For me, scent is one of the most important elements in my home. Smell is the sense most closely linked to memory and can elicit powerful responses almost instantaneously be them negative or positive. Anytime I smell Estee Lauder White Linen perfume it sends me straight back to my Grandmother's bedroom trying on her pearl earrings. I tend to gravitate towards woodsy, green scents with subtle floral undertones. Scents that (at least for me) feel like a warm hug next to a fireplace, reading a book after smoking a joint and gazing out the window at the mountains beyond.
The first thing I do in the morning after my bathroom run is light some Palo Santo or incense. Immediately I feel at ease and ready to start my day. I use a mix of incense, candles, resin, and dried herbs to create whatever scent I am craving and have fun discovering new pairings. Over the years I have found a few consistent favorites as well as some new finds that I am digging.
This is a recent discovery and I am obsessed with both the scent and the fact that I have a beautiful ceramic vessel afterwards; but again, when I want a refill my only option is to buy the entire thing. My personal favorite is Ojai. Shocking. Buy it here.
Made from 100% coconut wax these candles are handmade in Venice, CA. I discovered them on one of my many trips to LA and have been a huge fan ever since. I tried the Amber and Santal scent and while it smells lovely, it didn’t have the throw that the Tobacco and Red Currant does. I can walk into my bathroom and smell Tobacco and Red Currant without burning it, while the Amber and Santal I have to burn for a while before I can really identify the scent. Either way, I love them and they are always in rotation at my house. Buy one here.
These stay in steady rotation at our house. I love Blood Countess and Ozo. They have recently added the ability to purchase two sample cones which I think is a brilliant idea so you can try a few before committing to a scent.
Jonathan Adler Hashish
The perfect blend of black currant, green apple, wormwood, patchouli and moss it is hands down one of my top 5. My only complaint is that they don’t sell the candles in an insert because A) I’m not consistently spending $68 on a candle and B) how many stash boxes does a girl need? Buy it here.
I have seen a huge uptick in the use of Palo Santo the past few years. Not sure how I feel about this (social media ruins everything) but considering it’s an actual tree I wonder what the impact will be on these “Holy Woods” in South America. It is believed that a tree or fallen branches must lie dead for 4-10 years before the medicinal and mystical properties of the wood begin to come alive. This means that traditionally only the fallen branches and twigs of the tree are harvested, and this practice is regulated by the government of Peru to ensure that the trees do not become overharvested. However, as Palo Santo has become more popular, the illegal harvesting and cutting of trees has also greatly increased, ruining yet another Rainforest species, but that’s another post. Sigh…
Consequently, if you are purchasing wildharvested Palo Santo, it is important to do so from an ethical wildcrafter. I purchase mine from Mountain Rose Herbs. They buy from a 50 acre farm in Ecuador that contains both naturally occurring and replanted Palo Santo. They have replanted over 5000 Palo Santo trees on the land so far to ensure adequate supply for the future.
I use this on a daily basis for clearing and protection before I start my yoga and meditation practice and throughout the day because I love the smell.
Years ago on my first trip to Tulum I was totally captivated by the smell of this resin. It was everywhere and each time I burn it it takes me right back there. Beachside, bikini clad and drinking mezcal. Buy them from my source here.