Sneak Peek: “DIAVOLI” – 13 shades inspired by Dante’s Inferno!


Reposted from Facebook:

I’m releasing the sneak peek of the entire collection today- because I’m so excited about this collection and I can’t bear to release a sneak peek each day until the release. I’m impatient, because I’m happy! I hope to have the collection fully orderable by 9/15 or sooner.

All color descriptions and pertinent information will be coming soon, but right now I am neck-deep in programming and testing the new website which launches in 3 days.

Please comment on these and let me know that you see them– your feedback is REALLY important to me and inspires me to work even harder. Without it, I often feel like I am formulating colors in a vacuum with no direction and no idea if my customers are happy with my work. I love to read your comments when you like something. It’s what keeps me going! THANKS!

If Facebook has not been showing you any of our previous posts about this new collection, here’s a little background about this collection! (You’ll see more of our posts if you like/comment on things, or request page notifications)

“DIAVOLI” collection- I hope to release this collection by 9/15.

Diavoli means devil in Italian. I hope you weren’t thinking of ravioli. There’s 13 colors inspired by the Malebranche of the 8th circle of Hell, which in italian is called “Malebolge”, which translates to “evil ditches”. The Malebranche (which means “evil claws”) were 13 devilish demons who patrolled the 5th Bolgia. (only 12 are named in the Inferno). Bolgia 5 was where extortionists, blackmailers, politicians and unscrupulous businessmen: sinners who used their positions in life to gain personal wealth or other advantages for themselves) are punished by being thrown into a river of boiling tar. Should they try to escape, the Malebranche, armed with grappling hooks and barbs, stand guard over them. (Bolgia means “ditch” or “pocket” in Italian)

There’s 9 circles of Hell in Dante’s Inferno, so the potential inspiration for this collection was never lacking, but I decided on naming the shadows after the Malebranche because this particular section of the Inferno interested me in that Dante employed political satire, aimed at particular people or families, in his naming of the demons. For example, it is believed that the demon “Barbariccia” may suggest the Ricci family of Florence, or the Barbarasi of Cremona. In reading this section, I’ve wondered often what modern cast of characters would be found in this section!

The names are long, and some are tongue twisters in Italian. I’ve been studying Italian for years, so have become a rather proficient speaker, and will provide pronunciation guides for each name so that you can pronounce them with pride. I’ll also include different scholarly interpretations of what each name means.



Sneak Peek: “DIAVOLI” – 13 shades inspired by Dante’s Inferno!

#lovenotfear – a beautiful shade to benefit Autism Acceptance through Golden Hat Foundation


FEBRUARY 14, 2014

Today, most people are celebrating Valentine’s Day. But a passionately active segment of the internet is conducting a flashblog event, under the tag #lovenotfear . The goal of this is to increase the concept of Autism Acceptance.

50% of the sales of this color ($3.50 for each jar sold, and .50 for each sample sold) will be donated to the Golden Hat Foundation, through the lens of love. Not fear. Their work embraces the broad range of people on the autistic spectrum, in all of their expansive diversity.

Our Objective is to look beyond the differences caused by autism and into the hearts and minds of these incredible people.

The Golden Hat Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to changing the way people on the autism spectrum are perceived, by shining a light on their abilities and emphasizing their great potential. With proper education and career training, these individuals can truly realize their dreams. Our long-term goals include the establishment of innovative post-high school living campuses designed to truly honor all individuals on the autism spectrum by creating an environment that supports and respects their individual needs and strengths.

“Autistic individuals can achieve great things — but only if they’re supported by people who believe in their potential. Autistic people are often the creative innovators in our midst. They see the world through a different lens — and when their perspective is respected, they can change the world.”

Lisa Jo Rudy, Mother, Writer and Consultant for autism

Aromaleigh has in the past donated to a wide range of causes, ranging from Animal Rescue Groups, Heifer International, and Donors Choose. You’re probably wondering why we decided to create this color and donate to the Golden Hat Foundation. The reason is that life on the autistic spectrum is at the very heart of Aromaleigh. This color was formulated by a woman on the autistic spectrum. In 2011, Aromaleigh’s founder and current Creative Director, Kristen Leigh Bell, was diagnosed with Aspergers Syndrome/High Functioning Autism. Undiagnosed until age 41, she has brought forth hundreds of gorgeous eyeshadow shades and lovely cosmetics, but she has met many challenges in both her personal and professional life, due to her form of autism, and what often occurs alongside of a lack of diagnosis- depression, anxiety, sensory processing issues, insomnia, and stress.

