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In Defense of the Christmas Tree Candle

  • Najib Benouar

To truly win the holidays, you’ve got to have a multifaceted attack that barrages all five senses into yuletide submission.

And when it comes to making your humble abode smell like holiday spirit, you’re going to need some help—in the form of a tasteful cedar-, balsam- or pine-scented candle.

Your thoughts may have instantly jumped to something tree-shaped or even one of those air fresheners you’ve seen hanging from a rearview mirror. Stop right there. This couldn’t be further from what we’re advocating.

This is about the unmistakable coziness of flickering flames alongside the general winter-wonderland-y smells of freshly cut evergreen. And retaining your dignity while making your place smell how being wrapped in the warm, velvety embrace of Santa’s beard feels.

Allow us to further extol the virtues of the tree-scented candle and suggest a few options.

A word to the wise: not all scented candles were created equal. If teenage girls are shopping for body lotion in the same place you’re shopping for a candle, you’re in the wrong place (for several reasons).

Stick with something like this Frasier fir candle that’s got hints of citrus and woodiness—you can upgrade to one in a pinecone for extra points. If you want to ease in, this Iowa pine candle has a hint of clove and cedar and will only run you four bucks. Or, on the off chance you’ve already found a go-to candle brand, see if they’re make something seasonal. Otherwise, we’d keep it limited to anything you can personally give a whiff or have heard good things about.

It’ll also come in handy anytime you’re feeling the need to amp up your urban woodsman vibe.