Story Behind the Scent: Geranium Patchouli

Our delicious food-centric goodies all have a story behind their creation. Alana Rivera, owner and soap maven of Etta+ Billie will take us through a dive into the history behind our scented concoctions and the foods, memories, and people that helped bring them to life. This week, we are highlighting the scent combination that started it all: Geranium Patchouli!

Etta + Billie geranium patchouli lotion with skin and lip balms

Tell us about the inspiration behind this scent: 

Etta + Billie was founded in my apartment in the Haight Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco. For anyone who has been to the area, knows it’s history, or has lived there, they know how unique it is. Both free-loving and corporate, unique and yet a caricature of itself, very touristy but with a strong sense of community! I was always struck by the many dichotomies of the neighborhood which led me to create the Geranium Patchouli combination. Patchouli is deeply rooted in many people’s memories as a “hippie” scent and the epitome of Haight Ashbury, so that was an obvious choice. But I didn’t want it to be a single note because it’s incredibly earthy and intense on it’s own. That’s where the Rose Geranium comes in. It is this elegant floral with rose notes and geranium notes. Alone, these two scents seem to be opposites and are overpoweringly strong, but together, they bring out each other’s best qualities. 

What products does E+B offer with this scent?

You can find this unique scent in our Skin Balm, Soap, Body Scrub, Room + Body Spray, Body Oil, Hand + Body Wash, Deodorant, and Body Lotion.

Etta+Billie's Geranium Patchouli Bath and Body Oil

Any recipes/goodies that contributed to its creation:

Not really because if you’ve ever tasted patchouli, it’s not so good. But geranium candy, sugar, tea, and cake can be lovely! Here are a few Geranium based goodies to try:

  • Make your own Geranium Liqueur to add to sparkling water or to up the game on your next vodka soda.

Everyone Around the World Loves Donuts!

Whether you spell it DOUGHnut, DOnut, or call it something completely different (“Sfenj” in Morocco!), there’s one thing that pretty much the entire world can agree upon: we absolutely LOVE a puffed pastry.
If you’ve been following Etta + Billie for a while, you know that I don’t hide my love for these pillowy miracles (see exhibit A).

Exhibit A.

So, in celebration of National Donut Day (mark your calendars, this amazing holiday always falls on the first Friday in June), I thought it might be fun to share with you all some “donuts” from around the world!

MoroccoSfenj. These little guys are fried and sprinkled with sugar, or soaked in honey. The perfect Moroccan pastry for morning tea!

Morocco's version of the donut: Sfenji.

South AfricaKoeksister. These are made by frying the dough and then immediately dunking them in ice cold sugar syrup. Yum!

South Africa's version of a donut: Koeksisters.

IndiaVada. These can be made from dal, lentil or potato flours rather than wheat flour. Vada is always served with chutney. In North India: sweet & sour chutney. In South India: coconut chutney.

India's version of a donut: Vada. Vada can be made from dal, lentil, or potato flours rather than wheat flour. In Southern India it's served with coconut chutney. In Northern India, it's served with sweet & sour chutney.

Iran: Zulbiā (aka Jalebi) – This is a Persian fritter that’s made in pretzel or circular shapes. These are made with Saffron syrup and Rose Water. Yes, please!

Iran's take on the donut: Zulbia, also known as Jalebi. A fritter made in pretzel or circular shapes.

Czech Republic: Koblihy. Koblihy are usually filled with jelly or a vanilla custard. They’re so pillowy!

The Czech Republic's version of a donut. These are usually filled with a jelly or vanilla custard.

Latin America: Churro. No list could be complete without one of my favorite treats, the Churro. Although its origins are in Spain and Portugal, this tasty treat found its way through most of Latin America. Dip them in chocolate, stuff them with cream, or coat them in cinnamon sugar!

Latin America's favorite fried treat: the churro. Churros are coated in cinnamon sugar, dipped in chocolate, and sometimes stuffed with vanilla cream.

San Francisco: Dynamo Donuts. To bring it all back home, I just had to add a local favorite, and a staple pastry in the Etta + Billie studio: Dynamo Donuts. My favorite one is the Coconut Lime-filled donut!

San Francisco based donut shop Dynamo Donuts. Artisan donuts made in the Mission District of San Francisco.

Obviously there’re so many other types of donuts around the world, but hopefully you enjoyed how some different cultures love their fried doughy goodness. Have you tried any of the pastries we mentioned? Is there a different style of fried dough that you absolutely love? Let me know, I would love to hear about it!

Behind the Counter: Creation of E+B Body Scrubs

You may know that Etta + Billie makes all their skincare products with natural ingredients. (No weird stuff like artificial colors and scents.) But did you know that we also use sustainable practices and recyclable packaging? 

For example, take our amazing line of body scrubs: 100% natural ingredients, gentle on skin and the environment, made in the USA, and made using local goods, all which leaves your skin glowing, hydrated, and smells delectable.  

Mixing up the oils and scent for sea salt body scrub
Etta + Billie Behind the Scenes Mint Coffee Sea Salt Body Scrub
Etta + Billie Sea Salt Body Scrubs

Here’s how we do it:

  1. Start with the most delicious natural ingredients.
  2. Carefully weigh and melt our butters and sea salt.
  3. After butters are melted, we had our essential oils and additives (like coffee!). 
  4. SO MUCH MIXING. Each batch is mixed by hand. You get some serious muscles after a few weeks!
  5. Once thoroughly blended, we ladle our mixture into molds.
  6. The scrubs sit for at least 20 hours so they will harden up.
  7. Unmold, wrap in beautiful gold foil (also happens to be recyclable!).
  8. Handwrite our batch numbers on our boxes, pop the scrubs in and voila!