On Wednesday evening I was invited by Love Popups London to attend the Scott’s Apothecary‘s soy candle and therapeutic perfume workshop, in which we learned to make a scented candle and a roll-on blend of therapeutic essential oils. The location is a cozy meeting room in a building near Clapham Junction, packed full of scented candles and essential oils of all kinds.
Note: while I was given this experience free of charge, this does not effect my review in any way!
Alice welcomed us to her lovely work space with complimentary hot drinks or fizz, and started explaining how essential oils work and what to keep in mind when creating scent blends. In the first hour of the two hour workshop, we got to find out all about essential oils, how they’re made, which ones are used for cosmetic or therapeutic purposes and so much more. It was very in depth lesson, with Alice being very helpful and open to all questions we had. We sniffed our way through her array of oils, from the citrusy and fruity ones, over floral and wood scents, to spicy essential oils, there’s a plethora to discover. Small jars of coffee beans were provided as nasal palate cleansers, the clean scent of coffee beans helps reset the receptors in the nose, which can easily get overwhelmed when sniffing on so many different scents in a short time span.
We were taught how to select and compliment different scents, selecting base notes, middle notes, and top notes that work together to achieve our indivual ideas. Each oil has different effects on the body, and along with a pleasing scent we were able to decide whether we wanted a calming or invigorating blend, and so much more. Each of the five attendants at the workshop were able to create their very own, unique blend of oils, starting with small amounts and working up to the full scent profile. Alice was always on hand to suggest complimentary oils, help decide on base notes to round out the scent profile, and answer all our indivual questions. As workshops are kept to smaller groups of up to eight people, everyone gets the full attention and assistance needed to create a beautiful, personal candle.
After selecting our favourites and using them to create a beautiful scent blend, Alice poured out our wax and helped us stir and pour our candles. We used pure soy wax, which is 100% natural and vegan and has no synthetic ingredients. Everyone’s candle smelled quite different, with individually selected oils, I wanted to create a halloweeny, autumny spiced pumpkin type of smell, which I achieved with a balanced mix of cinnamon, clove, ginger, mandarin orange, may cheng (also a citrusy scent), bay, juniper, cedarwood, nutmeg, and just a few drops of pachouli to round out the smell. It all came together beautifully to create a comforting, spicy, comfortable scent profile that I’m very happy with. Each candle has a burn time of 35-40 hours and will keep its lucious scent for a long time. The lid helps lock in the oils and prevent them from evaporating when the candle is not in use.
After we all finished our candles and left them to cool and set, we started working on our roll-on therapeutic perfume. For this, everyone selected three oils based on their personal scent preferences and the effects they wanted to achieve. Most attendees in our group opted for calming oils that aid in anxiety reduction and good sleep. I personally used lavender and chamolile with just a few drops of basil. Lavender calms the mind and reduces anxiety, chamolile aids in sleep and is also calming, basil reduces anxiety and stress. Together these three oils should help me settle down for a good night’s sleep while also providing a wonderful scent.
As the basil oil has a very strong, licoricey smell, I only used three drops, while chamolile got eight and lavender nine drops, making for twenty drops of essential oils in the roll on. This is then topped off with a little bit of Vitamin E, which is a great natural preservative and also good for the skin, and then filled up with almond oil, our main carrier oil for the perfume. I am very happy with this combination of oils and do feel it has helped me to relax and get to sleep easier, but I’m not sure how much that is me expecting it to, and how much it’s actually down to the oils. I’ve struggled with sleep problems for most of my life, so having a few nights of actually restful sleep is always welcome, no matter how they’re achieved!
I absolutely loved the workshop and am very happy with the candle and perfume I have taken home. Alice provided so much help and knowledge, it really was an outstanding experience. With so many products to choose from and personalised advice, everyone got to really create something individual for themselves. There was a very calm, supportive atmosphere throughout our session.
Overall it was great experience and I learned a lot. My only little complaint is that the workshop space itself is a bit difficult to find. While it’s a short walking distance from Clapham Junction, it’s a bit of a winding walk through residential areas and past construction sites. The room itself is perfectly suited to the class, so it’s really just a tiny complaint on my part. Other than that, this workshop is fantastic and I can definitely recommend it to anyone interested in making their own essential oil candles or perfume, you will learn so much and have fantastic procuts to take home with you!
Five and a half out six rainbow sloths from me.