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Image: Octō

The six best festive scented candles to buy now

From spicy cinnamon scents to sweet cherry aromas - some of these wax beauties are still discounted from Black Friday

Ed Cunningham
Written by
Ed Cunningham
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There are so many reasons why people love scented candles at Christmas. For starters, they look homely, cosy and a bit rustic. Then, obviously, they smell. And they smell good. Candles can have your abode smelling of gorgeous spices, citrus and berries, but they can also get other, unwanted smells out of your home – or at least cover them up. At a time of so many parties and guests, candles can be true godsends.

But it’s no secret that some scented candles are better, stronger and smellier than others. Which are the best? And where can you snap ‘em up on the cheap?

That’s where we come in. Below are the six best wax smellies that you can buy this festive season. And, even better, some of them are still discounted following the Black Friday sales. From rich pines and cypresses to rich cherries and musky cinnamons, these candles will have your home smelling just right this Christmas.

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The best festive scented candles

Oranges and Christmas (well, Michaelmas) go hand-in-hand, and this spiced orange-scented East of India candle, designed and made in the UK, is a cute fit for any home. Decorated with delightful drawings, it also comes with a handy message for when you think you’ve eaten too much Christmas pudding. The lid reads: ‘Remember you are braver than you believe, stronger than you feel and smarter than you think’. In other words, you can and you will cram more pud into your mush. Simply inspirational.

Straight out of a workshop in one of London’s most uber-fashionable neighbourhoods, the Hackney Wick Co.’s mulled wine candle is surely one of the most festive candles out there. Sure, the website insists that you can smell it all year around, but mulled wine is such a thoroughly, inescapably Christmassy drink – there’s no better time than now. This being made in hip ‘n’ trendy Hackney, it’s made of soy, is 100 percent vegan and is cruelty-free. So not only does it smell fantastic, but you can feel good buying it, too.

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Picture the scene. It’s a few hours into Christmas Day and everyone’s getting a little bit on each other’s nerves. Some mad uncle has decided to bring up politics. You are, it seems, on the brink of familial catastrophe. But then you light this soothing Calming Retreat candle, and before you know it, everyone’s zen AF, satiated by Woodwick’s tri-faceted scents. Obviously we can’t guarantee that’ll happen – but as this candle melts its way through marvellous aromas of lavender, sea salt and cotton, and white tea and jasmine, surely it can’t hurt. It’d relax us, that’s for sure.

Hand-poured in a studio down in leafy Dulwich, south London, Octō’s candles are about as natural as they come. All vegan and cruelty free, and made with essential oils and certainly no artificial, synthetic or chemical ingredients, their candles have a crisp, clean burn to them. This one, which combines a Christmas tree-esque mix of cypress, pine and cloves with the spicier depth of black pepper and warm cinnamon, is a seasonal highlight from one of London’s most deluxe (yet surprisingly affordable) candlemakers. 

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The advantages of having lots of little scented candles over just one big one is that you can fill your entire abode with lovely smells. These tealights from Wax Lyrical might not seem that festive on the box, but the scent certainly is. With spices and cedar with added jasmine, guaiac wood and vanilla, they give off a very thick, full odour. Even better is that Wax Lyrical makes its candles in a wind-powered site in Cumbria in the Lake District, so they’re not too bad for the environment, either.

This one’s all about the deal. 12 Arosky candles for just over a quid a piece is an absolute steal, including two each of the luxury brand’s rose, lemon, lavender, vanilla, jasmine and spring flavours. Sure, not all of them are Christmassy exactly, but the rose, jasmine and lavender ones certainly are – so just save the rest for some other time. Each candle has about 10-15 hours of burn in it, and the solid glass pots can be neatly reused as tasteful tealight holders once the Arosky candle has burnt through.

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