Friday, January 1, 2016

My Top Favorite Scents From 2015!

Top 5 Favorite Wax Vendors & Scents:
1) Pocket Full of Peonies 
As most of you know I received a bunch of PFOP tarts in a giveaway. But if I had purchased them with my own money, PFOP would be at the top of my list! I had never heard of this new brand before, but it seems to be off to an excellent start. I love the huge and varied scent list, wide array of adorable shapes, and the fact that new scents are added daily. Most importantly over 90% of the 20 or so scents I tried had STRONG throw. I am hugely impressed by the kindness and excellent customer service of the owner and I hope one of my next wax purchases will be one of her custom rose loaves! They look incredible! Favorite scents I tried include Peppermint Sugar Cookie Royale, Moroccan Mint, Holiday Sparkle, and Iced Lemon Biscotti/Strawberry.

2) Sassy Girl Aroma:
Oddly enough, I have not purchased any tarts from this vendor either, but the lovely Nuttycoconut has sent me a ton of them and they quickly became a fast favorite! I love the uniqueness of their chunk tart blends and their stellar performance; super strong and long lasting throw from nearly all the scents I've tried. I look forward with excited anticipation to placing my own SGA order in 2016! Favorite scents include: Pink Rainforest Sugarcane, Noel Eats Cake & Cereal at 7 and IHop.

3) Beezy Tarts
I placed my first Beezy order in December of 2014, and although I had to let my first order cure for a couple weeks to achieve scent perfection, I have since come to understand and agree with the hype around this cult favorite indie wax brand. Most Beezy tarts have monster throw and come in a lot of really fun scents. My favorites are his foodie/bakery blends and designer dupes. John's stellar customer service is also noteworthy; my first two orders arrived promptly within 7-10 days and let's be honest; who doesn't love getting that yummy bag 'o candy with their wax order? I think Beezy's popularity has really skyrocketed within the last couple months as his current TAT is specified as 40 business days. I'm more of an instant gratification gal and I've never waited that long for wax before, but even that didn't stop me from ordering a third time back in November. I look forward to receiving my order later this month. I have not gotten my hands on the legendary Apple Clove Butter scent yet, but that will be another wax goal for 2016! My all time favorite Beezy scent is Marshmallow Lava Cake.

4) Lake Providence Lodge:
LPL is a wonderfully customer oriented business with lovingly handcrafted, strongly scented tarts. I'm quite impressed with their excellent value and attention to detail. The tarts are generously sized and priced, and they offer discount codes for small order shipping and first time customers. Aside from two scents that smelled "off" to me, I have loved all the LPL tarts I've tried. I've only ordered once, but have been compiling a rapidly growing list of scents I'm interested in trying, so clearly I must order again in 2016! Past scent standouts have been Strawberry Fluff and Glazed Orange Cake.

5) BHG and Scentsationals:
I know, I know, these are not etailer vendors, but as roughly half of my wax collection consists of these two Walmart wax brands, I must include them. For the value and strength of scent most tarts from these brands can't be beat. For only $2 you get 6 wax cubes in a clamshell and if you buy in store you don't have the added cost of shipping. As much as I love indie wax brands and supporting small businesses, I am consistently lured by the convenience of the Walmart wax isle. Plus it's great to be able to sniff in person to get an idea of whether you'd like a scent before buying. Favorite Walmart wax purchases of 2015 include Sugared Lavender Twist, Exotic Amber Woods, Gourmet Cookie Shop, Banana Bread Pudding, and A Wonderful Winter.

Top 5 Favorite Candles of 2015

1) BBW Pumpkin Coconut:
This is literally the ONLY Bath & Body Works candle I've been 100% satisfied with. It is a heavenly blend of 2 of my absolute favorite scents and has a beast of a throw. In other words, perfection in a jar! I'm so sad I only managed to purchase one of these candles and am hoarding it; slowly burning it for special occasions. I hope they bring it back next fall and don't reformulate it.

2) 719 Walnut Avenue Pumpkin Waffles:
This Walmart brand candle has been one of my fall favorites for 2 years in a row now, and I like it even better than the BBW scent Pumpkin Pecan Waffles that it's modeled after. Before you get out your pitchforks, let me explain why. BBW's 3-wicks are anywhere between $22.50 reg price to $7 and change depending on how good a combination of sales and coupons you can wrangle up. 719 candles are consistently $4.93 and sometimes even clearanced, making them a superb value. But it's not just the price I love about 719 candles. I actually think the scent is equally as good as the BBW version and the throw is even better! Although the 719 version lacks the nutty pecan note of the BBW, it smells amazingly dead on like freshly cooked pumpkin waffles and is so strong and delicious! I will repurchase this favorite year after year if they bring it back, and although a few people have mentioned having performance problems from some 719 candles, I have not had any serious problems that prevented me from enjoying their candles.

3) Mainstays Blueberry Pancakes Candle:
The quality of this Walmart brand has really risen in my estimation this year. I had had some weak throw experiences with some of their scents in the past, but this year I discovered some select scents from Mainstays that are truly wonderful. One of my favorites would have to be the Blueberry Pancakes 3-wick which I've repurchased half a dozen times, because the scent is so realistic, strong, and delicious! These 3-wicks are excellent performers with extra hot burning wicks and deep, even wax pools. Regularly priced at $3.33 and sometimes clearanced at $3 or under, this bargain can't be beat!

