An article in the Guardian today discusses a groundbreaking study that Humans which are just 0.01% of all life on the planet, have destroyed 83% of Wild Mammals.
After assessing all life on earth the study revealed humanity’s surprisingly tiny part in it, as well as our disproportionate negative impact on it.
Humankind are utterly dominant in the grand scheme of life on earth but are considered to be insignificant: The 7.6 billion people living on the earth today represent only 0.01% of all living things and yet the negative impact on the other species that share the Blue Planet with us has been disproportionate in the extreme.
According to the study, humanity has caused the loss of 83% of all wild mammals and half of plants, since the dawn of so called civilisation.
This work overturns some long-held assumptions or beliefs. It shows that Bacteria are indeed a major life form and make-up 13% of everything.
Plants leave, however, everything else in the shade (excuse the pun), representing 82% of all living matter. The remaining known creatures, from animals, insects, fungi, fish and fowl, make up just 5% of the world’s biomass or put another way, the total quantity or weight of organisms in a given area or volume.
This new work is the first comprehensive estimate of the weight of every class of living creature on the planet.
The study has been carried out by Prof Ron Milo, at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. He hopes that it gives people a perspective on the very dominant role that humanity now plays on Earth.
One of the staggering discoveries was that of all the mammals on Earth, 96% are livestock and humans, only 4% are wild mammals. To try and put this into perspective, new estimates compared with those from the time before we became farmers and stopped being hunter-gatherers, and the onset of the industrial revolution, show the full extent of the huge decline.
Just one-sixth of wild mammals still remain, the results were so staggering that it surprised even the the scientists involved in the research.
So what we choose to buy at the supermarket or put on our plates everyday has a huge impact on our natural world. It is not something we think about on a daily basis, as we have enough to do just worrying about feeding our families.
Our dietary choices have, however, a vast effect on the habitats of the other animals, plants and organisms that we are privileged to share this beautiful planet with.
We have a brain that allows us to ‘Think’ in a certain way and it has been one of the distinguishing factors that separates us from animals.
When supposedly over the last century, our IQs have steadily increased, i.e. we are all getting smarter, then why can’t we ‘Re-think’ how we treat this planet and the other species we share it with before it is too late. This planet is our home.
When you do stop to think about it, there is really no point in being smarter, if we do not learn from our mistakes and become ‘Wiser’.
That is why here at PAIRFUM London, we choose to use Natural, Organic ingredients in our formulations, compostable or biodegradable packaging and recycled materials. We try our best to work in harmony with nature because after all without it we would not exist.
You can review our products and the ethos of Pairfum London here.
Please click here to read the full article in the Guardian.
A flower installation by Terrain will grace the streets of New York from May 18th to the 2nd of September. Terrain a landscape architecture studio have placed this ‘Work of Art’ between Broadway and 24th street in Manhattan, as part of the city’s car-free, earth day event.
Is this New York’s answer to Banksy?
With this spectacular display Terrain wanted to capture that unique ‘New York Spirit’, in a “City that never Sleeps” you can however ‘Sleepwalk’ your way to and from work or through life, not however, when passing this ‘Super-sized Broadway Bouquet’, which has been described as “a living, breathing, garden-like installation”.
This work aims to give a glimpse of a World free of cars (hard to imagine), and provides an alternative example of what these public spaces could be used for, e.g. displays of public art, inner-city gardens or just a quite space.
This Larger than Life Bouquet came to life thank’s to the generous support of NY City’s Department of Transport or DOT, Blondie’s tree house, a company that designs, builds and maintains landscapes, green walls and interior plants in New York City and Nationally, Duggal visual solutions, a company that works in photo and print production, and Desimone consulting engineers who provide high-quality structural, facades.
The Art installation harks to the culture of the New York kiosk or corner shop where cut flowers can be found, from Manhattan to Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens or Staten Island, it is approximately ’12 meters long (40’ feet) and 2,5 meters high (8’)’, and is portable ( although I would not advise ordering a ‘Bouquet’ this big unless you are planning a Royal Wedding!!
