Everyone enjoys a fresh-smelling home, hence the expansive fragrance market. However, this industry is loosely regulated, which opens the door to false claims about “natural” ingredients. Furthermore, most fragrance products are created with the inclusion of harmful chemicals, and consumers often don’t even know it. Enter Grow Fragrance, a company planning to change the industry with its non-toxic products complete with sustainable packaging.
Grow Fragrance is a family business based out of Durham, North Carolina where co-founders Daniel and Kelly Swimm live with their two sons. Daniel comes from a background that encouraged a love of nature. Following his dad’s work in the fragrance industry, this exposure led him to work in the industry and eventually discover the lack of truly chemical-free fragrance options on the market.
In response, all of the company’s candles and air freshening sprays are 100% plant-based and toxin-free. It believes in total transparency by disclosing every ingredient on the label, even though it doesn’t have to. The candles come in a variety of scents, with limited edition seasonal products released a few times a year. Current scents include lavender, bamboo and amber santal. Unlike the majority of petroleum-based candles on the market, Grow Fragrance candles are made from soy and coconut oil. Even the wicks are made from all-natural cotton, which is lead-free and unbleached.
Perhaps best of all is the vessel and candle refill system for zero-waste living. The vessels are handmade from concrete and are endlessly reusable. Customers can choose from three color options to match any décor. The candles come in a 100% recyclable insert, made from recycled aluminum. All candle products are made in the U.S. with the exception of the wicks, which are made in Germany.
In addition to candles, Grow Fragrance has developed an ever-growing line of Air + Fabric Sprays, which are available in a variety of year-round and seasonal scents. Some customer favorites include bamboo, lavender blossom and sea salt neroli. The sprays can be used to cover odors or simply to create a mood.
Caring for the planet doesn’t stop with all-natural products. The company is a certified B Corp and donates 1% of all sales to 1% for the Planet to help protect land, forests, rivers and oceans as well as toward encouraging sustainable production methods.
Grow Fragrance review
The company offered to send samples so I could get a “scents” of the product line. While wildly popular, my daughter and I are both sensitive to lavender so I requested they send other options. On a side note, the lavender products are highly rated on the company website.
I received the package quickly and in good condition. The packaging and packing materials are completely paper-based, including a cardboard box, corrugated cardboard dividers and thick paper. Therefore, everything was easy to recycle.
The first product I tested was the bamboo-scented Air + Fabric Spray. A mechanism on the bottle sealed it during transport, and some basic directions made it easy to unlock. The bottle is non-aerosol and easy to pump to release the spray. The mist itself is light and airy, not heavy or sticky. It’s not overwhelming. My family and I found the bamboo scent to be earthy and woodsy. It also has a hint of citrus. Scents are a very personal and subjective thing, so each family member had a slightly different impression. I am extremely scent-sensitive so I found the initial hit to be a bit strong. However, after the initial release, the scent fades quickly, leaving behind a freshness without a dominant smell.
The second item in my sample box was another full-size bottle of the Air + Fabric in the seasonal Agave + Mint scent. This was my favorite product, with a light fragrance that matches the description. It’s natural and fresh with a hint of the sweet agave and an undertone of the fresh mint. It reminds me of muddling mint and lime for a mojito.
A bamboo candle insert was also in the box. The scent matches that of the Bamboo Air + Fabric spray. My husband quickly adopted it for his “man cave.” Finally, I unwrapped the candle vessel. It’s a sturdy candle holder and the candle sits nicely inside. I love that it offers a long-term, reusable way to enjoy the candles while adding a visual appeal. I feel the color options would match any décor in any room. They exude a natural vibe and are more attractive than the aluminum candle tins.
The spray bottles and candles are tastefully labeled with a focus on nature. There are even plants growing out of the bar code. It offers directions for use and a list of ingredients that highlights the omission of toxins, phthalates and parabens. The spray comes in a plastic bottle, which I would love to see replaced with an alternative, but there is a note to, “Please recycle or reuse bottle.”
Images via Grow Fragrance and Dawn Hammon / Inhabitat