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  1. #1

    Default Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scents..

    Just read these on some website that had study tips listed on it:

    "For girls, when you study, have a scent in the room, preferably a perfume or something. Then when you take the test, wear that perfume. It can help you remember what you study because you relate the scent to the information. Of course you have to use a scent that you wouldn't normally smell."

    "Be careful about wearing too much perfume or sitting near someone who does. The chemicals in some perfumes may affect your power to concentrate and remember information."

    I can maybe see how the first one is true, but the second one? Does anyone know if chemicals in some perfumes affect your power to concentrate and remember information?

    Does anyone have experience with using a certain perfume while you study? If you think this might work, would you recommend I wear the same scent while studying for all subjects and then wear it into all of my finals? Or should I wear a different scent for each one? Ex. Lolita Lempicka for Con Law, Omnia Crystalline for CJ, Gucci Eau de Parfum II for Civ Pro, ardenbeauty for Obligations and Lily Chic for Property or should I just wear ONE of those for all? (btw, there was no reasoning behind choosing those scents, other than i don't wear them very often. but there is a lot i don't wear very often simply bc i have a big frag wardrobe!)

    Please let me know what y'all would do!

    Another option: wear whatever while studying, but when finals time comes, choose something that makes me feel happy and confident and that I can smell for four hours while taking the test. and maybe wear it to each four-hour exam or wear diff ones to each four-hour exam?

    Opinions, now! What would you wear for your final exams? Recs (see my wardrobe, although there are plenty not listed). thanks!

  2. #2
    Tovah's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    When I was in my last semester of undergrad school in 1988 (yes, I know I'm old) I had an Anthropology class in a large lecture hall. A particular woman in the class managed to drive me nuts because she REEKED of the original Liz Claiborne. Every class. The whole time. I never wore that particular fragrance, and I didn't think it was unpleasant or anything, until that class.This woman must have had a serious sinus problem in order to be able to endure the amounts of fragrance she wore. There were literally hundreds of people in the room and she managed to wilt every one of us. My nose used to itch, and I'd sneeze, and get a headache, and I literally DREADED the Anthropology class because her fragrance made me suffer. To this day, if I got a whiff of that fragrance I think I'd choke. I don't remember a darn thing about the class but I remember that stench.

    Years later (around 1993?), my ex-husband and I were season ticket holders at a playhouse nearby. Because we were season ticket holders, we always had the same seats, and there was a lady who sat right in front of me who must have bathed in Youth Dew before each performance. After she bathed in it she sprayed a bottle on her body and in her hair and then she drank another bottle of it...(I'm exaggerating). The point is her fragrance was so gaggingly, sickeningly strong I couldn't concentrate. People all around would sneeze and sniff and wave their hands in front of their noses, but she never seemed to catch on. (Or she just plain didn't care whether people around her were suffering).

    So, yes, I think fragrance can affect your ability to concentrate, and its imprint on your memory can probably last a lifetime. Scent memories that evoke really emotional times can be distracting, too. I think most of the distraction, however, comes from the amount of fragrance worn by many people who don't realize they may be immune to their own fragrance, so they overapply. Some people wear too much...another person should not be able to taste one's fragrance from 20 feet away...

    I have asked to be moved to different tables in restaurants because I've been so distracted by someone's perfume or cologne. I guess I have a really sensitive nose, but what I smell affects my ability to taste, and if I'm tasting someone's Joy I'm not happy.

    I had a three hour long literary criticism presentation last night (I'm a grad student) and I wore Ananas Fizz. I chose it purposely because it's a happy comfort scent that I'm not likely to associate with stress. I applied it courteously, I promise!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    Thanks for the feedback, Tovah!

    I actually have a sample of Ananas Fizz and really enjoy it. I see how it could be a good scent to wear into a final because it is not loud or distracting, not to mention that it is quite a happy little scent.

    So maybe I'll take that route--just go with something I know won't distract me during those torturous four-hour tests. Maybe I'll use up my Ananas Fizz sample for the occasion.

    And I agree with you re: the too much perfume/food issue. Blech! I HATE it when someone has on so much perfume that I can taste it. Rare filet with a side of Obsession? No thank you.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    And Tovah, you are not old!

