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Meet Tenia Simpson of Ten Candle

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tenia Simpson.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I began my candle-making journey last year during the pandemic and in the midst of all the senseless killings of unarmed Black people. To make matters worse, my job of 6 years had laid me off due to the pandemic. 2020 was a tough year. I had just had a baby and moved into a larger apartment so I wasn’t prepared to lose my job.

To support, uplift, and honor Black folks, I decided that I would only buy Black. I’ve always been a lover of fragrances and candles. I was in need of a new candle and didn’t want to buy from Bath & Body Works or any other major retailers. One night, I started looking up Black-owned candles on Instagram not knowing it would be regular Black people making and selling candles.

I’m not sure what I was expecting to find, actually, but I was intrigued and amazed at candle-making. I started doing research and was thinking to myself “Hmm, I can save money and make my own candles”. I’m totally not a DIY type of gal but I didn’t have the extra money because I had lost my job so, I started making candles for myself and gifting them to family and friends.

Everyone raved about how good they were and encouraged me to sell them. I was skeptical at first because I didn’t know how to start a business let alone run a business but I did it. I took my stimulus check and purchased supplies and Ten Candle Co. was born.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
It definitely hasn’t been a smooth road. Everything was a struggle for me. Going out on a limb and spending the stimulus check was not easy! I had bills to pay!

And when I do something it has to be full-on. I didn’t want to start a business without getting an LLC, a website, or a business account. I wanted people to know my business was legit and that I’m serious and passionate about what I do. Building the website was so hard for me!

But most importantly making a good candle. Not all candles are made the same. You definitely have to figure out and try different formulas. No one wants to buy a candle, light it and it has no smell. I had to learn that the hard way!

Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Ten Candle Co. was created to enhance your mood and mental hygiene. There’s nothing like lighting a candle, pouring a glass of your favorite wine, and blasting some 9o’s R&B or Hip-hop.

It’s a total vibe! Not to mention they’re 100% natural, made from vegan soy wax and the wicks are 100% cotton. What sets me apart from others are my masculine scents. Men love candles but they don’t always want fruity and floral scents like most women and honestly, women don’t always want fruity and floral scents.

Also, my packaging isn’t feminine. I wanted my product to look good in any home whether male or female because it’s home decor. My candles are clean and modern with a minimalist decor design.

How can people work with you, collaborate with you, or support you?
You can find Ten Candle Co on Instagram and Facebook at @tencandleco. My website is www.tencandleco.com and I’m at Playa Vista’s Farmers Market every other Saturday.

Pricing:

  • 16oz candles $25
  • 8oz candles $18

Contact Info:

  • Email: Contact@tencandleco.com
  • Website: www.tencandleco.com
  • Instagram: @tencandleco
  • Facebook: @tencandleco

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