She recently began blogging about her journey, in hopes of telling her story and raising the level of acceptance for a group that often goes undiagnosed; women. Despite this color being named #lovenotfear, the decision to release this personal information has been a difficult one, and it almost didn’t happen because of FEAR.

Kristen states that “There is a great deal of misunderstanding and ignorance regarding high-functioning Autism Spectrum disorders in women. Women tend to go undiagnosed, with a trail of misdiagnoses and a lifetime of confusion and struggling to fit in, left behind in their wake. “ Her only regret about being diagnosed is that she didn’t know about it sooner, because knowledge of her unique neurology would have allowed her to make healthier decisions in all facets of her life. “But there’s no time like the present. I hope that in the future there is a greater understanding for women who are neurologically atypical, or autistic. But I realize that this day can never come if women like me stay quiet, shy and scared to share their experiences.” Today, Kristen continues to do what she loves, by formulating products for Aromaleigh, but she no longer puts herself in a position that isn’t a good fit for her, as she did in the past. She’s gone to great lengths to make changes to her life in order for it to be a kinder, quieter and gentler place. And also a place in which she can explore things that are important to her, such as Autism Acceptance.

Color Description: This is a beautifully delicate but very complex shade, with several layers of color and finish within it. It is intended to be an extremely wearable shade, but also fascinating in it’s delicate shifts of finish and chromatic effects (this was done on purpose to reflect the broad and diverse range of the Autistic Spectrum). It is a chameleon-like color, which will appear very different on different skintones and in different lighting conditions. In sunlight and on a pale warm/yellow skin tone, it appears as a softly metallic cocoa with taupe tones and rich chromatic effects of rose and copper.

This color is vegan/cruelty free! It is not lip safe.

Contains: Mica (CI 77019), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), May contain: Ferric Oxide (CI 77491), Tin Oxide (CI 77861), Silica, Bronze/Copper/ Aluminum Powder, Tin Dioxide (CI 778161), Calcium Aluminum Borosilicate, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite

Size: Packaged in clear jars with sifter, 1.2 gm net wt jars, Samples are 1/8 tsp zip baggies.


#lovenotfear – a beautiful shade to benefit Autism Acceptance through Golden Hat Foundation

Focus on URRACA of Castile and Leon, Empress of All Spains! From “Ignis Antiquita” collection

Queen Urraca of Leon and Castile refused to tolerate her husband Alfonso’s physical abuse. She left him, only to have him bring the fight to the battlefield. She eventually got her annulment, and as “Empress of All Spains”, she worked hard to recover her lost lands, and prepare a legacy for her Son to rule.

urraca.gridHer color is rich bordeaux with mahogany undertones, and interference multichromal highlights of gold, green and blue.

Order Urraca/Learn more about this collection, HERE

More about Urraca of Castile and Leon:

Urraca of León and Castile – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Urraca of Leon and Castile – Women’s History –

In Your Face Women: Urraca – Blogger

Focus on URRACA of Castile and Leon, Empress of All Spains! From “Ignis Antiquita” collection

Focus on ADELAIDE of Susa, Marchioness of Turin, from “Ignis Antiquita” eyeshadow collection

Adelaide of Susa was the Marchioness of Turin. She had eight children and acted as regent for her son. She was accomplished in many different aspects. (From Wikipedia) “Adelaide had passed her childhood amongst the retainers of her father and had even learned the martial arts when young, bearing her own arms and armour. She was reputed to be beautiful and virtuous. She was pious, putting eternal things ahead of temporal. Strong in temperament, she did not hesitate to punish even the bishops and grandees of her realm. She patronised the minstrels and always received them at her court, urging them to compose songs emphasising religious values. She was a founder of cloisters and monasteries that transmitted the history of the region.”


Her color is a rich violet-blue with multi-tonal overlays of rose and violet. A completely cool toned shade, but still full of life and shimmer.

Order Adelaide/Learn more about Ignis Antiquita, HERE.

More info about Adelaide of Susa:

Adelaide of Susa – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Epistolæ: Women’s Biography: Adelaide of Turin and Susa

In Your Face Women: Adelaide of Susa

Heroinas da Cristandade: Beata Adelaide de Susa, Marquesa – 19 

Focus on ADELAIDE of Susa, Marchioness of Turin, from “Ignis Antiquita” eyeshadow collection

Focus on KHUTULUN, the Mongolian wrestler princess! From “Ignis Antiquita” collection

Khutulun was a Mongolian Princess, and the Great-Great-Great Granddaughter of Genghis Khan. She is also known as the “wrestling princess”, for she refused to marry any man who could not beat her at wrestling. Any man who lost owed her 100 horses. She died unmarried, with over 1,000 horses.


