The La-Eva universe is an intimate one, infused with the warmth, loyalty and passion of a family-run business. A diverse group of doers and creatives, our shared values bridge differences with a love of simple luxuries, ethics and aesthetics in the every day.
2014 - Gentle beginnings
La-Eva is the organic evolution of an artisan cold process soap studio set up in 2014 by founder and former Clinical Psychologist Louisa Canham.
Having completed her doctoral training at Oxford and specialised in complex adolescent mental health, Louisa spent over a decade working in schools, hospitals and prisons before discovering the gentle, creative pass time of traditional soap making - a therapeutic antidote to the everyday.
Over many trials and errors, and with the passing of time, some unique, beautiful, layered soap recipes evolve. Handmade, traditional cold process soap provides a unique platform for exploring palettes of scents, the potential of natural raw ingredients, and the care and attention it takes to create something truly beautiful.
Fast forward further down the timeline, and Louisa comes to take what was meant to be a short break from psychology. A rustic, wabi sabi studio on the edge of a sawmill manifests, and for a while ahead, in its fragrant confines, Louisa and close friends blend, cut and edge blocks and bars of soap. They pop up at festivals, local independent shops and markets, including the iconic London Spitalfields. Slowly but steadily, the studio establishes a small, faithful customer base and close working relationships with farms and suppliers.
2017 - La-Eva Opens Doors
La-Eva begins taking more sophisticated form and the brand opens doors with a wash, a lotion, much passion and little expectation. Over time, more products are added to the collection thoughtfully and slowly, with a commitment to a less-is-more philosophy.
2020 - Now
Against the odds, and by word-of-mouth, La-Eva comes to nurture an aspirational selection of partners across the UK and Europe which continues to expand organically. We work with settings that celebrate natural beauty, foster a slower pace and deliver the purest of produce to their guests.
La-Eva IN Oxfordshire
Our premises are nestled within a cluster of old farm dwellings on the edge of Thame in South Oxfordshire, with rolling views across the horizon and a woodland on the doorstep. This serene setting fosters a sense of connectedness with the earth and the elements, and is in harmony with the creation of pure, aromatic products for self-care.
Our lab, barn and bungalow are beehives of logistics. Here products come together in their amber glass bottles. Where they are carefully prepared, packed and sent off to our partners and customers. This is where ideas are generated, where scent blends are created, where artwork is sketched out, and where words are scribbled down.
This is a rare, special place. One that embodies the philosophy of La-Eva, and that allows theory to be put into practice.
The La-Eva Studio
Located in West Oxfordshire – the original La-Eva studio which has enjoyed an organic evolution from artisan soap maker’s studio into a rare, lived-in concept space. This is where our roots lie and today we still use it for photoshoots, creative gatherings and occasional open days.
La-Eva in Portugal
In 2022 we set fresh roots in Portugal. This is now our second home .
Louisa Canham, Founder & Creative Director
"My years as a Clinical Psychologist afforded me precious front line experience of the continuum of wellbeing. Many of the ideas that we explore and our products embody have come together alongside reflections and learnings from the past.
La-Eva has been sewn together with a spirit of joie de vivre and is about wellbeing in the every day. About small, pure pleasures. What we wash the day off and what we nurture our skin with - the delicate film between our external and internal worlds. About fragrances that open the doors to our emotions and memories through complex neural pathways. About self regulation and harmony across the layers. Base notes. Heart notes. Top notes.
Wellbeing thrives on balance and movement. On mind and body being able to pause and root to the ground. On feeling feelings, and connecting. On eagle views and experiences that transport us between the ordinary and the extraordinary.
Somewhere within the loops of these ideas and intentions lies the core of what La-Eva has become."
Christine Michaelis, Senior Product Manager
Christine has worked for 15 years in the Beauty industry, first at L’Oréal in Paris in Marketing and International Product Development for Vichy and Lancôme and later as Brand Director for H2O+ in Chicago. She is a passionate advocate of ethical, respectful and mindful beauty. Christine now works on the development of the La-Eva product range alongside Louisa.
Victor Rinaldi, Operations Manager
Victor spent many years in Asia working in the most exquisite, exclusive spa environments and brings his operational expertise to the daily running of La-Eva. Having previously held prestigious positions including as Director of Spa and Director of Experiences in a number of Amān properties including Amān Tokyo, and Amanpulo, Victor brings a wealth of insights and unique expertise to the experiential offerings of La-Eva and is passionate about the evolution of the wellness industry.
Tara Donovan & Nina Carrington
Tara is a lawyer by training. A former partner of London law firm Denton Hall, she joined client Jamie Oliver in 2003, initially as Head of Business Affairs and ultimately as CEO of his Media Group of Companies. Tara is now a self confessed corporate butterfly, making connections, sharing experiences and nurturing the organic growth of La-Eva as a Non-Executive Director.
Nina is a floral milliner specialising in bespoke bridal crowns and an independent stylist for select fashion and interiors photoshoots. She has a background in sales and adds a warm, creative and bohemian air to the creation and hosting style of La-Eva events.
Also indispensable in the everyday life of La-Eva:
Ellie Hammond - Amanda George - Léonie Gallo - Danielle Noakes