La-Eva launches at The Oxford CollectionOct 4, 2023
“A match made in heaven” – Louisa Canham, founder & creative director of La-Eva.
We are delighted to announce the launch of our new partnership with La-Eva, a sustainable British wellness brand inspired by organic beauty, a love of art and the alignment of luxury with simplicity…
Made in the UK and featured in Vogue, FT and Wallpaper, La-Eva makes its debut in Oxford’s hospitality scene with The Oxford Collection, and we couldn’t be happier to be sharing this new little secret with you all.
“It’s a natural partnership in every sense of the word. We both aspire to deliver an authentic, quality guest experience through genuine service and organic produce. We’ve always believed that ‘simple is best’, and this is a philosophy that La-Eva also puts into practice with admirable transparency. We’re delighted to introduce this holistic approach to our amenities, aiming to enhance guest wellbeing, both physically and mentally.” – Rebecca Mofford, Director of Operations
We are particularly excited to be collaborating with a brand built on such strong principles of sustainability. La-Eva’s products are vegan, animal and ocean-friendly and made from the purest natural and organic ingredients. Louisa shares, “La-Eva’s ethics and sustainability credentials are in natural harmony with those of [The Oxford Collection], which places sustainability and local sourcing at the epicentre of its guest offering.”
This occasion also marks La-Eva’s first partnership introducing their amenities in refillable aluminium – a highly recyclable material.
Luxury amenities by La-Eva can now be found in every en-suite bathroom at the Old Parsonage and Old Bank hotels, ready to gift you with many peaceful and invigorating moments during your stay. This luxury extends to our restaurants, offering those of you dining with us the chance to sample their washes and lotions in our restrooms.
Learn more about our partnership with La-Eva through our Q&A with founder & creative director, Louisa Canham…
– Can you provide a short overview of the range being introduced?
For the opening of our partnership with the Old Parsonage and Old Bank hotels, we chose a layered combination of Rosēum skincare and Spīce haircare.
Rosēum skincare offers a soothing and balancing wash that effectively cleanses the skin while preserving its natural oils. Enriched with organic antioxidant-rich extracts of calendula and milk thistle, it calms and protects, leaving the skin soft and radiant. The fragrance of Rosēum is a beautiful blend of rose geranium, petitgrain, and clove, offering a rosy and citrusy aroma that uplifts and regenerates, awakening the senses.
Our Spīce haircare presents an innovative formula that combines natural active ingredients, such as aloe vera and purifying oat kernel oils, to respect the balance of both hair and scalp. This unique blend helps restore strength, volume, and shine, making it suitable for all hair types. The captivating fragrance of Spīce comes from a harmonious combination of ginger, cinnamon, and patchouli, creating a warm and spicy scent that inspires layered experiences and a sense of warmth and fulfilment.
Both ranges are meticulously crafted to provide specific benefits and enhance the overall guest experience. Rosēum skincare nourishes and soothes the skin, while Spīce haircare revitalizes and invigorates the hair.
– Can you share any unique features or ingredients that make these amenities stand out?
Our scents and aesthetics are defining features of La-Eva amenities and are two of the most commented-on elements of the products.
We use perfumery principles to construct layered, rich fragrances whilst tapping into the therapeutic properties of each individual element that we use. We work exclusively with essential oils – they are truly incredible substances with a structure that only Mother Nature can put together. Our fragrance blends are constructed from the ground up, like a pyramid, beginning with the strong base note and building the rest of the scent upon it, layer by layer.
Aesthetically, we have always looked to the arts for inspiration. Our bottles are adorned with ethereal paint textures, chosen to capture the scent and sentiment of each La-Eva blend, by fine artist Rose-Marie Caldecott who was born and raised in Oxford. The textures featured are small sections of larger paintings by Rose-Marie, nodding to the idea that beauty is found in the detail of the day-to-day, in moments in time.
