Voluspa is considered to be one of the premier boxed candle lines due in part to the loving attention placed on all aspects of packaging the handmade candles. For example, the signature patterns that dress each box are spirited and decorative. The look is carried throughout the design of the product, even down to the label on the bottom of the candles. Extra details, like lids on most of the products, are fine touches that the company’s founders say “exude luxe and superior craftsmanship.”
With more than 50 employees, this Lake Forest-based company boasts more than 350 products. Says Traci, “We resource components from all over the globe including fragrances and glasses, but every Voluspa candle is poured by hand in the Lake Forest facility.” She adds, “All design, marketing, sales and operations happen here too.”
It seems the family business is good for the Arnsten family. While some couples cannot fathom working together, Traci and Troy wouldn’t have it any other way. “It is wonderful, ” Traci says. “There are, of course, days when it is difficult and we spend more time together than we should on the business. However, the benefits outweigh any of the negatives. We bring our children to work with us, and when we have a major success with our business, we experience it together … most couples are outsiders to their spouses’ successes at work.”
According to Traci, Voluspa has over 5,000 active customers both nationwide and abroad. And Hollywood’s heavy hitters can’t seem to get enough of Voluspa’s luxuriously scented products. “Voluspa has developed a long list of celebrity clientele over the years,” says Traci, “…everyone from Halle Berry who loves our ‘Cocoa Tamarind’ fragrance to Goldie Hawn who bought several of our ‘Sake Lemon Flower’ candles at one of our accounts up in LA. Voluspa is literally the most popular candle brand in Los Angeles. All of the best stores carry our products… and that is where celebrities shop. We also recently had a former N’ Sync band member visit our offices and take a tour.”
What makes Voluspa candles so special is their ingredients which include a proprietary blend of vegetable waxes and cosmetic wax. “We chose this blend after four years of experimenting. We were looking for the strongest fragrance throw and a perfect long-lasting burn,” Traci explains. The couple hasn’t always been in the candle business, but their previous career experiences have definitely proven to be helpful assets.
“When we started Voluspa, we were lucky in that we both already had a background in the gift and fragrance industry,” Traci says. “Troy had started a company with two partners a few years before we started Voluspa that imported essential oils from all over the world. These oils were sold to aromatherapy and fragrance companies as raw ingredients. During that time, I was working with a master aromatherapist who created products and fragrances for his own collection of products and who also did custom work for clients such as Crabtree & Evelyn. It was then that the world of creating fragrances opened up to me and I was hooked.”
When asked if she has her own personal favorite, Traci laughs. “I don’t have one. I’m always mixing them together to see what new creation I can come up with.” The most popular fragrances include top-selling “Crisp Champagne”, followed by “Italian Tangelo”, “Vervein Olive Leaf”, “Cardamom Fig”, and “Yashioka Gardenia.”