Design

You Need to Calm Down. Aesop’s Scented Candles Will Soothe Away the Worries

Aesop introduces three Aromatique Candles that promise to soothe away the madness.
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If you haven’t experienced the bliss of a scented candle, you’re missing out. Lighting the white wick of a weighty taper, allowing the candle’s scent to swell and then swallow a room, getting lost in the wriggling shadows that erupt on walls, and finally blowing out the flame at the end of the day… it’s spiritual.

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The Scented Candle to Soothe the Nerves

More than ever, you need something like this, a sacrament of tranquility that allows you to smell the roses (literally, if the candle smells of roses) and forget about the madness of the world.

French scent master Barnabe Fillion has been doing just that. “Like everyone else over the last few months, I've been paying closer attention to my indoor environment, and I’ve noticed how we rediscovered the pleasure that can be found in everyday rituals,” he says to Esquire Philippines. The longtime collaborator of skincare brand Aesop knows that you’ve been channeling your energies toward the betterment of your interior spaces.

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Aesop debuts its much-awaited Aromatique Candle line

Photo by Aesop.
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Maybe this involved a giant plant or a home office makeover? Or maybe you’ve gone with the sophisticated choice of hoarding premium candles? As Fillion puts it, home scents are a way to elevate everyday living. “It is our hope that the uplifting fragrances and the gentle, subdued light the candles offer lend a measure of calm and succor in these circumstances,” he adds.

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The Aromatique Candles in the Aesop Universe

The calm of scented candles was something that Aesop devotees had been asking for some time, and finally, the company delivers three, Aganice, Callippus, and Ptolemy, under its new Aromatique Candle banner.

Aganice Aromatique Candle by Aesop

Photo by Aesop.

Dr. Kate Forbes, innovation director of Aesop, says the team worked “assiduously on new fragrance profiles,” while Fillion, who, of course, was part of the process, reports how the resulting scents are distinctively Aesop and, in keeping with the label’s direction, genderless. “They are intended for all who take pleasure in evocative aromas,” he describes.

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Each housed in a spartan cup, the candles have been designed to fit into the existing fragrance universe (and even the body care line) of Aesop, too. In other words, if you’re already fans of the Aromatique Room Sprays, which were also made by Fillion, or Oil Burner Blends, they will serve as natural extensions or an alternative format, from which to enjoy those flavors.

Callippus Aromatique Candle by Aesop

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The Right Candle for the Right Time

Fillion thankfully connected the dots for us, presenting the candles this way:

If you enjoy the Istros Aromatique Room Spray and the piquant aromas of the Coriander Seed Body Cleanser and Resolute Body Balm, you’ll like the floral and spicy Aganice candle. If you use the Reverence Aromatique Hand Wash and Balm a lot, you’ll choose the opulent and woody Callippus candle. And if you’re drawn to the Hwyl Eau de Parfum, you’ll lean toward the dry, mossy woods of the Ptolemy candle

Ptolemy Aromatique Candle by Aesop

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Apart from personal taste, the professional nose also puts forward this method for choosing a candle: the time of day. “Some will prefer to evoke, during the day, a landscape of spicy flowers, like the Aganice candle, and, in the evening, that of a Japanese forest, like the Ptolemy candle,” he muses. “Others will be more sensitive to the green notes of vetiver and shiso from the Calippus candle in their interior in autumn.” 

The Shadow and Light of Candle Flame

But it’s not all about the smells of spicy flowers or earthy moss. In keeping with the brand’s emotional approach, equal emphasis is placed on the inimitable light a candle produces—that dance of flame and shadow from its wick.

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“Aromatique Candles are the perfect choice when subdued lighting is also desired, perhaps at the beginning or end of the day, when a gentle interlude between workaday routine and personal affairs can help establish or restore equilibrium,” says Forbes, who points out how the candles were created for their “calming light” (and not just for their scents).

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She continues, “We have long agreed wholeheartedly with the views of Japanese author Jun'ichiro Tanizaki, not least the assertions in his classic work In Praise of Shadows about the beauty afforded by flickering candlelight and shadow.” 

The Stars That Inspired These Candles

Since we’ve touched on the magic of shadows, we might as well discuss the philosophical leanings of the scented candle collection. If the names sound familiar, it’s because they are taken from great explorers, the first astronomers who looked up to study the stars.  

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Photo by Aesop.

“The overarching concept began with the notion of ‘candles as stars,’ …comparing the flickering lights of a candle in the dark to the stars in a night sky,” says Fillion.

And that evolved into a scientific and cultural study of the cosmos, which then led to the role of stars in seafaring journeys, which naturally led to three ancient stargazers: Aganice, the first female astronomer of ancient Greece, Callippus, the Greek astronomer and mathematician, and Ptolemy, the Roman scholar who cataloged the heavens.

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The well-chosen names allude “to the capacity of candlelight to evoke a calming sense of wonder, much like a radiant night sky,” adds the perfumer. And now, you can have all that wonder and magic, shadow and calm by simply lighting up.

 Greenbelt 5

 

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Clifford Olanday
Associate Editor, Esquire Philippines
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