Winter is a heartwarming time of year. We hunker down around the fireplace with loved ones to enjoy warm drinks while sharing traditions and trading stories. We work together to recreate recipes passed down from passed-on relatives whose jokes still make us laugh in stitches. We gather around a crowded dinner table to retell legends and build new memories. Some family traditions are so powerful that they've inspired businesses!
These candle and skincare makers are also incredible storytellers. They've each treasured family pastimes, anecdotes from their ancestors, or cherished childhood memories into their product line. Gather 'round, Indie fam—these 9 makers have the floor. Find out how they use their businesses to celebrate their fascinating backstories!
Gather ‘round! Hear About the Family Traditions That Sparked These 9 Candle and Skincare Businesses
Frances and Louise Candle Co (IL)
Maker: Carolyn Wass
Frances and Louise Candle Co pours a little piece of their heart into each and every candle. Founder Carolyn was so inspired by her grandmother's love for genealogy that she dove deeply into her ancestry to design scents that rep'd age-old stories from across generations. Every product listing is accompanied by a treasured family photo so you can fully understand the sweet memory underpinning each scent.
Baisun Candle Co (DE)
Maker: Brandon Leung
Scent is such a powerful way to invoke a treasured time or place. Through candles, Baisun Candle Co shares childhood memories and rich traditions with a dash of joyous nostalgia. Like Candied Plum and Lychee Red Tea, each scent is unique to a specific slice of the Asian American experience. Unfamiliar with these stunning scents? Take one whiff for an exciting way to immerse yourself in the stories of another culture!
Albisa Candles (CA)
Maker: Isabel Alvarez
Founder Isabel is on a mission to celebrate her Cuban heritage through senses! Each candle waxes poetic about a cherished anecdote or memory from her childhood. You'll feel like you're part of the family after reading the personal narrative accompanying each candle. Pull up for a sensory serving of the famed Cuban Bread, a scent reminiscent of the doughy, aromatic loaf that was a beloved staple at her dinner table!
Lakebound Candle Co. (CA)
Maker: Lea Cram
Growing up, Lea's favorite childhood vacations were always the ones that involved two things: a lake and a boat. What could beat endless summer days on the boat soaking up the sun, learning how to water ski, or gazing longingly at the summer stars? Each scent ignites a sun-splashed memory from her lake getaways.
Diya Candles (MD)
Maker: Sonia Srivastava
When Sonia and her family moved from India to the United States, she loved catching a fleeting whiff of familiar scents that reminded her of home. So, she decided to immortalize her most precious memories of storied temples and ambrosian Jasmine trees through candles. Each one brings a special scent of India to your doorstep!
KANEA Candles (NJ)
Maker: Akosua Ayim
“Kanea” means “light” in Twi, and founder Akosua uses scent and candlelight to immerse you in the neighborhoods and cities of her homeland of Ghana. You can breathe in the lush, verdant landscapes of Tamale, the popular shea nut exported out of the trade center of Yendi, or among others, the botanical oasis of Aburi.
Phenic Skincare (MA)
Maker: Sophia El-Hayek
Sophia's story starts with a sacred family recipe passed down through generations: Mediterranean olive oil. Inspired by its bounty of wellness benefits, she investigated how other ingredients from nature could also boost skincare. She blended her wealth of knowledge into an all-natural line that integrates her family's time-honored wisdom.
Green Gold (GA)
Maker: Nneka Otim
Even as a kid, Nneka had a feeling that her grandmother was onto something special. She was smart with simple, natural remedies. She overflowed with effortless wellness techniques. Nneka always remembers leaving her grandma's house after long summer stays feeling vibrant. Over the years, she started to incorporate her grandmother's innate know-how into skincare and aromatherapy, culminating in Green Gold!
Mon+Ash Natural Blends (WI)
Maker: Monica Semington
Homegrown chamomile, cinnamon, rue, and spearmint: these were just some of the all-natural remedies Monica remembers her grandmother wielding during her childhood in Mexico. She uses this ancestral knowledge to swap icky ingredients in personal care and household products with nature-based alternatives.
Questions for discussion and sharing
What are some of your favorite holiday traditions? What scents most remind you of cherished memories spending time with friends and family? Let us know in the comments!
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