Her color is rather difficult to describe. It can appear dominantly deep green or purple depending on the light. In sunlight, it appears to be a deep fir green with a strong purple essence showing through. It’s powerful and mysterious.

Order Khutulun/Learn more about the collection, HERE

More about Khutulun:

Butt-Kicking Princesses in History: Khutulun, the Wrestler Princess 

Khutulun – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Focus on KHUTULUN, the Mongolian wrestler princess! From “Ignis Antiquita” collection

Focus on HONORIA, a intricate, delicate shade from “Ignis Antiquita”

Justa Grata Honoria was the older sister of Roman Emperor Valentian III. Regarded as too ambitious and promiscuous, her Brother decided to marry her to a “safe” Roman Senator who did not challenge his rule. Honoria responded with a plea for help to Attila the Hun, an enemy of Rome. Her plea included her ring, which Attila interpreted as her requesting marriage. And giving him an excuse to invade Rome. Little is known of Honoria after this incident, but one has to give her credit for standing up for herself, even if it did completely backfire.

“Honoria” is a lilac with grey tones and beautiful multi-tonal copper/pink highlights.

Order Honoria/Discover more shades from this collection, HERE!

Learn more about Justa Grata Honoria:

Justa Grata Honoria – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Scheming princess behind Empire’s fall –

Focus on HONORIA, a intricate, delicate shade from “Ignis Antiquita”

When an Eyeshadow Becomes More than Just an Eyeshadow: How the concept behind “Ignis Antiquita” was born

We’re very excited to share this with you- how the new “Ignis Antiquita” collection came to be, and here is a special posting from Aromaleigh founder and product formulator, Kristen Leigh Bell, on how this concept became near and dear to her. Hope you enjoy this and find parallels to it in your own life! This quote sums up the sentiment of the collection very well- “Having the knowledge of a world full of inspiring female history is something which can have more impact on your attitude and self-concept than you might realize. If eyeshadow becomes something that helps us achieve that, merely by naming and association, then eyeshadow is in fact a powerful thing.”


When an Eyeshadow Becomes More than Just an Eyeshadow:
How the concept behind “Ignis Antiquita” was born

By Aromaleigh founder and formulator, Kristen Leigh Bell

“The concept behind “Ignis Antiquita” was sparked in me many years ago. Not the idea to create eyeshadows inspired by badass historical women, but rather the idea of finding strength in the women who came before you. Whether those women are your immediate ancestry or distant relations. Or just a woman you’ve learned about, that you connect with, and are left wondering why you never learned about her in a history class.

For the last five years, I’ve been quite obsessed with working on my family tree. It’s been a journey of exploration for both myself, and to establish a family history for my Son to have. Growing up, my parents didn’t really talk much about their ancestry. I never knew much of anything about the ancestry and traditions of the cultures from whence my family came. My parents couldn’t even fill out the spaces on their family tree with names, much less know where those people came from. Good thing I’ve always been so curious, because it became my mission to figure it all out!

Working on a family tree, you frequently find yourself wondering what it was like to live in the era of whatever ancestor you’re researching. You start to daydream and place yourself in that time period. One of the first strong women in my family tree who made a deep impression on me was my Great Grandma Augusta. She was basically left as a single Mother with a newborn baby, in the tiny town of Corva, in Northern Italy, when her husband got on a boat for the United States. Being a single Mother myself, I felt a kinship with her when I learned that she raised my Grandfather for 13 years before the two of them boarded a ship to New York, and after two months in 3rd class, eventually were reunited with my Great Grandfather in Philadelphia. I found myself thinking of her whenever I was having a hard time. She did it, she was strong- I would be strong too. I knew that one of the reasons my Grandfather was a great man was because of his Mother. It’s much easier to find strength in yourself when you have someone dear to you, that you can relate to.


 Great Grandmother Augusta Crestan Calderan, with my Grandfather

A while later, still working on the family tree, I came across the fascinating discovery that my Father’s ancestry included several Mayflower passengers. One of only five of the women to survive the voyage and the first winter was Mary Love Brewster, who is my 12th Great Grandmother.


