This $13 H&M Home Candle Smells So Much More Expensive than It Is

published Apr 25, 2023
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Living room with sage/olive colored walls, gallery wall, black credenza, 2 peach armchairs with throw pillows, gray patterned rug, gray wardrobe/cabinet, patterned floor to ceiling curtains, sofa with patterned throw pillows, glass and gold oval coffee table
Credit: Erin Derby

Scent, to me, is one of the most important aspects in making a house feel like a cozy, layered home. An elegant or complex fragrance can set the mood in a home for guests, and lighting a favorite candle before sitting down, say, to do a morning crossword puzzle turns that experience into a complete act of sel- care for me. On the flip side, though, a lingering smell from last night’s dinner — or a whiff of my dog’s fur — is enough to put me on edge. So having a candle ready to light instantly neutralizes those vibe-killing threats. 

That said, candles, especially the most intricately scented ones, are expensive. You’ve probably noticed the big players on your Instagram feed: the simple but chic minimalism of Le Labo, the oh-so-French Diptyque, the understated elegance of Jo Malone. You might have even purchased or been gifted one of these luxury candles and been hesitant to burn it, saving it for a special occasion like you would with a bottle of Champagne. But candles should be burned and enjoyed, not left to gather dust on the coffee table or forgotten in the back of a closet. 

Credit: Caroline Mullen

That’s where my new favorite H&M jarred candle comes in. It’s no surprise the fast-fashion empire noticed (and is now capitalizing) on the trend toward herbaceous fragrances, which have been rising in popularity for the past few years. I am surprised, though, by just how good this candle smells. Their “Green Basilicum” fragrance is described as “leafy meets spicy with an herbal mix of basil, ginger, and tomato leaves,” which is pretty spot-on, and according to H&M’s site, was created in partnership with perfumers from the renowned French perfume house, the Robertet Group. It’s the perfect balance of deeply herbal and sweet notes — with not a trace of cloying faux florals — and it has an impressive throw, which can fill a room and linger. 

If this candle smells familiar to you, that’s likely because it’s reminiscent of some of the most luxurious and trending candles on the market right now, which evoke the scents of tomatoes and gardens. The difference, though, is that it’s only $12.99 for a standard 8.64-ounce candle, compared to the up to $110 price tag on the luxury versions. If you can go luxe, by all means, do it! After burning through the wax, the Loewe vessel, in particular, would be absolutely stunning upcycled as a bud vase, succulent planter, or cup to corral writing tools or makeup brushes. If you don’t want to spend more than $20 for a candle, though, H&M Home has got you. 

This scent is currently also available in a mini glass jar with a wooden lid, and a lidded, 3-wick, stoneware vessel that resembles a black pumpkin (which is, admittedly, a bit pricier but still less than $35 for such a decorative vessel). If you’re lucky enough to be visiting the U.K. soon, it’s also available there in a reed diffuser, which would delightfully fill a room with the fragrance for an extended period of time. 

It should come as no surprise that I’ve stocked up on this scent. I just placed an order for three more jarred candles just in case this fragrance happens to be discontinued or sold out. If you’re partial to leafy, tomato-y fragrances, I’d recommend you stock up, too.