The French Alchemist
A name inspired by my grandfather Simeon Pommier. Simeon was born from a “maquignon“ (horse dealer) family in the town of Auvergne located in the center of France. The French region of Auvergne is well-known for its good cheese, volcanos and Vercingetorix, but Auvergne is also the cradle of natural medicine, healing and magnetism. During the First World War, he served as a Dragon (France elite cavalry). After being wounded in battle during the war he dedicated himself to alchemy and herbology. Simeon was a “rebouteux” (someone that puts your bones back in place after you've had an injury) and a “guerisseur” (someone that could cure most common illnesses with plants and naturally made potions or unguents).
Being raised by my grandparents, I spent a great deal of time with my grandfather gathering flowers, plants, and minerals for his potions and unguents. He taught me a lot about the medicinal effects of these natural ingredients on the body and he sparked my passion for natural healing, as well as an incredible thirst for learning about alchemy, apothecary and later aromatherapy as they are all interrelated.
When I was 14, my parents moved to Grasse in the south of France. Growing up in the perfume capital of the world I pursued my interests in plants, flowers and later essential oils. At the time aromatherapy was not recognized as it is today so I entered the perfume industry and worked in all its aspect from perfume maker to perfume distributor, as well as publisher for one of the first trade magazines dedicated to the perfume industry.
I never forgot my interest in alchemy and herbology. Starting with the textbooks of my grandfather and an easy access to essential oils (due to my position in the industry), I experimented and created formulas with the help of many colleagues, perfumers but also pharmacists, researchers and cosmetologists. For as long as I can remember I have used essential oils for my family and essential oil compounds as a natural alternative to harsh medicines in many occasions. Step by step my family and friends, as well as niche perfumers, asked me to find them the best essential oils or to share some of our wellbeing and skincare formulas so I decided to open "French Alchemist".
This passion for natural healing is probably in my genes as my daughter spends time with us as an apprentice alchemist. My younger brother is in pharmaceutical research as a doctor in pharmacy and biology and his wife is also a pharmacist selling aromatherapy in her pharmacy near Montpellier (South of France). When my daughter finished her studies we moved to Tampa Bay were I am still investigating alchemy, aromatherapy and the art of living well in harmony with nature.