University students are known to move around a lot, whether it's their first or final year of studies. The process of packing and shifting all their belongings to their new accommodation can be quite daunting. However, once they settle in and have their bed, desk, and clothes set up, the question arises of how to make this new place feel like home.

We spoke to Master's year student, Jaq, about how he uses his favourite fragrance to make everything feel a little bit more comforting.

Jaq, what does home mean to you?

I guess it’s a feeling. When you’re comfy and there’s good food and you’re with your family.

What advice would you give to someone starting Uni?

It goes by before you know it, so do as much as possible. Throw yourself into it as much as you can, because you can either sit in your room for 3-4 years or you can go and meet as many people as possible and do everything that interests you. I think that’s important – to dig into what gets you excited. The great thing about University is that because there are so many people, you’re bound to find some with the same interests as you eventually, no matter how niche.

Do you think there are ways to make Uni feel more like home?

Absolutely. I’ve definitely learnt that your room is your haven and the more effort you put into it, not only decorating, but making it clean and comfy, the more you’ll be able to relax. At the end of the day, you’re a long way from home so you’ve got to make the space somewhere that feels good so you can sleep and chill. You have to put the effort in.

What motivates you at Uni? 

Simply put, I want to succeed in what I end up doing and I think I need to know as much as possible to do that. I’ve always thought "a man who knows something knows he knows nothing at all" (Eric Badu).

What brings you joy? 

I’m a very visual person so being able to see the progress I’ve made makes me feel good – whether that’s in rugby or in academics. Also, my friends. Always my friends. When you have a good bond with someone nothing beats it.

Do you think it can take a while to make friends at Uni? 

Yeah, for sure. You’ve got to know it takes time but it’s worth it when it happens. When you get to Uni there’s a lot going on, but I think if you make the effort and have patience, people show their true colours and you can make real connections.

What’s your favourite fragrance?

After Dark by ÉLAN Home Fragrances – the candle and the diffuser are great.

What does our After Dark fragrance remind you of? 

It makes me think of my mum because she bought my first one. It also makes me think I've got things together. I light my candle after I've tidied my room, as the final step, so it makes me feel as if I'm done for the day. I keep a matching reed diffuser in my bathroom too!

I get so many compliments - all the boys love it; they think it's like aftershave for your room. It makes it look and smell good. But it's also sexy and makes me feel sophisticated, and you know what? I'll take that.

It feels good when the candle is lit and someone says, "Your room smells really nice" and I think, "Thanks Mum."

Jaq's 5 must-have items for University

  1. ÉLAN candle or reed diffuser (After Dark)
  2. Pictures of friends (Try the app FreePrints)
  3. LED lights
  4. Desk lamp
  5. Plants (Ikea has some good fake ones if you’re worried about keeping them alive!)
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