is the use of essential oils and hydrosols for health and well-being
and has created a re-emergence in the use of aroma for celebratory
occasions. Pure essential oils of plants, and the
aromatic water which results from their distillation (hydrosols) are
incorporated into the bridal shower, marriage ritual, the reception,
and even into the honeymoon! Recent research gives further meaning to
the historical symbolic use of flowers and their aromas in the wedding
ritual. According to Valerie Worwood, essential oils improve the
supply of oxygen and nutrients to the tissues, improve the immune
system, and relieve stress. The research of Alan Hirsch, MD shows a
40% increase in penile engorgement with particular aromas. Whether or
not they are used with these findings in mind, essential oils of Rose,
Lavandula angustifolia, Neroli, Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang, and Vanilla
heighten the elegance of the wedding occasion. Hydrosols of Lavender,
Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens), and Yarrow flowers invigorate and
enliven ancient tradition.
Invitations to the bridal shower, the wedding ceremony, and the
reception can all be scented with pure essential oils to offer guests
and aromatic taste of events to come. Essential oils are diffused via
candle diffusor or electric diffusor to scent the room of the bridal
shower. Bridal gifts are scented with essential oils. Gifts of
lingerie and stationary are wrapped in tissue scented with essential
oils. Any books or paper items given as gifts are purchased two weeks
in advance, and scented. For books, place 2-4 drops of essential oil
on a piece of paper or scrap of fabric and lay them between the book's
pages. For paper, place 2-5 drops of essential oil on cotton balls and
place them in a box with the paper. Allow these scented pages to sit
and absorb the aroma for several weeks. For a personal touch, leave
scented ribbons to mark your favorite passages or parts of a book. Or,
give the gift of aromatherapy to the bride-to-be. Be wary of
aromatherapy bought in gift stores. For a product to be considered
true aromatherapy, with all the stress-relieving, beneficial qualities
of the plants from which they come, the oils must be pure essential
oils. Read labels carefully or make your own gift by adding drops of
pure essential oil to unscented lotion, sweet almond oil, or an
unscented cream. Use 10 drops of essential oil per ounce of lotion,
cream, or oil. New Age Creations makes an Aromatherapy First Aid Kit?
for Love and Romance which contains all the oils needed to make a gift
for the bride-to-be. The Kit itself makes a lovely gift as well!
Rather than punch or soda, the beverage of the day is carbonated
water scented with essential oil of Rose or Jasmine, or a combination
of 1 part hydrosol to 3 parts carbonated water, or try some of the
other aromatherapy beverages or treats described below.
New Age Creations makes an Aromatherapy First Aid Kit?for Love and
Romance which contains all the oils needed to make a gift for the
bride-to-be. The Kit itself makes a lovely gift as well!
The following recipes are from Mindy Green's article "Culinary
Aromatherapy" in The World of Aromatherapy anthology:
3 ripe Peaches
1 cup plain yogurt
2 tablespoons honey
4 ice cubes
1-2 drops Mandarin essential oil
Whiz everything together in a blender. Start with one drop of
essential oil and taste before adding more.
2 cups prepared Lemonade
2 tablespoons Lavender hydrosol
For a special touch, add ice made with fresh Lavender or Violet
flowers frozen into the cubes.
1/4 cup honey
1-2 drops Vanilla or Lavandula angustifolia essential oil
Begin with one drop, it is usually enough. Stir well. Serve with
scones or biscuits.
Aromatic Whipped Cream
1/2 pint whipping cream
1-2 drops Rose or Neroli essential oil
Whip cream to desired consistency, add essential oil and mix well.
Start with one drop only. Add sweetener if desired. Serve with
Strawberries or on simple dessert.
