The new home care collection includes scented candles and even a washing-up liquid. Here's our verdict
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If you love the way Aromatherapy Associates bath oil makes your whole house smell like a spa, you’ll be beating a path to the door for the iconic British brand's new home collection of ‘air wear’, out now.
This week it dropped an innovative waterless electric diffuser The Atomiser and five essential oil blends as well as four scented candles. Aromatherapy cleaning products are set to follow in July, as part of a collaboration with NYC natural cleaning company The Laundress. At a time when we're spending more time indoors than ever before, creating a supportive sanctuary within our four walls is a key part of our wellbeing.
If, like me, your living room has become a place where you eat, work, work out and relax, it’s increasingly hard to switch between professional mode and downtime. This is where home scents, with their direct effect on our emotional brain – the limbic system – can usefully step in, to solve an issue that until recently we never knew we had.
I’ve been lighting candles all day, every day, for the past year based purely on what I liked. The idea behind AA’s new collection is that I can now tailor that experience, punctuating my day with different scents to boost what I'm doing – to give me more energy, calm me down, sharpen my focus, welcome visitors or simply change a room from workspace to a chill-out space without a trip to Ikea. As WFH days seem to merge into one, I’ve been using this creative new way of scenting to bring some differentiation in my days.
Incredibly, Aromatherapy Associates has been around for 35 years and I have to ask - home care, what took you so long? I tested the collection. Here’s what’s in it and a heads-up on the launch offer that can save you £50.
This is the centrepiece of the new collection and really does deserve praise as it’s waterless (so no mouldy reservoirs to clean), pretty much silent (no trickling noises or whirring fans) and doesn’t use heat so the purity of the oils is preserved – very clever in fact.
This ceramic tower comes with two diffuser head which you screw into your chosen oil blend bottle and slot back in. It gently puffs away with the odd delicate cloud of vapour. One charge will give you 18 hours of use in standard mode and 15 in the boost mode. You can choose a 30 minute, one hour or three-hour setting, so no worrying about burning the house down if you go out. It comes with an empty bottle which you run with rubbing alcohol for cleaning, but I guess there’s nothing to stop you from mixing your own blends in it either.
My verdict? It’s incredibly easy to use, very stylish and has a soft glowing light option. It is VERY potent, however. Even ten minutes was enough to scent my space as powerfully as any candle and my husband actually asked me to turn it off after two minutes (but I made him wait). It’s fast-acting and the essential oil bottles, which cost £25, will last you a very long time.
I will be taking this on staycation with me – perfect to make somewhere potentially fusty smell like home fast. It’s great for the office too, where fire regulations often don't allow candles.
It's a good option too if you struggle with essential oils on your skin (one respected gynae told me bathing in essential oils is bad for the microbiome of your ‘intimate area’ and to avoid especially if you had thrush). The Atomizer give you that sensory bathtime experience without aggravating sensitive skin. I particularly liked popping on the Deep Relax oil blend for a couple of minutes at bedtime. Who needs pillow spray?
There are five blends for your Atomiser, all pure essential oils (potency alert!). They are some of the brand’s most popular scents and can take you from dawn til dusk. My favourite is the Revive blend with neroli, pink grapefruit and bergamot – for morning yoga and mid-afternoon slumps. My teens like the Support Breathe blend when they are revising as it’s great for focus and as a poor sleeper I’ve long been a fan of Deep Relax which was created but the founder to help with insomnia. They’ve added one of the newest blends too, Forest Therapy, which is very grounding with pink pepper and cypress for moments of overwhelm. De-Stress contains calming chamomile as well as frankincense which has been shown to relax the diaphragm to calm your breathing. Experimenting with them is a lot of fun
As a launch offer, you receive two free Essential Oil Blends worth £50 when you buy The Atomiser.
The smooth ceramic holders with their raised lettering are a sensory experience in themselves, and that's before you even lit them. I felt just holding them that miraculously I’d got my sh*t together. There are four to choose from in classic blends Revive, De-Stress, Deep Relax, and the newest blend Rose which is designed to smell like optimism and feels like a hug in a jar. Again they are super potent with up to two bottles of essential oils in each. An hour at a time was plenty to scent my large room. Each one gives 40 hours of burn time. Are they vegan? Yes, they're made of 100 per cent natural soy wax.
Laundress x Aromatherapy Associates cleaning collection from £25, out 1 July
In July, the home care collection will expand to include cleaning products a collaboration with the cool NYC laundry company The Laundress. Watch out for a laundry detergent, washing up liquid (dish soap, they call it) and surface cleaner. I haven’t had this in my hands yet, but the prices definitely say 'premium'. There's Signature Detergent in Deep Relax & Forest Therapy, £35, Surface Cleaner in Support Breathe, £25, and Dish Soap in Support Breathe, £25.
Doing the beds, the dishes and the dusting will become a joy, we hope. However I remain to be persuaded that £25 is an acceptable price for washing up liquid – but will report back!