Workout Your Nose for Winter

Workout Your Nose for Winter

As the cold weather muscles in, your thoughts are probably turning to winter aromas, comforting scents and perfumes that will last on the skin. And while this time of year can be a favourite amongst niche fragrance connoisseurs such as yourself, a thoughtful employee here at e-scents HQ recently questioned aloud why things seem to smell different in winter, and it got us all pondering

So, stick with us as we delve into the science and context behind the why, and as a bonus, learn how to improve your sense of smell as we move into the new season too



Our ability to sniff is one of our most powerful and most underrated senses. It reveals information about our surroundings that our other senses just can’t. Smelling through your eyes would be a bit weird, wouldn’t it…but anyway, we digress

What is a smell? Did you know that aroma itself is actually teeny tiny particles coming in through your nose and travelling up to those clever olfactory receptors of yours? So, when you’re sniffing cinnamon, for example, you’re actually breathing in microscopic particles of cinnamon. We don’t like to think too much about it, but you can apply the same notion to disgusting smells too. Ewww



Here’s where temperature comes into the equation. We’re sure you’ve noticed things seem to smell more when it’s hot. This is because warm, humid air is great at trapping particles in the atmosphere and keeping them around longer for you to breathe them in. And to answer our querying employee, winter air is drier and actually impedes the release of particles into the air, and at the same time it also doesn’t deliver the particles to your nostrils as effectively

So, deeper perfumes work better in the winter because their scents are stronger and therefore you can distinguish them better. But there’s potential for you to work on improving your sense of smell, so that you’ll be able to detect those stronger scents for longer, and also discern lighter fragrances you might struggle with usually



The human nose can distinguish almost a trillion different aromas. A trillion! And there might be a whole world of perfume out there you’re yet to discover in its full glory because you haven’t been working out – your nose that is. Yes, professional perfumers can recognise scents others simply can’t, but that’s only because they dedicate hours upon hours of their lives to sniffing. All you have to do is practice

Our first tip is easy peasy; smell everything you can in your day-to-day life. Take a deep whiff of your cup of tea or coffee, the spices in your cooking, your glass of red wine or the apples in your local supermarket and commit it to memory. Log every aroma and moment in your mind because every conscious sniff will get your nose and brain working out simultaneously, and it might even heighten your tastebuds too

Learning how to distinguish between difference scents is also a brilliant way to train your nose. Your sense of smell is sharpest first thing in the morning, so take some time in the early hours and smell 3 or 4 different aromatics. It can be anything from orange peel to chocolate, coriander to coffee beans. Take your time and consider what you’re smelling with each deep inhalation

What do you smell? Is it citrus, woody or even unpleasant? Would you describe it as warm or cool, perhaps? The idea is to expand your mind and associations, and at the same time sharpen your senses. Stick to those same 3 or 4 scents for a week or so and really get to know them. Practise makes perfect, as the saying goes and there’s a lot of scents out there to discover. A trillion of them, in fact!

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