In Conversation With

In Conversation with Viola from Mahoni

We wanted to learn all about how Viola brought her vision of Mahoni to life. Keep reading to learn more about the founder and Mahoni's product selection!

Viola Bloch founded Mahoni in 2019 with a line of manuka honey products to help others reap its health benefits and create the perfect manuka products with features that other brands were always missing: easy application, precise concentrations, certified sourcing, and backed by scientific research.

MAHONI Interview Q&A

Having suffered from cold sores for many years, Viola was on the hunt for an effective solution and tried many products but nothing worked as well as manuka honey. This led her to do a deeper dive into the virtues of this powerful ingredient. Wanting to share her passion for manuka honey with the world, she decided to create her own line and showcase it as the perfect remedy for daily health emergencies in the form of three products: Skin Remedy, Daily Boost and Inner Remedy.

Q&A WITH FOUNDER VIOLA

When we discover a new product line, we are as interested (if not more) in the products as the person behind them. We are always curious to know how a brand came to be, to know the founder’s background, etc. – that is, we have this crazy desire to know everything about the brand in order to really understand it. Our team conversed with Viola and asked her all the questions that were on our minds. Learn with us about Mahoni and the woman behind the brand.

Can you tell us a little about your personal/professional background? 

Viola: “I started off my career working in media, being passionate about news and the evolving landscape of digital media. At the same time I have always loved entrepreneurship, coming from a very entrepreneurial family. But I became an entrepreneur by chance – not for sake of being my own boss – when there were products I needed that I simply couldn’t find.”

When and how did you come up with the idea to create Mahoni?

Viola: “I first discovered manuka honey years ago as an effective way to soothe my cold sores. Previously having tried many remedies for cold sores, for me personally, nothing seemed to work. Everything changed when my mother read that manuka honey from New Zealand would help. I was very skeptical at first, but it worked! From that point on, whenever I felt the tingle coming in the early stage of a cold sore, I immediately put manuka on. I also started applying it to soothe sore throats. Research on manuka honey shows its science-backed benefits and unique potency. It quickly became my go-to for various common ailments, but I was quite unhappy with the products on the market. I wanted manuka honey to be portable, applicable, practical and have the right concentrations. After being a manuka honey pro for so many years, I had a pretty good idea of what the products should be able to do, and was confident that others would find them helpful too. So I decided to go for it! I was excited at the prospect of more people knowing about manuka honey, and reaping its amazing benefits through great products.”

What makes Mahoni unique? In other words, why would someone pay $69 for Mahoni’s honey as opposed to the $12 product available at their local health/grocery store? 

Viola: “Manuka honey is unlike any other honey. It is the only honey that has intensely high levels of methylglyoxal (MGO). This is the natural compound that is responsible for the strong antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and wound-healing properties. Its natural benefits are truly unique to this type of honey. Furthermore, manuka honey potently grows almost exclusively in New Zealand, and the manuka flower only blossoms 2-6 weeks per year. It’s truly a rare and precious natural resource. What makes Mahoni unique is that we independently lab test every batch of honey, not once, but twice! First in New Zealand and again in Germany. 90% of manuka honey sold worldwide is not real. So it’s important for us to take the extra steps to deliver the highest quality, authentic manuka to our customers. In addition, our line is developed around specific use cases. Meaning: We make sure that each product has a dedicated purpose, a benefit and the right level of MGO.”

Any tips or tricks that you can share with us on how we can use your products? Is there an unconventional way to use any of your products? 

Viola: “Our products are a little unconventional because you can use them inside and outside. They are made for topical use (on skin and lips) and for oral use (e.g. for the throat). It’s amazing because there are few ingredients like this that are 100% natural, toxin-free, but also highly effective and science-backed.”

What makes you proud of Mahoni? 

Viola: “That it’s loved by so many around the world! The emails I receive from customers writing me “my eczema has never healed faster” or “the sachets have such a soothing effect for my throat”. Those are really proud moments. For every product sold, I know that it’s authentic manuka honey in quality packaging with effective application. We go out of our way to supply amazing natural remedies and it’s fun to see people discovering manuka honey through Mahoni. Fills me with so much pride and joy!”

What are the main benefits that someone can see or experience using your products? 

