05/29/2014 02:19 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

This Small Business Went From Scented Candles To A Multi-Million Dollar Enterprise

A Portland-based couple won this year's National Small Business People of the Year Award for their vegan and cruelty-free beauty line. The couple joined HuffPost Live to talk about their win and their journey so far.

Brooke Harvey-Taylor and her husband Billy started Pacifica over 15 years ago with just a line of scented candles. Brooke had prior training in aromatherapy and felt that candles were the best place to put the perfumes she had developed.

"...I always had a vision for having this big beauty line but back then boutique perfumes didn’t exist and what was happening in the market were candles and so we thought, 'Let's just try to put them in candles and see what happens,'" Brooke told HuffPost Live's Ricky Camilleri. "And that’s what we did, and it was really successful and then we were able to put the fragrances into perfumes shortly after."

Since the company's inception, it has grown into a multi-million dollar beauty line. Brooke said that her company was really one of the first brands to take a vegan and cruelty-free approach to beauty products.

"We were really one of the first brands to take such a strong stance on being vegan and cruelty-free in the marketplace," Brooke said. "It wasn’t happening at that point and we’re certified by PETA, which means a lot to us. We were both vegan when we started Pacifica and it’s a big part of our brand ethos for sure."

Watch the full HuffPost Live segment on Pacifica below:



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