It has quickly become a talking and destination point for the public, that brings a smile to your face and must give even the busiest ‘New Yorker’ cause to wonder, even if it is only to wonder where all the Yellow Cabs have gone.
At PAIRFUM London we create Perfume Bouquets that are suitable for the streets of New York, London, Paris, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shanghai,… Click here to enjoy these fragrances.
When deciding which fragrance to choose that will help you unwind and relax, a Natural Sandalwood Candle is a perfect choice.
Sandalwood is one of those easily recognisable fragrances, like cinnamon, lavender or Vanilla, that can stir up the senses and release the stresses and strains of a busy day.
The usage of sandalwood has been documented in art, literature and medical journals, dating back 4000 years, it has had numerous uses in the treatment of colds, infections and many other health conditions. In many ancient cultures from Egypt to India sandalwood has been used in or for religious ceremonies, from embalming in Egypt to the building of various religious temples in Asia. In today’s world sandalwood is primarily used in the cosmetic industry and is a favourite note in perfumery, with its rich fragrance and warm exotic notes it is typically being used as a base note.
This beautiful essential oil is harvested from this aromatic tree and is extracted by steam distillation. Sandalwood is used in a variety of applications in the cosmetic industry, candles, aromatherapy, soaps and beauty procedures are only some of the magical applications of this wonderful tree.
Choosing the Perfect Sandalwood Candle:
Perfumed Candles have become an inseparable part of people’s interior design, with the wish to create a warm welcoming and cosy home. The Sandalwood candle with it’s warm slightly powdery and sometimes creamy wood aroma creates the perfect ambience for a romantic night in, to a lazy Sun-kissed afternoon with Friends and Family. The warm aroma of a PAIRFUM Sandalwood candle can help to relieve stress and help you unwind after a busy working day. They are the perfect addition to any home. From the deep thinkers to the social divas among us, a PAIRFUM Sandalwood candle is the perfect ‘Wind-Me-Down’.
This wonderful Perfume note that has stood the test of time, is brought to life perfectly by a PAIRFUM Candle.
In just a week from now Saturday the 19th of May, a Royal Wedding will take place in Windsor when Prince Harry and Megan Markle will be making their vows at St George’s Chapel in the grounds of Windsor Castle. The service which will begin at 12pm and will be conducted by The Dean of Windsor, The Rt Revd. David Conner. While the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, will officiate as the couple make their marriage vows.
What makes this a very special and unusual ‘Royal Wedding’ is that ‘The Lord Chamberlain’s Office at Buckingham Palace’ is normally responsible for organising royal weddings. However in this case Harry and Meghan are taking the lead and have said that they wish to have a wedding celebration that “reflects the characters of the bride and groom”. Although the Lord Chamberlain’s Office has not been fully left out, as it is still dealing with all the ceremonial aspects of the day.
Invitations have gone out to to 600 lucky guests, with a select 200 close friends invited to an after party at Frogmore House, in the grounds of Windsor Castle. Windsor is preparing to welcome guests and work is well underway to prepare for visitors and well-wishers from across the world. The preparations that are taking place will allow visitors to take part in the celebration and will enable then to view the wedding procession which leaves from Windsor Castle and proceeds through the town centre and then re-enters the Castle via the Long Walk entrance.
As the beautiful Castle and historic town of Windsor is at the other end of the ‘Long Walk’ from the PAIRFUM London offices ( Neighbours so to speak! ), we intend to pop along to enjoy the celebrations and will keep you updated as it unfolds.
Layering is a concept that has been around for a while in fashion and many of us are experts at layering and combining clothes to create our own, ‘personal look’, whereas fragrance layering is still relatively new. Regardless of whether you are speaking with catwalk designers or high street boutiques, they all talk about layering.
Playful layering is always on the style agenda, especially when navigating the changeable weather conditions of the Spring and Summer Seasons. We can indulge our creative sides by mixing different textures and fabrics with a variety of lengths and colours and then accessorising them with scarves and jewellery. Now, men’s fashion is also turning to luxury layering and it could be seen at recent catwalks in Paris.
