Sweet surroundings: From home scent to skin and back again

We see it happen fairly often in the fragrance world – a perfume that sells well gets made into body products, and sometimes home scent products: candles, room sprays, or incense papers (Maison Francis Kurkdjian — love these!). Dior makes candles in its warmly unisex scents Bois d’Argent and Ambre Nuit, and Bond No. 9 has turned practically every one of their fragrances into highly scent-saturated candles. Frederic Malle now has a Tubereuse candle which has Carnal Flower lovers covered; the gardenia-lily-centric Kai has candles and a room spray as well. And I’m sure there are plenty more that I’m forgetting.

homescent1 But what about the reverse? What happens when a home scent product is so wonderful that we want to wear it on ourselves, too? Case in point: Antica Farmacista’s Vanilla, Bourbon & Mandarin is one of my favorite diffusers, candles and room sprays. Happily, I can now wear it in perfume. Other scents in that brand come in body lotions and shower gels, so here’s hoping this one won’t be too far behind.

And don’t worry, Musette, I’m not forgetting your beloved line Agraria, with its reed diffusers, burning sticks, candles, drawer sheets, body products and hooray – cologne sprays. She adores their Bitter Orange scent to pieces; I really like their Balsam and their Lemon Verbena, but have yet to give them a go in anything besides the diffusers.

Sometimes it’s not so easy and you have to play mix and match. I love Diptyque’s Ambre candle and I was delighted to find that Mona di Orio’s Les Nombres d’Or Ambre gives me a very similar scent on my skin. And it wouldn’t be too difficult to pair your favorite incense perfume with a similar candle, or the other way around.

homescent2 What I’m waiting and hoping for is one of my favorite diffusers, Henri Bendel’s Vanilla Bean, to be made into some sort of personal scent or body product. It also comes in a candle but I haven’t tried that. The diffuser is in my downstairs powder room and when I pass by, I get the most delicious little puff of scent wafting out.

I also like Bendel’s Firewood diffuser (and candle), although it might be a tad too masculine for me to wear, but I know some of you might really warm up to it.

What home scent do you wish came in fragrance/body products, or vice-versa? Or what home scent items are you enjoying right now?


  1. I confess, I’m not big into home scents and other ancillary products. I’d rather just have some of the juice. But I would be happy to have my house smell of Neela Vermiere Trayee.

    • Hi, lady! Mmmm … wouldn’t a house wafting Trayee be divine? Sign me up for some of that, too. Neela, hope you’re listening. 🙂

      • Your post got me thinking: What about Interlude Woman in a candle? Or might it be just too complicated or difficult to translate well into a non-skin scent? Or maybe Interlude Man? Hmmm …

        • Oh my goodness, I could bathe in Interlude Woman! Sherri M was a perfume fairy godmother to me and included a sample, which started a love affair which can only be unrequited unless I have some rich relation that I’m unaware of die off and leave me their fortune. A candle would be gorgeous.

  2. I wish that the Frederic Malle Santal Cardamome candle (Dominique Ropion) would be made into a fragrance. I splurged and bought one over the holidays. It’s stunning.

    • Oooh, lucky you!! That one sounds divine, too. I’ve been itching to sniff the FM candles, but, alas, no one anywhere near me carries the line. I am curious, though: How is the throw on the Santal candle when you burn it? I have been disappointed in the past with candles that you have to stand right next to them to smell. For that kind of money, I need it to scent at least most of the room.

  3. I love HB Vanilla Bean, and CocoaPink sells a dupe of it in all sorts of personal fragrance products. It satisfies my craving.

    • Yay, Gina, another Vanilla Bean lover! Must try that dupe of it at CocoaPink; what is it called? Thanks so much for the tip.

  4. I currenty have Lorenzo Villoresi Dilmun diffuser and it’s so amazing that I can’t stop thinking of trying the perfume.I also have several candles from the same house (Diamante), as well as from Voluspa (White Suede) and Homage d’Ipuro (St. Claude – Tresor de la Cathedrale, St. Joseph – Le Jardin Botanique).

    • I have not tried any of those, but they all sound amazing. Not sure where to get most of those lines near me but I think I can at least try the Voluspa one. Thanks!

  5. I would love to see Bath and Body Works Marshmallow Fireside made into a perfume/body product. It is just the right amount of vanilla/sweetness with a little smoke. I do have the room spray for it. Can anyone comment on how room sprays work if you spray them on yourself (or your clothing)?

    • Hi, Sapphire! I don’t know that you’d want to spray it directly on your skin, but several folks have sprayed a scarf, hankie, etc. (see Musette’s comment below). That BBW does sound yummy — must go try it!

