"Throughout school and university, I was told that the best path was the corporate world. That you should climb the ladder. And I started to do that after university, I spent eight years in the corporate world. But I wasn’t happy or fulfilled," says Florinela Cooke (featured above), founder of wellbeing and candle company Gloriously Good. "I had my own ideas - I wanted to pursue my own interests and start a business."
Florinela launched her wellbeing blog, Gloriously Good, in 2016. "I wrote about what brightened my day if I’d had a bad time at work or was feeling down," she says. "Through blogging, I discovered the thing I am truly passionate about: providing people with natural aromatherapy products that make their time spent at home more enjoyable." Aromatherapy is the practice of using scent to help boost wellbeing.
In 2020, during the first national lockdown, Florinela and her husband Jason began to transform Gloriously Good from a blog into a business selling products. The couple make and sell natural aromatherapy candles, wax melts, body scrubs and pulse-point roll-on oils. They use Starling to manage their business finance.
"The extra time we had available during lockdown, at least two hours a day from not having to commute, gave us the opportunity to do all the research and background work necessary to launch our business," she says.
The mover, the shaker, and the candle maker
Florinela, 32, moved on from her corporate marketing role to focus on the business full-time at the end of 2020. Jason, 32, works as a software engineer and spends evenings and weekends helping make and package products.
"We put our love into every candle, wax melt, body scrub and roll-on oil we make. Everything is handmade and we only use natural ingredients," says Florinela, a self-taught candle maker.
"The lavender we use is grown at high altitude in the foothills of the Alps and is more fragrant than normal lavender. Ylang ylang is a flower that grows in countries near the Indian Ocean and is also very aromatic. The two flowers combined make a very grounding, very relaxing scent which forms the basis of our Spa collection. Whereas the peppermint and eucalyptus scents, which are at the heart of our Revive collection, are more energising and restorative," she says.