The importance of the olfactory memory hidden in a perfume

For some it means only a fragrance, but for many it means emotions, memories and sensations. Learn how the so-called "Proust syndrome" works.

Olfactory memory: discover the connection between perfumes and memories

Whether it is a freshly baked cake, the scents of nature or an eau de parfum, each of us every day stores a series of information that go to position itself in a particular area of the brain equipped with small drawers, where each drawer corresponds to a memory.

In fact, unlike the episodic memory that undergoes the passage of time, the olfactory one resists more than any other sensory information.

This happens every day repeatedly in everyone's life and is identified as “Proust Syndrome”, which in fact was enough for a small dessert, the madeleine, immersed in tea to make it sink into the past that suddenly became present.

A perfume is therefore enough to open wide the doors of memory and establish an association between a smell and a state of mind, evoked even years later with respect to the perception of the smell itself.

Perfumes that reach the depths, exerting a power also on our psyche. Positive or not, they are stored in our brain and do not go away anymore, because if a memory can fade and lose shape, a perfume does not, it remains there whether you want it or not.

This is because the olfactory reaction is automatic and acts even before the brain can process it, for this reason even the latest trends in marketing have begun to involve the sense of smell by adopting a marketing strategy called “multisensory marketing”, that is a type of marketing based on the stimulation of the five senses in this case the sense of smell (but not only), so that you can tie them to a certain product or brand, as making a perfume an integral part of your brand is considered a winning strategy.

Why are we influenced by fragrances?

Brands tend to approach a certain perfume to their name using the technique of sensory marketing so that a certain perfume makes us immediately think about their brand and their products.

In these terms, Coco Chanel has made school with her Chanel n.5, an iconic perfume that we are now used to recognizing as an emblem of the French brand.

The name of the perfume, the design, and the fragrance are important components in the choice of a product, which is why some with eccentric designs manage to sell more easily than others. Each of us has developed his own olfactory identity, which makes us more or less love a certain type of perfume. Whether it leaves a recognizable trail or a light breeze, using a perfume we want to give a certain image, acquire its own identity, leave its mark on us.

So it is difficult to betray the fragrance that has accompanied us for a lifetime, which is now part of us so much so that we do not even feel it anymore, to be faithful to a perfume forever, just because in reality we often stop on a fragrance without discovering others perhaps out of laziness.


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