    The 20s are so overrated. I cannot wait until I am in my thirties and forties. My 20s were wasted trying to figure everything out--career, relationships, etc. I can't wait until I am "thirty, flirty and thriving" (to quote that precious movie 13 Going on 30). Plus, my boyfriend tells me all the time that I am turning out to be a beautiful woman and he thinks that I get prettier as I get older (he met me when I was just a girl of 22. I insist to him that I don't feel grown up enough to be called a woman yet and that I am still a girl ). He is so sweet (and slightly biased, but that's fine by me!). I know one thing, I FEEL better the older I get. So I can only imagine it will get better as I age. Bring on 30, 40, 50!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    Well, I AM old - 47! Tho' I don't feel old. I've gone back to school for a teaching degree (there are a lot of us oldies doing this), and I will use any aromatherapy or crystal power in the book to get through an exam or a tough course. I have read that both lemon and mint are good scents to use while studying, they help to either clear or focus the mind - not sure which - but I have worn eau d'Hadrien to exams and used it while studying. I think orange would be good, too. One time I slathered myself in Rosemary/Mint body lotion after using the body wash in the shower for a morning exam. Traditionally, rosemary is for "remembrance" so I figured it can't hurt, maybe I'll "remember" everything I was cramming. I particularly enjoy minty fragrances because I find them stimulating but relaxing somehow, and they really do seem to clear the mind; lavender too, but it must be pure lavender oil for me not a lavender perfume. Also, I've tried various types of stones. I wore a hematite bracelet to try to "ground" my concentration for math, but it actually just made me feel leaden and tired. I guess hematite is not the right one for me. So I don't really know what I'm doing in the crystal dept, but I'm willing to give anything a try at least once. I would go with anyth citrussy, minty or herbal for aroma effect. I do think there is something to it and you have nothing to lose by giving it a try. And yes, someone else's injudiciously applied fragrance can be very distracting, particularly if you are sensitive to smells. ;-)

  6. #6
    Dependent pluran's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    For concentration - Basil, cardamom, ginger, black pepper

    Sailing through interviews and exams - Grapefruit, basil, bergamot, lavender

    Basil is tremendous for helping one concentrate and think straight. It's great to use while studying. A drop on a tissue sniffed before and during the exam will give you a head start - and nobody, except you, will be any the wiser!
    “Perfume is decidedly not about two things: it isn’t about memory and it isn’t about sex. Perfume is about beauty and intellect,”.........“A perfume is a message in a bottle—not a smell—and the message is written by the perfumer and read by the person who smells it.”

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    bonni's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    I think that studying to a particular scent might help recall, BUT I think it would have to be a new scent to you. A familiar scent has its own associations already. I do know that different scents put me in different moods and evoke memories, so I might be willing to give the "use a scent while studying" and then wear it to the exam. Why not? It can't hurt, you get a new fragrance...

    bonni
    "Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other."
    -Karl, age 5

  8. #8
    ChrisW's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    I forgot what it is called, but I remember in Psychology that you do better taking an exam in a familiar environment or situation. Like, if you are taking an exam in a lecture hall, you should study in that lecture hall. This applies to both sexes, not just girls. I guess that can be similar to wearing a familiar scent, especially since memory and olfaction are more closely related than memory with other senses. However, I was going to try this but then I was too focused on my studies to choose out a specific scent. When exam time came (I was unlucky enough to have four exams in the timespan of 24 hours), I just chose a scent that put me in a happy mood and acted as a 'pick me up.' I don't know if the fragrance helped me at all, but I seemed able to focus more. Then again, I hadn't slept in a long time, 2 all-nighters, so I was running on caffeine. ;D

    I have noticed that, since I began the fragrance hobby, my nose seems to be more accute in detecting the fragrances/smells/BO from others. On occassion, normally when others have over applied, I get a headache and/or a disruption in concentration during my lectures. I think this is just due to not being able to concentrate on too many things at once.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    My sister used to wear a fruity happy scent for any important tests(for good luck and lifting her spirits). I'm one of those people who can't wear foody scents...they make me terribly hungry. I love CSP Vanille Abricot but it makes me CRAVE a cookie. Anything that'd make you hungry during a test would be a no no

  10. #10
    ChrisW's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    I thought I was the only one! Whenever I wear Burberry Brit on an empty stomach, after about an hour my stomach starts growling. Quite an embarassing situation lol :-[

  11. #11

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    My foody scents don't usually make me hungry...but maybe I'll wear one to the finals in hopes of having that effect on my fellow students so they'll get distracted....

    how evil would that be?! hahaa.

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    Dependent pluran's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    This is not a very well developed thread. You should try the aformentioned notes I suggested above. *The essential oils are powerful, easy to acquire, easy to use and are effective in all aspects of your life. They worked for me during severely intense times at Stanford graduate school and many other situations of that magnitude or more.
    “Perfume is decidedly not about two things: it isn’t about memory and it isn’t about sex. Perfume is about beauty and intellect,”.........“A perfume is a message in a bottle—not a smell—and the message is written by the perfumer and read by the person who smells it.”

  13. #13

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    I'm taking everyone's advice and anecdotes into consideration, including yours, pluran. I think the thread has been very interesting--I like hearing everyone's perspectives on this; sure we go off on some tangents, but I think that is pretty natural for any conversation between several people. Thanks to all who have posted! Keep the suggestions coming...

  14. #14

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    The essential oils mentioned by pluran are good, especially the basil & rosemary. Different oils perform different functions in the process:

    To improve concentration: basil, cardamom, bergamot, cedarwood, lemon, grapefruit, peppermint, rosemary, cypress, ginger.

    To aid relaxation: lavender, clary sage, geranium, ylang ylang, bergamot, melissa.

