The 23 Best Candle Brands, According to ELLE Editors

The 23 Best Candle Brands, According to ELLE Editors

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If there’s one thing ELLE editors covet, it’s candles. At a recent pitch meeting, I brought up how the Boy Smells candles helped me get through the pandemic and just thirty minutes later, I had this list of the best candle brands according to all of the editors in that meeting. Yes, I was also very late to my next meeting, but it was worth it. Below, learn the favorite of our editor-in-chief, Nina Garcia, plus everyone on our team, from beauty to art, design, features, and culture. When it comes to candles, the ELLE team is full of experts.

Bibliothèque Candle



“I love Byredo’s “Bibliothèque” and “Bois.” Both of them are a blend all of my favorite warm notes: sandalwood, leather, and cedarwood.”—Nina Garcia, editor-in-chief

Encens Japonais Limited Edition Candle



“I have loved the selection from Aedes de Venustas for many years. There are so many new scents to discover, as well as old favorites.” — NG

Baies Candle



“The black current and the rose scent of Diptyque Baes is like poetry for your nose. Fresh, clean and totally transporting.” —Amy Synnott, executive editor

Shinola Hotel Candle



“After a long stay at the Shinola Hotel in Detroit this fall, I fell in love with its signature candle which smells like leather, smoke, and cherry blossoms. It’s warm, inviting, but very cool and trendy. It reminds me of feeling safe and taken care of, and amidst a lot of beautifully crafted stuff I want to buy. It also has an excellent throw.” —Katie Becker, beauty director

Bora Bora

Le Paradis


The second I received this candle, I was immediately transported to the islands of Bora Bora. It’s a powerful candle that can take up the entire room (which I love!) and has a super long burning time. It’s a mini-vacation courtesy of hand-poured, plant-based soy and coconut wax.  —Chloe Hall, beauty director

Aesop Candle

I gifted an Aesop candle to my fiance’s dad, a fancy man with exquisite taste. His review sums it up perfectly: “Fantastic earthy and cedar scent as if you are walking through the forest, reminding yourself of those simple things that can be so meaningful.” —CH

Eleganter Schwan 06 Opus Mauve Scented Candle

If I’m looking to feel luxurious, I’ll light a Krigler candle. The beautiful aromas instantly fill any room and just look so beautiful as they burn. My new favorite candle from the brand is the Eleganter Schwan 06 Opus Mauve Scented candle. It’s the perfect mix of floral and vanilla that puts me in the best mood. —CH

Sunday in Brooklyn

Alexandra Winbush


“2019 was the first time I caught a whiff of an Alexandra Winbush candle. The brand did a collab with Summer Walker: a lemon pound cake scent inspired by Walker’s breakout single, “Girls Need Love.” It hit every cylinder. Elegantly fragrant without overpowering the senses. Handmade by a young Black woman in NYC. Paired with bespoke teas and curated playlists to encourage self care as a lifestyle (not just a hashtag). What I love most is that her three signature scents complement one another; I can light them all at once for what the kids call, a *vibe*.” —Angel Lenise, supervising video producer

8.5 oz. Flor de Naranjo Candle

Coqui Coqui


“I love the way Coqui Coqui candles, specifically the Flor de Naranjo one, really makes me feel like I am on a beach somewhere amazing. This one has a bright citrus smell mixed with suntan lotion. It’s my happy place.”—Alexis Wolfe, fashion and accessories market director

Sicilian Tangerine Scented Candle

NEST New York


“I’ve always been a fan of Nest Candles, but in a year when I desperately needed to be mentally transported to far off places, their scents—many of which are inspired by destinations around the world—felt more essential than ever. Lighting my favorite scent, Sicilian Tangerine, sends me to the Italian coasts that sit near the top of my post-COVID travel list. Moroccan Amber takes me back to the 10 amazing days I spent traversing the country in 2019, blissfully unaware of PPE. Birchwood Pine reminds me of the evergreen forests where I grew up; Velvet Pear of my father’s fruit trees growing in our yard. And all the while I sit in quarantine in Brooklyn breathing deeply, grateful to have these fragrant little beams of light to help me dream of better days.”— Kayla Webley Adler, deputy editor

Scented Candle: Edition 03 – Incense

“My favorite candle brand are the G edition Goop candles (not the vagina or orgasm ones, lol). My signature scent is edition 3, which is called Incense. While it does have notes of the signature nose-filling incense smells, the candle instantly transports me to a crisp fall morning in the forest with a wood fire burning somewhere in the area. It’s homey, earthy, and calming all in one and has lasted me a few months despite burning nightly!”—Kevin LeBlanc, fashion closet assistant

Balmoral Candle

Cire Trudon


“Cire Trudon may not the most exciting or under-the-radar, but I love the mossy Balmoral scent, which brings a touch of the outdoors to the concrete jungle. During the holidays I like Spiritus Sancti (also Cire Trudon), which smells like mass at the Vatican. For unscented tapers and pillars (because no one wants a scented candle ruining a festive meal), I love the interesting shapes available from East City Candles and Greentree home and the rainbow of colors from Root. And indoor air pollution is real, y’all, so beeswax is always best!”—Naomi Rougeau, senor fashion features editor

