Many of us have seen the trend in wax tarts, basically wax potpourri. We’ve likely all bought them from large retail stores, maybe even gotten in on the whole Scentsy thing. However, some small businesses are making an effort to break into this retail niche. One such small business owner, Becky Anderson, is trying to do exactly that with her company, Two Timing Tart. Her unique scents are the trademark of her business, and definitely break away from the traditional, boring profiles of more well-known wax companies.
Becky, thank you for talking with me today!
So, what made you decide to start a business selling tarts and candles?
Long story made short: I used to get a lot of wax melts from Yankee Candle and Colonial Candle, and when the quality began to decline, I began to wonder if I could do it myself. A lot of testing later, I did! The candles were kind of an afterthought and required more testing and such, but I’d like to think that I make a quality product that lasts longer than the big guys. (Ego? Moi? Never!)
How did you decide on the name Two Timing Tart?
It was kind of a play on words; I thought that if I were to start with the making of the wax tarts and then progress into the candles/bath salts/perfume oils/whatever else, I would be two-timing the tarts. And it spiraled out of control from there. The flapper lady on our company logo (courtesy of Ms. Sarah Weaver) is also an extension of that kind of carefree, flippant punny attitude.
What do you feel is the most important thing about your product?
I think that the most important part of my products is the fact that I don’t just walk the same path as other wax makers. We all have similar ingredients and oils that we can acquire from the same vendors, but I’m not a fan of just going wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am and churning out things that are the same as everyone else’s. For instance, if I want to mix something with serendipity (which is coconut, cherry, almond and orange), I’m just as likely to pair it with incense as I am with something fruity, which gives it a different dimension than just the straight addition of fruit or sugary-type scents. There’s a fine line between alienating people with the uniqueness of a blend and giving them something familiar with a twist. I’d like to think that familiar with a twist leads people to try something completely out of their comfort zone, though.
Why do you name your scents after geeky things?
Because I’m a giant geek! I love books and tv and movies, the geekier the better. Science fiction and fantasy, as well as classic literature, have been a huge part of my life, and I like to pay homage to the things that make me happy.
Related to that, are all your scent names based on fandoms as well? I love the names, by the way. I’d buy stuff from you just because, you know. Captain Tightpants, and Vampires Don’t Fucking Sparkle!
Not all of them are related to fandom – there are a lot of homages to concepts, like Sunshine is in memory of a favorite aunt, and 42 is an ode to a summer’s day. However, there are a lot of scents that are based in fandom-related concepts: lots of Doctor Who, Firefly, Spooks/MI-5, Sherlock, etc. There are scents that are based on throw-away lines from things and there are also references that no one else has gotten yet. Those are the fun ones!
What’s your biggest inspiration?
It depends from day to day: there are times when things are sparked by nature and sometimes, it’s just following my own intuition and bliss. I’m always inspired by small things, though – I just don’t always show it, because the brain cogs turn more slowly at times.
How do you come up with the scent combinations? Many are profiles I think no one else would ever come up with.
That’s the million dollar question! I have kind of a weird synesthesia thing where I can taste smells on the back of my tongue sometimes by just thinking about them. There are many scents that I can match up in my head based on an impression of a scent (or what I think it will smell like based on the scent description from the oil vendor), and from there, it’s just getting the right proportions worked out. There are other times where I open bottle after bottle and put them side by side until I get an impression of the finished results. (Pineapple and Tomato Leaf, anyone?)
Do you have a favorite scent?
I love lemon of all persuasions, and all variations of mints (Moroccan, corn mint, peppermint, spearmint, etc.); my least favorites are strawberry, lavender, grape, and bubblegums. Of my own mixes, my favorite has to be Bonkers But Brilliant, which is a mix of fuji apple, purple sage, and mint leaf. It’s anything but typical, and throws like no one’s business. My second favorite is Freak Flag, a mix of sandalwood, berries, chocolate, and champagne, because it’s so unusual and comes out of nowhere and punches you in the higher brain functions – it completely bypasses your nose and goes WHAM in your frontal lobe.
What kind of customer do you market to?
I cater to people who want something just a little bit different than the norm. A lot of people want bakery/fruity scents; I like fresh spa-like scents and incenses and musks. There’s usually a happy medium somewhere between the two, and sometimes, you can cross profiles and make something extraordinary!
How do you decide what ingredients to buy and from where? Are they ethically sourced?
I mainly use fragrance oils (rather than essential oils) because they are much cheaper and have a wider variety of finished product (that is already stable). My wax is 100% soy (with added botanical oils that the parent company does not disclose), and is sustainable – however, seeing as how the company is large, I do not know the size of their carbon footprint. The stearic acid that I use is palm stearic acid and has been harvested responsibly. I do know that everything I make is biodegradable and the packaging is recyclable/reuseable.
Do you have any products for charitable organizations?
At one time I did, but they have since fallen by the wayside. I am not adverse to reattempting them in the future, but for the moment, not as much.
Becky, thank you again so much for talking with me. You make a fantastic product and I truly can’t imagine buying from anyone else!
For the full, geeky, fandom awesomeness of the products discussed here, get thee to the Two Timing Tart website! http://www.twotimingtart.com