Candles have always been a self-care go-to, and over the past two years, they’ve become even more intertwined with our daily just-for-me rituals. Candles are accessible, easy and cost-effective ways to transform your environment into something special.
And if you’re looking to veer into very special territory — including around the holidays when we’re craving nostalgia, peaceful vibes — flaring up that luxury candle nestled inside an Instagram-worthy decorative glass vessel will instantly elevate the moment.
Not to mention, luxury candles are a fail-safe holiday gift. Candle gifts are especially great for all sophisticated women in your life (aka the ones who enjoy a signature perfume or beauty product), but we also know our fair share of men who adore a masculine, woodsy home fragrance, too.
You’ll know a luxury candle when you see one, because it’s the whole package and often sold in high-end spas. The scents are have more refined ingredients and a higher concentration of oils, meaning they’re deeply fragrant and last longer. Their fragrance profiles are also more complex, requiring more notes than your average candle, and the strategic layering of such notes to blend together beautifully and seamlessly. Plus, the luxury candle vessels are usually decorated to the nines, housed in glossy containers or decked out with letter-pressed labels. And if you can’t pick just one (who could blame you?), jump into the holiday spirit by purchasing a spa gift basket or set that has two or more.
Different types of luxury candles
There are a variety of waxes that can be used for candles. Most luxury candles are created with soy, beeswax or coconut wax or a blend of the three.
- Paraffin wax is the cheapest and fastest-burning type of wax, typically used for tablescaping candles, like votives, pillar and tapers. As by-product of the oil industry, it’s not eco-friendly, though.
- Soy wax is 100% all-natural, vegan and eco-friendly, plus it burns slower than parrafin wax. Due to its formulation, it’s also excellent at holding and retaining fragrance.
- Beeswax is one of the more expensive types of wax because it relies on a beekeeper’s ability to extract it during the honey-making process.
- Coconut wax is fashioned from refined coconut oil, most commonly used for container candles.
We’d bet that this holiday season in particular, we’re all looking for a little extra comfort, extravagance and ease — and one of the best aspects of a luxury candle is that it offers immediate gratification. Once the wick is lit, you’ll have hours upon hours of enjoyment. In fact, some luxury brands offer candles with up to 70 hours of burn time. So if you’re wavering on purchasing a luxury candle because of the sticker shock, know that you’ll get more joy for a longer period of time than you would with a less expensive, faster burning candle that will need to be replaced more quickly.
And even if don’t see yourself as a “candle person,” these merry little luxuries just might convert you. Ahead, we compiled the 26 best luxury candles that look like pieces of art and smell absolutely amazing — whether like a fresh pine forest, a kitchen filled with just-baked cookies or a heady spiced cocktail. Pick your favorite ahead.
D.S. & Durga Portable Xmas Tree Candle
“I think people resonate with the rich narratives, names and expanded world that go with each of our fragrances,” says D.S. & Durga founder, David Moltz. And this limited-edition soy-vegetable wax candle that boasts 60 hours of burn time is no different, providing the quintessential combination of freshly hewn spruce, pine and cypress trees. It’s also grounded with subtle hints of far-off smoke.
Cire Trudon Gabriel Christmas Edition Candle
Founded in 1643, the oldest and most storied candlemaker in the world, Cire Trudon, still handcrafts luxury candles in its original Trudon workshop in Normandy, France. This Christmas-inspired scent has an intoxicating blend of candied chestnuts, leather and fiery embers from the grandest hearths. Save this limited-edition classic for your coziest, most peaceful evenings.
Le Labo The Candle Discovery Set Candle
For the indecisive among us, go for a trio of Le Labo’s most popular candles in delightfully varied fragrances to complement any holiday occasion. Composed of 62 ingredients, Laurier 62 is unlike any other luxury candle, ever-evolving into different notes of amber, rosemary, eucalyptus and clove as it burns. Meanwhile, Calone 17 evokes Christmas by the sea with maritime notes mixed with geranium and amber for a stunning finish. And Verveine 32 presents an uplifting earthy scent of alpine trees.