When we are not yet entirely sure of the weather, when one week we are basking in tropical temperatures, to running for cover from a mini-monsoon the next, we have all become dab hands at the tricky art of layering our clothes to be prepared for different conditions.
Layering is not only associated with one’s outfit but can also include our perfume. The latest trend is taking the skill of layering clothes and adapting the principles to our skin, by layering our perfumes and beauty products for a more dynamic and unique scent.
The key to mastering layering is knowing which notes work well together and how they enhance each other. It is all about incorporating the right scents into your beauty routine to make your perfume work harder for you. When thinking about layering perfume it is important to remember that fragrances have top, heart and base notes.
Here are a few perfumer’s tips for fragrance layering:
• For Spring and Summer, the nicest combinations of fragrance layering is created when you combine light with heavy fragrances. For example, you can adapt your typical ‘winter’ or ‘evening wear’ fragrance for summer use by layering a fresh, light scent over the top.
• Take one of your ‘classic’ perfumes and layer something ‘trendy’ over the top.
• Start your journey towards professional fragrance layering, by using fragrances which are as close as possible to single ingredients, such as the very trendy ‘soliflorals’.
• Alternatively, use fragrances from the same fragrance family to start with, such as floral, oriental, herbacious, citrus, wood, etc. Once you are pleased with your results and become more confident, you can combine perfumes from contrasting families, such as layering citrus over oriental, floral over woody, herbacious over musky.
• Begin with the heavier of the fragrances you plan to combine and use them sparingly, as they may overpower the lighter notes you have in mind. You may have to use more of the lighter fragrance to counterbalance the impact of the heavier perfume.
• Layer by combining different applications. Fragrance oils will naturally bind with the oils in your moisturiser or body oil. This insight allows you to layer a light, fresh eau de toilette over a heavier, rich body lotion.
• You can also layer by applying fragrance to different parts of your body. For example, start with fragrance on your pulse points (wrist, elbow, neck) and finish with a different fragrance for your hair. Alternatively, a fragrance on your wrists and elbow easily combines with another fragrance for your neck or under your arms.
Be prepared to share your secret, when you receive a compliment. The compliments may come from the most surprising directions.
Fragrance Layering At Home
The concept of layering can also be adapted to fragrances in our home and the same basic rules apply.
Many real estate agents are known for warming bread in an oven for open houses or preparing fresh coffee to welcome the visitor to a viewing. Smells send out subliminal ‘welcome’ or ‘comfort’ messages when you open the front door.
This is exactly what you do when you welcome people into your home. Take this a step further by combining various fragrances in your home to provide a multitude of sensorial experiences when walking from one room to the next, as fragrance layering can really enhance the ambience of your home.
A perfumer’s approach to layering fragrances at home
One of the reason’s why we struggle to perceive the fragrance we apply to our skin during the course of the day, is that our noses get used to our own fragrances. They literally get ‘saturated’.
The mistake in layering fragrances at home is consequently to use fragrances which are ‘too similar’. Imagine you have just been in your bedroom which has a beautiful floral fragrance, and then walk into the corridor, also with a floral fragrance. It is likely that your nose will have difficulties noticing the difference.
Instead, we suggest that you distinguish between the ‘spine’ of your house and the ‘outlying’ rooms. In the spine of your home, which are corridors, hallways or any other central room in your home, you should have a distinctly different fragrance from the connecting outlying rooms, such as bedrooms, living rooms, and bathrooms. For example you could use heavier fragrances from a similar ‘olfactive range’ in the entrance hall (for example a vanilla fragrance) and then entice your visitors into your living room with a lighter floral perfume, such as a beautiful rose note. Equally, you can do the same and contrast ‘herbal’ fragrances with ‘fruity’ or ‘floral’ perfumes.
Here are a few suggestions for the ‘spine’ of your home that combine well with many different perfumes:
Innocent Vanilla: A rich white floral top note of Louisiana magnolia invites you into a soft, enveloping heart of white musk, infused with crushed vanilla pods and resting on a base of sandalwood. This is an ideal, heavier ‘base’ fragrance for your home, as it combines exceptionally well with other fragrances.
