I was really disappointed with this candle. It's hard to make jasmine feeble but this is. Everything about it is a bit wishy-washy including, most seriously, the sillage. It isn't bad, it's just not as good as it should have been, especially given the price.
I'm not as blown away by this candle as I thought I would be. It doesn't burn at all cleanly and the throw isn't as knockout strong as I had hoped. However it is a lovely jasmine smell (not too green, not too indolic, just jasmine) so I really can't complain too much. The only floral Diptyque I would repurchase so far is Narcisse (except that in their wisdom they have discontinued it...).
I have this candle in the small votive size but it still has the lovely black pattern on colourless glass in common with the other Miller Harris candles. I think it is a limited edition. The fragrance is slightly sweeter and less green than the perfume version but it's the same rich, dark geranium rose. The sillage isn't great but that could be because it's a votive and not a larger candle. The burn is clean and true and even. However I would always purchase Feuilles de Tabac in preference to this.
According to the website, the notes of this candle are: laurel, oregano, sage, thyme, rosemary, lavender, fennel, juniper, green grass, fir, bergamot, coriander, cypress, cinnamon, clove and tree-moss. Phew! These are basically the same notes as the perfume version which to me is spicier and less green and herbal than the notes suggest. The candle is woodier and less green and herbal than the notes suggest. I have this candle in a small votive but the throw is still very good but only when it's first burned - the smell doesn't last even a quarter of the way to the bottom of the candle. It comes in a frosted glass holder with white wax and is a frustratingly slow burner with a tiny flame. It doesn't burn evenly either. After my bad experience with the Olea candle in this range, I only bought this candle and another (Fiori) because they were drastically reduced in a sale. After this one, I don't think I will buy another no matter how cheap it is.
The sillage on this candle is amazing. I have no experience of burning any other Annick Goutal candles and every other one I have tried smelling unlit in a shop smells of nothing but this one is seriously strong. Personally I don't like the jar which is colourless glass with slightly tacky looking gold AG etchings, though I do approve of the gold lid. I would also rather have classic white candles and the ones in this range are all pastel colours - this one is orange. The smell is a sweet slightly one dimensional amber. If you like it unlit then that's exactly what you will get when it's lit only tenfold. It spread through my entire (small) flat after only 5 minutes of burning. There are other candle fragrances that are a little more sophisticated that I prefer (Diptyque's Opoponax, Henri Bendel's Amber and Clove, Parfums de Nicolai's Maharadjah and Miller Harris's Feuilles de Tabac) but on a bitterly cold night, this can't be beaten.
Candles -Unlisted Brand - Arran Aromatics Soft Cinnamon Candle
135792468 12/22/2008 12:05:00 PM
This candle is larger than Diptyque and costs less than half as much. The white frosted pattern on the glass makes the candle more decorative and expensive than you would think (though I happen to prefer them plain). The wax is pure white which I like. The sillage is just as good as more expensive brands and better than many. You get a free box of matches like you do with Jo Malone and White Company candles which I think is a nice touch. It burns down evenly and cleanly. My only problem is that I don't much like the smell which is entirely my fault since I chose it. It's just a little sweet and sickly. I also have the Herb Garden candle in this range so I will see how that compares.
This is the most expensive candle I have ever burned (£41!) and one of the most disappointing. I don't like the packaging. I don't mind the Le Labo bottles as, although the labels aren't the prettiest things in the world, I do like the shape of the bottles (though I do object to the fact that the boxes are far too big to keep the bottles in after you've opened them - the same incidentally applies to the candle). The candle has the same ugly label over a clear glass jar which is oddly curved like a cheap tumbler. I would much prefer something straight sided. The smell in the candle is a nice evergreen without the disinfectant connotations but not, in my opinion, as nice as Diptyque's more Christmassy Epicea and more woody Cypres (neither of which have I ever burned). However it's the throw which I object to because when the candle is lit, I just can't smell it and for £41 I expect more than that. I should say that I think the candles are larger than the standard Diptyque size so you get more for your money but it's not enough!
