When you juice cleanse, you bid farewell to a lot of toxins blocking your way. That is why we advise to be extra mindful with what you put on your body. No chemical soaps, make-up or perfumes, ideally. But, as part of our self-care tools, don't we love to smell good? Luckily, because of Frances Shoemack, founder of Abel Odor, we can smell as nice and clean as we feel. She started natural perfume brand Abel, with ingredients so natural, it won’t get in the way of any toxin eliminating your body is doing in the background.
More likely, it will make the journey more enjoyable, since your palette is cleaning up nicely, and you’ll be all opened up and have a nose for the subtlest scents. We don’t want you to miss out on this party, so during the month December, when you finish a cleanse with us, you'll get an Abel discovery set on the house! Let's meet the formerly wine-making woman who's behind these magic concoctions.
Abel Natural Perfume, ‘the ultimate intersection between art, ethics, and science’. Amazing! Could you elaborate?
Thanks! The three pillars frame the way we work. Artistry (whether it’s in the fragrance or the product design) is nothing if we are not using the best of science and technology to make it technically sound and perform. And both are no good to us if we are not doing so in an ethical way.
Do you feel a parallel in the crafts of making wine and making perfume?
There are so many - roots deeply entrenched in romanticized French culture, the beauty of working with unpredictable, nuanced, natural ingredients, and the olfactory challenge of course (your olfactory system is your sense of smell). However, I think the nicest parallel is what I eluded to in the previous question; their ability to transcend the worlds of science and art. Not so many products can do that in the way that both perfume and wine do.
What kind of scents did you wear before you made your own?
I’d recently really got into the world of artistic perfumery (as a consumer) and was loving discovering the wealth of emerging indie brands. But there was a disconnect between that, and my otherwise holistic approach to living. It was here that Abel was born – a desire to marry the two.
Why and how do you believe you are on the course of making the world’s best natural perfume?
When I first started researching natural perfume six years ago, everyone I talked to in the industry said it wasn’t possible. There were many reasons they gave, but with every one I thought - that’s not a definitive ‘you can’t’, more like a ‘you can’t really’! So right from the get-go I knew we were trying to do something that most people thought was too hard to do. We knew that to succeed in making natural perfume that can compete alongside the world’s best fragrances, we’d really have to want it and work for it. Our vita odor collection is the culmination of over five years of relentless effort and we didn’t stop trying then!
How do you keep your peace while trying to conquer the world with your company?
The honest response is that some weeks I feel like everything is in perfect harmony, and others like everything’s a mess. I guess the biggest thing is prioritizing personal wellbeing in the same way you prioritise all your other commitments. For me, this means a lunchtime yoga class even when I can’t really afford to get away from the office, making time to spend just talking with my husband, or saying no to a night out in favour of going to bed early.
What has been the biggest challenge trying to achieve your goals? How did you overcome it?
I think the biggest challenge is actually surrendering to the fact that the challenges will never stop! Whoever said business is just a series of problem solving (I think someone said that?!) is totally right. Finding enjoyment in the problem solving, and not being too precious in your solution either, knowing that in a year’s time, you’ll have a better solution.
What to you is the power of fragrance?
Smell is just such an incredible and so often under-rated part of daily life. The olfactory bulb has direct connections to the amygdala and hippocampus – two parts of the brain that are most often associated with emotion and memory, neither of which are linked with your other senses. This is what’s thought responsible for the incredible emotion and memory trigger generated by scent, and to me this is what makes scent so powerful.
What is your favourite flower or ingredient to work with?
I really loved working with neroli in our “golden neroli” scent. It’s such an exquisite, rare ingredient – the purist form of orange blossom. It has this amazing profile which is at once honeyed and rich, and slightly tangy green. It also has a wealth of healing qualities such as hormone balancing in women, so it also makes you feel good when wearing it.
What other products do you like to use in your beauty routine?
I’m not a big beauty routine person (I spend about 10 minutes in the bathroom), but I do notice these days I have quite an impressive array of beautiful natural products, generally from like-minded natural brands that I love to use. I love just how much the industry is growing and improving. I tend not to go anywhere without at least mascara, otherwise it’s just a smattering of make up. It’s very cliché, but there’s definitely something to be said for water, sleep, good food and exercise – whether I actually look better or not, I definitely feel like I look better when I’m on top of those things and I think that’s basically the same thing.
How did you find out about the Juicery? What do you love the most in our stores?
My parents used to be big juicers (my mum was a yoga teacher), so green juices have been a part of my diet for many years. We don’t have a juicer at home these days and I like to juice cleanse on a Monday, so every Monday morning I ride via The Cold Pressed Juicery on my way to work. My weekends are pretty chill (we have two small children!), so I’m not doing it to detox as such, instead I find it is a really nice way to start my week. It makes me feel better and also makes me more mindful during the rest of the week. I favourite juices are the MOAJ and the Bedrock Juice, both of which I love, and also the superfood latte's - such a good alternative to coffee!
To start a cleanse, visit or call your nearest store, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. To find out more about Abel, go here.