SPA: A beautiful aquatic note with a tangy, effervescent top note of bergamot, mandarin, rosemary, lavender and fresh violet leaves. Radiation from heart are sea salt and mineral notes, with aerial and translucent flowers (lily of the valley, jasmine) and accents of green tea. The fond is layered with vibrant woody (cedar, patchouli), ambery and mossy accords (oakmoss). This is a lighter, fresher ‘base’ perfume, around which you can easily layer other perfumes in your home.
The following are some fragrance suggestions for the ‘outlying’ rooms of your house, as they will contrast well with the two afore mentioned perfumes:
Black Orchid: An exotic fragrance with rich top notes of Anjou pear, dark cassis and orange slice. The heart is elegantly floral with notes of black orchid, powdery violet, olive leaf, freesia and ginger flower leading to a sensual base of musk, copahu balm and vanilla pod.
Trail of White Petals: A delicate and yet sparkling white floral note infused with jasmine blossom, interlaced with lily, white rose and ylang-ylang. The top note has a hint of apple and the fond rests on a base of precious sandalwood and musk.
Pink Grapefruit: A vibrantly pink grapefruit fragrance with added complexity from mandarin, lime and bergamot. Floral notes of jasmin and lily lend a feminine touch and deep sophistication comes from a sandalwood accord in the base note.
Neroli & Olive: The distilled fragrance of the Mediterranean: a sophisticated accord built around the vibrant citrus notes of neroli, pomelo and lime and yet softened with jasmine petals. Vertiver, patchouli and leather add depth and complete the sensation of walking through an olive grove on a warm, sunny day.
Accents and Base Notes
Another form of layering fragrances at home is contrasting continuous ‘base fragrances’ with sporadic ‘accents’.
For example, imagine your bathroom with a continuous, beautifully warm vanilla fragrance but then you come home and prepare a bath and would like to add a relaxing lavender scent. Alternatively, you have a wonderfully floral fragrance in your living room but in the evening you may wish to add something ‘light & fresh’ to compliment a soft balmy evening, or ‘warm & comforting’ to keep the winter chills at bay.
Does this sound familiar?
Layering fragrances in these situations is similar to layering perfumes onto your skin: you use a base fragrance and then add an accent over the top.
The ideal product to give your rooms a base fragrance is a reed diffuser. Products that can add an accent are natural perfume candles or room perfume sprays.
Another suggestion is to use a bouquet of beautifully fragrant flowers for the base note, for examples ‘lilies’, and combine these with a luxurious fragrance candle to give your room the desired atmospheric accent when your visitors arrive.
There are many other creative ways how you can think outside of the box for a base fragrance, and an accent in each room.
A Final Note
The PAIRFUM London Collection offers you healthy and luxurious options for base and accent fragrances to suit your rooms. The PAIRFUM Collection is designed to be displayed proudly in your home and will fit perfectly into any interior style, regardless of whether this is ‘minimalist’, ‘country cottage’, ‘funky’ or ‘palatial’.
The sophisticated yet subtle blending of the perfume notes in the fragrances makes them a welcome addition to any home.
The PAIRFUM London collection is available online in our boutique.
Do you have a Perfume Personality and do you know what it is?
If you are trying to buy that ‘Perfect Perfume’ for someone special, how do you go about choosing it?
It can be a very difficult task as perfumes are very personal and different scents evoke different memories and emotions for different people. In some cases what smells wonderful on you might not suit someone else, since everyone’s individual skin pH may alter a perfume slightly. If you’re trying to express your feelings with perfume, then nothing expresses it worse than choosing a badly thought-out bottle of fragrance.
Afraid To Choose?
Maybe one of the reasons that people tend to buy the same perfume again and again, for themselves or a loved one, is not that they ‘love’ the fragrance but because they are afraid to make a mistake when choosing something so personal for someone else, or they are just unsure about trying something different, when it is easier to go to the tried and tested, safe option.