Wedding Ritual: Essential oil worn by the bride will
serve to enhance her aromatic beauty, envelop her in an aromatic aura
fit for a princess, and calm her nerves! As she prepares for the
exciting day, she relaxes with regular foot soaks and massages and the
regular use of aromatherapy for body care. Five drops of Peppermint or
Sage oil in a foot bath soothes and relieves tired feet. Ten drops of
essential oil added to an ounce of unscented lotion can be used to
tend the feet, or anywhere on the body. While Peppermint and Sage are
good for the feet, floral oils such as Ylang-Ylang, Lavandula
angustifolia, and Neroli provide relief from jittery nerves and
tension. Aromatic baths of 5-7 drops of essential oil are swished into
the tub just before stepping in to increase the efficacy of this
stress relieving time.
Cotton balls with drops of essential oil have been clipped to the
inside of the bag holding the bridal gown, to envelop the wearer in
the scent of thousands of flowers. Essential oils are diluted in
carrier oil and applied to the hair and body or diluted in alcohol to
be worn as a perfume or cologne on this special day. The bridal
dressing room or waiting room is well scented with a calming essential
oil such as Lavandula angustifolia. The bride is regularly misted with
Rose Geranium hydrosol with 2 drops of Rose oil added to calm her
nerves and keep her in a positive state of mind. The light misting
will also serve to set her make-up and keep her face from perspiring.
The families of the couple and the members of the wedding party are
not forgotten, and they receive a regular refreshing spritz as well.
Essential oils are dripped on to cotton balls which are hidden into
the bouquet to emit magnificent fragrance throughout the wedding
All corsages or other floral arrangements which are worn or carried
are scented with essential oils. For men, a drop or two of Vanilla CO2
is placed the ribbon of a corsage. For women, Neroli, Rose, or
Lavandula angustifolia is used. Cotton balls containing essential oils
are hidden in bouquets to be carried by the flower girl, the mother of
the bride, or others in the wedding party.
For an extra special entrance, two doormen on stands spritz
aromatic hydrosols just beyond the entrance, creating a cooling and
relaxing aromatic mist. The wedding hall is dreamily aromatic via
diffusors placed throughout, creating a scentual connection between
all in attendance. Candle diffusors are easily placed among other
candle arrangements. Essential oils are flammable and are never
dropped directly into a candle flame. Slips of paper or ribbon with
drops of essential oil are placed in the attendance book two weeks
prior to the occasion, so the pages will emit delightful aroma as they
are turned. After the ceremony, the newlyweds exit through a shower of
rice and rose petals.
Essential oils and hydrosols are incorporated into recipes
served at the reception. Especially wonderful is champagne scented
with one drop of Ylang-Ylang essential oil per bottle, and a champagne
fountain filled with aromatic hydrosol instead of champagne. For
alcohol-free receptions, essential oil and hydrosol beverages such as
those at the bridal shower add elegance. The icing of the wedding cake
is scented with essential oil of Rose or Neroli essential oil. One
drop of essential oil of Ginger per glass is added to carbonated water
is served after the reception dinner to settle stomachs which may be
upset from nerves and over-indulgence.
Of course, the reception hall is filled with the aroma of
diffusing essential oils as well. Rather than candy, gifts to the
guests are bundles of floral potpourri including Rose petals and
Lavender and scented with essential oils, wrapped in silk to be placed
under the pillow or to scent drawers or paper. Bride's maid's gifts
include small mister bottles of aromatic hydrosols or stationary
scented with essential oils. Thank-you notes to all attendants are
scented with essential oils as well.
The Honeymoon: After such an
enticingly aromatic celebration, the newly married groom is certainly
prepared for a honeymoon to remember. The hotel has been contacted in
advance, and the bridal suite is delightfully aromatic upon entrance.
Bridal lingerie is scented with essential oil of Vanilla and drops of
Lavandula angustifolia is placed on the pillows and edge of the sheet.
Jasmine essential oil can also be used to recreate the Indian ritual
of the first night of matrimony spent on a bed of Jasmine flowers.
