I was lucky enough to discover this range of products a few years back when I was on a work trip to Melbourne and stayed in the Prince Hotel in St Kilda, recommended to me by my guru in all things hip Kelly. Aesop products were provided as a courtesy in the bathroom and can I tell you I so did not want to get out of the shower and have to go and do my focus groups. On the morning of checking out I made sure I emptied the bathroom of any remaining product and have not looked back since, although I do buy the stuff now rathe than steal it.
Aesop was established back in 1987 (a cool decade if ever there was one) in the cultural heart of Australia, yes Melbourne. Their ethos was, and has remained, to provide a “range of superlative products”, and I challenge anyone who tries them not to like them. Their commitment to using plant-based ingredients appeals to the aspiring organic user in me, oh and can I just say all their products smell divine.
I was also very lucky to have the opportunity to hear one of the founders of the company give an inspiring speech about how dedication and a belief in innovation helped them get to where they are today. I believe them when they say they value “all human endeavours undertaken with intellectual rigour, vision, and a nod to the whimsical”.
The other thing about this brand that I love is their communications, I receive their newsletter and trust me they are great at living the promise they make to “advocate the use of our products as part of a balanced life that includes a healthy diet, sensible exercise, and a regular intake of good books”. It’s always a great read and they do make some very good recommendations re books.
They are known for being a different in terms of what they do, and nowhere is this more evident than in their retail outlets. I remember one autumn going into their store in Melbourne, they had the entire floor covered in piles of brown leaves, it was so cool. Going into their stores is a real sensory experience and they clearly put a lot of thought, effort and work into the space making it a great place to experience as a shopper. There is a novel idea, a retailer putting the shopper at the heart of what they do….
And finally – the product itself is brilliantly packaged, it is the kind of packaging you really want to keep once the bottle is empty. They are somewhat modest in appearance but the design is fast becoming iconic.
Oh and of course I should mention my two favourate products, are the Animal body wash – yes I did say animal. It is a mild “body and fur wash” which “is formulated with the same research, development and care” that they apply to all their products. It has lemon rind, tea tree and spearmint leaf in it, I love it. My other love is the body wash that has crushed coriander seeds and black peppercorns in it.