There are two aromatherapy formulas offered to Conrad guests.

Revive

This mix, in shower gel and lotion, is scented with neroli, bergamot, and grapefruit, which can boost alertness and lift mood.

Balance

Available in shampoo, conditioner, and lotion, the Balance blend is infused with oils like ylang ylang and rosemary, which have been shown to decrease levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

Scents

of Calm

Scents of

Calm

Unlocking the ancient art of aromatherapy—and the benefits it can bring

By Virginia Vanzanten

Ever felt your energy level perk up from simply smelling coffee? Had a whiff of coconut trigger a rush of vacation memories? Then you know just how powerful the influence of scent can be on our brains and well-being. And you know why aromatherapy is a part of every guest room at Conrad Hotels & Resorts. (See "The Essentials," to the right). The power of aromatherapy has been well known for more than 6,000 years. Hippocrates even advocated aromatherapy massage for his patients—and modern science shows us that he was onto something.

There are two aromatherapy formulas offered to Conrad guests.

Revive

This mix, in shower gel and lotion, is scented with neroli, bergamot, and grapefruit, which can boost alertness and lift mood.

Balance

Available in shampoo, conditioner, and lotion, the Balance blend is infused with oils like ylang ylang and rosemary, which have been shown to decrease levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

Researchers believe aromatherapy works by stimulating smell receptors in the nose that then send messages to the amygdala, the part of your brain that controls emotions and memories. The essential oils used in aromatherapy are extracted from various plants, then distilled into highly concentrated formulas (just one drop of rose oil can take 60 flowers to produce). The result is potent oils made up of tiny molecules. Their size allows these molecules to easily cross tissue and cell walls, allowing the oils to be absorbed into the skin more quickly and deeply than traditional beauty products. So not only can lavender oil, for example, impact the alpha wave activity in your brain via scent—leading to relaxation and better sleep—but it can also help heal bruises when applied to the skin.

The Essentials

Essential oils and their healing properties are standard in all Conrad hotels and resorts, thanks to the introduction of the Aromatherapy Associates line of bath and beauty products, one of the three lines guests may choose during their stay (other choices are Shanghai Tang and Tara Smith Vegan Haircare). The 30-year-old British beauty brand offers two aromatherapy formulas to guests, Revive and Balance (see the box at right for details).

If that isn't enough to make you feel good the next time you step into the shower, know that all products are free of additives, never tested on animals, and use sustainably sourced oils.