Smell works 40 times faster than the thought process in the brain. A scent can immediately take you back to a moment or emotion, and you could be creating a life-long memory for someone. So,… get it right and you have created a wonderful memory, but get it wrong and you may be creating just the opposite.
For Whom Is The Fragrance?
Luckily there are some simple guidelines that you can follow when picking out that ‘Perfect Perfume’.
Remember who you are shopping for! It may sound obvious but we can sometime forget and get carried away with testing perfumes and deciding whether ‘We’ like them or not. For example, ‘Teenagers’ tend to like fragrances that they see their favourite celebrity wearing, or that they have heard about from their friends in school or on social media. They will, like most teenagers, most likely have dropped not so subtle hints to guide you along the way. We find that ‘fruity’ or ‘gourmand’ style fragrances tend to be preferred by teenagers.
If it is for a close Friend or a Sister, then remember all the information you already know about them. You probably know what kind of fragrance the person wears now, or even the kinds of scents they are drawn to, like soft floral or fresh citrus notes. Do you remember some of the fragrances they have loved in the past? Maybe a modern interpretation has been introduced which may be ideal for them.
If its for your Mother or Mother-in-Law, then she may have some classic Perfumes she reverts to time and again, no matter what the occasion is. If this is the case, then this is the perfect opportunity to add to her fragrance wardrobe with a variation of her favourite scent.
How someone dresses can also give you a hint about their taste in perfume, is it Feminine or Fun, Ladylike or Tomboyish or a combination of all, depending on their mood. A combination of all would give you a wider choice as they will be open to trying different scents.
Fragrance & Personality
Most Perfume purists would agree that you should work out which of the three feminine fragrance families the person you are giving the Perfume to belongs to:
Floral – fragrances created around accords dominated by red Florals, white Florals and green Florals
Oriental – warm spicy notes of resin, vanilla and musk
Chypre – this is an accord with elements of moss, wood, oakmoss and other fresher elements
Citrus – lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit, … the list endless.
Fruity – red fruits, yellow fruits, tropical or exotic fruits
Woody – notes of sandalwood and patchouli dominate these feminine perfumes
A more in-depth overview of fragrance groups can be found here.
Below is perfume personality that has been associated with these olfactive classes:
Women wearing florals have been described as carefree, uncomplicated and open.
Oriental wearers are ‘Larger than Life’, extravagant personalities that love big exotic oriental perfumes bursting with life.
Chypre or Woody is usually worn by personalities that are more subtle and understated in style. Perhaps, they are classical and their taste is tailored.
Fruity notes are the domain of youth! It might be because they are still growing or full of energy that fragrances with an edible connotation are their preferred choice.
Also take into account various elements of their interior style, are they Classic, Sumptuous, Minimalist or Shabby-Chic. What are the home fragrances you come across in their house? It may not be something that springs to mind when choosing a perfume for someone, but it can be an excellent indicator of their olfactive taste, and can help you decide which ‘Perfume Personality’ they have.
Take Your Time
If you are still unsure which perfume to choose, then make sure to take your ‘Time’ and don’t buy in a rush while charging through the airport to catch your flight or drifting by the perfume counter in your favourite department store.
Invest a little time in researching and trialling what is the Perfect Perfume for that Perfect Someone.
It will be time well spent, as you are about to invest both money and a part of yourself in this gift and the olfactive memory or moment that you are about to create for your loved one.
We were truly enchanted when visiting a customer yesterday on the border of Hampshire and Wiltshire. They showed us their beautiful ‘Bluebell Wood’, just a small part of their magnificent garden.
The Perfume of the Woodland Bluebell filled the air and was only matched in majesty by the Birdsong.
Watch this video and listen carefully for the birdsong:
Bluebells at their Best
The National Trust has said that bluebells were likely to be at their peak this coming weekend. With March being so dry it could also mean that the Bluebells are smaller and less abundant this year.
However, the bluebells which do flower will produce even more perfume than usual. The reason for this is that flowers concentrate more energy on breeding during a dry period rather than on producing succulents. They will produce more nectar and therefore more scent in order to attract pollinating insects.
