Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Snuff Feeds Your Senses

Fribourg & Treyer in 1906
We experience the world through our senses and perceptions.  Listening to beautiful music or the voice of a loved one comforts us, soothes us, and brings us happiness.  Watching an action movie or our favorite sports team compete gets our heart racing, our blood flowing, and brings us alive.  Bundling up in cozy blankets makes us feel warm, and safe, and makes all our problems very far away.  We experience the world around us through our senses, and this stimulation sets a tone, shapes our mood, and changes who we are in the moment.

Snuff is to the nose what our favorite song is to our ears.  Snuff directly interacts with our olfactory senses, which have been shown to have a strong connection with our memories.  First there is the ritual.  A tap on your tin or box.  The pinch warming between your fingers.  The snuff settling into the front of your nose.  And the slight pleasant burn of the tobacco accompanied by the full and complete scent that fills you entire nose,   Over time, as the scent lingers, it changes...and layers of flavor are revealed.

The right snuff can take us to places and moments in our life, and have an impact on our present.  Sometimes this is very overt and obvious, and we can identify the memories that are consciously triggered.  But, most of the time it is more subtle than that, and the complex layers of scent and sensation change us in the moment.  The right snuff sparks an emotional reaction, and can shift our demeanor dramatically.

Yes, snuff delivers nicotine from the tobacco into our bodies.  But snuff-taking is so much more than a chemical reaction.  Snuff takes over one of our five senses, and drags us along for the ride.  That act of taking snuff is a stolen moment from the rest of the world, and the flood of sensation and scent that hits us sets the stage for a definitive shift from where we are, to where we want to be...

Mark Stinson
Modern Snuff Website


  1. Lovey post. Believe it or not, there are still a couple of old tobacconists around which look very similar to the one in the photograph. There is one in Oxford and another in Windsor, I could happily spend hours in each taking in the aroma of the shop. I will be paying each a visit in the run up to Christian for some seasonal snuffs.

    1. I'm jealous. Everything I've seen here in the Midwestern United States is cigar and pipe stores. Very few of them carry snuff, and the few that do carry snuff carry a very small selection. If I ever get to visit Great Britain, I will se seeking out several of these shops. #1 on my list. :-)