Atelier Cologne Bois Montmartre Candle
Inspired by the architecture of French city Montmartre, a bohemian neighborhood known as the painter’s district, this Atelier Cologne candle is an art-lover’s dream. Notes of vetiver, petitgrain and pink pepper give the perfect, subtle hint of Christmas spirit.
Nest New York Hearth Candle
Decadent and richly comforting, this long-burning, clean candle introduces warmth to chilly winter nights with notes of intense oud wood and frankincense that call to mind a smoky, roaring fireplace filled with pine logs. It’s the perfect masculine candle to instantly transport you to a cozy log cabin nestled within a snow-capped mountain.
Diptyque Flocon Candle
Reminiscent of a fresh snowfall, Diptyque‘s annual limited-edition holiday candle is a soft scent of light, white musk and sweet, winter flower, mimosa. And the vessel, a signature glass jar flecked with touches of blue and real gold, is a true masterpiece to behold.
Nomad Noé Wild In Hollywood Candle
Finally, a luxury candle that celebrates all the optimism, fun and joy that come with the dawn of a new year. Designed to recall New Year’s Eve in Hollywood 1932 — during the pinnacle of the Prohibition — the sultry scent has hazy notes inspired by those you’d fine in an underground speakeasy, like whiskey, citrus, clove, leather, tobacco and warm amber. This New Years Eve, party like it’s 1932.
Jo Malone London Pine & Eucalyptus Luxury Candle
This stunning handcrafted Jo Malone London candle is the epitome of both pure decadence and classic Christmas vibes. Soft notes of lively eucalyptus and festive pine radiate a deliciously potent aroma that not only awakens all five senses but also fills your home with the fragrance of a lush, larger-than-life holiday garland.
Cire Trudon Bayonne Candle
Trudon’s limited-edition Christmas Collections candles are themed to an extravagant King’s Christmas at Versailles, symbolized by the black and gold arabesques reminiscent of Versailles ironwork and imposing gate. The Bayonne candle from the collection, named after the French city where cacao was imported, has warm cacao notes as well as punchy hints of pine, chili pepper and other rare spices.
Esker Terracotta Plantable Candle
The holidays can be a stressful time for many, making daily self-care rituals more important than ever. And Esker, a clean beauty brand devoted to elevating simple body care routines into meditative, healing rituals, understands the need to relax and destress during the holidays. This is especially apparent with its new, hand-poured, soy-based candle. It’s composed of naturally calming ingredients lemon balm, white honey and coriander, all designed to restore and rejuvenate. Light this one next to your bath or bedside table for maximum relaxation.
Ellis Brooklyn Super Ego Candle
If you’re not into a traditional holiday luxury candle but still want a rich fragrance, try the dreamy Super Ego for a moody-meets-fruity scent that’s perfect for winter (and any time of the year, too). A heady base of saffron, black leather and oud paired with lighter notes of passion fruit, apple blossom and rose combine to offer just the right amount of juicy boldness.
Byredo Altar Candle
Reissued in 2020 by popular demand, Byrdeo’s Altar candle was inspired by the winter memories of Byredo founder, Ben Gorham, especially of his nights spent with family in Stockholm. Opulent and strong, this festive candle blankets your home in warm waves of clove buds and sweet floral ylang-ylang, brewed with Haitian vetiver for an elegant and earthy holiday scent.
Goop Edition 1 Church Candle
This magical and highly giftable candle is composed entirely of natural elements, designed to tap into the organic healing powers of plants, flowers and trees. Described by Goop as a “sexy sense of quiet” that evokes the sacred and majestic aroma of a medieval European chapel, the scent exudes fresh cypress, calming labdanum and lightly spiced frankincense with powerful clove-leaf oil.
Boy Smells Broken Rosary Candle
A reimagined take on a Christmas Eve mass and all of its accompaniments, this beeswax-soy candle marries cedarwood — a common material for rosary beads — with rose water and pumiced orrice — one of the world’s rarest ingredients that effuses a gin-like botanical sensation. It’s rounded out with a dash of spices that’s totally worth of worship.
