Hello! Tell us a little bit about yourself, Dr. J’s Apothecary, and what you’ll be bringing to Feliz this spring
Hi there— I’m currently pursuing a graduate degree in modern and contemporary Art History at UT, which is what brought me to Austin from Marfa last summer. Dr j apothecary is my mellow and aromatic side hustle, which initially arose out of a desire for a hands-on, creative outlet to complement other, more information-centric activities that I was doing at the time. The project has expanded beyond my initial imaginings in really exciting ways—it’s been a lot of fun experimenting with different combinations and learning about new ingredients.
At Feliz, I plan to offer all the “old” classics as well as some exciting new products. I will have the all-purpose aromatic spritz for space, face, and body; the landlocked seaspray for hair; salt scrubs; beet lip and cheek stain; “fresher than you” hair and beard oil (see Beyonce, 7/11); my brand new SPF hand salve, as well as some other potential surprise appearances.
How did you get involved in making apothecary products?
Totally unexpectedly! My first spring in Marfa (2013) I went on a few pretty long road trips and made some essential oil spritzes to freshen up the car. These early spritzes joined me and some friends—including Susannah Lipsey, founder of the very wonderful Marfa shop Freda—on a trip to New Orleans for Jazz Fest (NOLA native Frank Ocean’s first Jazz Fest and his mom and little brother were there! S w o o n). When I spritzed the car, Susannah was curious about what I had made and encouraged me to make some from the store. It was a lot of fun for me choosing the packaging, designing labels, making scent combinations, and learning as I went along. They turned out to be a hit. The ideas for other products kind of flowed from there, but they were always based on things I wanted but couldn’t find elsewhere.
What is your favorite spray that you make?
I think the poolside spritz is a fresh and calming classic; it brings some fond memories to mind. I love all of the salt scrubs, especially after long afternoons of sun and swimming.
Does the inspiration differ for the products when they are made in Marfa vs. Austin? If so, how?
For me, dr j will always be connected to memories of being in Marfa, and for that reason, they all feel like things I would want to use in that magical calm desert space. The hand salve, hair oil, and lip stain, which I developed here in Austin, are things that I would have wanted there, but work anywhere. More than anything, the products speak to my experience of crisscrossing the Southwest over the last few years, of being on the road but still wanting to feel and smell good.
And lastly, what is one of your mixtures you think no one should live without?
I’m super excited about my new hand salve featuring several ingredients with naturally occurring SPF such as red raspberry seed oil, shea butter, and grapeseed oil, scented with cardamom, clove, and patchouli. My roommate and I use it all the time!
Great! Thanks Jana!!