Pulse March / April 2016 | Page 54

THE ART OF AROMATHERAPY (CONTINUED FROM PAGE 50) women can work in a healthy working environment. Additionally, our partner is also in the process of trying to help these women’s family members get legalization papers so that the families can be together,” he says. Integrating Aromatherapy When selecting the right aromatherapy product to add into one’s retail collection or use during treatments, Howard advised to make sure that it passes the “smell test.” She explained that before performing any of Aromatherapy Associates' treatments, the therapist will conduct a "smell test" to select which blend is most appropriate to use, so they can be sure guests are really getting what they need for that day. Aromatherapy Associates has an extensive range of blends designed to cover a huge variety of concerns, such as stress, sleep, energy levels, emotional challenges, skin conditions and even digestive issues, so there is no need to custom-blend for every individual client. Howard said she believed relaxation and stress cannot be covered with one essential oil alone and advised spas to have a selection to fit the need of the individual client. Similar to Aromatherapy Associates that do not offer custom-blending options, Kneipp formulates its products to offer guests’ desired effects. “We train all accounts on the plant ingredients that we use in Kneipp formulations. Kneipp has on-staff chemists, naturopathic doctors, herbologists and AROMATHERAPY TRENDS TREND: Healthy Living “Recently, aromatherapy has been moving in bold new directions and playing a greater role in the treatment of mood enhancement, sleep therapy, pain therapy, massage and cognitive function,” Fensterstock says. Consumers are increasingly demanding products that can help them relax, sleep better and de-stress during or after a busy day, and aromatherapy is the perfect fit for the industry as it trends toward holistic fixes. TREND: Artisanal and Organic Oils “As people become increasingly informed, the demand for organic certified and artisanal oils is on the increase. People generally love to feel connected to the source and story behind the products they use, and with aromatherapy, this ties directly into the land and the way we treat the planet. Knowing that an essential oil has been produced without the use of chemicals and artificial fertilizers is an important aspect for consumers, and the pay back is that with just a little extra investment on their part, they can expect much better therapeutic results,” says James. Leber agrees, adding that consumers want to know the story behind the product. “Consumers want to know what the ingredients are—in plain English. They want to know where they come from and how they are harvested,” Leber says. TREND: Home Stress Reduction “One of the uses of aromatherapy is to strengthen the self-healing processes by preventative methods and indirect stimulation of the immune system in order to have a positive effect on the spiritual and overall medicinal well-being,” Fensterstock says. In addition, Howard said consumers are demanding products that can help them relax, sleep better and de-stress after, or throughout, a busy day. Sleep and stress in particular are huge concerns for many. TREND: Customization Spa consumers are increasingly demanding a greater degree of customization in aromatherapy. “Scent has a significant impact on memory, emotion and body, and marketers understand the validity behind wild harvesting the most effective botanicals for use in aromatherapy,” Fensterstock says. Trend: Aromatherapy Tech Consumers are constantly looking for new ways to use aromatherapy blends and new gadgets to facilitate healing. Ultrasonic essential oil-diffusers are a particularly big hit according to James, due to their quiet, heat-free and elegant designs. “This revolution has brought aromatherapy into fresh perspective for many consumers,” he says. 52 PULSE ■ March/April 2016