4) Nature's Wick Pumpkin Nutmeg/Bonfire Nights/Vanilla Dolce layered wood wick candle:
My first time trying this brand, available at Target for around $14, was receiving it as a wonderful Christmas gift from my husband. The multi layered scents intrigue me; the first scent was a strong and delicious pumpkin spice. I'm just now getting down to the Bonfire layer and I do believe I can smell and added layer of woodsmoke. The crackling of the wood wick is mesmerizing and I hope to purchase more wood wick candles in 2016. Overall this candle is an excellent performer and was a better value and stronger than a comparable WoodWick brand candle I tried.

5) 719 Walnut Avenue Peppermint Twist: 
I had a lot of favorite candles from the 719 brand in 2015, but Peppermint Twist was a standout holiday staple this year. It is the perfect strong but not cloying peppermint candycane scent and it paired so well with all my minty, piney, holiday tarts.

Top 5 Favorite Bath, Body, & Perfume Fragrances of 2015

1) Indult Tihota and Cocoa Pink Tihota dupe:
2015 was the year that I found my ideal vanilla fragrance! This was very important to me since vanilla is in my top 3 favorite fragrance notes. I was recommended Indult Tihota perfume by some very fragrance knowledgeable ladies, and they weren't wrong about how intoxicating it is! I've described it before as a buttery, nutty vanilla shortbread cookie scent, but my words really can't do justice as to how perfect it smells to me. If you've ever been completely captivated by a fragrance, you'll understand. Sadly I will likely never be able to own a full size bottle of Indult as it is $200. Luckily for me one of my favorite etailers, Cocoa Pink, makes a duplicate scent that smells and performs EXACTLY like the original in my opinion. All for the low, low price of $15.99 an ounce, yay! I do believe it has become my "signature" fragrance as it keeps me sniffing myself for hours on end.

2) Haus Of Gloi Satyr Pumpkin Butter:
I hope to order many products in this scent in 2016. Never have I been so intrigued by an aroma! I might not have picked this one out for myself, but a sweet friend sent a sample of what is fast becoming one of my most sultry and addicting scents! This scent to me is an exquisite blends of aromatic smoky incense, sensual musk, and exotic, mysterious oriental spices. It is ridiculously long lasting and lingers on the skin without being offensive at all.  I admire HoG's extremely unique scent blends and as much as I like sweet scents, I love that she has many non-sweet, complex scents for the sake of variety.

3) Haus of Gloi Coconut #3 Perfume Oil:
My previous comments about HoG tie directly into my love affair with this perfume oil. I have been describing this fragrance as a "sophisticated Almond Joy bar." It is a heady mix of dark chocolate, almonds and coconut, with a sensual dusky/musky element I can't quite identity. It is heavy, complex, and probably not for everyone, but I just adore it on myself. As this was also a generous sample sized gift from a friend, I will soon be running out and am crushed that as It appears to be limited edition release it will be difficult to get my hands on again.

4) Vera Wang Embrace and Sugar Works Egyptian Rose Vanille:
I included both of these together because they are very similar to me and equally as wonderful. I purchased the Sugar Works mist in the spring of 2015 and it is a glorious blend of fresh roses and exotic creamy vanilla. The longevity is absolutely phenomenal for a mist; it lasts 7-8 hours on me. I was crushed when Sugar Works closed up shop and I still hope they will reopen as I have many favorite products from them. However I was immensely relieved when I purchased Vera Wang Embrace Rosebuds & Vanilla completely unsniffed from Ebay and it turned out to be a near dupe of my beloved SW fragrance. I would say they are about 90% similar; I do find VW to be slightly more youthful and innocent and SW to be slightly more exotic. I would picture VW as being worn by a sweet young ballerina princess and SW as being worn by a mysterious and elegant Egyptian princess, but the base rose and vanilla notes are especially the same. I'm glad Embrace is readily available in case I ever run out of either fragrance.

5) BBW Oahu Coconut Sunset line:
I believe Oahu has edged it's way into my heart as my all time favorite Bath & Body Works scent. It is a glorious fresh, warm, and not overly sweet coconut that I would imagine truly embodies island spirit. I'm so impressed with the longevity of this scent on me, as most BBW products fade within 15 minutes, but this scent lasts around 3 hours on me. I like to wear what I call the Oahu Trifecta: layering the shower gel, which is one of the only ones that ever lingers on my skin, the rich body cream which I prefer over the lotion, and the EDP which lasts much longer than the mist. Warm coconutty perfection! 

Thanks for reading my lengthy selection of favorites; feel free to share your thoughts and also your favorite products of 2015!

1 comment:

  1. Great list of favorites Amanda! You have me wanting to buy more PFoP. I seriously need to place my first SGA order. I don't know what keeps me from doing it. So many vendors to try and so little time (and money!). I also wanted to hop on that Cocoa Pink sale you told me about but the timing was off. That is another vendor I want to try. 2015 was a great smelly year. I hope this one will be too!