Hi! I’m Derek DeAndre, the founder of HOAM Candle Co. and I want to begin this story with the truth. I started this company because I wanted to make money. Flat out. Sometimes, as small businesses, makers, and creators, we struggle to admit that we actually want to be able to eat and pay our mortgages from the things we produce, but no more. I have been on the entrepreneurship track now since 2011 and I’ve learned a thing or two about how to run a business and how not to run a business. I’ve been through many an up and down throughout my time as a small business owner and so in starting HOAM, I wanted to make sure that I did it the right way. Believe it or not, I’ve never started a business because I wanted to make money. I always started from passion. Which, isn’t a bad thing, but passion alone does not a business make. When I thought of what venture I wanted to take on next, I knew that it had to be something that combined both passion and profitability. I felt that if I was going to start over and create something new, that it had to be something useful and universal. Many questions swirled through my head, but the loudest and most resounding one was “how do I make an impact on people?” Little known fact, but in high school, I was named one of the “20 Young People Who Will Change The World” by a local publication and for some reason, that mission has always stuck with me…change the world. But how?
Now, I want us to use our imaginations for a moment and this may be a stretch, but I want you to think about the feeling of being stressed. Now, on top of that, add a crippling anxiety about what the future held for not only you, but for your family, your friends, society, the world…Now think about about doing all of this in isolation. Does this sound familiar to anyone? If it doesn’t, then life on Mars must’ve been great in the year 2020, because here on earth, we all know exactly what the onset of the global pandemic felt like last year. Like many people, I was stuck at home eventually laid off with nothing but questions about what the future looked like for me. My only escape became suiting up and going to the grocery to grab the essentials and my not so guilty pleasure, candles. During the pandemic, home fragrance became the ultimate comfort for me. Between candles, diffusers, oils, incense, plugins, and sprays, my one bedroom apartment smelled like a perfumery and I was in heaven. One day, I was sharing my bi-weekly candle haul on social media and ended it by saying, “I should start my own candle company.” And thus, the seed was planted. I dove into a few YouTube tutorials about how you make a candle and as I do with most things, said “I think I can do that.” Before I knew it, I was buying supplies and signing up for a business accelerator course.
Now like I said, I started this business because I wanted to make money. And that is still the 100% truth. But something very surprising happened as I went further down the rabbit hole of this candle and home fragrance world. I discovered the control that scent has over your psyche. How it can literally bring back memories, reduce stress and relieve anxiety. I began to understand that what I was creating was bigger than just wax and oil. It could evoke change in people’s world. So my mission has become to build a brand that is totally focused on products that bring people to their place of peace, align them with their center, and create a place that feels like home, no matter where they are.
I know that there are those who will say, why do we need another candle brand? My answer that is you don’t. But, I’m not just selling candles. Yes, that’s the physical product. But what I’m selling are mood enhancers and joy bringers. HOAM is not just another candle brand. We are an aroma company that specializes in curating unique and inviting scent experiences by combing luxurious natural wax blends with complex international fragrance oils. We use the best quality ingredients to produce our clean burn candles and home goods. I invite you to follow our journey on Instagram & Facebook @hoamcandleco and join the #HOAMteam email list to gain exclusive insider access to all products and updates. Welcome HOAM!