Massage oils scented with essential oil of Neroli, carbonated water or
champagne scented with Ylang-Ylang, and strawberries served with
Rose-scented whipped cream, and an aromatic honey add further aromatic
pleasure to a blissful honeymoon. Flower petals of fresh Roses, and
fresh Jasmine flowers are added to the bride's bath, along with a drop
or two of essential oil. This bath is taken before romance to relax
her mood and increase sensual desire. A more elaborate bath for the
same purpose includes the dried herbs of Roses, Acacia flowers,
Rosemary, Myrtle and Thyme. One ounce of the mixed herbs are gently
simmered in a quart of water for 10 minutes, then allowed to steep
while the bath is drawn. The herbal water is then strained into the
bath, and a few drops of essential oils swished in. [From Herbs &
Things by Jeanne Rose, 1972]
After romance, the couple has a sponge bath with a lightly fragrant
hydrosol added to warm water. A drop or two of essential oil are added
to this as well, if desired. This is a most relaxing, and bonding
Aromatic flowers and plants, resins, and oils have been used
throughout the ages for life's ceremonies. The use of essential oils
and hydrosols is reminiscent of this ancient tradition and are easily
incorporated into the great variety of cultural marriage traditions.
Perhaps they are used for their increasingly studied benefits to mind,
body, and emotions, or perhaps they are used simply to add pleasure
and to create fond aromatic memories of this special occasion to all
The Oils: The
following essential oils are most versatile for wedding celebrations
and romantic use. Although they tend to also be the most expensive,
remember that only a drop or two is used at any one time. The
Aromatherapy First Aid Kit?for Love & Romance contains all the
essential oils listed and a bottle of carrier oil at a very reasonable
price. The following information is from Aromantics by Valerie Worwood
and "The Women's Oils" article in The World of Aromatherapy.
Lavandula angustifolia: a steadying influence on
the psyche; calming; relieves intellectual indecisiveness. [Dr.
Hirsch's research shows that the aroma of Lavender, in combination
with other aromas, has been shown to have a physiologically
aphrodisiac affect on males.]
Rose (Rosa centifolia): luxurious, earthy yet
erotically sexual; warm and mysterious; traditional symbol of the
Virgin Mary and of spiritual union; good for confidence and bringing
out deep emotion.
Neroli (Citrus aurantium): calms highly charged emotional
states; relaxing yet stimulating; energetic and confident; helps to
positively face emotional fear.
Ylang-Ylang extra (Cananga odorata): soothes frustrations;
excitingly exotic; sensually stimulating.
Vanilla CO2 (Vanilla planifolia): familiar and consoling;
offers safety and unleashes hidden sensuality. Jasmine (Jasminum
officinale): the mistress of the night; brings out a man's desires and
fantasies while accentuating the feminine and stimulating seduction;
traditionally associated with romance and union; lifts dark moods and
anxieties; relaxing and sedating.
Jeanne Rose has been a practicing aromatherapist for 30 years, author
of 18 books on herbs and aromatherapy and founder of the Institute of
Aromatic Studies with two courses in aromatherapy. The basic Course is
for those with some interest while the Intermediate/Advanced Course is
for those wishing to practice the arty and craft of Aromatic Essential
Oil Therapy. Jeanne Rose's Correspondence course is approved for
Nurses for 150 CE.
Rose, Jeanne. Herbs & Things, Perigee, New York, 1973.
Rose, Jeanne and Susan Earle, Editors. The World of Aromatherapy,
North Atlantic Books, Berkeley, 1996.
Worwood, Valerie Ann. Aromantics, Pan Books Ltd., London, 1987.
- The article above is
being used with permission -
Internationally acclaimed author, Jeanne
Rose, has graciously offered her recipes and writings to be used
on the "all natural beauty" web site. Jeanne has been in the
forefront of the movement towards using all natural products for many
years. She is a master herbalist and aromatherapist that has
made a huge impact in the field at large. Please visit Jeanne's
web site (jeannerose.net) to see her many books that she has written, as well as her
all-natural products, educational opportunities and her special program, the "Aromatic Plant Project".
You may call her at (415) 564-6785.
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