Candy Crush: Penhaligon’s Fragranced Soaps

I’m always crushing on something scented or other. My nose knows no limits. Candy Crush is where I showcase the beautifully scented things I’m crushing on right now so you can hopefully develop a crush too.

I worry about plastic, I really do. As I get older and more aware of my impact on the environment I worry about the products I use and the waste that they produce. Recently I made the decision to stop eating meat, not because I don’t like it, but predominately because of the environmental impact of mass-rearing animals (and the treatment of said animals). I also find myself making considerations about the beauty products I use and asking myself questions like, can I reuse this packaging, and is this refillable etc.? A good place where one can make a change is with their shower gel – switching out the convenience of gels for traditional soaps.

Now, I love a good shower gel, but more often than not they come in a plastic bottle, and they don’t last very long. So a soap, which may come in minimal, recyclable packaging, and which will ultimately last longer, may actually be a good alternative. What’s even greater is that many of our favourite fragrance brands still continue to make soaps so it’s not too difficult for one to get their hands on a lovely bar of something scented with their favourite fragrance. This week’s Candy Crush is just that and more: the entire collection of fragranced soaps from Penhaligon’s.

London-based perfumery Penhaligon’s has a vast catalogue of fragrances, ranging from the historic classics of Hammam Bouquet to the more contemporary and quirky offerings such as the animal-headed Portraits collection. Of course, a scent for each and every one of these fragrances would be quite the undertaking, so instead, Penhaligon’s offer fragranced soaps for four of their most popular fragrances: Luna (orange blossom, rose, musk), Halfeti (rose, oud, leather), Blenheim Bouquet (lemon, lavender, pine) and Quercus (mandarin, cardamom, oakmoss).

First off, let’s talk packaging. Each one of these soaps comes in a pack of three, tucked neatly into a box that mirrors their respective fragrance. Quirky Penhaligon’s tissue, with its vintage print lightly applied, wraps the soaps luxuriously. The soaps themselves are attractive and each boasts the same design, that of a an oval-shaped soap printed with the Penhaligon’s logo and its royal warrants. It’s nice to think that one may be soaping themselves up with royal soap, I tell you.

What about the fragrances? Well, believe me when I say that these are not shrinking violet soaps – they are pungent. Each of the signature fragrances are embedded deep into the triple-milled, vegetable-based soaps, making for products that give off a decent amount of scent. They also smell exactly like their Eau de Parfum/Toilette counterparts, which is no mean feat seeing as the base for these products is completely different.

Now for performance in the shower – I’ll save you the mental image of me lathering up (whoops – too late) and just say that these work exactly as expected. They foam up very nicely, creating a generous coverage and leave the skin feeling soft, and delicately fragranced. I’d perhaps avoid the heavy hitters such as Halfeti if I were wanting to wear a different fragrance (Halfeti is nuclear), but the others, especially Blenheim Bouquet, leave one feeling clean rather than heavily fragranced. Good work!

The only complaint I have and in fact, this is just a general soap-complaint rather than an issue with these soaps specifically, is that once used extensively, what was a nice and neat little bar of loveliness, becomes a manky, messy mush of misery. So make sure you get yourself a soap dish, or keep it in your private shower (does anyone have a non-private shower?!) to hide your soap shame.

One of the things I like to do most with soap is not use them. Typing that, I realise how weird it sounds but bear with me… Because soaps like this are so richly fragranced, they are perfect for leaving in a bathroom or WC (we like to call it the ‘downstairs cloaks’ in Candy Perfume Towers) just to scent the room. I left a Luna soap in the downstairs cloaks with the strict instruction for it not to be used (Nigel, my husband, faithfully obeyed) and every time I would pop in I would be greeted with the delightful scent of candied orange blossoms. That’s my handy tip of the day for you: put them in your bathrooms to scent the room!

OK so, in summary, I like these soaps very much. Could they pry my plastic-using hands from a bottle of shower gel? Actually, they could tempt me and at £31 for 3 x 100g bars, they don’t feel too expensive either. They also make a really lovely gift, especially as soap is having somewhat of a moment right now. So yes, this is a well-earned Candy Crush – well done everybody at Penhaligon’s!


The Penhaligon’s fragranced soaps are available in four fragrances: Halfeti, Luna, Blenheim Boquet and Quercus. Each is a box of three 100g soaps for £31.


Samples (pictured) sent by Penhaligon’s for consideration. I was not paid for this review and Penhaligon’s had no input in the contents of this article. Notes and quotes via Penhaligon’s London. Images are my own.