Candles -Unlisted Brand - Modern Alchemy Dia de los Muertos candle
135792468 11/24/2008 7:45:00 AM
This candle was a grievous disappointment because I really wanted to like it. You can get the range from Luckyscent or Selfridges in the UK and they have quirky and interesting names and concepts like Boston Tea Party (tea, cedar and seaweed) and Ex Libris (old books). This one is supposed to be frankincense and marigold and remind you of the South American Day of The Dead celebrations. The glass jar is frosted and etched and each in the range is a different colour. This one is dark red. Personally I like my candles to come in a clear colourless jar and be white but if they are going to be coloured, you at least need to get a glow through the glass which this doesn't really have. I can live with all of that if the smell is nice but this doesn't have any smell at all and it smokes like crazy. On the plus side, the wax pools nicely and the candle burns evenly. EDIT I was a little harsh. The fragrance is subtle but it is there and there is a glow through the glass once the candle burns further down.
Fragrances -Unlisted Brand - Bella Bellissima Perfect Night
135792468 11/10/2008 12:00:00 PM
I don't find this particularly skanky. It's a thick incense with citrus notes. I haven't tried them together but from memory it's a cross between Shaal Nur and Miyako. I find it sublimely comforting in Winter and suitable for any occasion. I also greatly admire the ethos of the brand. It's very hard to be both niche and affordable.
Candles -Unlisted Brand - Slatkin & Co Frankincense candle
135792468 10/17/2008 6:54:00 AM
I like this candle a lot and I only say I wouldn't re-purchase because there are so many other great candles to explore. It burns beautifully with a proper pool of wax covering the entire surface area. The glass container is square and thick and hefty - not elegant but perfectly respectable. The smell is a true frankincense with a reasonable throw. My only quibble is that the wick smokes a lot when you blow it out. Otherwise it's a general two thumbs up which makes two out of two for me for this range. I also have Oriental Woods to try.
Like the reviewers who have commented on other candles, I do not like the pot pourri at the top as it leaves bits on the top of the candle and around the glass and there isn't enough of it to do anything with. Also like the other reviewers, I found this candle to be very smoky which is a definite no no. As to the smell, it's a faint floral with little throw or interest. EDIT: Downgraded to one lippie. This is the first candle I have ever thrown away before burning down. I thought the smoke couldn't be doing me any good.
Scrubs -L'Occitane - Honey & Lemon Sweet Sugar Scrub
135792468 8/22/2008 7:22:00 AM
I find the smell of L'Occitane's Honey and Lemon range to be a little too sweet and sickly and this is no exception. The other problem is that the grains are so small that there isn't much scrub effect. But I would rather have it too gentle than something which leaves big red scratch marks and the packaging is nice (plastic tub which is sensible) and it is moisturising without being oily so it's a pretty good choice overall.
Finally a citrus candle with some oomph! This has a lovely sharp bite to it and an excellent throw. Unfortunately the wick was very short for some reason on my candle and not only does it keep extinguishing its flame, the burn has gone straight down the middle of the candle leaving a large ring around the edge. If that is a problem with other Verveine candles, I wouldn't repurchase but I am going to assume it's just a flaw in this one.
Fragrances -Unlisted Brand - Angela Flanders - Melissa
135792468 8/14/2008 5:38:00 AM
For anyone who finds L'Occitane Honey and Lemon too sweet, this is the perfect alternative because it's basically honey and lemon in just the right proportions. The sillage and lasting power are tremendous even in the EDT version. EDIT: You can now buy from her website www.angelaflanders-perfumer.com
This is the blurb from the Lorenzo Villoresi website: "The round, rich and intense aroma, delicately sweet and full of different nuances, of the small, ivory-colour flowers of Olea Fragrans and its dark green leaves. Their radiant and sumptuous fragrance recalls the flowers of acacia, cassia, mimosa, linden and locust (lotus?), with sweet and slightly fruity touches similar to jasmine." To be fair I bought this unsniffed and had I smelled it unlit, I wouldn't have bought it because even unlit it smells of nothing. Lit is no better. The presentation is fine - a frosted white glass jar - and the candle is pure white and burns quickly and evenly. I have never seen Lorenzo Villoresi candles in a store so I can't comment on the other fragrances in the range but the one thing you definitely can't accuse his perfumes of is weakness so I am sure other candles must have the same sillage as the perfumes.