Algarve Candle Company is the joint venture of a mother and daughter who wanted to innovate
For Pamela Twentyman and Lauren Slaterhe, the Algarve was always the go-to holiday destination. Six years ago, they decided to permanently move from Lake District, in northern England, to Boliqueime in Loulé.
With the pandemic and the lockdowns, they had to close their ice cream shop in Albufeira and decided to invest in new activities to occupy their free time. Pamela decided to buy a candle-making kit online, somewhat motivated by her daughter’s passion for natural fragrances, and the result was surprising.
“I love candles and I can tell the difference between the smell of a quality, natural product and a cheap, chemical one. When my mother showed me the first candle she made, the result was so beautiful and so nice that we decided to start experimenting with other fragrances,” Lauren recalls.
The quality of their candles was such that, after they started giving them to friends and launching the page on social networks, Christmas came and “it was crazy”. Initially, in the summer, they bought a 20-kilo box of wax each time, which they melted in Pamela’s kitchen. Today, with the opening of the candle shop, orders are by the pallet and the oven is now industrial. Every day there are clients in the new space, which opened in October, and they ship orders by the hundreds to all over Europe, and especially to the UK. There are also a number of shops in the Western Algarve that sell the brand’s products, and various hotels and spas in the region have fallen for the natural fragrances of these handmade candles.
But what sets these candles apart and what is the reason for their sudden success? “I think the pandemic helped us a lot because people started to value their home environment more as they spent more time inside. Also, everyone started shopping online. That helped boost the Algarve Candle Company,” Lauren replies.
“We wanted a natural, non-chemical scent for all the fragrances. It took us a long time to get there, but because we use natural soy wax and quality products, the difference in the smell of our candles is very noticeable,” she states. Mainly because the intensity of the fragrance is the same both at the top and at the bottom of the candle, something that highlights the quality of the product. This is because, in the confection of the candles, all the ingredients are well mixed, which is something that doesn’t happen with more industrialised brands. Besides, even their appearance shows that they are natural products as the creators chose not to use any colouring in the candles or in the waxes, which makes them all white, regardless of their fragrance.
The recipes and ideas for new essences come from the two Brits, who make all the candles by hand. The scents may vary according to the season, but, for now, there are several to choose from, ranging from Amber & Orange to Dark Velvet and Fresh Linen, all available in two sizes – 40 and 70 hours. They also have gift kits, which may contain wax burners and wax melt bars, and diffusers.
For the Holidays, the new collection features five fragrances: Gingerbread; Christmas Spice; Fresh Snow; Clove & Cedar Leaf; and Fireside. It also brings something new in the form of kits that include gel and hand soap, and sprays to perfume the home. Advent calendars are also back, where each day a different candle is unveiled, as well as wreaths. All Algarve Candle Company products can be personalised with logos or any word or phrase, to give as a gift for a birthday, wedding or baby shower.
Pamela and Lauren’s only ambition for the future is to open a shop in a shopping centre or a street in a town centre. Until then, all their products can be ordered through the website or the brand’s social networks.
But if you want to get lost and discover all of their fragrances, you can visit the Algarve Candle Company shop, in Boliqueime.
By MARIA SIMIRIS