Since I confessed a major miscalculation of my candle stock in my last post, I might as well come totally clean. While spending the past month exploring the masculine scents that I enjoy, looking for the perfect manly man, I should confess that I already know of one perfect specimen already. No, I’m not referring to my manly husband! (Although we are perfect for each other😊) I’m talking about my ideal masculine scent, the One. The wax that started it all around five years ago, it may surprise you because I rarely buy or comment on the brand-it’s Hemingway, by Scentsy.
Given a sample and being intrigued enough to order some bars, I fell in love with this fragrance. Why do I still love it so many years later? Let me see if I can convey the reasons…it’s rich and complex. It’s perfectly woodsy with sophisticated autumn tones but evokes coziness during the winter, can be calming and rejuvenating melted in spring and transports you to an exotic locale in summer. One of my few year-round melts, if only I had enough to last all year long.
Fragrance: The official Scentsy catalog description goes like this; “Though Hemingway may have spent many of his days travelling through exotic destinations like Paris and the Caribbean, this master of American Literature found immense solace in an isolated cabin amidst the vast wilderness. Where nothing could disturb him save for the echoing calls of wildlife, Hemingway was able to pen the most gripping tales of hunting, war, and other masculine struggles. The essence of Hemingway’s writing abode is captured in our Hemingway Scentsy Bar. A foundation of rich, ripe autumn apples greet the foresty accents of warm eastern sandalwood and refreshing cedar.”
I mostly agree with the description, I wouldn’t interpret the apple note as fresh, but more as stewed apples. It is such a warming blend of cedar and sandalwood but it’s balanced by a sumptuous, cooling aged leather tone, too. It may be my imagination but I also detect an undertone of smokiness, from a fragrant cigar. Most importantly, it exudes a masculinity without smelling at all like cologne!
Performance: I always use Scentsy cubes in one of their small plug-in warmers. Two cubes has a bold enough throw for our downstairs family room, while one cube is just the right mood-setter for filling up the bedroom. I usually get 6 hours of fragrance from one wax cube.
Recommendation: For fans of masculine scents without an overwhelming cologne aspect, this is a great one. I also recommend it for lovers of woodsy, spicy, earthy or exotic scents, and for all of the apple blend enthusiasts this time of year.
There’s only one problem with recommending this wax–it’s long retired. In fact, it was part of a “Bring Back my Bar” promotion the first time I acquired it years ago. It was voted back again this past January but I unfortunately found out when it was no longer available. Why recommend it at all, you ask? It can be located on ebay (too overpriced) and at craft fairs and swaps, but can be hard to track down. I do have a few feelers out with Scentsy reps who know I’m looking for it and I’ve heard it may return in the lineup for 2017’s “Bring Back my Bar” campaign this fall. You know I’ll be voting for it every chance I get.
Time to wrap up Manly Man:
Least manly: Mountain Lake – such a regrettable purchase. Although, I didn’t have success with The Lumberjack by Boyfriend Candle, it did make me curious to try out more dye-free wax. Often times I get a particular wax melt because I like the pretty colors or decorations, this will allow me to focus more so on the scent and throw.
Most manly of the month goes to Hemingway. What else would you expect from a scent inspired by an author who built a career writing about war, bullfighting, hunting and fishing?
Ernest Hemingway’s writing has been described as virile and macho, but also real and intensely descriptive. Recently, I’ve become inspired to read Hemingway’s “A Farewell To Arms” after listening to an NPR repeat story about the diligence Hemingway showed in rewriting the ending to his second novel some 39 times. Thus far, I’ve only read one haunting short story by Hemingway titled, “Hills Like White Elephants.” Also, books by his contemporary and friend, F. Scott Fitzgerald and books on the periphery of Hemingway’s home life, such as, the historical fiction novel based on his first wife’s tale, “The Paris Wife” by Paula McClain. I’d recommend his novels if you’re looking for a break from beach reads, but I so hope that they aren’t too depressing. I plan to dive into the biography, by Jeffrey Meyers, as well, to shed some light on this mysterious and tortured artist.
As far as other manly fragrances go, I also love Yankee Candle’s Mountain Lodge scent. It’s in my top three all time favorites as well and the one I would always go to as an employee when customers would inevitably ask me, “What’s your favorite candle?”
Exciting times coming up for the Candle Enthusiast blog this fall…stay tuned and thanks for reading!