Our Unique Service

Our Ethos

bespoke fragrances

Our View on Animal Testing

Using animals to test ingredients or finished products within the cosmetic industry is a practice we firmly stand against at Arcania Apothecary and is among one of the most controversial areas of animal testing around the globe.

Despite animal testing being banned in the UK in 1998 and across the EU in 2013, it does still occur in other parts of the world. The sad reality is that any ingredient from Lavender to Capric/Caprlyic Triglyceride (fractioned coconut oil) will most likely have been tested in this way at some point.

Although it may be that here in the UK we have brought in a law to protect animals from cosmetics testing, it should be noted that products which are classed as both medical and cosmetic are essentially exempt from these rules, one example that springs to mind being the wrinkle treatment, Botulinum Toxin, or ‘Botox’ as it’s more commonly known.

In order to be confident that we do not come into contact with any animal-tested ingredients, Arcania Apothecary aims to use suppliers that can confirm the materials we purchase have not been tested on animals since 1998. This is in fitting with our mission to create each and every product with the same focus on efficacy, kindness, and creativity.

Arcania Apothecary is equally concerned with the use of animal ingredients in cosmetics; we believe this is wholly unnecessary with the wealth of botanically derived ingredients that can be used as alternatives. The power of plants is irrefutable. Botanical substances are esteemed for their effectiveness and healing properties which, if exploited appropriately, can work wonders for all things health, beauty, and wellbeing.

While we are committed to the avoidance of animal ingredients, as a rule, ethically-sourced beeswax is an ingredient we cherish. Understanding our responsibility to animal welfare, it is, therefore, our policy to source only the most ethically produced, highest grade botanicals. The beeswax we use is organic and we are completely satisfied the source meets our standards in every way.

Should you wish to collaborate with us, we welcome any questions or queries you may have on this important subject and we thoroughly look forward to hearing from you in the near future.

Choosing Organic

It is concerning that marketing and advertising campaigns have made many of us numb to the word ‘organic’. Having lost touch with its true meaning, we see it at best, as an opportunity to purchase a clear conscience and at worst, standing for ‘expensive veg’.

Many products sold as organic are misleading, the organic content is diluted, compromising the contents promise to function as an organic product. Naturally the word ‘Organic’ leads us to believe we will reap the benefits, when we are in fact receiving a watered down version, with the only benefit being received by the company producing these products with an increased price tag.

We think it is about time we remember the reason why we are attracted to the word organic. It was the environmentalists, once thought of as fanatics, who were screaming for organic principles. They wanted us to realise the value of protecting our environment and be respectful of nature, 30 years before it was profitable.

Since the industrial revolution our modern economic forces and governments have legitimised and promoted the dis-respect of our ecosystems, biodiversity and habitats. In the name of modernisation we have become detached, seeing ourselves and our needs superior to what was once understood as our Mother Earth.

Still today our innovation represents the exploitation and destruction of life around us to a degree greater than ever before.

We believe organic principals should represent one small step toward our return of respect and sensitivity to nurturing all life and its eco systems.


Bespoke Fragrances

My relationship with natural perfumery is organically developing all of the time through a sensitive, privileged and exciting journey of discovery and anticipation.

Essential oils, absolutes, concretes and resins are the botanical essences that make the perfumer’s vision into a reality.

Bespoke Fragrance by Richard Howard, Managing Director of Arcania Apothecary

Their chemistry is built upon the infinite complexity of nature’s design and as Paracelsus described it… Spiritus vitae (life spirit) and quinta essentia (spark of divinity) is within.

We too share with all life on earth this original spark within. Through the window of pure plant essences we can recognise our own connection and deepen our relationship with humility and gratitude.

Through our sense of smell natural perfumes can interact with our subconscious, transcending a language defined by words, triggering memories, emotions and sensual impulses.

Mindful of this, the perfumer’s journey is guided by respect for the plant essences produced and the person experiencing them. There is no compromising in this process… yet within the art form, the science and adventure is endless.

By Richard Howard

Richard Howard Managing Director at Arcania Apothecary, Wells, Somerset

Our Ethos

arcania apocthecary was founded by Richard Howard,  brand innovator – perfumer – formulator, in 1995. 

Running arcania apothecary alongside Richard, is a fantastic 45 strong team, with exceptional expertise, dedication, and passion.

Organic business development has occured over 25 years, responding initially to therapist/spa clientele with botanically based face, body and hair products

Progressive formulation integrity led by capturing brand individuality, raw material innovation and product efficacy has been at the centre of activity, led by a logistics and operations management team who work with a sense of precision, flexibility, vitality and diversity

The arcania team prides itself on working with exceptional and inspiring partners with sensitiviy and looks to our onward journey refining and perfecting our creative partnerships and adventure, maintaining our unique support status within the industry.


Our Unique Service

New Product Development (NPD)

  • Fragrance Expertise: Innovators and leaders specialising in natural perfumery
  • Progressive formulators specialising in the latest Bio Technology science
  • Product idea generation, stimulating brand concept
  • EU product safety assessments (CPRS) including guidance conforming to legislations world wide
  • Product development with the aim to support specific claims

The Fragrance Room


  • Specialist manufacturing infrastructure supporting emerging brands within the market
  • Product manufacture supporting and engineering the scale up process to 1000kg batches
  • Complete logistic services; from product compounding to the finished pack ready for distribution

The Vessel

Resourcing, Advice and Support

  • Regulatory expertise and support
  • Packaging
  • Copy writing