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Heaven-scent opportunity; EDITED BY SALLY MCLEAN Aromatherapist Liana saw gap in the market and launched her own brand of luxury candles.

Byline: MARIA CROCE maria.croce@trinitymirror.com

AFTER running her own beauty salon for 20 years, mum of two Liana Mullen got a nose for a new business idea which has given her a better work-life balance.

As an aromatherapist, she was passionate about the benefits of different scents and candles - and decided to launch her own business.

Liana, 44, lives in Glasgow with husband Simon, 40, daughter Mia, 17 and son Luca, seven.

She said: "The salon was really time-heavy for me. I wanted to try to have a business I could fit round the kids.

"I can pick up my wee boy from school a few times a week and take him there every day. There's less stress by doing it this way. I'm trying hard to get a better work-life balance.

"I've tried to do so much myself in the business but I've got a few part-time staff and I hope to grow that side of it."

When she had her own salon, Liana was a beauty therapist and she taught others.

She added: "I'd always try to create a lovely environment for customers in my salon.

"Clients would come in and say, 'If we could just bottle up this feeling we have in the salon and take it home with us'.

"You go for a massage and have a lovely experience and then you go home and the kids are running around crazy and your husband is asking all kinds of questions and before you know it, the feeling has gone.

"I wanted people to take time for themselves. I wanted them to be able to carry on that feeling."

Liana decided there was a gap in the market for a luxury Scottish scented brand and launched her business, Timeless Candles, in 2013.

She wanted to make people feel good for longer - and have lasting scents for different rooms and seasons. At first, she sold her candles through the salon and then sold the salon to concentrate on the candles.

Interior designers and boutiques started stocking her candles, as did spas including the Blythswood Spa Hotel in Glasgow.

She also sells them in Debenhams and House of Fraser, as well as her own shop in Glasgow's Hyndland Road.

After starting with three scents, she's expanded the range to 125 products, which includes room diffusers as well as candles.

Liana received a grant from Scottish Enterprise to launch an extra 25 products including body and bath oils and export the range abroad. Liana started her new business the same as her last - by doing much of the work herself.

She added: "My advice would be keeping a really strong eye on finances and getting help where needed."

Liana used her network of contacts to help the business and she still regularly meets with mentors. She said: "It can be lonely at times running your own business with no one to bounce things off of, so I recommend getting a good network of mentors and people you trust. Also, use your instinct."

Liana, who uses a Scots manufacturer to make the candles, helps to create bespoke scents.

She created a scent for members of Loch Lomond Golf Club.

Liana added: "I went into the walled garden with the spa manager and we took a whole load of ingredients they grow there and worked with my perfumer to create a scent for them."

She's also been inspired by her Italian heritage to create a new scent, Casa Mia, from childhood memories of family holidays in Italy.

She's keen to encourage people to slow down. "Our ethos is, 'Time is precious, waste it wisely'," she added. ?Follow @timelesscandles on Instagram and Facebook or go to timelesscandles.co.uk

CAPTION(S):

BRIGHT IDEA Liana launched new business

LAB-OUR OF LOVE Working with scents

FAMILY FIRM With Simon, Mia and Luca
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jan 5, 2018
Words:639
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