Viola: “They are very versatile natural remedies that can be used in day-to-day life. The Skin Remedy helps with skin outbreaks, acne, soothes symptoms of cold sores and eczema. The Inner Remedy helps soothe symptoms of sore throats, and the Daily Boost provides a daily immunity boost rich in antioxidants.”

Can you explain the strength levels? What do they mean?

Viola: “This can be a bit tricky at first, as manuka honey is the only honey that has different potency levels. What we mean by that is the level of methylglyoxal (MGO) found in the batch of manuka honey. Manuka honey can range from 100 MGO to 1000 MGO. The higher the number, the stronger the potency of the honey. We offer two strengths: 100 MGO, which is good for moderate daily use. 600 MGO is ideal for more acute purposes, on days when you are looking for a stronger effect. For levels higher than 600 MGO there has not been any conclusive research showing significantly higher efficacy.”

What is Mahoni’s best-selling product? 

Viola: “The best-selling product is seasonally dependent. Right now, as we are approaching fall and colder months, Inner Remedy is the most popular. Our customers love to have these on hand, in their bag or pocket, for their throat. They’re also a delightful afternoon pick-me-up.”

Which product is a must-have? A product everyone needs in their cabinet? 

Viola: Ooh tough one! All of them. They’re complementary and not mutually exclusive, as they are made for different use cases. The great thing is that they’re quite shelf stable, 100% natural and healthy. No additives, no toxins, no bad conscience. If you have skin that is sensitive to cold weather, stock up on the Skin Remedy: cracked lips, dry patches, weather-induced eczema… If you want to do something for your health on a daily basis, the Daily Boost is for you: full of antioxidants, which help reduce free radicals. You can add a spoonful to your smoothie every day or put it in your breakfast in the morning. There are so many ways to incorporate it!”

What is your desert island product? Which product do you carry everywhere with you?

Viola: “I always have the Skin Remedy with me. It’s small and fits into every handbag or pocket. I have this in case of a skin outbreak or sudden tingle on the lips. The antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and wound-healing properties are amazing. Also, I always have one Inner Remedy sachet in my pocket. Little helper in need that never fails me.”

How has the brand evolved since its creation?

Viola: “We are learning about our customers all the time. How they use the product, what information they seek, and what they want to know more about. Since the launch we have worked on our messaging, making the purpose of the products clearer. After all, it is a new category merging beauty, health and wellness.”

How can we integrate your product into our skincare routine?

Viola: “The Skin Remedy can be used along with your current regimenIt’s a spot treatment that you apply punctually (e.g. on a pimple, dry patch, …).Think of it as an SOS remedy that helps heal your skin in a non-aggressive effective waythrough the antibacterial anti-inflammatory properties. The most common reason for pimples and outbreaks is excessive bacteria growth on the skin which inflames the pores, causing a blemish on our skin. The honey helps reduce bacteria growth, making the skin heal faster. It’s best to leave it on as long as possible, but it is of course honey (yes, it’s sticky!) and therefore best used punctually.
My tip: You can use the Daily Boost as a face mask. The natural crystals in the honey provide a nice exfoliation, leaving you with glowy smooth skin as a result.”

Do you plan to launch any other products to extend the line?

Viola: “Yes! So many product ideas! But I’ll keep them secret for now…”

Is there a particular kind of product that you would really like to create/make, but haven’t been able to yet? 

Viola: “There are so many ideas I have for future products because it’s such a versatile ingredient. Something for brides is on my mental roadmap for sure. Every one of my friends got a huge pimple or cold sore or flu or skin breakout in the days leading up to her big day, because of the stress. Having gotten married myself not long ago, I can attest to that!
But for now, everything revolves around educating our community on the benefits of manuka, our core mission, and increasing the awareness of its amazing benefits.”

How did you come up with the name of the brand, Mahoni? 

Viola: “Mahoni is a fictional word that plays on the words “manuka” and “honey”.”

What are some of the things that you take into consideration when creating new products? 

Viola: “What we love about manuka honey is the unique intersection of it being natural AND highly effective. The benefits of manuka honey are rooted in science. Any future product must be effective, it must work, and be easy to use.”

What can you advise consumers who want to make the most of their Mahoni products? 

