Ahhhh, “Self-Care”. At its essence, it is much richer and more complicated than long baths (though we DO love long baths—see below!) and fancy candles (ok, ok, we love a good candle too). Like everything, though, truly caring for the self is more about the whole picture: acknowledging and nourishing the entire constellation of necessary human alchemies—beauty and magic, power and vulnerability, community and self, body and soul, mind and matter—and trying to aim for balance as gracefully as possible, every day. 


Sometimes that looks like intentionally making choices in your life and business that support your whole human community, sometimes that looks like surrounding yourself with good people and giving everyone the space to search for their own best way, sometimes it looks like a simple daily ritual of slathering your precious body in intoxicatingly aromatic, richly nourishing oils. For Everyday Oil founder and chief alchemist Emma Allen, it’s all of the above.


We sat down with Emma to talk about the magic of her signature oil (for the uninitiated: it’s sustainably crafted, radically accessible, great-smelling, multi-tasking skin-hair-soul-self-care body oil with a seriously devoted following) and about how she’s worked to build her life and tailor her business to best support the search for grace. Read on for a conversation on the gift of time, what it means to lead, and (yes!) a recipe for taking a better bath. 


Emma wears the Oversize Tee and Kate Jeans





What philosophies are central to your universe?

With decisions for Everyday Oil and also in life, I try to ask myself the central existential question: What if everyone did this? Would that be good or bad for the world? I try to run the business like that...is this good for me, our employees, our customers, the Earth? If everyone made this choice, would that be OK?  


Do you have any daily nurturing rituals / rituals of intention?

Well, I am not an early riser—sometimes I wish I were! I usually wake around 7:30 or 8 and I drink a raw cacao herbal drink I make or hot water with lemon. Then I do yoga—but most mornings since Covid I just do a casual amount in my living room. I do Ashtanga but I'm pretty mellow about it. It helps me a lot to stretch in the mornings and do some short meditations of 10-15 minutes before the day gets going. I like to take the pressure off of myself to do anything extreme—and just try to do what fits and works everyday.


Has your perspective on how or why we nourish both our physical or spiritual selves shifted or altered during these wild times of upheaval?

I think it has reinforced the need to take care of ourselves, physically and emotionally...and a big part of that is time and slowing down. Something I am working on learning from this is that all we have is our time. So, trying to use it more wisely, give it more freely to ourselves and others, and generally break the rules of our society governing our thought patterns about it. Change will come from giving time to what is important, internally and externally.




Emma wears the Audrey Shirt JacketOversize Tee and Kate Jeans



Emma wears the Audrey Shirt JacketOversize Tee and Kate Jeans







As a fellow female-led company working with a small, mighty, and marvelous team we think a lot about what it means to "be the boss" or to "be our own boss" and how to actively work towards building work spaces and cultures that feel right to us. What is that like for you and your team and business? How has that shifted in the past few months?

I think a big reason I started my own company was to not have a boss and do my own thing, so I do struggle with being one. It is not a role I identify very well with. My solution to that is to empower everyone to be as independent as possible. I want to create an environment that people don't feel a need to try to "escape" from, like I felt a need to escape from most jobs I had. I think feeling overly controlled without reason was a big reason for that, so I try very hard not to do that, while maintaining high standards. It inspires me to see that the Everyday Oil team brings more to it than I ever could have hoped for. I love being my own boss, however and, to be honest, I am most inspired by the opportunity to continually create spaces and cultures and products that feel correct. I look around at the status quo of running a business—making products, being a boss, creating spaces, establishing work cultures and my general reaction is—NO to that. It can just be so much better. We don't have to follow this prescription. Seeking to create another way...for myself, the team, our community...that's what keeps me happy and inspired.

We love how universal Everyday Oil feels. The list of who can use it (everyone) and what they can use it for (basically everything) feels almost shockingly comprehensive. What's your personal favorite application for it?

Thank you so much. I am my own customer and I do wake up, shower, and put Everyday Oil literally from head to toe. I've put it in my ears at the beach when I got swimmer's ear, or used it to polish my shoes in a pinch. I hear so many fun stories from people all the time about how they use it: shaving oil, nursing salve, tick repellent for dogs, you name it. Personally, one of my favorite applications is as a super simple pre-bath>bath scrub and soak treatment, just the two ingredients:

Emma's Salt Scrub Recipe


1 cup plain Epsom Salts

1/4 cup Everyday Oil

in a small bowl


I use this as I'm filling the bath. I do a full body scrub and massage with the salt scrub as the bath starts to fill, then just get right in and soak in the Everyday Oil and Epsom goodness. It makes your skin incredibly silky smooth, it dissolves the oil completely into the water, and the Epsom salts soothe tired muscles.



Read more about Emma's work here and follow her adventures on Instagram here. Photos by Sadie Culberson.






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