What is Ambiance?

What is Ambiance?

What is ambiance? Ambiance has entered our common terminology after skyrocketing in popularity after the year 2000. It's not surprising, as thousands of YouTube videos showcasing marvelous locations, inspired by both fictional and real settings (for example, this whimsical beach-side escape) have made their way into the homes, workspaces, and relaxing spaces of millions of people. 

While it's easy to see that many of these videos have amassed millions of views each, there is a whole world of ambiance driving this movement and helping people improve their lives one rainy atmosphere at a time. 

But does ambiance really mean?

Visual elements of ambiance, just as a background video, your home design, the comforting flicker of a candle, or a lovely piece of artwork is all part of creating an atmosphere. There are auditory elements, such as a specific music playlist or soundscape; there are also many sensory elements like the scent of a space as you walk in or the feeling of a warm fireplace on your right side contrasted with a cool beverage in your left hand. Ultimately, ambiance comes together to unite all of these elements, as well as every other element that surrounds us, into a feeling. Some call it an atmosphere, others have more specific terms such as Hygge, and even others call it a vibe. Ultimately, it's the feeling you create for yourself and others within a space. 

Every space we enter, be it a physical or mental space, has an ambiance. When you walk into the average dentist office, for example, the ambiance may feel cold and sterile, harsh sharp lines, mechanical sounds, and medical office smells are all part of the ambiance your body automatically registers every time its in a dental office. Alternatively, if you walk into your favorite hair spa and immediately breathe a sigh of relief as you are greeted by soft colors, plush seats, and gentle aromatherapy is another, far more pleasant, example of the way we interact with the atmosphere around us. Our systems are very attuned to the ambiance around us and that attunement is often what influences or even creates immediate and (at times) inexplicable "gut feelings", such as when we immediately feel at home somewhere, relaxed and open, or when we feel uneasy and tense. These feelings created by the environment we find ourselves in at a given moment, the ambiance, also echo through us biologically, affecting the nervous system and other body processes.

Nature is an amazing starting point to understanding the correlation between ambiance and bodily response. For example, research shows that "natural environments, compared to urban environments, usually lead to reduced stress and positive body appreciation". As nature is often ripe (no pun intended) with beautiful ambient settings, calming soundscapes, mesmerizing colors, and wonderful scents (what smells better than a fresh rainy morning or a field of lavender or a citrus grove?) that simply make humans feel alive, it's no surprise that a majority of the most popular ambiance videos on Youtube rely on these elements of nature. We see this trend work just as effectively in our own homes, as research has linked houseplants to reduced stress, lower blood pressure, and an improved state of mind. What do houseplants and tranquil forests have in common? They both use elements that speak to our very nature as humans (sight, scent, etc.) to improve our ambiance and make us feel safe, energized, focused, happy--you name it.

The beauty of this is in knowing that the power of ambiance is within reach. Learning about the elements of ambiance that speak to you, you can intentionally surround yourself with elements that create an air of calm, peace, focus, and relaxation. In reflecting on the ambiance you want to surround yourself with, on what you want your atmosphere to communicate to your physiology, consider the following as a starting point:

  1. Fragrant Candles: Choose candles with scents that evoke the desired ambiance, such as floral, woody, or citrus notes.

  2. Soft Lighting: Use string lights, fairy lights, or dimmable lamps to create a cozy and inviting atmosphere.

  3. Plush Throws and Pillows: Add texture and comfort with soft blankets and cushions in luxurious fabrics like velvet or faux fur.

  4. Natural Elements: Incorporate elements from nature such as potted plants, flowers, or a bowl of fresh fruit to bring freshness and vitality to your space.

  5. Aromatherapy: Use essential oils to infuse the air with soothing scents like lavender, eucalyptus, or chamomile for relaxation and stress relief. 

  6. Relaxing Music: Play calming music or nature sounds in the background to enhance the ambiance and promote relaxation.

  7. Cozy Textiles: Choose rugs, curtains, and upholstery in warm, inviting colors and textures to create a sense of warmth and comfort.

  8. Personal Touches: Display meaningful objects like family photos, artwork, or sentimental items that bring joy and nostalgia to your space.

  9. Ambient Sounds: Consider incorporating ambient noise or white noise machines to drown out distractions and create a peaceful environment.

  10. Soothing Scents: Use room sprays or potpourri to add subtle fragrance to your space, choosing scents that promote relaxation and well-being, such as our atmosphere enhancing room sprays.

May your atmosphere envelop you in warmth, comfort, and peace. Evoke your best epoque, with Ephoque.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.