Viola: “You can use the Daily Boost every day, do something good for yourself, your health and wellbeing. It’s full of antioxidants and natural. It’s also an amazing ingredient for your beauty rituals. Very versatile and a true allrounder!”

Thank you Viola for all this valuable information! Discover the Mahoni products in detail here.

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Jordanna's Spring Reset Routine
Hair Care

Jordanna’s Spring Routine

Etiket's holistic aesthetician shares her favourite tips and products for the upcoming season.

A change of season is upon us, and with that comes the need to adjust our skincare and wellness routine. 

We asked Jordanna Kavannat, Etiket’s holistic aesthetician and Tata Harper Spa Specialist, to tell us what this change of season means for her.

“Spring is a beautiful time to awaken your spirit and to make self-care through skincare a more sacred practice. In Chinese medicine, the term ‘shen’ means to glow or light from within. Below are my favourite tips and products to help your ‘shen’ shine brightly this spring!”, says Jordanna.

WAKING UP

“I start my day with some kind of physical activity. Sweating and moving my body in the morning helps the flow of our lymphatic system and is a great way to release endorphins (happy vibes).”

POST WORKOUT

A green smoothie with the Agent Nateur (Holi) Mane collagen is a great way to start the day with good nutrition. I find it helps me make better choices throughout the day.”

SHOWER TIME AND BATH ROUTINES

“The Lovefresh Vanilla Coffee Bar Soap gets rid of dead skin cells, helping regenerate your skin, and the coffee can help tighten skin and reduce cellulite. It’s like a morning cup of java!”

“I also love using the new Smoothing Body Brush from NUORI before my shower. Daily dry brushing of the body has been proven to boost microcirculation, stimulate the lymphatic system, and improve the removal of toxins”, adds Jordanna.

“My bath time routine includes Bathorium Charcoal Garden Detox Crush bath salts. Epsom salts + french sea salts relax your aching muscles. Wonderful for muscle tension”.

HAIRCARE

“Now that our winter hats are coming off, I use Rahua’s Founder’s Blend Hair and Scalp Treatment to treat the scalp first. I follow that with their Hydration Shampoo and Conditioner for beautiful healthy hair and finish off with the Leave-in Treatment Light to help with wash and wear. I love that Rahua products use refillable pouches!”

BODY CARE

“As the winter layers gradually come off, I use Agent Nateur’s body (oil) to get ready for the warmer weather. I LOVE the smell of this product; it has caffeine and vitamin c, which gives noticeably great results.”

FACIAL CARE

“For me, it’s always Tata Harper. I modify my skincare regimen depending on the condition of my skin and the temperature outside. The Regenerating Cleanser is great to exfoliate the skin from the cold winter weather; it’s all about regeneration!”

“The Tata Harper Illuminating Moisturizer is another favourite for daytime as it makes my skin radiate.”

“And finally, with our masks coming off, let’s talk lips! The ILIA Lip Wrap Reviving Balm is a luxurious daytime lip treatment. I’m obsessed!”

TREATMENT

”My favourite treatment to detox the body, face and soul at this time of year is the Deluxe Detox Body Treatment & Facial from Tata Harper, it’s a stimulating and purifying treatment that will reawaken your senses.”

Deluxe Detox Body Treatment & Facial: 90 minutes | $275.00

Visit etiket.ca to shop Jordanna’s routine, or visit us in the store!

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Discover Juliette from Juliette & Chocolat
In Conversation With

In Conversation with Juliette from Juliette & Chocolat

Our story with Juliette begins a few years ago, when we discovered her chocolate shop on Sainte-Catherine. We wanted to learn more about how Juliette & Chocolat came about and how Juliette juggles life as a successful business owner, mother, wife and friend.
@juliettechoco

Our story with Juliette begins a few years ago, when we discovered her chocolate shop on Sainte-Catherine, just a few blocks from Etiket boutique (we’re practically neighbours!). Our love for Juliette & Chocolat grew when we learned more about the woman behind the brand. 

In fact, Juliette & Chocolat was founded by a beautiful woman named… you guessed it, Juliette! All you need to do is follow her Instagram page to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at how she runs her successful business with her husband and her 5 adorable kids. We wanted to learn more about how Juliette & Chocolat came about and how Juliette juggles life as a successful business owner, mother, wife and friend.

