just a girl living her best life in the upper lefthand corner

The Best Scented Candles and How to Care for Them

It’s the time of year when everything gets a bit cozier and in the full spirit of hygge, I love to light candles around our house to add both fragrance and ambiance. I’m absolutely in favor of other home fragrance products (diffusers, warming oils, incense, sprays, etc.), but there’s just something about the flickering flame from a candle that really sets a cozy mood for me.


THE BEST CANDLE BRANDS & SCENTS:

Diptyque
Favorite Scents:
Cinnamon / Cannelle (for autumn)
Sandalwood / Santal (for winter)
Linden Tree / Tilleul (for spring)
Jasmine / Jasmin (for summer)

I mean, honestly, I’d burn any of Diptyque’s scented candles any season of the year, but these are my favorites that I feel are the best fragrances to add to the seasonal ambiance of our home. I love to order our candles directly from the brand because they often have exclusive scents that can’t be found anywhere else, but you can also find the majority of their items at Nordstrom (and when Nordie’s has sales the little multi candle sets like this one are typically included!).

6.5 oz — 60 hr burn time ($68)

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Sydney Hale Co.
Favorite Scents:
Oaked Bitter Orange (Charred oak and patchouli add great depth to this bold and bitter citrus fruit)

A little boutique shop in Seattle sells these candles and we always love going in to check out all of the different seasonal scents. This woody / citrus combo is our favorite and always stock up when they have them available!

14 oz. — 50 hr burn time ($30)

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Woodlot
Favorite Scents:
Original (fir, crisp pine, woodsy cedarwood, calming eucalyptus, and sweet vanilla + orange)

We actually discovered this brand in the Sézane’s New York Appartement (which is SO cute — you must go!). We didn’t buy any candles at the store due to limited luggage space, but placed an order direct from the brand as soon as we arrived home. The scent is fairly similar to the candle above that we love from Sydney Hale (are you noticing a trend here? lol), but it definitely has its own distinct fragrance. Highly recommend.

8 oz — 40 hr burn time ($26)


CANDLE CARE – PRODUCTS AND MAINTENANCE:

I love to amplify a candle’s glow by using a photophore. Not only do they create more illumination, but they also help to protect the flame from any breeze that may come through your home.

I absolutely recommend placing your candles on a candle stand while they are burning — the candle base shown above can be purchased individually, but you can also use a very sturdy coaster (such as a ceramic tile!) if you prefer. These products help to protect the surface that you are burning your candle on.

I suggest using candle lids for those candles that do not come with their own because these caps will preserve your candles’ scents while they are not in use. Occasionally, candle brands will come with their own covers (such as Woodlot’s convenient screw-on cap), but having a few spare lids on hand is never a bad idea.

Care Instructions & Precautions:

– The first time you use your candle, let it burn for at least two to three hours until all of the wax on the surface has become liquid. This will prevent the wax from tunneling down around the wick.
– The candle may smoke slightly as heat from the flame causes the liquid wax to rise up the wick.
– For your candle to burn evenly, make sure the wick is centered and trim it with a wick trimmer (ideal length of 3mm to 5mm.

– Do not light the candle when less than 5mm of wax is left at the bottom or when the wick tripod is visible.
– To avoid spilling the liquid wax, use a snuffer or lid to put out the candle
– Never leave a burning candle unattended.
– Do not place a lit candle in a draught or in direct contact with a surface that has a fine finish and is not heat resistant.
– Never move a candle that is burning or in a liquid state.
– Keep out of reach of children and pets. Do not place near curtains.

The above care suggestions are from Diptyque regarding their candles, but I recommend following the specific burning instructions from any candle vendor. The rules above are generally universal, but sometimes different products burn at varying speeds so you may need to adjust your maintenance routine accordingly.
(Care for Sydney Hale candles here;
care for Woodlot candles here)

I have this brass set of candle care tools and absolutely love the convenience of the angled trimming scissors, especially when my candles get closer to their end of life and the wick is much farther down in the jar.

The snuffer is intended for tapered or tea candles so I don’t plan to use it on these kinds of wide mouth candle jars (like I demonstrated in the above photo – lol) because the whole surface of the wax will be liquid and I don’t want to have to clean wax from the edge of the snuffer lid after every use!
No thanks.

The other little hook tool is used to reposition the wick if it curls down / falls over / etc. into the melted wax and you need to correct its behavior.

These tools have a really nice weight to them and feel very substantial. Given the super affordable price, I was very surprised by their excellent quality; I would buy them again in a heartbeat!

If you are keeping your candles out on display you may also want to keep some fancy matches out near your candles in a stylish matchstick holder like this one. I also love this modern and chic flameless electric lighter option – such a brilliant invention!

I also recommend repurposing your candle jars once they’ve burned through down to the bottom of their containers. Don’t just throw them away — it’s actually incredibly easy to clean them (I was shocked, tbh). I love using mine to hold my matchsticks, makeup brushes, Q-tips, bobby pins, hair ties, and all kinds of little items that would normally get lost in a drawer — such a chic way to recycle. ☺️

Stay cozy and enjoy your candles, friends!

xx, Natalie

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