Whenever I travel or celebrate a special occasion, I make a new essential oil blend. Sometimes I put it in an inhaler, or sometimes a perfume oil, sometimes a body oil, or a spray. Having a new aroma is my way to commemorate special moments in my life.
A few weeks ago, I went to Ireland. I wanted to bring some body oil for relaxing, so I first made a blend with Peace. Then I remembered I recently bought jasmine extract and neroli essential oil for personal use. They are both very precious oils, so I don't often use them, I had purchased them on a whim. It turns out I had a reason, I just didn't know it at the time.
I wanted to make something that reminded me of summer; reminded me of flowers blooming and of fertile earth and fresh green leaves. I started by pulling aside the oils that reminded me of that aroma. I wanted to use neroli and jasmine for sure, not only because I wanted to work with them, but also because their heavy floral aromas were perfect for the heart of the blend.
I needed a top note that was a little fresher and a tiny bit less floral. Something to introduce the blend in an inviting way, that was less intoxicating than the jasmine and neroli. I thought of lavender essential oil, but not the regular lavender that we're used to, but of lavender Mailette, the sweetest lavender in the world.
If green had an official scent, it would be violet leaf extract, so that made it an easy choice for the note of fresh, green leaves. Even when used in tiny amounts, violet leaf is almost too green, so I needed to balance it with something dirty as well as root it in something earth-like.
I love patchouli essential oil, but I normally don't do a lot of blending with it, Even just the mention of the word can cause a polarizing reaction. But, I was originally making this blend just for me, and I love patchouli, so that's what I chose. Violet leaf and patchouli are both strong aromas but compliment each other so well, they end up softer together, and made an ideal base for this summertime blend.
I experimented with the oils, adding each drop by drop, taking notes with each change until I created something I loved. Normally I'd set aside a new blend and let it sit overnight to see how the oils work together, and to see if the blend needs to be adjusted. This time I only set it aside long enough to blend the base. I knew it was perfect.
For the body oil base, I chose to make the majority of the oil blend with meadowfoam. I've been wanting to work with it more recently because it's a highly stable oil (making it a good choice for an oil that would be sitting on a bathroom counter all summer), that absorbs well and smooths out dry skin. I wanted to keep the oil on the lighter side since oiled skin tends to hold heat in, so I chose apricot kernel oil and argan oil to complete the blend. Apricot and argan are both fast-absorbing oils, and together they contain all the major essential fatty acids that skin needs. The three oils together made a nice blend, heavy enough to be emollient, but light enough to be fully absorbed and not greasy.
The first time I used the completed body oil, I fell in love. Every day that I used it, I loved it more. I started to crave the aroma so much, I ended up putting it on multiple times a day. I'm usually pretty good at taking care of my skin (I can't get too lazy as the owner of a skin care company!), but my skin was extra soft and loved.
After using it just a few days, I knew I needed to share this scent. At first, I was planning on creating a perfume oil in a rollerball tube. Then I remembered how easy it is to let skincare slip as the weather gets warmer. Our skin is usually less visually dry as humidity goes up, but it still needs to be cared for. Our skin is our protection, our barrier to the world, and we need to make sure it's healthy and strong so it can take care of us. I thought, maybe if other people loved this oil as much as I did, it would give the same motivation that it gave me to keep using it.
I hope you love this oil as much as I do.
Comments will be approved before showing up.
I'm taking part in an Instagram Challenge called March Meet the Maker. Joanne Hawker started this challenge in 2016, but I only heard of it this year and jumped in late, just a couple days ago. Joanne set up each day with a different prompt, and makers share photos and stories related to that prompt. Today's prompt is "design process", and since this is my favorite part of my job, I wanted to share more than an Instagram post would allow.
Each type of product I make has a slightly different design process, depending on whether it's a lip balm and I'm creating new scents, or it's an aromatherapy blend where the ingredients are therapeutic, or it's a limited edition body product that is completely new. But they all start the same - an idea. Usually followed by the question, "how can I make this scent with just natural ingredients?"
Two years ago, I was browsing in a bookstore, and I picked up a book on their bestsellers table. I liked the way the book looked and felt in my hands, and I made a split second decision to buy it just before they closed, completely unaware that what I felt was what the book was about - an item sparking joy in myself. The book was Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
Though the KonMari Method is about following your heart, not necessarily your instincts, I'm so glad I picked up that book!
I love stuff. I love to collect things, especially old things. I love the memories they hold, the connections they remind me of, and the history they contain. I am comforted by always having useful things around in case I need them. It's rare I ever leave my house without a bag (although I do try to challenge myself sometimes).
Over the last couple of months, I've been joining new groups and meeting a lot of new people, especially other women in business. When asked what I do for work, I usually end up stumbling over my words a bit, unable to decide between a few different ways to answer.
I make lip balm is a good, basic answer but not the whole story.
I'm a herbalist* and aromatherapist and I make products is a better description of what I do, but it feels like I'm selling my brand short.
I own a small natural skincare and aromatherapy company is my favorite straightforward answer, but it's often met with questions like these:
"Like day creams and night creams?"
"Do you make under eye serums?"
"Do you have something for these wrinkles, haha?"