Business expands its product line

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Aromas Fiji founder Nishrat Nazeen began learning about aromas and their calming effects during the pandemic. Picture: SUPPLIED | Aromas Fiji candles are made of long lasting soya wax and come with high quality cotton wicks. Picture: SUPPLIED

Soap may not be most people’s first idea when deciding what to gift a child, and one certainly wouldn’t expect it to then be among the child’s favourite gifts.

When Nishrat Nazeen was gifted a creatively shaped bar of soap as an 8-year-old, she had no clue that years later it would become the tale she tells for how her artisan soap store first began.

“When I was about 8 years old one of my family from New Zealand gifted me soap in the shape of a car, and I was so much in love with that soap that I kept it as a souvenir,” she told The Fiji Times.

Ms Nazeen now owns and operates her own online artisan soap store, Aromas Fiji.

Ever the family-woman, the name was chosen by her little sister, and the business was born at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when soap had possibly become more important than ever before. Aromas Fiji has since expanded its product line and the business has made a name for itself in the local self-care market.

“At Aromas Fiji we are soap artisans, making small batches of wholesale organic soap, scented soy candles, herbal hair oil, and shea butter scrub cubes, that are not only unique and beautiful, but have exceptional qualities for the skin and hair,” Ms Nazeen shared.

A businesswoman with a passion for her craft, Ms Nazeen designs and creates her products herself and grows ever more inspired when a loyal customer offers her positive words. “I’m in love with the processes, experimenting, colours, and scents,” she said.

“Everyone says how much they love my products and I get more motivated when someone contacts me and says how much they are satisfied with my product.”

A devout Muslim, Ms Nazeen also ensures her soaps are made with all halal product considerations and is proud to say her soaps can be used without breaking religious regulations.

“Our soaps are made up of oils and we do not use any animal fat to make this soap,” she said.

“Our Muslim brothers and sisters are very particular about the soaps they use. If we use the soap which is made from animal fat, then this will be not pure, as certain meat is prohibited for the Muslims to consume,” Ms Nazeen explained.

Ms Nazeen imports the fragrant and essential oils used in her soaps and candles and gets to work on her by-hand manufacture process.

Her favourite scents to work with are frangipani and Japanese honeysuckle. Hinting for new customers, she shared that her favourites of her products are the Turmeric Charcoal Soaps and Japanese Honeysuckle Candles.

Aromas Fiji’s newest offering is the Island Spa Scented Candle, and the gears are in motion for new massage candles to be introduced for use in spas and massage parlours.

Ms Nazeen seems eager and determined to grow her business despite facing many of the same issues fellow small business owners struggle with.

“Due to the nature of handmade crafting, the production capacity of the business is limited in quantity and could lead to delays in fulfilling customer orders,” Ms Nazeen shared.

“Creating handmade items requires significantly more time and effort than machine-made products. The cure time for the soap takes 6 weeks. So, we have to be prepared and on our toes all the time,” she said with vigour. Ms Nazeen attributes much of her success as a businesswoman to the support of her family and relatives.

“My sisters from Dubai and Melbourne had been very supportive and not forgetting about my Aunt in USA and my cousin sister in USA were very supportive and were giving me hope all the way,” she said.

The high-quality, all-natural, Fiji-made products of Aromas Fiji can be purchased through their website at https://aromasfiji.com, ordered through email at aromasfiji@gmail.com, or found on the Aromas Fiji Facebook page.

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