Otherland Silk Pajamas Candle
What’s more luxurious than rocking a pair of silk pajamas and lounging in a European ski chalet? Light this Otherland luxury candle and you’re instantly there (mentally). Encased in a totally gorgeous (and reusable) vessel that’s worthy of a standout spot on your tablescape or mantle, it offers an aroma of ginger, bergamot zest and spiced yuzu to kick your festive atmosphere up to the next level.
Glasshouse Fragrances Night Before Christmas Candle
Go all-in with a candle harmonizing all the quintessential flavors of Christmas Eve — from fruity plum and blackcurrant grounded by provocative base notes of musk, oak moss and spice to florals and citrus. If the Nutcracker had a scent to accompany the classic ballet, this would be it.
Tom Ford Lost Cherry Candle
Known for his edgy, distinctive style, designer Tom Ford created a luxury candle with a sensual, provocative sensibility. Sweet and exotic black cherry melts into a deliciously boozy almond flavor before settling into floral Turkish rose and jasmine for a full-bodied aroma that evolves the longer it burns. And this is one we want to burn all night.
Frédéric Malle Notre Dame Candle
Former altar boy-turned-avant-garde perfumer Frédéric Malle recalls his memories of a church filled with cool stones and warm chestnut wood in this luxury candle that produces a formal, church-like atmosphere. Plus, its striking porcelain jar brimming with a gleaming shade of red is reason enough to spring for this one.
Maison Francis Kurkdjian Mon Beau Sabin Candle
The French fragrance house created its beloved holiday candle years ago, but this year, the Mon Beau Sabin scent is housed in an emerald-green vessel to match you Christmas tree and laden with gold serigraphy and snow-covered pine needle details. If you like your holiday candles to smell like you’re strolling through a magnificent Christmas tree forest, look no further.
Rituals Orris Mimosa Candle
A heavy dose of family time calls for mimosas, right? Or at least a candle that smells like one, if boozy breakfasts aren’t your style. From Rituals Private Collection, this scent is fabulously built around the sweet mimosa flower with hints of leathers and woody accords. Meanwhile, orris lifts the scent into liquor territory. And the beautiful champagne-colored glass jar is a perfect addition to any decor.
Tata Harper Into the Forest Candle
Clean beauty pioneer Tata Harper knows exactly the place on her Vermont farm — where she grows all of her organic skin-care ingredients — to find inspiration and recharge. Referring to her pine-tree filled corner on the farm as “forest therapy,” she bottled up its so-called healing powers into this coconut-soy wax blend to ease holiday stress. It has invigorating notes of Christmas trees from around the world — pine, cypress and balsam — dotted with black pepper and clove to remind us all to pause and take a mindful moment.
Belle Fleur Scarlet Flower Candle
This radiant floral candle pays homage to the renowned opera, “Carmen,” featuring notes of purple rose and Cassia, smoky myrrh, oud and saffron and hints of almond and cinnamon. And because it’s not too holiday-specific, you’ll happily burn this intense candle all winter long.
Nette Chai Milk Candle
This is not your normal chai latte scent, but offers a vibrant burst of spices, sweetness and sophistication all rolled into one hand-poured coconut and soy wax blend luxury candle. Nette layers notes of zesty orange oil with spicy clove buds, tonka beans, cinnamon bark oil and peppery cardamom to put a punchy, indulgent holiday spin on a classic beverage.
Smokehaus Farm Juniper & White Tea Candle
Handmade with love from a homesteading family in Bucks County, PA, each Smokehaus candle is crafted from organic, all-natural ingredients straight from their herb garden or sourced from another nearby farm. The cool floral and pine blend of this one simply beams with Christmas cheer and beauty. And don’t be fooled by the cost—these labor-of-love candles are true luxury.
Rituals Wild Fig Candle
With aromas so rich and complex, another candle from Rituals Private Collection had to make an appearance. An in-depth olfactory study of the marvelously sweet and earthy fig tree from the Far East, this option celebrates the tree’s unique qualities — from the warmth of the bark to the freshness of the leaves and milky sap of its fruit.
Belle Fleur Figue Noir Candle
This candle just gets what the Christmas spirit is all about. It weaves different aromas of the fig tree groves found on the Turkish Aegean coast together — from the barky branches to the sweet fruit itself — to reveal a richly vibrant, complex and extra festive ambiance.