Scented candles we’re coveting

Scented candles have helped us stay (mostly) sane this year. A bold statement, but when we’ve spent more time than ever at home – working, raising families, interacting with partners or house-mates on a 24 hour basis or simply trying to get through the day alone – it’s been an easy way to instantly change a space, a vibe, with fragrance.

And it seems we’re not alone in this perfumed passion. Sales of fragranced candles, along with ‘premium food’ have been one of the mood-markers of 2020.

As The Guardian newspaper recently commented, ‘cold weather and coronavirus restrictions encourage Britons to hunker down for winter,’ reporting that what we’re been turning to are ways of making ourselves feels better, hence: ‘Sales of scented candles, potpourri and essential oils for diffusers jumped 29% in October, according to the research group Kantar.’

It makes sense. Candles can help us feel calm – not only for the scent, but focusing on the flickering flame awhile. They bring a feeling of warmth and comfort, a cosiness that’s been sorely needed as the temperatures in the U.K. plummeted and the darkness drew in. We’ve gone from tropical exoticism in the bathroom to torrid sensuality in the bedroom (or the kitchen, why not?). We’re using zingy scents to get us going in the morning, soothing smells to help us wind down of an evening, and traversing the world through our noses all the many, many hours in-between.

Because good grief, how we’ve longed for ‘newness’ – and the act of lighting a scented candle can genuinely shake you out of the doldrums!

Quite apart from how fabulous some of the containers look, and how good quality candles can contiunue to scent a room even unlit; they also make thoughtful gifts. But personally, we’re doing the ‘one for you, one for me’ rule with the following selection of some of our favourites to stock up on. Which will you give, and which are you coveting for yourself, we wonder…?

Ruth Mastenbroek Ancient Frankincense £55 for
Cosy as toasting your toes by a roaring fire, this is one to light, snuggle up on the sofa and read something unashamedly soothing with. Or kick back with a frivolously festive film. The warmth of frankincense, precious resins of myrrh and labdanum are tickled by pink pepper up top and swaddled in rich patchouli in the base. Aromatic notes of cypress and pine, meanwhile, remind us of walks through the woods – wrapped up in your favourite coat, savouring the frosty freshness of the air. Sublime!

(PS: Get your hands on a mini size of either Ancient Frankincense or the Rebel County candle as part of our sumptuous Indulgence Discovery Box, for £36 / £32 for VIPs)

Boujee Bougies Queen Jam £55 for 220g
Outrageously jam-y, this sashays up with bucket loads of berries – raspberries and bilberries, to be precise – and oodles of rose petals; that unctious stickiness shot through with flashes of tart green to prevent it being sickly. Olfiction perfumer Pia Long has created a stunning evocation of a Finnish preserve that feels equal parts grown up glam and giggle-inducing frolics. Check out their entire range via the super cute mini candles for £25 (buy one of each and you’ll get one free as part of their launch offer, while stocks last!)

Floral Street Sunshine Bloom £28 for 200g
A welcome shaft of sunlight for the duller days, this scented candle keeping the memory of summer vibes alive with luminescent notes of jasmine, creamy fig leaf (which smells like being on holiday – close your eyes and you can almost feel the sunshine, hear the waves…). Meanwhile, wild orchid, black pepper, incense and salted musks manage to be both delicious and vibrant. This is a solar scent that truly sparkles and recalibrates: a fragrant re-set for the mind, if you will.

 

La Montaña Siesta: £39 for 220g
We don’t know about you, but getting absolutely anything done right now seems to sap twice the amount of energy as usual. We could all dearly do with a daily siesta, but not all of us can make that space in our day. This candle cossets with lavender, juniper and thyme – an herbaceous breeze from a garden as you ‘close your eyes and imagine yourself drowsing on a hot afternoon, gently swinging in a hammock in the shade of a tree, with the crickets chirruping, and the sun-baked fragrances of the countryside lulling you to sleep.’ Oh we’re SO there…

Tom Daxon White Narcissus: £25 for 185g
A winter’s walk captured in fragrant form, here, with a bouquet of white flowers – gloriously heady narcissus and hyacinth – and the snapped-stalked freshness of galbanum and green violet leaf, which manages to temper the otherwise fabulously blowsy floralcy. Tendrils of cardamom-infused smoke drift drowsily through the cold, still air as gaiac wood and cedar smoulder on the shady vetiver base. One to gift those who are about done with cinnamon and eggnog and are checking the weather forecast, hourly, for the first signs of spring. That’d be us, then.

By Suzy Nightingale

By Kilian scented lingerie works with body heat…

Niche fragrance brand By Kilian are launching a capsule collection of perfumed lingerie, created in collaboration with French luxury brand Fleur du Mal, featuring By Kilian’s Love, Don’t be Shy fragrance. With Oriental notes of orange blossom, iris, rose and amber, things are clearly going to get rather steamy…
Designer Jennifer Zuccarini worked with handcrafted lace from the Solstiss Lace Mill in Caudry, France, and the entire lingerie collection uses micro-encapsulation techniques to weave the garments with the fragrance, gradually released with the body heat and movement of the person wearing it. And with the additional help of any special friends, um… also enjoying the lingerie, one assumes!
‘There’s something intriguing and intimate about fragrance and lingerie that I’ve always wanted to explore,’ says Jennifer. ‘With this collection, we’ve been able to add an element of sensuality that enhances the experience of intimacy.’ So, what can you expect to be wafting forth while shimmying in your scented scanty things? By Kilian describe Love, Don’t be Shy, composed by perfumer Calice Becker, as follows:

Opening: As tender as orange blossom, as luscious as a marshmallow.
Vibe: A fragrance with a sweet tooth, like when you love someone so much you just want to take a bite of them!
Drydown: The amber base adds sensuality.

The collection features three curated sets: lingerie, accessories and pyjamas, with prices ranging from £360 to £620, they’re available at bykilian.com, KILIAN boutiques, fleurdumal.com and speciality boutiques worldwide.
Designed to last between four and five washes, once the initial fragrance has worn off, one could pick up a bottle of the perfume and continue the perfumed passion the traditional way. According to founder and Creative Director, Kilian Hennessy, Rihanna is a big fan Love, Don’t Be Shy – and as she certainly isn’t known for being backward in coming forward, we say pick up a bottle and spritz away (on lingerie, skin, hair, sheets, perhaps even your special friend…) to your heart’s content.

 
By Kilian Love, Don’t be Shy £205 for 50ml eau de parfum,
Buy it at Selfridges
Perhaps if trying to win favour as a gift, and lingerie seems a little too… forward; might we suggest adding the cheeky, slogan emblazoned clutch-bag style case?
£225 with clutch-bag case
Buy it at Selfridges
Written by Suzy Nightingale