an interview with Johanna Query-Smith, founder
We're like, in LOVE with the quality, endurance, and general amazingness of your scents. Can you talk us through how they're formulated?
Our signature scents are the result of endless mixing of single and complex fragrance notes. We spent close to one year simply perfecting our scents. Our goal was to create scents that were warm, clean, interesting, and sexy.
What are some things you're inspired by?
As an artist, I am inspired by color, design, and anything that evokes emotions or memories. I took incredible care designing our packaging to be clean, elegant, and vintage yet contemporary. I wanted our products to not only benefit the skin, but look beautiful on countertops. I'm inspired by scent and its ability to take people back to a certain moment in time and evoke special memories.
Any secret tips for applying perfume?
Our roll-on perfumes have amazing lasting power. A little goes a long way! I apply a dab to the wrists and then a few dabs to the back of the neck, almost in the hairline. Fragrance lasts especially long in hair, and I feel like it creates more of a subtle feel.
With solid perfumes, I always recommend swiping the finger away from you with the top of the nail to avoid the perfume getting under the nail.
You mention layering scents... how does that work?
Our favorite way to layer scents is by using the body butter and a perfume together.
What's your favorite scent and how you would you describe it?
My favorite scents are wander and vibe. Both are a little spicy and sexy. They aren't our best sellers, but people who love them can't get enough of them.
One of the projects you support is called The Gathering Place. Can you tell us a little more about it and what drew you to their cause?
The Gathering Place is a refuge for rebuilding lives. It is Denver's only daytime drop-in center for women, children, and transgender individuals who are experiencing poverty or homelessness. Their work is so important and they are incredibly loved in the community.
What made you want to give back through skincare?
Starting a brand with a social mission was incredibly important to me. There are so many ways to give back, and I knew that one important way for me was through GLOW for a cause. I've always been a person who volunteers and supports social causes and I wanted to make this part of my business model. Some of the non-profits that we support have a direct meaning to me and my life. My mom is a breast cancer survivor who benefited greatly from women's support and retreat groups. I chose Cowgirls vs. Cancer as another organization we give back to because this is exactly what they do; support women with breast cancer and provide them with retreats to experience horses, yoga, and healing in Montana. Then, as a former 20-year teacher, the Red Sox Foundation's Scholars Program was important to me. They provide mentoring, tutoring, and scholarships to 250 promising students from disadvantaged schools in the Boston area. It's another extremely hands-on organization who makes a huge difference.
Any last words for the bonJOY crowd?
My mantra: There is a gift in everything! (Even when it seems impossible to see.)