In regard to the formulations of these amenities, we are particularly proud of our haircare products. In our industry, it is well-known that creating organic haircare products that perform as well, if not better, than formulations that rely on synthetic ingredients is very difficult to crack. We were very fortunate to find two great cosmetic chemists specialising in haircare who were inspired by the challenge. The development process took longer than our other products have to date the – best part of two years from beginning to end. The end result was worth it. Our formulas are based on a blend of naturally active ingredients that respect the balance of all hair types restoring strength, volume and shine. They feel and smell beautiful and are free from parabens, phthalates, SLS and SLES. We have a high repeat clientele using the haircare range and consistently excellent feedback so we are delighted.
– How do La-Eva products differentiate themselves from other products in the market?
We are passionate about creating products that are beautiful in every respect. What is in the bottle, the bottles themselves, the artwork, the refills – every touch point and every decision made is lengthily considered.
La-Eva is part of the rapidly growing positive impact movement out there, as we all become increasingly preoccupied with how to be well, how to find joy in the everyday, and how to be connected in mind, body and nature. We are a high concept, or perhaps psychologically-minded, entity; we have particularly expanded our focus and positioning as a well-being brand since launching our first treatments last year at the renowned new spa at Claridge’s in London, and it is an area of development that we have many plans for. The impact of unique sensory experiences; the connection of the olfactory system with emotions and memories; simplifying complexity to its bare essence; perception and alternative interpretations of beauty; ethical “do no harm” principles; holistic thinking; drawing on the arts to explore and express beauty; these are all threads of inspiration and frames of reference. The ideas that underpin La-Eva seem to have alchemically come together to form a brand and products with a rather unique essence.
– What kind of research and development went into creating these products?
Cosmetic development is a creative, multifaceted, lengthy process. It begins with an initial concept, and unfolds with overlapping layers spanning budget allocation, sourcing raw materials, creating formulas, producing samples, exploring artist collaborations and designing packaging. Quality and compliance procedures are rigorous and include testing the behaviour of a product in very cold or hot conditions, microbiological testing to ensure that the chosen natural preservatives are effective in protecting the product, and completing lengthy documentation including a Product Information File (PIF), Safety Data Sheets and Cosmetic Notification forms.
New product development is both one of the most challenging and the most enjoyable processes we engage with. Creativity, flexibility, focus, method and patience are all required in equal measure. In the end, it is always with a sense of excitement, anticipation and hope that we introduce the end result to our customers.
– In what ways are sustainability and environmental considerations incorporated into the production and packaging of these amenities?
Commitment to the best possible sustainability practices has been a founding principle of La-Eva. We choose our ingredients thoughtfully and purposefully. Where possible we buy directly from growers and are continuously looking for new partnerships with farms and suppliers of ingredients.
The La-Eva capsule range is ocean-friendly, vegan, and of course not tested on animals. Almost all the base oils that we use are certified organic and we use as high a percentage of organic content as possible. Our fragrances are created using beautiful, pure essential oils.
From the outset, we have been committed to refills, only offering this as a presentation solution in hospitality. Five years ago, this positioned us in what was still a pretty niche market, but it has been great watching change unfold and definitions of luxury in the amenity world change. Exchanging small, single-use plastic amenities for full-sized, refillable bottles will have a huge impact on reducing the environmental waste created by the cosmetics industry and does not have to in any shape or form impact negatively impact guest experience – in fact, quite the opposite.
We are particularly delighted that The Oxford Collection is the first partnership where we are introducing La-Eva amenities in aluminium. During the past year, we tested all our formulas in aluminium, a highly ethical material in our industry. Aluminium is infinitely recyclable thus supporting a circular economy and reducing waste. It is lightweight and therefore has low carbon emissions during transportation. It is durable, does not rust and is suitable for reuse or refill systems. It does not leak harmful chemicals – while certain plastics leak toxins into products and the environment, posing risks to health and ecosystems. And it eliminates health and safety concerns that quite often arise in relation to glass.
– Is there anything else you would like to highlight about this exciting new product launch and partnership?
For us, the La-Eva x The Oxford Collection partnership is a match made in heaven. We both aspire to deliver the purest of products to our customers. We are aligned in our ethos and commitment to ethical, sustainable practices. We share a passion for the arts and culture. It is a synergistic match and the ease and speed with which this partnership has come together since our paths first crossed earlier this year is a testament to this.