Bluebells are sometimes called ‘Common Bluebells’ but they are anything but common. This spectacular plant is only found in northern Europe, with Britain containing more than half of the world’s population.
They are a protected species in the UK and a woodland carpeted in masses of bluebells is one of the most magical and one of the greatest woodland spectacles you can see.
A bluebell wood in full bloom is a true delight for all your senses.
As you wander through a wood with dappled sunlight kissing the flowers and their scent wafting through the air, it is nature at its best. This is a quintessential British sight during the spring months. It lets us know that the days are getting longer, warmer and that Summer is on its way.
When Bluebells transform our woodland in springtime, the carpet of intense blue under the tree canopy stretching out into the distance is a scene full of delicate fragile flowers. A beautiful sight that once seen will remain with you for ever. It will come as no surprise that the British bluebell is one of the nation’s best-loved flowers.
Fragrance of Bluebell
How can we describe the fragrance of the Bluebells?
The olfactive profile of the Bluebell is reminiscent of the Hyacinth. It is not a very strong fragrance but it becomes very noticeable when walking through a woodland covered in Bluebells.
We describe it a green-floral, as it is oily-green and quite intoxicating. Bluebells are not part of the ‘white flowers’ category (Jasmin, Orange Blossom, Tuberose, Ylang, Gardenia,…), not because of their colour but because they have a richness, headiness and depth that is more reminiscent ‘red flowers’ category (Rose, Violet, Lilac, Sweet Pea,…). Some perfumers believe there should be a ‘green floral’ category for flowers such as Lily of the Valley, Narcissus and Hyacinth. This is where we believe the most natural home for the Bluebell is.
In fragrance accords, Bluebell is not typically a dominant scent profile in a fragrance accord, even though many famous perfumes have been created in honour of this beautiful note:
Bluebell by Penhaligon’s
English Bluebell by Yardley
Wild Bluebell by Jo Malone
For Home Fragrances, we can highly recommend Pairfum’s White Lavender which contains the beautifully green notes of Bluebell and Hyacinth. It is available in perfumed candles, reed diffusers and perfume room sprays.
Native Bluebell v Spanish Bluebell
How can you tell or spot the difference between a Native Bluebell and a Spanish Bluebell?
One of the ways that you can tell the difference between the Native and Spanish flower, is that in the Native Bluebell the pollen is white, whereas in Spanish Bluebells, the pollen is blue. In the hybrid Bluebell, a variety of characteristics are exhibited which are intermediate in form and a colour between both ‘Native Bluebell’ and ‘Spanish Bluebell’. In other words the hybrid Bluebell exhibits characteristics of both parent plants.
Their wonderful scent is said to have 35 components which attracts pollinating insects deep into the woods.
Some might say, they also attract passing walkers to sit down, take a welcome rest and enjoy nature in all its beauty …
Maintaining an optimal level of wellness is absolutely crucial to living a higher quality of life.
The definition of wellness given by the World Health Organisation is “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”.
Now we all know that it is very important to take care of ourselves this is not something new, but what is new are the terms that we currently use to describe or explain the fact that we should look after our general health. So is Wellness New Age or Age Old?
‘Feeling well or ‘Wellness’ is very important because everything we do, every decision we make and every emotion we feel relates to our well-being. In Life our actions and emotions are directly effected by our well-being, so the decisions we make and how we react to a situation depend on how we are feeling at that time.
So much of what we read about ‘Wellness’ in articles is often described as ‘new age’, when the therapies and practices they refer to are thousands of years old. So should it be ‘ Wellness – New Age Old Age or Age Old?.
The so called ‘New Age’ ideas of ‘Mindfulness and Wellness’ have been practised for thousands of years. Studies have shown that there is a link between mindfulness and wellness. Being aware of how we are feeling, and knowing how to deal with it can and will improve our health. We all experience stress in our everyday life, and emotional wellness is very important in helping us cope effectively with that stress.