  6. I nearly spit out my coffee! I was JUST rearing up to go all ‘waitaminit! what about…?’ and you…you KNEW! LOL! Agraria is great because you can use it both ways (I do). And you know most perfumistas don’t care if it’s home or personal spray – we spray with abandon (a little more difficult to do with a candle, I admit…..giggling, trying to figure out how to transfer, say, Malle’s 1erMai to my wrists…but I’ll bet it could be done….) I love the smell of Annick Goutal’s Noel room spray – I liberally sprayed it on a scarf and the scent held for days!!!


    • Ha – it’s YOU nearly spitting liquid out for once (instead of all the rest of us while reading YOUR posts)!!
      I KNEW better than to forget about your beloved Bitter Orange, as I knew I would never hear the end of it 😉 . BTW, I have got to try the AG Noel scent — keep meaning to, but you know how it goes …

  7. I always have tons of candles at my place due to the power going out frequently. I love BBW’s and Slatkins candles especially. Most of my candles are the lilac ones but do have the Fresh Bamboo and Harvest Apple. For a while, I was into the scent diffusers, wall flowers and room sprays but after a couple years, I was bored with it. So far, haven’t smelled any candle, diffuser that I would want to smell on my skin.

    • Wow, your candles really do come in handy, and it’s a nice plus that they smell great. I’ve heard good things about BBW and Slatkin candles, so I need to go sniff them. Thanks!

  8. This candle ho uses melted wax from my favorite candles as solid perfume all the time. The DL&Co candles are especially good for this. I prefer the Bond frags in candle form, Park Ave and Chelsea Flowers being my favorites. I was thrilled when Pacifica came out with a perfume to match my favorite candle in their line (Persian Rose), but it didn’t smell anything thing like it. (Still a nice fragrance at a very decent price!)

    I’d love a candle of Pure Oud or Back to Black, but I’m content with having the perfumes for now.

    I have a few diffusers, with Saint Parfum being my favorite brand, especially Fresh Cut Bouquet. DL&Co have stunning diffusers; the bottles are works of art…etched glass, in some cases. I’d really love some of the Agraria diffusers, too; the colors are stunning in the line named after various CA locations.

    I think Slatkin Winter would be an amazing perfume!

    • LOL I’m glad to know I’m not the only person who’s done that. The one I use is Voluspa Warm Perique Tabac. I love it. And the wax actually works reasonably well as a solid perfume since it’s coconut oil based. Mostly I just keep the candle sitting around so I can huff it every once in a while. I’ve never even lit the thing.

      • Tammy, you and Jennifer read my mind. I was just thinking the same thing about a candle as solid perfume. I do love those gorgeous etched glass D&L diffusers — I need to get one … And Jennifer, I know what you mean about not lighting a candle. I have a couple that are so potent that there’s almost no need to.

        • OMG! and here I thought it couldn’t be done!!!!! I’m going to scrab a bit of 1erMai, next time I’m in Barneys (shhhh! 😉 and see if it works!

          • It largely depends on the hardness of the wax. Something like those Cire Trudon (beeswax?) will definitely need to be lit, and gotten after they’ve melted a bit. (And they still aren’t the greatest for this purpose) The softer ones like DL and the Bonds ( soy?) can be used right out ‘the jar.

            For you saner folks, DL& Co do actually have solids in a few of their scents, housed in little faux watch cases. Quite nice.

            I am nowhere near sane and have been known to use diffuser liquids in a pinch.

            • Tammy, thanks for the info! I have a couple of Bond candles so will have to try this.

              • Hey, I did try this a little while ago with my Little Italy and New Haarlem candles and it worked pretty well and lasted nicely. Can making our own (candle) perfume solids be next? 🙂

  9. Voluspa probably has the best price/performance ratio from all of these since the candle I have seems to be lasting forever. And I love the names – Crisp Champagne, Ambre Lumiere, Sommelier, Orangerie d’Azahar or Warm Perique Tabac..

    • Good to know — thanks! I see them from time to time and had wondered about their quality, etc.

  10. Votivo is also a great brand for the price, but they’ve discontinued several of my favorites. Now I am off to hunt down that Voluspa Warm Perique Tabac!

  11. I am constantly in search for a house-skin-scent. A scent that will be enjoyable and noticeable but won’t scream for attention. On top of that I get bored pretty easily so even when I find something I like it won’t be getting a second chance. I am currently using the Zara Home White Jasmine reed diffuser. A bargain compared to most brands and nice multilayered scent as opposed to most one dimensional functional jasmines. The Dark Amber of the same brand is nice too

    • Those diffusers sound quite nice; I’ll definitely have to look them up to try a sniff. Thanks!

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