As you may know, I am lucky to work with my close friends Nick Gilbert and Pia Long at Olfiction, a fragrance consultancy and perfume house. Yes, it is a dream come true. What you may not know is that we at Olfiction have been working on a candle brand for the last two years or so and today is the day that we share that brand with you. So, let’s not keep her waiting. Please welcome to the stage Boujee Bougies!
The idea behind Boujee Bougies is actually the name itself. “Boujee” means ostentatious, flamboyant, ideas above your station, ritzy, glitzy, glam and luxe, whilst “Bougies” is French for candles. Put them together and what do you get? Well, as one journalist put it this week, you get “posh candles” and that’s exactly what they are: wonderfully flamboyant candles with beautifully artistic fragrances.
Boujee Bougies is a creative playground for perfumery and each of the candles features a high quality perfume created by our in-house perfumer (the wonderfully talented Pia Long) and compounded in Grasse, because if you want to be fancy, that’s where you do your compounding. What makes Boujee Bougies different is how we tell stories through home fragrance – in fact the fragrances are all unique concepts that challenge what home fragrance can be, with scents that are evocative, unique and novel. We are very proud of them.
The brand is a team effort and we’ve all played a part. Nick came up with the brand name and concept, and has developed each of the fragrances with Pia, who did the perfumery. Ezra, our Perfumer’s Assistant drew the illustrations and I provided the words for the fragrance descriptions and copy (words are kinda my thing). In the case of Boujee Bougies, teamwork really does make the dreamwork.
The debut collection consists of five scented candles in two sizes (60g/£25; 220g/£55). Let’s meet them.
“Cuir Culture is a daring and unashamed celebration of the bold beauty of queerness. You see, queer culture is the culture. It is rich, irreverent and proud. In that spirit, our Cuir Culture is unashamedly cuir, with the smell of leather at its most raw and carnal, accented by the dusty sweetness of old books and warm spice. It’s like a chilled Sunday afternoon spent leafing through vintage erotica or polishing your harness. Sure, it’s raunchy, but therein lies the fun! Whatever your pleasure, whether you’re into the spicy top or the powerful bottom, we don’t judge.”
The scent of worn leather, old books and a hint of spice.
“Queen Jam is a Finnish conserve made from raspberries and bilberries. It is divinely delicious and it also has a beautiful name so you probably know where this is going: yes, we made a candle that is just as sticky, juicy, tart and fresh as this decadent treat. Our Queen Jam throws in a few roses (because there are few things greater in life than rose petals swirled together with succulent berries) to make things more luscious and just ever so slightly green. The result is the jammiest candle in the world – the queen of all jams, one could say.”
The scent of roses dripping in jam and a hint of the forest floor.
“Succulent is our tribute to the noble botanicals that bring beauty and joy to our homes, without any of the hassle of actually growing anything. With juicy green notes of cactus and tomato leaf, Succulent is verdant and fresh, evoking a glass conservatory overflowing with lush tendrils. Succulent offers an abundance of green, with fruits, flowers and leaves carried upward in a rush of musk, all in one humble little pot. Just don’t water it, because, you know, it’s a candle…”
The scent of juicy stems, rain water and fresh flower.
“If the walls in a church could talk, what would they say? Would they speak in smoky whispers of frankincense? What secrets could be found beneath the patina of ages on cold stone floors? Would they reveal hidden truths about ourselves; of our destiny, our origin? Gilt explores these mysteries, bringing together ancient resins, spices and woods, and shrouds them in a veil of gold. A scent that captures the quiet, contemplative nature of rituals seen through smoke, and a touch of guilt. Light the candle. We are ready for your confession.”
The scent of incense smoke, whispered confessions and the cold feeling of gold.
“When we found a tatty old sci-fi novel called Hellflower, all about a populace addicted to flowers, we thought “this is totally up our street” and just had to create a candle with the same name. The novel was terrible, honestly, but the name was gold – and it’s this symbiosis of the brilliant and the beastly that forms the core of Hellflower. Evoking a magnolia bloom burning with brimstone, Hellflower is a post-apocalyptic floral bursting with the sulphuric brilliance of grapefruit, proving that a touch of the dangerous and the deadly is sometimes needed to enhance beauty. And as far as we’re concerned, if the world ends in an explosion of sparkling flowers, we say bring it on.”
The scent of magnolias, brimstone, sulphur and grapefruit.
Now that you’ve met the Boujee Bougies, you can head over to bougieboujees.com to shop. For a limited time we have an introductory offer where you can buy the whole range of our mini candles for the price of four* – just add one of each of the minis to your basket and the discount will be added automatically.
* offer redeemable once per customer, whilst stocks last.
You can also listen below to the latest episode of our Fume Chat podcast, in which we discuss the creative process behind each of the candles! Check it out on the player below or wherever you usually find your podcasts – just search “Fume Chat”.
S3 EP11: Best Perfumes of 2020 – Fume Chat
I am affiliated with this brand.