It is very important to pay attention to ourselves ( as selfish as this may sound), for both our physical and mental wellbeing. We need to insure that we ‘Make and Take’ time to relax, and to become aware of our stress signals, to develop the inner resources we need so that we can learn and grow from experiences. It gives us the space to handle whatever surprises life may bring our way ( because not all of them are bad), in fact so many of them are wonderful, sometimes we just worry too much about doing or getting things right – remember – it is right, it is ‘YOUR’ right.
Words such as Prana, Garshana and Dosha, form part of one of the World’s oldest holistic, natural healing systems. You will no doubt have read in numerous beauty columns about the ancient Indian philosophy of Ayurveda, which incorporates breathing exercises, yoga, oil massage, it advises on which foods to eat, herbal teas to drink, and lifestyle changes to make that will enhance the quality of your life.
This is just one system that reminds us that we should ‘Live in the Moment of Now’, yesterday is past and tomorrow no matter how long we live and no matter how long we wait for it, will never come. What does exist is right here, right now and there is no better time to take a deep breath, relax and put your worries on the back-burner. They may return but at a different time and when you are in a better frame of mind to handle them, remember to tell yourself often that you are doing a good job.
Make Time For Yourself
In this busy World where we have to juggle, Home life, Work Life, and everything else that pops-up in between. Where it is not always possible to go to the Gym and take that Yoga or Spinning class that would help you unwind. It is still possible and vitally important to ‘Take and Make’ that ‘Me Time’ that we all need in our lives, for our Health and Well-being.
A Candle and a Bath
One very simple way to do this is to have a relaxing bath, fill the tub, and add some of your favourite bath products. Light a scented Candle or two or three, well it is your ‘Time’ and you can light as many as you like. Choose a relaxing, calming fragrance such as Lavender or Citrus these scents work wonders at lowering stress levels and helping you unwind. Lavender can be used to reduce tension, it can also help you drift off to sleep. Lemon and other citrus fragrances also help improve concentration and have calming properties.
So at the end of a long and stressful day, make it easy for yourself to ‘Find & Take’ time just for for you.
We have all heard this slogan at sometime or another and it may seem like a cliché, but ‘You Are Worth It’.
You may have heard of the terms such as ‘Pre-biotics’ and ‘Pro-biotics’ being mentioned in association with digestive health, but what are Pre-biotics as opposed to ‘Pro-biotics’ ? While they may sound similar, they are very different and play different roles in our digestive system / gut or in the flora of our skin.
Pre-Biotics v Pro-Biotics
Prebiotics are classified as non-digestible food ingredients that can be utilised by Probiotics in the gut. They are soluble, fermentable fibers that we are unable to digest in our stomachs, which allows them to progress through to our intestines, where they are fermented by Probiotics and turned into short-chain fatty acids that increase healthy bacteria in the gut.
FOS and Inulin
Research has shown that FOS and Inulin are some of the most beneficial types of Prebiotics for feeding our gut bacteria. They come from the same family of fructo-polysaccharides and although they both carry out a very similar job in terms of promoting the size and diversity of our gut bacteria, some research has also indicated that FOS may wield a broader restorative benefit than Inulin. FOS is extracted from sources such as the blue Agave plant which has been found to have the highest concentrations of ‘FOS’ of all cultured plants.
Probiotics on the other hand are live beneficial bacteria, that are found in fermented food products such as yogurt, traditional buttermilk, sauerkraut, miso, tempeh, kimchi and kombucha. Many types of probiotics are similar to the bacteria naturally residing in our guts. We have 100 trillion bacteria living in our stomach and intestines, but poor diet, antibiotics, hormones, stress or too much alcohol can upset this natural balance.
It is very important to have a large number of microbes in your digestive system, but it is equally as important to have a wide diversity, which creates a more robust bacterial ecosystem where good bacteria grow and thrive. Natural sources of Probiotics have been found to have a greater variety of good bacteria.
Bacteria & Health ?
Scientists are still discovering how and why exactly gut bacteria plays such a vital role in our health. What is known, however, is that the gut’s bacterial makeup affects us far more than previously assumed. Along with improved digestion, having abundant and varied colonies of good gut bacteria has been linked to better health, such as lower cholesterol levels, improved blood sugar regulation and improved mood.
