A little bit of fireside magic from Birch & Brook

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Readers of this blog will know how much I like a scented candle. Probably my favourite candle of all time is Diptyque’s delightfully smoky Feu de Bois but I’ve had problems with the ones I’ve used recently in terms of sootiness and uneven burning so this one, Fireside, from British Brand Birch & Brook, has been a Godsend. Similar scent-wise to Feu de Bois it delivers a fantastically masculine, woodsy, smoky aroma, has a good burn time (40hrs) and is free of paraffin and other candle nasties. Cheaper than Diptyque too. Recommended.

For more info go to www.birchandbrook.co.uk

Want to fragrance your pad? Then go hell for leather

Leather Candle_5060270293583If you’re a man, finding a scented candle that doesn’t make your pad smell like a boudoir can be a real challenge so here’s one that makes your search a cinch. Roja Dove’s Roja Parfums Leather Bougie is rich, warm and – as the name suggests – delightfully leathery. It’s also big on one of my favourite fragrance notes, birch tar – an ingredient that has a natural affinity with leather since it’s often used to make it waterproof. How does it smell? Well, imagine slipping into stiff new riding boots, straddling an unforgiving leather saddle and galloping off through a Scottish forest at full pelt and you’re kind of halfway to appreciating its rich, manly fabulousness*.

Available from Harrods

*Think of me what you will but I really enjoyed writing that last sentence. 

The Grooming Guru Awards 2012. Best Room Fragrance: Byredo Parfums Apocalyptic Scented Candle

Byredo Apocalypticggawrd12lIn the last of my Grooming Guru Awards for 2012 (I know, they do seem to have gone on forever and for that I apologise) I wanted to give an award for my favourite new room fragrance. I’m an absolute scented candle/diffuser/incense stick junkie so it’s always hard for me to pick just one product I really like but this new candle from Byredo I love for several reasons.

For starters, I tend to prefer candles with a warm, earthy, woody and slightly mysterious feel (if they smell anything like a smouldering campfire in a secluded forest all the better). Apocalyptic ticks all these boxes thanks to notes of oakmoss, birch wood and fire iron (think hot, smelting metal). It’s similar in vibe to my favourite ever candle, Diptyque’s Feu de Bois, but is subtler and not quite so overwhelming.

I love it, too, for the deep navy-black wax which reminds me a bit of an ancient obsidian scrying glass when liquid. If indeed, the end of the world is nigh as the Mayans predicted, Apocalyptic will be what’s burning in the background, at my place at least.

Byredo Parfums Apocalyptic Bougie costs £50.00 for 300gr and is available from Liberty 020 7734 1234