In partnership with Gattefossé, Carlin helps you to capture the spirit of the times. “When sensoriality turns us upside down!” was written by Géraldine Bouchot, Carlin’s prospective director for Addiactive, Gattefossé’s inspiring and creative blog. We are proud to share this content with you.

Sensoriality is a new field of research and has been the subject of many misrepresentations. Although the prefix “sensoriality” may seem to be a shortcut to sensitivity, it has a scientific meaning and is part of the so-called “hard sciences”. This is a science that the 21st century is embracing via neuroscience research, but also via neuromarketing and even neurophilosophy!


Sensoriality refers to all the knowledge about the world that comes from the senses, in other words, the process by which an organism collects, interprets and understands information from the outside world through what it sees, hears, tastes, feels…

The skin reveals itself to be a very sensitive organ! Better than a touch screen with 800,000 pixels, our skin has 800,000 neurons! Only on the fingertips, there are 2300 nerve endings per cm² of skin. Our touches allow the body to think before our cerebral cortex, which converts the multiple signals into comprehension. The skin is therefore our first tool for knowledge and exploration of the world and a biological sensory field that our brain regulates. It is frequently considered by neurologists as the computer of our individual happiness through its homeostatic function. Behind this barbarism is hidden a process of rebalancing and harmonization of the body’s perceptions and human thoughts based on the hormonal system. It is therefore this great central unit of the human body that allows 77% of French people to declare themselves “happy” in 2019 [1].

[1] According to a study carried out by the firm Mood Media (2019)


For several years now, new practices have been emerging that promote the use of olfaction, taste and contact: olfactive, culinary and oenological workshops, and manual therapies are increasing. All these activities stimulate our senses and promote our well-being. Consciously or not, our feelings influence our psyche and behavior. Neuromarketing clearly understood this. The “study of explicit and implicit mental processes and consumer behavior in various marketing contexts {…} is based on the paradigms and knowledge of neuroscience »[2]. It has influenced modern consumption since the development and popularization of sensory marketing in the early 2000s, whose impact is still very important. 78% of consumers recognize the importance of the general atmosphere of the  sale point in their purchasing decision [3]. “I do not desire things because they are good or beautiful, it is because I desire them that they are good or beautiful. This statement from the Spanish philosopher’s publication Ethics (1677) has become the mantra of the experts. Because having a pleasant experience, which confuses, stimulates and inebriates our desires through the senses to better canalize them… and guide them, motivates our irrational impulses. And Spinoza couldn’t have been more right when we aware of the disposition of the French to act according to the misnamed « coup de tête ».  We would be 1 out of 2 to be ready to move if we are keen on about a holiday place [4]. In-store, we become much less reasonable when our sensoriality is stimulated. As in the Intersport football department, where the diffusion of scents led to a 26% increase in sales, in the area tested [5]. Or at the bank, where customers also like sensory stimuli, such as music (24% when appropriate) and/or smells (23%) [6].

[2] Fouesnant B., Neuromarketing, entre science et business, Annales des mines – gérer et comprendre, 2012/4, n°110

[3] According to an Ipsos / Europe Assistance study of June 4, 2019.

[4] According to a Nestenn study (2019)

[5] According to the Mood Media survey for Intersport – November 2019

[6] According to the Walnut Unlimited study for Mood Media conducted in 9 countries.


Brands want to seduce us, whisper in our ears, blow our minds all at the same time. Even if it means becoming emotionally invasive? Be careful not to pull too hard on the (sensitive) cord to avoid an overload (sensory overload) that turns into a sensory overdose. There is only one step from sensoriality to sensitivity. 30% of the world’s population is subject to hypersensitivity, according to Elaine Aron, an American psychologist [7], we must be careful not to overstimulate the senses. This applies to autistic people. Subjected to hyper or hyposensitivity depending on whether they receive too much or too little stimulation, according to the classification established by Carl Delacato in 1974, autistic people are subject to gestalt perception, which is the difficulty or even the inability to naturally select relevant information. More generally, neurological over-stimulation can be related to what we called burn-out from which almost one in two students suffered in 2019 [8].

[7] According to a survey conducted by Elabe with the Institut Montaigne (2019).

[8] According to a study published by European Psychiatry in early 2019, 44.2% of medical students suffered from permanent stress.


If isolate the individual in his world of perceptions by submerging him in, is not the ideal solution, it is therefore a question of finding an alternative that is more in line with his real aspirations. The science here approaches philosophy. Is it in the balance of senses that reside the secret of humanistic temperance ? The neurobiologist Jean-Pierre Changeux was already saying this in the mid-1980s when he recommended an indispensable interdisciplinary in these « sciences whose purpose is to study the mechanisms of thought – language, psychology, memory, thought, reasoning, behavioral organization». An ideology now pursued by the American researcher Patricia Churchland, author of Braintrust – « What neurosciences tells us about morality [9] » and precursor of the concept of « neurophilosophy ».

Ultimately, should not everyone work to balance their passions in a collective aspiration to temperance ? Unless we prefer the exaltation of a wildly sensitive life, in its ups and downs – even if it means turning our senses upside down!

[9]  Braintrust – What neurosciences tells us about morality, Princeton science library (2018).

Geraldine bouchot marketing directrice carlin creative trend bureau

Géraldine Bouchot
Prospective Director

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