Prebiotics and Probiotics are both essential to your health, that much is clear, but how should we go about consuming both Probiotics and Prebiotics?
Probiotics and Prebiotics can both be consumed through food. Foods such as chicory root, onion, garlic, jerusalem artichokes and beans are all good sources thanks to their high soluble fiber content, as are sources of resistant starch. A fiber that gets its name because it “resists” digestion in the stomach. Resistant starch can also be found in oats, unripe or green bananas and peas.
Are Humans Bacteria?
We now understand that humans are 90% microbial but only 10% human and that the average human has over 100 trillion microbes in and on their body.
Yet we have spent the previous decades focusing on trying to kill all bacteria, e.g anti-bacterial handwash. In other words, we have spent decades and millions of pounds trying to kill or attack ‘90%’ of our own biological makeup.
The latest research is now challenging previously held beliefs about good and bad bacteria. We are now witnessing the shift away from everything being ‘ant-ibacterial’ to a new understanding of the complex bacterial system in our bodies and in the world around us.
We are a symbiotic organism that relies heavily on our relationship with bacteria both inside and out. In recent years, due to new research, we have become more aware of the importance of the microbial ecosystem or the microbiome and our wellbeing, both internal and external, e.g. our skin.
Microflora of the Skin ?
We actually have more bacteria on our skin than we do in our body.
Just like your gut, your skin has a delicate balance of bacteria called a Flora or Microbiome. The skin microbiome protects us from invasive virus-causing pathogens and maintains the pH function of the skin.
Consider this, your Skin is the human body’s largest organ. Our skin is made up of three layers:
epidermis: the outermost layer
dermis: the cells in the epidermis are continually replaced with cells produced in this inner or bottom layer. It also contains nerve endings, sweat glands, hair follicles, and blood vessels.
hypodermis: our deeper subcutaneous tissue that is made of fat and connective tissue.
Together these layers provide us with protection and are vital for our survival. The skin is a protective covering and our first barrier to fight illness and disease, whilst also protecting the body against extremes of temperature, damaging sunlight and it also manufactures vitamin D for converting calcium into healthy bones.
Considering just some of the functions that this wonderful organ does for us, and the fact that our skin works so well during most of our lifetime, we tend to take it for granted. It is only when something goes wrong that we start to sit-up and take notice.
Probiotics are already sold worldwide as a solution for gut problems, but the benefits of Prebiotics are only now starting to be recognised in the skincare industry for the health benefits they offer the skin microbiome and your overall natural wellbeing.
Educating the Immune System
The skin flora also commonly referred to as skin microbiota refers to the diverse milieu of microorganisms which reside on the skin, many of which are beneficial to their host (that means us Humans). One of the many wonderful processes preformed by the skin flora or microbiota is that it also educates the immune system, as it changes and adapts to the environment in which we find ourselves by modulating and adapting the skin flora.
To further our understanding of the health of the skin and the diverse ecosystem that our microbiota is composed of, microbiologists, immunologists and dermatologists are working alongside genomic scientists to develop a more complete picture of the skin microbiota and how it interacts with us, it’s hosts. This work has and will advance our understanding of the delicate balance between host and microorganism. To put it simply, the symbiotic relationship between us and the skin we live in.
This amazing research is completely altering how we look at beauty products, skin health and changes the focus from removing all bacteria from the skin.
For decades we have seen all bacteria as ‘bad bacteria’. This attitude to bacteria and in particular skin bacteria, is changing with better insight and understanding of our Skin Flora or Microbiome and how it works for and not against us.
Pre-Biotic or Microbiome Skin Care
For this reason, which is now over three years ago, PAIRFUM London decided to bring to the market a range of prebiotic or, as they are sometimes described, microbiome skin care products.
This skin care range uses ‘prebiotics’ to feed the skin’s Flora or Microbiome and will help to rebuild the skin barrier. They are designed to provide the perfect environment for the skin and its ‘Good Bacteria’ to re-balance and thrive.
Let’s embrace our bacteria to lead healthier lives!