Would you believe it if I told you ice cream is still on my mind? We made another batch with our machine, this time getting our flavors from fresh plants instead of essential oils. A big handful of fresh, locally grown mint was steeped in milk and heavy cream overnight and lent our sweet mint ice cream a cool and delightful flavor.
I adore mint, in ice cream and out, on the branch, and mixed into my drink. I love its extroverted aromatics that flirt with your senses whenever you walk by a plant. It’s so versatile in all of its manifestations, and an allegedly easy addition to an herb garden.
Part of what makes mint such a perfect ice cream flavor, and such a refreshing garnish to a glass of tea, is the cooling property of menthol. It’s theorized that mint may have evolved to contain that chemical as a way to deter predators. Wherever the reason, menthol is what gives the illusion of being cool, as it triggers the sensory receptors that tell the brain the body is cold.
There are multiple species of mint, each with a unique aroma and flavor. The most common essential oil you’ll see is peppermint, which is a hybrid of watermint and spearmint. Peppermint oil is often used topically for relieving muscle and nerve pain, and it’s been touted as a treatment for gastrointestinal disorders as well.
If a mint leaf is referred to without specification it’s probably a spearmint leaf. You’ll find spearmint in teas and cocktails, toothpastes and insecticides, and, of course, perfumes.
Unsurprisingly, people have been taking advantage of the scent of mint for centuries. There are records that indicate the plant’s leaves were once used as a room deodorizer by tossing them all over the floor. The scent would grow stronger when the leaves were crushed by footsteps.
If you want to wear the cooling scent of mint on your person, you can get some of the effect just by crushing a fresh leaf and rubbing it on your wrists. The cooling properties of menthol are equally refreshing as a scent, which makes mint a fantastic component of any summer perfume.
In fact, you’ll find mint in a number of the blends in our Possets Summer Retour. A good summer perfume is one that will bring lightness to a hot afternoon, and keep you in touch with the bold, relaxing vibes of summer vacation long after you return home.
Our summer scents use the addition of mint to cool things down in scents like Air Conditioning, Summer (Wateau), Nile, and of course, Mint Tea. These blends were designed with that refreshing effect of mint in mind, perfect for feeling fresh on a hot, muggy day. The ironic Air Conditioning perfume oil — an all-natural blend named after an artificial process — combines mint with a refreshing jolt of grapefruit and breezy lavender. Summer (Wateau) also cools with the combination of mint and citrus, while Nile twists mint together with earthy spikenard and cool water, which makes me think of an exotic afternoon by the water, even while I’m landlocked in the midwest.
by Katrina Eresman