A collection of products that feature fragrances that awaken memories and infuse whimsy into everyday life, Royal Apothic is a brand that was not created as so much as it was found.
This well-known luxury brand, and favourite among celebrities such as Victoria Beckham, has recently launched in Australia.
We were able to interview founder, Sean O’Mara about his success with Royal Apothic, and what he hopes to achieve with the brand in Australia.
How did you first discover the idea of Royal Apothic?
I was in Notting Hill at an antique stall and high on a shelf was an apothecary manual, inside the weathered pages I found the formulations created for great monarchies of Europe. I was so inspired by the Apothecary, I went straight in to the lab when I returned to LA and started working on fragrances for modern day aristocrats.
Was Royal Apothic just an idea at that stage or did you just know that this was something that you wanted to do?
I asked the Universe for a sign on the flight over to the UK. I had been thinking about how I could merge my love of fragrance with the work I do in interior design. I then found the Apothecary manual in Notting Hill. I started reading it and thought I’d struck gold, this was the catalyst to me starting Royal Apothic.
What steps did you take from this moment on until you thought that you might have something worthy of selling?
On reading the Apothecary Manual, I made a list of the fragrances and blends that resonated with me. I then went in to the lab and started working on developing fragrances. I always wear the fragrances I create and when I get many comments on what I am wearing, I then know its one I need to put in to production. It can take time to perfect a scent, Cutting Garden, an instant hit, took three years to develop.
Did you have any idea that Royal Apothic would be so popular?
No, every morning I wake up in shock. I love hearing from fans who wear it and how it makes them feel, the impact it creates, the great memories created wearing a specific scent. I never thought it would resonate as it has.
I have many celebrities wearing my fragrances and its not because I give it to them, they buy it. Celebrity or not, its incredibly satisfying having so many people enjoy something you have created, especially as it takes time to create.
How does it make you feel knowing that when people immerse themselves in your brand, they are also connecting with a piece of history?
Everything I do honours the method of perfumery, which has a long lasting tradition. I think it’s fabulous that I can take this together with ingredients and blends that were enjoyed by Royalty, and give it a fresh contemporary feel. I also translate my own experiences and memories in to a fragrance and it all appears to resonate with many others, this is a fabulous reward.
You’ve had quite a successful career within the beauty industry, how did you first get involved in it?
I started on the beauty counter with Estee Lauder where I learned great skills that I use today. I quickly discovered how important it was to listen to people and understand what they really needed, the contact with the public taught me so much about what people are looking for, what’s important to them, invaluable information. I ended up becoming the head of global marketing. I was with Estee Lauder for 10 years.
I strongly believe you should do what you have a passion for. I love beauty and design – the universe took care of it.
Royal Apothic has just launched in Australia, what are you hoping to achieve here?
Australia is such a vast land. I want people in regional areas, the outback through to the cities to experience fragrances inspired by royalty. I was receiving many requests from people in Australia for Royal Apothic to be available in Oz, so it was time to respond.
Long term I would love to have a Royal Apothic store here. I am constantly developing new lines and it would be terrific to have a flagship store selling all the lines.
What do you wake up each day feeling most grateful for?
I wake up most grateful for the fact I do what I have a passion for and that I can share it with an amazing team of people that I work with who share it with me. The fact so many people around the world buy the product is something I will never take for granted, it inspires me to keep developing new lines.
You have to enjoy what you do; this is pivotal to succeeding in business.
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