Essio, the new clip-on aromatherapy device for the shower, is the result of a collaboration between Peter Friis, young entrepreneur, and his father, Nils, a chemical engineer and holder of several patents, and Peter’s mother, Candace. Their company, Aromatec, Inc. was founded to create innovative products for the personal shower that are pure, sustainable, organic and natural. Friis shares some of the steps taken, from concept to creation, on the road to launching Essio.
2006—Essio Conceived: “Aromatherapy had been around for thousands of years but when we looked at the market we found that tapping into its benefits was difficult. It’s generally used in massage or in the bath but it’s not easy-to-use in the shower. There are many synthetic body washes or soaps but there was no way to enjoy this ancient tradition, with pure essential oils, in the shower.”
2009—2010—Essio Takes Shape: “We built a crude prototype that was able to produce aromatherapy in the shower. When we started showing it we saw people’s reaction and they were really excited. So then we needed to make it aesthetically pleasing. We found Boston designer Carol Catalono and she made it more intuitive and easy to use. The form is inspired by a flower with a long stem and the bloom—the pod-- at the end. It also connects to nearly any shower set-up and no-tools-required for hook up. Our patented disposable pods slowly release a blend of organic essential oils into the shower water. They twist easily into place and create aroma once tilted into the water stream. Each pod lasts approximately 25 minutes, enough for three showers on average.”
2009-2011—Essio Outreach: “We did a consumer survey before we did a prototype to indentify a target customer. We discovered it most appealed to females, between the ages of 30-50, who value health, sustainability and who are already familiar with aromatherapy. Many are spa –goers and they don’t require education—they already understand the value of these oil blends.”
2012—Essio Quality: The six organic aromatherapy blends, which range from sensual to soothing, are formulated and poured in Australia. “Australia is one of the biggest producers of essential oils. What they grow and distill is of the highest quality and their certification for organic status is much more stringent than ours. It’s more expensive (than sourcing from Asia) but it’s worth it.”
2013 and Beyond: “We think people are starting to wake up and are looking at personal care products with the same scrutiny they give their food. They want to avoid harmful chemicals and synthetics and we want to innovate on behalf of this customer. It takes a lot of effort just to get one product out on the market but we aim to build the brand and win customer’s trust. When salons and spas bring in Essio—to retail or to offer it in their showers—they add to their client’s overall experience and to their quality of life.”