Monograph from “Voyage of the Mayflower” by Blanche McManus

I couldn’t imagine the indomitable will she must have had to have made that journey and weathered that first perilous winter. I can’t tell you how many times I remember her, and draw on her strength when it is needed. Even if I hadn’t found that I was related to her, I would have been able to find inspiration in her existence. Then I wondered, in all of the years of school courses where I have learned about the Pilgrims and the Mayflower voyage- why I had never learned about her and the other women in the colony? Other than what they prepared for the first Thanksgiving, that is. I never even knew their names. Not only was Mary Love Brewster a badass historical woman, but millions of Americans descend from her, and if she hadn’t made it through that first winter, I’m not the only person who wouldn’t be here right now.


Gwenllian ferch Gruffyd by Charles Keegan

My curiosity of awesomely badass historical women piqued when I came across Gwenllian Ferch Gruffyd in my family tree, as a very distant ancestor, but still a direct relation- my 25th Great Grandmother. This woman was the Welsh equivalent of Boudicca. For hundreds of years after her death, Welsh soldiers marched into battle chanting her name. Millions of Welsh girls have been named Gwenllian, in her honor. Why had I never heard of her? Why was most of the history I had learned centered primarily around men and their achievements? In order to learn more about women in history other than Cleopatra, I had to go searching for it. I found this to be unsettling.

Fast forward another year, and I found myself feeling a lot of conflict in regards to the nature of cosmetics and why women wear cosmetics or feel that they have to wear cosmetics. Women’s place in society, how societal standards demand that women present themselves a certain way, and the attitudes towards women in the workplace and also popular media- were all things that were on my mind. I found myself feeling confused about the nature of my work, and sometimes wondering if it was hypocritical of me to rely on formulating cosmetics to pay the bills and put food on the table, when I felt so strongly about these things. I’d been creating cosmetics, fragrances and personal care products for almost 15 years, but this was the first time I felt truly confused about the worth or value of what I did to support my family.

And that’s how the idea for “Ignis Antiquita” was born. Getting in touch with the women of my ancestry was incredibly empowering. I often wish that I had known about these women when I was a young girl, or a teenager, struggling to find my place in the world. I wonder if I would have seen the world differently, if armed with the strength of my female ancestry? The answer is yes, definitely- it would no doubt have had a powerful effect on me. Not only the stories and spirit of the women that I descend from, but all of the contributions that women across the space and time of history have made. That the years of history classes never gave me a glimpse of. When I was a teenager, I had a few eyeshadows in neutral colors, with boring names. What if I had owned eyeshadows named after amazing women in history, such as “Theodora” or “Tamar” or “Boudicca”? Would I have felt more confident, being armed with that knowledge? When you think of it that way, it’s not really just an eyeshadow anymore.

The last six months of intensive research have unearthed a list of hundreds of historical women, most of which I never heard of through all of my years of primary school, high school, college and graduate studies. The “Ignis Antiquita” collection became my way of honoring the women I learned about. I read about each woman and focused on their history when I created each color. The first color I created was “Gwenllian” in honor of my badass 25th Great Grandmother. I feel very passionate about this collection, for so many reasons. But the most obvious is that there exists in this world a vast amount of amazing feminine history and energy, that we can all connect with. Not necessarily by putting on an eyeshadow, but by becoming aware of, and reconnecting with that which came before us. Having the knowledge of a world full of inspiring female history is something which can have more impact on your attitude and self-concept than you might realize. If eyeshadow becomes something that helps us achieve that, merely by naming and association, then eyeshadow is in fact a powerful thing.

The act of applying makeup can seem trivial and even hypocritical at times. I still find myself thinking and over thinking these topics, but the process of creating this collection and learning all that I have has helped me to find some peace within it all. I have found some solace in knowing that by creating this collection, I would be able to introduce other women to these historical figures, and hope that others found it as empowering and inspiring as I have. I feel that one of the most important things we can teach little girls is the many stories and histories of women that history has forgotten, or rewritten. Would the world be a different place if, instead of seeing Barbie as a role model, little girls learned about Boudicca? Or Eleanor of Aquitaine? Or Empress Theodora of Byzantium?

I hope you enjoy the “Ignis Antiquita” collection as much as I enjoyed researching and creating the colors. It’s been an incredible experience to work on this collection, and has put me on a new journey and direction in the work that I do. That work isn’t finished, because I have a long, long list of women who have made profound contributions to history who don’t yet have colors! I think that 2014 is going to be a great year, full of many new historical lessons and a much deeper connection with the everlasting feminine energy that creates all of our stories.

IGNIS ANTIQUITA is a new Aromaleigh permanent collection of 40 eyeshadows, inspired by history’s forgotten women. See the whole collection, HERE.

When an Eyeshadow Becomes More than Just an Eyeshadow: How the concept behind “Ignis Antiquita” was born