Kempt

world of men's style / fashion / grooming

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In Defense of the Christmas Tree Candle

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.»

Clear the Air

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It’s nice to have a little fire around. Scented candles usually focus on the cologne-commercial coolness of making your space smell glamorous, but there’s something to be said for the simple caveman pleasures of controlled combustion.

The New York stalwarts at Odin just released their first line of candles—and while they smell pretty good, it’s safe to say they’re thinking about the pleasures of fire too. The metal lid and wine-colored glass make it feel like something you’d find in a nightclub or an unusually hip church…which means they should be right at home on your nightstand.

It’s the Thought that Counts

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Mother’s day offers a reliable conundrum: How do you adequately express your filial affection in the absence of your usual “girlfriend” standbys? We suggest something perfumed and French.

Diptyque is a Parisian firm that’s been a favorite for maternal gifts for upwards of 40 years. There are a few manlier options too, like the Southeast Asian Tam Dao shower gel, but at the moment your mind is probably on gifts. You can pick up a candle or two here or stop by one of their boutique outposts if you want to check out the goods in person. They’ve got outposts in New York, London, Paris, San Francisco and Qatar. Just be sure to add an appropriately heartfelt note.