Emily of Bodha, shares her insider guide to LA, and her simple and natural skincare routine and more.
Meeting ex pat New Zealander Emily L’Ami of wellness company Bodha one instantly thinks of the metaphor of a beautiful swan; gliding across the water with grace, while just underneath the legs are paddling like mad. Emily has built her therapeutic perfumery company into an international success story whilst always maintaining her calm and poise living in Los Angeles, a city that can be ruthless.
Her beautifully designed products mean that anyone can add a moment of stillness to their daily life and reconnect with the power of scent, the most evocative of our five senses. Bringing together the science of aromatherapy & the art of perfumery, the range is designed to help you reconnect through the healing power of scent.
We asked Emily about her daily rituals, her beauty routine and her favourite things to do in LA.
One of the phrases that is connected to your company, Bodha, is the expression 'Come Back to Yourself' what does that mean to you?
eeling connected to yourself is the key to happiness. We know this intuitively but find it hard to do because we're busy and distracted most of the time. Scent and ritual are the simplest and most powerful ways to reconnect & tap into our subconscious so I use small scented rituals every day. They bring a sense of ceremony and act like comforting touchstones in my day.
You have amazing skin, what is your daily skin care routine?
Haaaa, thank-you! What a lovely compliment!
I'm super simple and natural. I use pure jojoba oil to cleanse & moisturize because it's the same PH as our skin & I've never used sunscreen - but I'm sure I'll pay for this later :)
I read that you have the (very admirable) daily ritual of starting each morning with a glass of warm water and vinegar, followed by ten minutes of meditation, how do you maintain this practice? Do you have any tips for people who would love to do this but lack will power?
First I think it's all about finding little things you can do that you actually enjoy. If you'd like a morning ritual try a few different things - body brushing, meditation, writing, stretching and see what you like. And then pick one or two and start really small, like 5-10 minutes a day, and do the same thing in the same order over and over to really imprint it on your subconscious, and before you know it you'll be doing it automatically.
I know scent is a important part of the Bodha philosophy, do you have any cherished memories associated with scent?
Geranium oil makes me think of my mum.
Soap and bergamot makes me think of my granddad.
And the wet earthy green smell of the bush makes me think of home, of New Zealand.
Apart from your own products is there a scent that you wear and love?
For years I've only worn pure rose oil. I love roses & when I'm smelling lots of different things all day wearing a simple consistent scent palette helps rest my nose.
You have been living in LA for a few years, what are some of your favourite places to eat and also to chill out in?
My top 3 places to eat right now are Destroyer, Baroo and Gjusta.
And to chill out I head to the ocean, canyons or (if I've got a bit more time) the desert.
What is the last book, exhibition or movie that you touched or inspired you?
L.A. artist Doug Aitken's recent show at the MOCA was incredible. He does these large scale works that interact with or bring nature to life in a new way. My favourite was a beautiful glass structure in the Brazilian rainforest where they drilled a 200 meter hole into the ground and lined it with microphones so you can listen to the sounds of the earth turning while watching the light move across the jungle.
Where would you like to go next with Bodha as a brand?
I really want to reclaim scent and scented rituals. I feel like we've been so bombarded with synthetic scents in every imaginable product we've become desensitized to the beauty and power of natural scents. Helping people reconnect through beautiful scented rituals is everything to me!
Interview & Photography | Rebecca Thomas
Bodha products are available online at www.bodhamodernwellness.com
New Zealand Stockists : The Tonic Room, Sunday Store, be Organics and Precinct 35.
Rebecca Zephyr Thomas is a photographer and writer who has written and shot for magazines including LOVE, The Wall Street Journal, Wonderland and Amuse internationally and here in NZ for The Spin Off, Urbis and Sauce. She enjoys trying new types of face masks and watching Spong Bob Squarepants, preferably at the same time while drinking champagne.