‘Tis the season for fuzzy sweaters, warm blankets, and fragrant candles. Well, who are we kidding? Candles are a year-round delight. Goodness Candles is an all-natural candle company that sells eco-friendly, ethically sourced, vegan, and cruelty-free candles. What better way to enable a candle-shopping habit than to buy a high-quality, sustainable, handmade candle versus a random jar from the grocery store? Also, three words. Candle subscription service. That’s right. Goodness Candles offers monthly candle subscriptions, which is perfect for the current please-stay-at-home-as-often-as-you-can climate. It’ll be like a pre-planned present shipped out to you each month!
So, who are the women behind such a lovely brand? Friends Hannah and Nicole are the founders of Goodness Candles, and they met each other in college in 2016. “I always need a candle in my house — I love my house to smell good,” Nicole says. “And, I was like, ‘Wow, I really wish I could have a new candle delivered to my door every week. Like, how cool would that be?’ So then I came across Hannah, and I asked her, ‘Hey, would you ever want to build a company and do that?’”
Deciding to build Goodness Candles as sustainable company wasn’t a hard decision to make for Nicole, as sustainability is something that she’s always been conscious of growing up. “Personally, when I buy … any product, I do my research and I make sure that I go after brands that have their sustainable mission statement all out there, or [that are] being ethical, or working towards it, because some [brands] are now leaning that way,” she says. “That’s just … always been the way I shop, and I’ve always been conscious about it. So, when we started [Goodness Candles], I immediately said from the start that [sustainability] is just something that has to be one of our priorities, to make the least hurtful impact on the environment that we possibly could as a company.”
While Hannah wasn’t always as conscious about sustainability, it’s become more important to her throughout her long-standing, close friendship with Nicole. “And, yeah,” Hannah confirms, “ … day one, [sustainability] was our biggest priority. Before we even fully committed to doing a candle business, we did all the research to make sure that whatever we did buy was going to be as sustainable as we could make it.”
Hannah studied business in college, so this venture isn’t too far of a stretch for her. However, both Hannah and Nicole’s day jobs are in healthcare. “[Goodness Candles is] a nice break, because it’s a total distraction from our day jobs,” Hannah says. “It’s been really, really fun. It’s nice to mix it up, even though we both really love our day jobs, too.” Business is booming, but Hannah says that the two don’t necessarily think they ever want to leave their day jobs to make Goodness Candles a full-time gig, because of how much they enjoy their full-time jobs. And we can truly appreciate that. However, it is a goal to hire more people to take over daily tasks, as it’s only Hannah and Nicole at this time.
The candle-making duo launched Goodness Candles in early March, so it’s amazing to see how fast the business has grown despite the COVID-19 pandemic. They get a lot of their supplies from Candle Science, a company that has green packaging and offers carbon neutral shipping. Hannah and Nicole did their own research so that they could keep their commitment to sustainability. Everything used at Goodness Candles is recyclable, made from recycled material, or both! Shoppers can even purchase carbon offsets to reduce the carbon footprint of their purchases. Love that for them! “It’s kind of hard, because it’s just the both of us; it’s our money,” Nicole explains. “And, to get all the nice, easy, cheap things versus eco-friendly things — Eco-friendly is always going to be more expensive, but it’s worth it.”
Goodness Candles operates out of Phoenix, Arizona, and local customers can receive 50% off refills when they bring back their glass candle jars for reuse. However, if you’re shopping from out of state, you can easily clean out the wax residue and use the jars as drinking cups, desk organizers, planters, and so on. The crafting possibilities are endless.
Sunday Morning is said to be the company’s most popular scent and with “notes of soft linen and jasmine giving you the smell of freshness,” it’s easy to understand why. Sweet Dreams looks like — excuse me — an absolute dream. The ingredients are listed as lavender, green tea, and lemongrass; no combination of scents sound more relaxing. If sugary-sweet smells are more up your alley, Santa’s Cookies has vanilla, cinnamon, and sugar. Honestly, Goodness Candles appears to have a scent for everyone. There’s even a Mini Collection for mini rooms or mini budgets. However, don’t let that cute lil’ size fool you. “These little things can carry [a scent]; they carry well. They’re not overpowering, but they’re very fragrant,” Hannah and Nicole assure us.
If you just so happen to be considering ‘getting into’ sustainability and/or starting a sustainable business yourself, you’re in luck, because Hannah and Nicole have advice for you! Hannah recommends researching a lot before you commit to anything. Plus, a lot of shipping companies offer samples so that you can try before you buy. Also, find where the sustainable market is lacking. “If you can’t find it, start it,” she says. Nicole says, “For someone wanting to dip into sustainability, you can start anywhere. Or, very easily, you can start with your shopping habits.” For Hannah and Nicole, starting a sustainable business took a lot of research and trial and error. “I would just say, to women who want to go into [the sustainable business industry], just do it. Don’t hold back. … Just go for it,” says Nicole. This mentality is one of many things we at Zoe Elle sincerely admire about the founders of Goodness Candles.