10 under-the-radar designer scented candles that will give Diptyque a run for their money

We’ve curated some of our favourite under-the-radar designer scented candle brands that look good and smell great.
PHOTO: Instagram/amolnofficial

Candles are one of those additions to your home that say so much about your mood and your space, despite taking up such a small place on your table. For example, a floral scent invites bright joyfulness, whereas a smokier scent profile might hint at a more sensual mood in the room.

If the pandemic has shown us anything, it's that the spaces we call home could use a little bit of indulgence to help lift our spirits. After a long day, you deserve to come home, light a candle and melt your stressors away in the warm glow. Close your eyes, imagine that scene, and you can already feel that cosy feeling rising.

To help you locate the perfect candle for your home, we've compiled our favourite luxury candle brands here for your choosing. The best part? These brands are all bubbling under the radar, which makes them all the more curious to your guests (read: conversation starters). Unique, and smells fab? Check and check.

10 under-the-radar designer scented candles that will give Diptyque a run for their money.

Amoln

You're probably thinking, "Oh, it looks like that brand of super-blue candles I saw on Instagram!" and you're right.

Meet Amoln, a luxury candle brand from Sweden. The brand's name takes inspiration from the Swedish word for 'cloud' (hence, the sky blue tone), and features handpicked ingredients and hand-blended for a perfect finish.

Noteworthy scents include Chado - a Japanese-inspired profile inspired by tea ceremonies, where notes of bergamot, green tea leaves, and guaiac wood intertwine to create a calming earthy scent. Contrastingly, Berrybomb brightens up the space with a juicy bouquet of lychee, rose, and mango.

Available at their website.

Boy Smells

There's a reason why this brand's candles always sell out. Known for their imaginative scent blends, gorgeous candle vessels, and a really good scent throw, Boy Smells is a must-have for hip homeowners.

Hailing from Los Angeles, the brand makes quality burns at accessible prices. They use the term 'gender-full' in describing their scents - as opposed to the oft-used 'gender neutral' - because they seek to embody both masculine and feminine scent qualities in every concoction.

Check out Boy Smells' Core Collection, where scents like LES and Cameo imbue your space with summery floral and fresh green notes. If you want a candle with a talking point, then the newly-released Hackney Garden might do the trick. The scent of this candle also captures the technology of Phytogaia™ molecules similar to what is emitted by forest trees and is proven to replicate the calming effect of nature.

Available at MellowOver and Cat Socrates.

D.S. & Durga

Maybe one day, you'll wake up and think "I'd like a candle that reminds me of cross-country driving, with that lingering smell of fuel in the air". For those days, D.S. & Durga might be just what you need. (The scent is called '85 Diesel, in case you're wondering.)

Founded in Brooklyn, New York, the luxury scent company was created to immortalise the founders David Seth and Kavi Moltz's memories and imaginary landscapes. Failproof options include the newly-released Bergamot Superior and Wild Brooklyn Lavender, both of which will set your space in a calming, spa-like mood. Meanwhile, Portable Fireplace gives you a sensual blend of pine, ash, and cedar for that sexy, Victorian library fantasy.

Available at Escentials.

Overose

Think of Overose as the all-pink cousin to Amoln's all-blue candles. The brand's iconic shade of Pepto Bismol-pink candles are 100 per cent aesthetic goals and promise to brighten up any room. New releases from the brand have now stretched into lavender-hued wax candles and holographic vessels for that extra pop of eye-catching colour.

Scents-wise, the selection will appeal to those who prefer sweeter, brighter profiles. Signature ones are Nudesse - think an explosion of blooming rose notes - and the coastal blend of coconut and fig in Valkiria. Oh, and did we mention that if you miss the boulangeries of Paris, there's a croissant-scented candle? It's named (drum roll) Croissant and said to smell like "100 per cent Parisian Warm Croissant".

Available at Selfridges and Farfetch.

Gascoigne & King

Coming to you from Australia, Gascoigne & King produces small batches of candles that are equally affordable and divinely scented. Hand-poured by founder Bronwyn Gascoigne in her Sydney-based studio, the line of minimalist candles promise a really decent scent throw, making it a value-for-money addition to your candle collection.

While the individual scent notes may not sound as exotic or special as those used by other brands in this list, the way that Bronwyn intermixes them together is nothing short of poetic.

Belle, which places orange, geranium, and spearmint together, is a great choice for a day scent thanks to how it perks up the mood. Meanwhile, Mount Fuji Rice Flower is a perfect candle for your office space, with its soft musky notes of fig leaf and peony. The darker vessels denote scents made for the evening, and the intoxicating blend of rose and amber in Modern Love is a great option to start with.

Available at their website.

Nomad Noe

With a brand name that suggests travel, Nomad Noe's range of candles takes the travel theme very seriously, with each candle in their arsenal taking on a specific personality and place. According to the brand, 'Noe' also happens to be the French translation of the Babylonian "nukhu," which means repose or rest.

Muse in Wyoming marries feminine rose bushes together with woody cedar, while Pioneer in Tasmania calls to mind the seafaring explorers of the past with sea salt and coconut notes opening to musk and tonka bean.

For the intrepid scent explorer who prefers to explore all the many facets of the brand, the entire collection of eight scents is available for purchase too.

Available at their website.

Scene of Wonders

Closer to the region, Scene of Wonders is an Indonesian home scents brand that offers affordable reed diffusers and candles.

Even though the selection is limited in choices, each one tells a beautiful story of land and scent. Scene of Wonders incorporates traditional and native ingredients - such as salak plants, cloves, and turmeric - in their formulation blends, alongside commonplace fragrance notes like bergamot and lemongrass.

Aside from candles, they also have a range of reed diffusers and soap chips, all of which make gorgeous gifting ideas too.

Available for order via WhatsApp.

Hetkinen

Here's one for the minimalists amongst us: Hetkinen is a Finnish lifestyle brand with a great range of candles to boot. All of their products - candles included - are made with 100 per cent natural ingredients.

In particular, the Veggie Candle series makes use of a wooden wick that crackles gently in the background, creating an atmosphere of calm and warmth as if you were seated by the fireplace.

Scent-wise, the general mood of the range focuses on green-leaning scents. Biofilia is a crowd favourite, with notes of birch and eucalyptus opening up to a refreshing lemon heart. Spruce smells like a forest damp after the rain, and Metsä layers various woody notes together. Plus, all candles come in either a square or round vessel, so you get to pick what suits your space best.

Available at their website.

Laboratory Perfumes

London-based scent company Laboratory Perfumes keeps their candle production as local as possible, even going as far as to ensure that all of their ingredients and packaging come from within a 130-mile radius of their studio. Since their inception in 2011, they are on a mission to create ethical, carbon-neutral candles.

Currently, you have the choice of candles from any of their five signature scents. Amber layers woody and resinous notes together to create a warm, inviting scent, whereas Gorse delights in brighter, crisper notes of citrus, cardamom, and coconut.

Interestingly, Tonka eschews the usual creamy route for a spicier fragrance blend that mixes mandarin and pink peppercorn with tonka bean for a zingy, exotic finish.

Available at their website.

Fields of Yarrow

Last but definitely not least is Bali-based beauty brand Fields Of Yarrow. While known for their range of organic and natural skin care products, their candles round off the Fields Of Yarrow lifestyle experience.

Each one is housed in an olive-toned glass jar emblazoned with the words "LET ME BURN", and candle scents range from the refreshing Basil & Neroli as well as Earl Grey & Cucumber to the more sensual end of the range where Fireside and Oud & Bergamot await.

Available at their website.

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This article was first published in Her World Online.