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Thursday 7 January 2010

Keeping Cosy: Scented Candles in the Sales

It's taken me almost a week to come to terms with the traumatic discovery that now Christmas is over, no matter how much I might want to, it's just not on to laze around in a stupor all day, refusing to get dressed, watching bad films and glugging Baileys straight from the bottle.

But despite this annual distress and disappointment, this year I've been granted an extra few days of slobbing out in my PJs, thanks to the SNOWY APOCALYPSE. Or, as the BBC insists on calling it, FROZEN BRITAIN. And because five measly snowflakes have fallen on the train tracks at my local station, I'm apparently trapped until the ice age ends, wrapped in so many layers of clothing that I look not unlike the Michelin Man. Who is, of course, well-known for his panache, flair, and debonair fashion sense.

But I digress. Whilst I'm revelling in the childhood joy of OMG SNOW DAY, I decided it'd make sense to take maximum advantage of the unexpected days at home to have a bit of a spring clean, finally take the Christmas decorations down and get my place looking as lovely and cosy as I can. Not that I'm trying to avoid doing my work or anything. Honest.

So when the lovely folks at Debenhams sent me this sandalwood and ylang ylang aromatherapy candle to try, from their new Parks London range, it arrived just in time to christen my newly-organised and beautified boudoir. The simple, classic white design means it's elegant enough to fit in with any décor scheme, and it's made using natural wax, rather than the paraffin wax often used in cheaper candles. The ingredients are all organic and the wick is lead-free, so it's much more eco-friendly than other competing brands.

The best thing about it, as with most scented candles, is the smell. Whilst I wouldn't quite class it as "seductive and sensual," like the label claims, there's definitely something very soothing about the sandalwood and ylang ylang fragrance, and it didn't take long of having it flickering away before I started to unwind and even feel a bit blissed out with cosy contentment (and for a stresshead like me, that's quite an achievement.)

The Parks London candles are fragranced with essential oils, meaning the perfume permeates the entire room whilst the candle's lit, and long after it's been blown out too. Whilst for me this is an added bonus meaning I can enjoy the scent of it even when it's not in use, it isn't everyone's cup of tea. My dear beloved, never known for his sunny disposition even at the best of times, has been bitching that the smell of this one gives him headaches whenever his super-sensitive nostrils catch even the slightest whiff of its distinctive scent.

Whilst I hasten to add that this is obviously over-exaggerated man-melodrama, the candles do have a long-lasting smell. So if you light it once and then decide you don't like it, it might get on your wick (no pun intended) to have the scent hanging around for ages afterwards. If you're unsure, stick to traditional fragrances that you've tried before, like lavender, to be on the safe side.

It's now in the sale for £12.80, reduced from £16. Not bad for 60 hours burn time, eh? And if sandalwood and ylang ylang ain't your bag, there are masses of other Parks London scented candles in the Debenhams sale, including lavender, lemongrass, mint, grapefruit and jasmine.

Both the individual candles and the trio sets are delivered to your door in classy presentation boxes, meaning they'd be a nifty gift idea for any of those infuriating folk who insist on having their birthdays at this time of year, when everyone's penniless after spending all their money on Christmas presents, mulled wine and mince pies!

Are there any scented candles which you absolutely adore? Tell us your favourites (or any you detest with a passion) in the comments if so!


  1. 60 hours of burn time is impressive! I can't often be tempted away from my White Company favourites, but for the same price, they're only burn for 28...

  2. I know, I love Jo Malone - but I'd never buy them for myself - too extravagant! But when I do get them as presents I remember why I love them, but they never seem to last as long as I think they should for the £30 price tag...

  3. I love Neom Organics candles. They smell gorgeous and have zero nasties but the only down side is, they're very expensive - fortunately, I've just discovered they're on sale at the moment, with a whopping 60% off....I know what I'm going to treat myself to, today ;-)

  4. Thanks for your comment, Gesine, I've not heard of Neom Organics before but with such a massive discount will definitely check them out - thanks for letting us know!

  5. No problem. They're really lovely. I got one as a gift from a friend last year and can recommend them. But it seems I'm not alone in liking them. I've just had a look and the discounted ones have all sold out :-(
    But rumour has it, there might be more candles up for sale soon (fingers crossed!!)

  6. I pretty much love anything Fig. The first one I had was a habitat one a few years back now that was in a lovely clay pot. Then I moved on to Diptyque and have had those for a few years. I was bought a Jo Malone one (lovely but think the Diptyque scent is better) and recently treated myself to one on line. Its such a lovely fresh smell but also makes me feel cosy.

    For my Birthday last year I was given a Tuberose Dpityque, haven't lit it yet as it feels like a very spring smell (that and Chanel No 5) but just from sniffing I know I am going to enjoy.

    In my kitchen I also have a basil and something one from a set I was given from The White Company - perfect for cleansing after smelly cooking.

  7. Oh, the basil one sounds perfect for using after cooking, I've never thought of using scented candles in the kitchen, but that definitely makes sense! Thanks for your comment!


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