These days, social media is where we discover a lot of new brands, hotel recommendations and food destinations. I’ve definitely purchased items after discovering them directly on social media and I have a never ending list of places to that I need to visit, most of which seem to involve #millenialpink sofas – I know, I hate myself a little bit for becoming such a cliché.

In the last few weeks, I’ve noticed some fellow Birmingham dwellers have been visiting a new store over in Birmingham’s Great Western Arcade (shout out to Sophie!) which is a beautiful Victorian arcade full of some great shops. It’s home to the best sushi in Birmingham, Sushi Passion, award winning wine experts, Loki Wine, eclectic homeware store, Collective and now also home to Honest Skincare + Apothecary. Discovering Honest over on Instagram means that yes, it is very instagrammable and I was immediately taken with the images of the sink with foliage and simple labelled bottles.

I found myself at Honest after work one day and I got chatting to the lovely Megan who was looking after the store. She expertly guided me through some of the products ranging from skincare, shampoo, tea, candles, plants as well as some curated items including beautiful hand carved wooden utensils and magazines. She explained that the store is the second in Birmingham (the other one is in Kings Heath, Birmingham) and the brainchild of Katie Fisher. Katie wanted to produce skin care products made from natural, pure ingredients and using simple, biodegradable and reusable packaging. The end result is a brand which is organic (soon to be vegan) with beautiful looking stores  and stockists all over the UK and internationally.

Of course I couldn’t resist purchasing something and I took home the Smokey Oak candle which is made from vegetable wax. I was totally won over by the scent, it’s not the usual type of scent I go for (I often opt for fresh, clean scents) and this one is moody, woody, slightly musky and for me it reminds me of late summer evenings at the seaside. It’s not an overpowering fragrance and quite subtle, perfect for winding down after a long day.

I have to mention the wrapping! Each item is carefully wrapped in paper and decorated with twine, dried herbs and flowers. I couldn’t bear to unwrap it and I let the package sit on my desk for an entire day before I decided to open it. It really makes a difference when such care is put into the brand ethos, the creation of the products, store aesthetics and right down to the moment the customer takes home the purchase. It just feels so special. I can’t wait to return soon to purchase a cleansing cream, hand cream and maybe a cactus or two!

Honest Skincare + Apothecary can be found at the 13 Great Western Arcade, Birmingham, B2 5HU