We’ve handpicked the very best candles for your home below. Whether you prefer woody scents, floral scents are your vibe or it’s something fresh you are after – lighting a candle every once in a while can make your home smell… less lived in. Because we are all spending too much time in our homes right now, through no choice of our own, so it’s nice for our rooms to smell lovely and not of people. Candles also look stylish when on display in your bedroom, living room, hallway…
Candles are also an easy buy to mask home smells, whether that be from cooking or a wet dog. The majority of candles you buy are also safe to use around pets, just be sure to light them away from children. Don’t forget to keep your wick trimmed – for the cleanest possible burn – and to burn your candle evenly every time. This means no lighting for five minutes and blowing out, to prevent tunnelling. Why choose a candle over a reed diffuser or room spray? Candles, as well as smelling lovely, also have the ability to create a calm atmosphere. We love to burn candles and pop them at the centre of a table, whether you are due guests over or not. Choosing a candle over a reed diffuser or room spray is all down to personal preference as a candle will take longer than a reed diffuser to release scent, and it needs to be lit and blown out by you, in order to work and be turned off, effectively. It goes without saying that when using a candle, you can’t control how much scent is released, but you can with reed diffusers and room sprays – something to consider.
Related: Best home fragrance: 5 lovely buys for every room in your home – from reed diffusers to candles and more
We’ve done some testing (smelling) to decide on the best candles for 2021. Keep scrolling for five of our most favourite candles, ranked by their scent – there’s something for everyone below.
What is the best candle you can buy?
For this time of year, we suggest lighting The White Company’s Geranium Leaf Candle in your home. It’s fresh and uplifting, with strong notes of peppermint and lavender. It gives off a citrusy yet floral smell, which reminds us of the spring vibes we are longing for right now.
The best candles for your home
This Geranium Leaf Candle is a herbal option if you are searching for something uplifting. We suggest popping this candle in a living room or hallway – just make sure it's an airy or large space as it's is quite powerful. It's poured inside a ceramic vessel and comes with a matching lid – to stop the candle from getting dusty when it's not lit.
With initial notes of geranium, peppermint
and Sicilian orange, the immediate scent we get from this candle, before and after lighting, is peppermint with a hint of lavender. There's no doubt that it's uplifting, which is why we suggest popping it in a living room if this room is used a lot by you and the kids. Or, in a hallway to flood all of your rooms with scent.
This candle has a burn time of 40 hours – impressive! – and it's filled in the UK using high-quality wax for a long, clean and even burn.
Geranium Leaf Candle, £24, The White Company
If you are a citrus fan, then this Stoneglow candle is made for you. It'd be lovely in a kitchen due to its fresh scent, and it's poured inside a frosted glass vessel that features a stand-out floral design. Essentially, it smells as good as it looks.
This refreshing candle has immediate notes of citrus – lemon and patchouli to be exact – which is why we consider it to be just right for a kitchen. It has floral base notes of jasmine and lavender, as well as spicy nutmeg. The base is quite woody, but overall, from the first whiff of this candle, you will smell citrus with a hint of something floral.
With a burn time of 35 hours, this Stoneglow candle is an affordable alternative to others they sell. Rest assured what it lacks in price it does not lack in scent. It's also made right here, in the UK.
Stoneglow Flower & Lemon Scented Candle, £20, John Lewis & Partners
If you prefer woody scents that are warm and better lit on chilly days, then this DUSK candle is the one for you. It has two wicks to release scent fast, and it's poured into a glass jar which boasts minimal labelling – to blend in seamlessly with your decor.
With top notes of juniper and cedarwood, this autumnal candle also has middle notes of sandalwood and patchouli. You'll also be able to smell a hint of vanilla, Tonka and amber.
This large candle is ideal for large spaces – in the middle of a dining table or coffee table, or in a large bedroom. It's pretty basic in design, but it smells great.
Allure Candle, Amber & Sandalwood, now £15, DUSK
We're not usually fans of sweet candles as they are often quite overpowering, but this one from SKANDINAVISK, their Lempi Scented Candle, is lovely and subtle. It comes inside a decorative glass jar, complete with a wooden lid, making it ideal for Skandi-style, boho or modern homes.
This sweet candle has notes of peony and rose, as well as strawberries and mosses. It's definitely not too sweet, that's for sure. It'd be a great burn for spring or summer days and evenings.
This vegan-friendly Sweedish candle is made from rapeseed wax while the glass vessel is made from 30 per cent recycled materials. It has a cotton wick, too.
Capacity 65g, 200g
SKANDINAVISK Lempi Scented Candle, £35, John Lewis & Partners
This limited edition candle from This Works is here if you prefer something spicy over sweet or floral. It's packaged inside a glass vessel which arrives in a beautifully designed floral box.
With warming notes of black spice and cedarwood, this candle can definitely bring something different to the table. It even has base notes of orange to make it slightly sweet. Definitely one for late summer and autumn, we think.
This hand-blended candle is a limited edition blend by Alexandra Palmowski M.A. RCA – it won't be around for long. It has an impressive burn time of 40 hours.
Capacity 65g, 220g
This Works Black Spice & Cedar Scented Candle, £25, John Lewis & Partners