How did the idea of creating Juliette & Chocolat come to you?

I’m a foodie. Always have been, and I love to cook. Eating has always been one of my life’s greatest pleasures. I’ve always had a weakness for sweets. I can’t imagine ending a meal without a dessert, that just doesn’t make sense to me! When I go out to restaurants, I always start by asking for the dessert menu. Choosing my dessert first allows me to then choose my main course.

I got the idea of creating Juliette & Chocolat when I was at the end of my studies in Finance. At the time, I was looking for start-up ideas. Because I have such a sweet tooth, and because I wasn’t able to find any hot chocolate in Montreal like my grandmother used to make (!) the idea came to me to open a chocolate bar, similar to a coffee shop, but where one could sit and drink a hot chocolate. This idea then led to a menu filled with chocolate recipes, from hot chocolates and pastries to fondues and candies. I wanted Juliette & Chocolat to be a paradise for chocolate lovers. Finally, wanting there to be a French flare to the business, I added salty and sweet crepes to the menu.

With your own business and a family of five, how do you juggle it all and have time for yourself?

Hahahaha! I’m often asked this question. Honestly, it all comes down to being organized, while also being laid-back and taking life as it comes. Every hour of my week is organized, and I have “to-do lists” for every part of my life. I have a day planner that allows me to stay on top of everything. However, if at the end of the day, the house is a mess, the dirty dishes are still on the counter and the kids go to bed a little past their bedtime, I don’t lose sleep over it. I’d say that I also have an amazing support system in my personal and professional lives (even though the two overlap). I have friends and colleagues that are as invested in my business as I am and who want to see me succeed. I’m very blessed in that respect. 

How do you start the day? What is your morning routine?

My mornings are always chaotic: imagine a house of 7 people who all went to bed late the night before! I help the kids get ready for school, make sure I have my eye makeup on … it’s a little like a race against the clock, though we do manage to eat breakfast all together. No coffee for me, I have enough energy as it is! Instead, I make a healthy, vitamin-filled smoothie for us all to drink before heading out the door!

I then drop the kids off at school. Making sure everyone gets to school on time, with their schoolbooks, lunch and PE clothes is a challenge… it’s like a little victory every morning.

What does your everyday beauty routine look like?

Morning: My routine is remarkably simple. I hydrate my skin with a cream I have on hand (I’m lucky enough to receive beauty products as gifts, so I switch them up a lot).

Night: My nighttime routine is also simple. I wash my face with cold water and a gentle cleanser. Right now I’m using the Peoni Cleanser from JB Skin Savvi. After that, I hydrate my skin with the Peoni Oil from JB Skin Savvi. 

Do you do something special to take care of your skin?

Once or twice a week I will deep clean my skin with a Clarisonic brush. Besides that, I hydrate my face and body every night.

What’s the best beauty advice you’ve ever received?

Happy people are beautiful, be happy!

Who is your beauty inspiration?

Audrey Hepburn

What does your makeup routine look like?

I apply makeup everyday but I keep it simple. I apply a kohl liner that I bought at a souk in Damas when I lived there. It’s a black liner that stays put all day. I love it! After that, I apply a few layers of mascara. From time to time, I add a neutral eyeshadow and a pop of blush to the cheeks.

What beauty products can we always find in your handbag?

Hahahaha, I have more toys in my purse to keep my kids entertained than I do beauty products. I always have a lip balm (does that count?). Sometimes, I’ll have a lipstick in my purse for touch ups throughout the day. 

What’s your signature fragrance?

I’m a huge fan of Angel by Thierry Mugler. It’s a sweet, candy scent and so enticing to me. I have no idea how I found it, but I can recognize it anywhere!

What do you do to unwind at the end of a busy day?

I play with my kids, I read, I cook, I watch movies with my family, I never run out of ways to unwind at the end of the day. I always find time to relax and to ground myself. It’s the key to not burning out!

Finally, what’s your guilty pleasure?

A good meal with a delicious dessert at the end.

Follow Juliette on Instagram at  @juliettechoco or her business,  Juliette & Chocolat @juliette_chocolat

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Inscrivez-vous à l'infolettre d'Etiket et obtenez 10% sur votre premier achat sur Etiket.ca.