Festive Favourites No1: Diptyque’s Epinette candle

With Christmas fast approaching I thought I’d mention a few of my favourite festive goodies –  products with a Christmassy twist and a festive feel – and kicking off my selection this year is Diptyque’s Epinette scented candle, part of the company’s Winter 2011 Collection.

Taking its inspiration from fresh pine needles and fragrant fir tree resin this candle could easily have ended up smelling like toilet cleaner. Luckily, it doesn’t, thanks in part to the addition of cedar and patchouli (the latter being my all-time favourite smell as keen observers of my posts might have noticed).

Surprisingly, it has a fairly intense, sweet aroma rather than a fresh pine one and a thirty minute burn is all that’s needed to fill your house with the evocative smell of festive firs. Grab one while you can though – it’s a limited edition.

The 190g version of Epinette is available from John Lewis, Space NK and Diptyque boutiques priced £45.

Grooming Guru Essentials: Diptyque’s L’Eau Trois

Each year, when it gets to December I like to bring out my ‘winter’ fragrances – the ones that provide something of an olfactory comfort blanket on these cold, long nights. And what do I reach for? Well, this wonderfully aromatic Diptyque fragrance for starters.

Bursting with the scent of myrtle, oregano, laurel, thyme and rosemary, along with pine and myrrh it has a distrinctly Old World (and I mean Biblical Old World) feel to it. It’s meant to smell like a balmy mediterranean breeze I believe but to me it smells of churches. Of musty, old churches. Of religion, creaky old pews and of genuflection. And if I’m honest I find it strangely sexy. There, I’ve said it.

It won’t be to everyone’s taste, for sure, but for me, this wonderfully evocative fragrance (which is harder to find than a dead sea scroll thesedays) is a near religious experience. Yes, yes, that religious metaphor has been stretched to breaking point I know, so I’ll finish by simply saying track some down and enjoy!

Grooming Guru Essentials are the products I genuinely love and have used as part of my own routine.