SONIA ORTS BOTANICAL ALCHEMY
We had the opportunity to catch up with Sonia Orts and ask her some questions about herself and her business, Sonia Orts Botanical Alchemy.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and how you came to start Sonia Orts Botanical Alchemy
I have always been Mademoiselle Parfum (Miss Perfume)— I went to a French school. My favourite hobby was to guess the perfume that others wore. I never bought the same perfume twice as there were too many new scents to be discovered, too many stories to be unveiled. But I always felt that something was missing in mainstream perfumes. In addition, in my late teens I was working as a fashion model, and as a consequence of having to wear heavy makeup regularly, and living the lifestyle of a model, my skin suffered badly. Much time and money were spent on conventional, big brand skincare products to correct my condition, with no result. Frustrated and annoyed, I finally humbled myself and asked the women in my family for their skincare secrets. They all had beautiful skin so whatever they were doing had to be better than what I was trying. And so it was that I learnt that the results achieved by using traditional skincare methods far outweighed those of modern and synthetic chemical innovations.
My brand Sonia Orts is a tribute to the women in my family— a long lineage of women who had ancient knowledge of alchemic beauty and perfumery. An ancient wisdom that I received as a gift and transformed by adding the latest natural cosmetic trends — a beautiful philosophy I wanted to share with others.
What attracted you to work with Botanicals?
My grandmother was a herbal tea lover and her medicines were based on herb infusions and balms. My mum is a passionate gardener and raised me on a diet centred on fruits and veggies. A plant’s scent has always triggered happiness and satisfaction in a very special way. I guess it was meant to be— I have always been attracted to the natural world. Since I started my diploma in Spanish Alchemic Aromatherapy in 2002, I realised I could smell something others didn’t—the scent of the plant’s soul. Using the art of aromatherapy, along with perfumery’s magic and the ancient wisdom of alchemy, I can squeeze the plants’ soul aroma and bring you a scent that connects and transforms our souls in a way no other smell does. I believe the beauty of Nature cannot be surpassed by anything.
What would be one of your favourite products you have worked on so far, was there a lot of trials involved in making this product?
Definitely, the Alchemic Perfumes. Although all the scents in each of my products have been created following the alchemic perfumery methodology; the Alchemic Perfumes are pure alchemy. The base is a spagyric (alchemic tincture) that is obtained by a long biodynamic process that involves macerations, incinerations and several moon cycles. There were a lot of trials when I did my first spagyric 20 years ago until I got it right. This is the one that I use in Sonia Orts No1. The challenge with the other four Alchemic Perfumes was to go through the same process using different parts of the plant like delicate peonies’ petals, fruits or roots. So yes, there were several trials to find the right composition of plants for each spagyric.
Tell us what would be your favourite part of running your own business?
My favourite part of running my business is certainly creating. From designing our product labels, choosing the colour palettes to define each collection, to formulating new products. In fact, I have been collaborating with other brands for the past two years creating scents for their range or formulating their new products. The positive feedback has prompted me to open a new business, Atelier Cosmetics Design where I want to help other small brands to transform their ideas into new creations.
We always see the glamours side of businesses through our social squares, what would be your biggest hurdles in business and if you could give a new business a little bit of advice, what would it be?
Finding the right professional for each task sometimes can be very difficult; being surrounded by a good team is a synonym of success. I spent more money than I had initially planned on campaigns and PR which didn’t achieve the outcome that I expected. If you don’t choose the right person for this job you might find that you pay more than you need. Sometimes the right person/company or strategy might be out of your budget. Therefore, my advice would be to define your business strategy in detail and determine the size of your budget for marketing. Big goals equal big budgets. If you’re starting small you may find that attending a local event/market or encouraging people with a reward to share your business might be much more effective than a month of Facebook/Instagram ads.
When you are in a hurry what is your go to beauty routine?
Floral Cleanser while having my shower. Whipped Cream. A little bit of lipstick to protect my lips and that’s it!
What are some things to look out for this year, are there any new products launching?
In the past year we’ve launched the Wellbeing Collection, consisting of three body mists and four roll-ons. This collection was designed to elevate your daily rituals and I’d like to complete it with a new set of three candles: Sweet Dreams, Harmony and Beso de Sol. I don’t have a date yet as we’re still on the testing phase but I guess they’ll be ready for mid Spring.
This has been an absolute pleasure Sonia. Thank you for taking the time out and giving us such great insight into your business.