For the Aromatherapy Smitten

First, let me be clear and confess that

I HATE perfumes.

Some people would say, it’s just the cheap perfumes but expensive ones should not make you ill – Channel No 5 or Coco ? ugh !  Expensive or cheap, believe, me all perfumes literally made me sick – like nauseous sick.

So, imagine this stark  change in how I frame aromatherapy now.  There are some companies, brands that pay commission to sell their products which … I am not against as we all need to sustain ourselves as long as we ourselves have full faith in the product we are recommending, much less selling.  Over time, one’s olfactory sense is sharpened and refined enough that we can tell the difference between those scents supposedly “pure” that’s been adulterated, diluted, blended or chemically enhanced… Just be watchful for the “fakes” which tends to be the ones that smell heavenly so much that you wonder if it’s real.  Chances are … it’s not.

Natural scents, no matter how intensified by distilling process, usually tend to still be rather … subtle, delicate and soft.  Pungent intense smells can be just from squeezing a lemon or make your own humidifier with heating up an apple cider with some cinnamon sticks and cardamon or just … from baking or jam making.  Pleasant scents are all around us.  It’s in the everyday … yet I concede there are some special ingredients you just can’t get unless you go to a place of majestic resonance …


All scents I use are hand made by myself or much better, hand-crafted by a certified herbalist, Yasuko of Shastica.  You can feel, sense and yes, your brain can tell the difference between synthetics and chemicals vs. non-synthetic, therapeutic-grade scents.  I used to visit Mariko sensei at Foliage, a certified aromatherapist and floral artist in Berkeley who teaches mostly Japanese-speaking community … so it’s no surprise that now there’s a aromatherapy museum in this town …where yoga is embraced along with all alternative forms of healing and wakeful living.

Archive of Curious Scents @

Open only on Saturdays 10 am – 6 pm.
Tickets are $20 for a 1-hour time slot.
Tickets include 3 letter-press scent strips to dip in essences and take home.

Cottage at end of brick driveway,
1518-1/2 Walnut St. Berkeley, CA 94709
Phone: 510-841-2111 Email:

a scent museum in … of course …

Berkeley or

we used to call Bezerkeley !

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