In 1992, I started Escents at 23 years old after graduating Business Administration in Simon Fraser University. My desire to become an entrepreneur was embedded in me from an early age. My parents had always taken risks. Through their lives, I was able to understand the challenges of running my own business. My father John MacAndrew has always been my inspiration, hero and one of my biggest supporters.
After University, I got a job at a newspaper and just prior to management training realized this was not the direction I saw for myself. In a leap of faith I quit and went camping in Portland, Oregon. It was on this trip that I discovered the source of my inspiration: a bath and body care store that focused on custom scenting. I came back home to Vancouver inspired to start my own business. I studied the benefits of plant-derived ingredients and here I found my true passion. I learned how to mix and blend essential oils to create different physical and physiological naturally scented outcomes. I opened my first Escents cart at a North Shore Market. I maxed out my $500 credit card limit on samples, hand wrote my labels and 4 months later, I moved to my first shop at a kiosk in Park Royal Mall (West Vancouver, BC). Here I am 25 years later, never waking not wanting to go to work.
This passion with scent and wellness would also later be my rock in surviving a phase in my life that was my biggest obstacle. I suffered a life-threatening seizure while 38 weeks pregnant with twins, then underwent two brain surgeries. Through this, my passion came to the rescue and helped create an atmosphere that was soul-soothing in healing my mind (literally and figuratively) and body. Scent scientifically improved my memory, tenacity, resilience and generated positive feelings by triggering sensors in my brain. During the time at the hospital, wellness assisted my generation of hope, courage, strength and positivity. Escents has proved and allowed true healing.
Today we celebrate our 25th year Anniversary. Escents Aromachology has grown from one stand-alone cart to an international global brand with 74 retail locations across Asia and Canada, a growing eCommerce presence with international reach and an expanding wholesale offering – including a partnership with Air Canada.
Our product offerings that include custom creations, 100% natural essential oils, body and hair care, natural wellness remedies and home scenting. Escents’ goal is to be the global leader in scents, natural wellness and plant-based personal care products making the power of essential oils accessible to everyone. I am blessed to now share my story and Escents’ with the world.