Concrete After Lighting

D.S. & Durga


“While my favorite candles to hoard are those saint votives you can find at any grocery store in Brooklyn, my favorite actual candles come from D.S. & Durga. We know them for their perfumes of course, but they offer their scents as candles & car fragrances too! I love how thoughtfully they build out every scent, and create an entire sensory world around each (including playlists!) They also do flash tattoo days at their Soho store which I just think is the greatest–I got tatted with a storm cloud by Minka Sicklinger after purchasing the Concrete After Lightning candle. It just felt right!”—Rosie Jarman, fashion assistant

Jake’s House Candle

Henry Rose


“The candle I’ve been burning all cozy season is ‘Jake’s House’ from Henry Rose. It’s a bit of a splurge, but more than worth the investment for the long-lasting wick and luxurious scent. Plus, the candle is made with 100% clean ingredients, an important philosophy for brand creator Michelle Pfeiffer.”—Savannah Walsh, editorial fellow

Amber Fig Signature Candle

Cold Spring Apothecary


“I buy all my candles from Cold Spring Apothecary in Cold Spring, New York. I tend to gravitate towards more earthy scents, and their signature Amber & Fig candle is almost always burning in my home. The candles last a long time (about 60 hours) and are made with 100% natural soy wax, which is a must to really let the fragrance come through. If all that isn’t enough to convince you, the candles are packaged in a beautiful way, and I have several jars that I repurpose throughout my home. It’s always a good idea to shop small, but even more important this year, and they’re just the absolute best.” —Katelyn Baker, deputy art director

Natural Wax Candle

Susanne Kaufmann


“I love everything about this brand. My favorite was to unwind is to light this candle while taking a bath (and using the amazing bath oil) on days when I need to create a tranquil space for myself. The candle smells of figs and lemons which remind me of my best friend, who is from Italy and grew up with a fig tree in her backyard.”—Julianna Danielson, designer

Honey Tobacco Candle

Rosy Rings


“I can’t get enough of Rosy Rings’ botanical candles—when lit, they look like mini art pieces on my coffee table. Though I want to try every scent, I always go back to the cozy Honey Tobacco.”—Julie Kosin, senior culture editor

Lavender Tea Triple Wick Candle

Sicily Hill


“The best way to describe my apartment: Little fires everywhere. I love candles and burn through more than an average person probably should. To consolidate, I’ve turned to one large oversized candle. Sicily Hill makes these triple wick jumbos with drink-inspired scents like lavender tea, cappuccino, and champagne.”—Ariana Yaptangco, social media editor

Woodsmoke Minimalist Candle


“I’ve been a fan of Brooklyn Candle Studio for years. Sadly my favorite scent, Tobacco (which smells the way I imagine the man of my dreams smells), was recently discontinued. But they have a wide array of the warm, spicy and smoky scents that I love. They’re richly scented but delicate enough not to aggravate my scent-triggered migraines (and I find the fellas like them, too). My favorites are  Woodsmoke (for those of us with non-working fireplaces); Sunday Morning (the perfect foil for weekend mimosas); Hinoki (the one to take on your ski cabin getaway); Apple Cider (divine on a cold winter’s day); Brooklyn (great for a craft cocktail loving person in your life).”—Laura Sampedro, deputy managing editor

Birthdate Candles

Birthdate Co.


“This is the perfect gift for anybody obsessed with astrology (including yourself). Each candle has a custom scent that’s devised through a combination of numerology, astrology, and tarot. It’s all spelled out on the label (I’m born on August 20th and it says I’m mysterious… can anybody confirm?) and I love the way mine smells. If you know the time you were born, they also make a gorgeous, super-detailed birth chart book.”—Margaux Anbouba, associate editor

22K Gold Nightclub Map of Harlem Candle

Harlem Candle Company


“I love the thoughtful details behind Harlem Candle Company, especially this limited edition one. The vessel is reason enough to buy it: the 22k gold print has a vintage map showing Harlem’s best night clubs (made in 1932 by E. Simms Campbell) and turns into a cocktail glass once you’ve finished the candle. Oh yes, and the candle? It’s a sexy mix of white flowers like lily of the valley combined with mandarin and sandalwood.”—MA

Cowboy Kush Scented Candle



“I love everything about the Boy Smells brand: the unexpected pairing of notes (Cowboy Kush has pot leaf, raspberry, and suede), the subtle but stylish packaging, and the gender-inclusive messaging. I have one in every room of my apartment.”—MA

High Tide Candle

House of Puff


“You can choose from one of six labels for the House of Puff signature scent—I like to like this one in the morning to remind me, to, well get up and get stuff done. It’s a cotton wick, and the fragrance is a cozy but fresh blend of white fig, coconut milk, lime, and sandalwood.”—MA

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