions, fragrance has the ability to elicit varying emotions. Harnessing the same effects of dressing up all snazzy for a night out or listening to an upbeat tune, smelling certain scents can inject a boost of confidence to your state of mind.

Here are some scents that can power up positive vibes.

  • Citrus: Spry and energetic, citrus notes can put you in focus mode. It will help perk you up and be more alert, while counterbalancing fiery emotions. Such notes can zone in on mental clarity and lift professional confidence.
  • Oriental: Sensual, spicy scents of oriental origin can help to give off a seductive air around you. Notes of patchouli, vanilla and frankincense are warm and alluring, elevating your attractiveness from the inside out.
  • Minty: Cool as a cucumber, minty smells can leave you buzzing with energy and stimulate clarity in thought. This is due to the menthol in several mints like peppermint, which create a cooling, anti-fatigue sensation that will enliven your mood.

However, it needs to be said that every “confidence-boosting scent” is very much like a glass slipper— there’s no one-size fit all. Fragrance is a personal ritual, intimately-knit with each individuals’ emotional levels. At times when you need a pick-me-up, take a whiff of scent closely related to a happy or empowering memory in your own mind palace. Only when you smell a scent your brain has catalogued as positive, will you truly get that much-needed boost of confidence.

Will Cannabis Smell Good In Perfumes?

Its odour profile is described as such: weed-like scent with aspects of hay and nut. For those who are not familiar, basically it smells like the streets in Amsterdam where smoking of marijuana in ‘coffeeshops’ is legal (which means it is also well-regulated) and the glass-eyed smokers roam around looking for something undefined. However, not many people have described the scent pleasant. Thus, the basic question still remains to be answered: will it smell good in perfumes?

Amazingly, there have been a trend among the perfume and skincare brands to incorporate CBD (cannabidiol) in their products. Skincare companies advertise that the hemp seed oil has moisturizing and rejuvenating properties when applied on the skin. But what about in perfumes? Would consumers want to smell of weed?

Fortunately, fragrance brands have yet to create a pure cannabis perfume that will potentially drive out customers. The cannabis ingredient is blended in a proportion that would smell more appealing and even artistic with other ingredients. For instance, Music Festival of Mason Martin Margiela contains cannabis note which is well-balanced with the woody and smoky body. Users have described it “not too heavy” and “happy” like the name suggests.

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From left: Smoke For The Soul (By Killian), Music Festival (Maison Martin Margiela), Cannbis Santal (fresh), Black Afgano (Nasomatto)

Other popular fragrances that have cannabis note include Cannabis Santal and Cannabis Rose of Fresh, Smoke For The Soul of By Killian and Black Afgano of Nasomatto. Some give off very faint cannabis scent, while others have a distinct and clear characteristic of cannabis.

The reception of this trend, however, seems a little different from region to region. Before looking at the market of these fragrances, how the society views cannabis will play an important part to determine if the trend would catch on or fail. The legality of cannabis differs from country to country, and the purpose of the use also determines the severity of the penalties or punishment imposed by the government. Quite a few countries have legalized the medical use of cannabis or cannabis-derived drugs but not many allow their recreational use. It is especially strict in the Asian and Middle Eastern countries, and it could even escalate to death penalty in Singapore for mere possession of it. So it would be safe to assume that consumers in such regions are not prepared to ‘hype’ about such trend when the penalties are so heavy just by possessing them. A report by Deloitte states that when the drugs are not legalized, the users are more ‘risk-taking’ and also younger. In Canada, where recreational use of cannabis has been recently approved, it is predicted that ‘conservative experimenters’ would be the major group of consumers, who are older and take a controlled approach towards the usage.

Coming back to the fragranced zone, there definitely seems to be a good market potential for the cannabis-based products, but the marketing strategies would have to be more assuring and crafted in a way that will not trigger the alarm in the consumer’s mind. For instance, cannabis oil contains terpenes that are also found in lavender, clove or citrus fruits oil. These oils therefore exhibit similar properties such as soothing and therapeutic effects when inhaled. This could be a direction that these cannabis- based products could take to re-assure the consumers that they are not different from other essential oils.

Personally, it was a pretty insightful experience as I was writing this article. I was also inspired to smell the fragrances I have listed above, although I did smell a pure cannabis oil previously. It will be an interesting turn if the trend does catch on, or even better, change the social perception towards cannabis.

8 Places You Have To Smell – And They Are Free!

From buildings to iconic natural locations, you cannot miss out on these

  1. Singapore’s Changi Airport – with a designer fragrance called ‘White Orchid Tea’, you will feel like you are in paradise from the moment you hit the air-bridge

  2. New York Central Park in Spring – when love blooms hit Central Park

  3. Bali Frangipani – this iconic, fresh bloom, also known as Plumeria. Inhale and channel your inner Eat Pray Love.

  4. Trump Towers – if there was a smell of money, its probably here, that and Tsar which is the aftershave Putin wears.

  5. Tokyo Cherry Blossoms – this perennial event is one not to miss

  6. The Air Show – who doesn’t like the smell of jet fuel?

  7. The Rain – well its a pretty simple one, but its no less special. Called petrichor, it is actually a combination of ozone and plant life getting it together

  8. The King Fruit, AKA Durian is something soooo bad that we just could not leave it off this list

Rain, What Is That Smell

Petrichor (/ˈpɛtrɪkɔːr/) is the earthy scent produced when rain falls on dry soil. The word is constructed from Greek petra (πέτρα), meaning “stone”, and īchōr (ἰχώρ), the fluid that flows in the veins of the gods in Greek mythology.

Some plants secrete oils during dry periods, and when it rains, these oils are released into the air. The second reaction that creates petrichor occurs when chemicals produced by soil-dwelling bacteria known as actinomycetes are released. These aromatic compounds combine to create the pleasant petrichor scent when rain hits the ground.

Another scent associated with rain is ozone. During a thunderstorm, lightning can split oxygen and nitrogen molecules in the atmosphere, and they in turn can recombine into nitric oxide. This substance interacts with other chemicals in the atmosphere to form ozone, which has a sharp smell faintly reminiscent of chlorine.

You can read more here –

The Corpse Flower


A sort of pet name for the rafflesia or Titan arum, whose flowers smell of rotting meat.
“a corpse flower’s malodorous bloom only lasts for 24 to 48 hours”

Due to its odor, like that of a rotting corpse, the titan arum is characterized as a carrion flower, and is also known as the corpse flower or corpse plant (Indonesian: bunga bangkai—bunga means flower, while bangkai can be translated as corpse, cadaver, or carrion).

After many years, the plant finally gathers enough energy to bloom, and once it does, it can only hold the bloom for 24 to 36 hours before it collapses. Because the flower stays open and emits its odor for just a few days, it can be quite an exciting event for scientists and botany enthusiasts – According to

How To Choose The Right Perfume For Your Date

Well, this is not a subject that hasn’t been written on before, so we’ve decided to look at this from the perspective of your date activity!

If you are going to be doing something that’s going to generate steam like cycling, blading or skating you want to choose something thats fresh but also is going to last! Guys we recommend something called a Fougere. Dont argue, just go in and ask for it by name.

If you are going on a dinner date we recommend not to wear anything too floral. Just too heavy for a sit down and it may even have an effect on your dates tastebuds.

As far as movie dates go, if its a romance, then go wild and choose something that really shows your personality. For comedies keep the notes light, like citrus, muguet and soft woods. If you are watching an action flick then go deep, we talking amber, oud, heavy woods


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