While the pandemic has consumers anxious and cooped up, scented candles are a bright spot that have helped consumers alleviate stress. Scent has the ability to transport consumers to another time or place and scientists have confirmed that smell can trigger vivid memories and emotions. It’s no wonder that consumers continue to embrace new candle launches in record breaking numbers. Candles inspired by the current times, tropical themes, and spring scents are driving the newest activity.
For that first-quarter of 2020, the NPD Group reported growth in several U.S. prestige home fragrance categories, including candles (up 8%, year-over-year), diffusers (up 5%), and home scents (up 4%). According to National Candle Association (NCA) overall U.S. candle sales have increased 30% since the pandemic. Scented candles grew 13.7% in the 4-week period ending 3/21/20 and growth for scented candles reached a peak of 86.9% in the 4-week period ending 5/16/20, according to Unioncrate.
Candles Inspired By The Current Times
In response to the pandemic, brands have been creative and are releasing candle launches indicative of the times. Cancelled Plans launched a line of Pandemic Themed Candles including I Miss High Fives and It’s Fine, I’m Fine. The candles are formulated with a blend of coconut and apricot wax with a cotton wick. Cancelled Plans also collaborates with a variety of brands. Adventure bag company Baboon To The Moon partnered on the creation of I Need Space candle, which features notes of gin, balsam, oak, cypress, smoke, light musk, amyris, and sandalwood. Recess, the sparkling water infused with hemp, collaborated on the Lost Idea candle with cinnamon, nutmeg, black tea, mandarin, and blackberry accords. For 2020, Anecdote Candles debuted Smells Like WFH and WTF and for 2021 the brand released Smells Like Not Soon Enough. Here For The Burn’s three newest scents are: ILYSM (I Love You So Much!), If You Like Pina Coladas, and Okay Boomer. Village Candle released the Unity Collection in five themes: Brighter Days, Hope, Optimism, Togetherness, and Unity.
Candles Take A Trip To The Tropics
The pandemic put a damper on travel. As consumers long for a carefree trip to the tropics, candles meet the demand with a variety of new tropical scents. For the spring, Yankee Candle introduced the Last Paradise Collection in four fragrances: Beach Escape, Cliffside Sunrise, Coconut Island, and Tropical Starfruit. Similarly, Bath & Body Works launched several tropical candles such as: Island Daydream, Flamingo Beach, Orange Pineapple Punch, Passionfruit Banana Flower, Suntan, and Waikiki Beach Coconut. Village Candle added Soleil All Day to its range, which features notes of coconut milk, jasmine, neroli flower, oud, teak, and musk.
Candles Sprout Up
Fruit and floral candle launches are sprouting up as spring approaches. For Spring 2021, Glade launched the Clean & Refreshing Scents limited-edition collection in four varieties: Bamboo & Bliss, Citrus & Shine, Rose & Bloom, and Sky & Sea Salt. Partylite’s new spring collection includes Boho Berry, Lily & Linen, Midnight Cactus, and Moonflower scents. Voluspa added Apple Blue Clover, Freesia Clementine, Gardenia Colonia, Pink Citron Grapefruit, and Saijo Persimmon to its portfolio. Rifle Paper Co. has extended its offerings with the introduction of scented candles in Amalfi Del Mar, Champs De France, and Jardin De Paris fragrances. In October 2020, Grow Fragrance debuted “the first certified 100% plant-based candle.” This season, Bamboo and Lavender Blossom candles join the line.
Consumers enjoy a scented home year round. As the season changes, watch for new scented candles inspired by current events, fantasies of traveling to tropical locations, and seasonal fruits and flowers.