    To strengthen memory: rosemary, basil, peppermint, lemon.

    In one study, peppermint eo gave test takers a 28% edge. In another, citrus oils caused office workers to make less paperwork entry mistakes.

    It does help if you sniff the same fragrances both while studying and then taking the test. For the test, you can bring a vial of your blend with you and sniff it, though that might be considered odd under some circumstances, or dab some on kleenex or cotton balls and sniff that during the exam. With any of them, you can mix with a carrier oil (2 drops per tsp carrier) and rub into your wrists and hands. Don't apply full-strength to skin. If you're hard up, you can rub a few drops into your palms, and sniff.

    There is strong support for the efficacy of this practice as it echoes in many ways the amazing memory systems of past ages, before books were prevalent. Things to be remembered were often assigned to "rooms" of an edifice erected in your mind. When you mentally walked through the various rooms, opened the various doors, looked on the various shelves, the information assigned there would emerge through association, and it's a similar concept with the olfactive association.

    There are ones to avoid, which lessen concentration (essential oils, not artificial fragrances): Benzoin, Carnation, Camomile (German and Roman), Hops, Hyacinth, Linden Blossom, Mace, Marjoram, Neroli, Nutmeg, Ormenis flower, Petitgrain, Sandalwood, Spikenard, Valerian (a major relaxant), and Vetiver

    CONCENTRATION BLEND
    Lemon - 20 drops
    Basil - 6 drops
    Rosemary - 2 drops
    Pine Needle (optional - some people really respond to it)
    A good all around blend.

    PICK-ME-UP
    Grapefruit 10 - 15 drops
    Spearmint - 5-10 drops
    It stimulates and gives the pick-me-up needed in the afternoon.

    If you have problems with your mind dragging don't use Lavender, but if you have problems with nerves, Lavender will be very helpful in a blend, as it will calm you and allow you to focus.

    As far as fragrances go, I like the classic eau de cologne types, the ones with Bergamot, citruses, rosemary, lavender, basil. They almost seemed designed to freshen and sharpen you.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    Great post, flathorn! Thanks.

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    bonni's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    There's an oil you can buy that's supposed to be good for headaches, Migrastick. It's mostly peppermint oil, but also has lavender. It can, indeed be very helpful for headaches (especially stress headaches) but given the effects of both peppermint and lavender, it might be VERY good to use as a study scent and then wearing to the test. Alert and relaxed with good memory recall sounds like just the thing for taking a test...



    bonni
    "Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other."
    -Karl, age 5

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    audrey's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    I don't have much to add, there are already so many good suggestions. I use many of the mentioned essential oils in aroma lamp, and I find it very helpful. The scent is around me, not ON me. Later I remember the atmosphere in my room, and the virtual scent makes the click in my head. It brings me mentally back into the relaxed surrounding of my home, I feel less stressed and can concentrate better.
    when I have a concert, I always choose one certain scent which helps me find my attitude.
    (it's Diva haha)
    There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    Everyone has such great suggestions. I especially liked pluran's and flathorn's suggestions about the oils. Since I'm not experienced with oils, I decided to pick a couple of frags that contained the notes of the oils they suggested (am I pathetic or what--any excuse to buy more scents! ).

    Today I ordered Nanadebary Green, Comme des Garcons Series 5: Sherbet Peppermint, and Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin cologne. I plan to use the one I like the most for the last days of my studying and for the finals themselves.

    Over the summer I plan to try some oils and familiarize myself with some of the things pluran and flathorn mentioned.

    Thanks again, y'all.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    Haven't posted in a few days...can't believe I've had so much restraint so far.

    Anyway, just wanted to log in and let y'all know I got the three "study" scents I ordered. I got the Jo Malone first (that stuff came lightning fast) and I got the other two today (with MANY samples, thanks to LuckyScent). I love all three--I can definitely see how those scents can perk one up. My favorite of the three has to be the Jo Malone. I was most worried about buying this one blind because of the mixed reviews on Makeup Alley. But this scent with my chemistry is amazing! And even though it's a cologne, it lasts and lasts. I've gotten several compliments on it.

    Well, back to studying. I cannot believe my Constitutional Law final is Wednesday.

    If I fail out of law school :'(, can someone give me a job??

  20. #20
    Krysia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any truth to these statements? Studying w/scen

    [quote author=ChrisW link=1145051847/0#7 date=1145094493]I forgot what it is called, but I remember in Psychology that you do better taking an exam in a familiar environment or situation. *Like, if you are taking an exam in a lecture hall, you should study in that lecture hall. * This applies to both sexes, not just girls. *I guess that can be similar to wearing a familiar scent, especially since memory and olfaction are more closely related than memory with other senses. *<snip>

    ChisW is right. This is called "state dependent learning". Perhaps a scent can help with retrieval of information from memory if the material was studied in connection with a particular scent. Recalling the info during an exam may be then facilitated. To my knowledge there have been no studies done with fragrances and recall of information. I have been looking for them.

    Krysia

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