When we talk about strong or weak scented candles we talk about a candle having scent throw.
What is scented candle scent throw?
Basically, scented candle scent throw is the amount of scent that permeates into the room that you are burning the candle in.
If the scent throw is strong, your entire room will be swimming in fragrance when you burn your scented candle. If the scent throw is weak, you’ll only be able to smell the candle when you stand or sit next to it while it’s burning.
The scent throw depends on the amount and intensity of fragrance oils that are in a candle. It also depends on the type of wax the candle is made of.
Your standard paraffin wax and your less standard but supposedly healthier soy wax are best bets for getting a candle that throws.
How to buy a strong smelling candle
When you sniff the unlit candle, it should smell strong. It helps if you rub the finger on the wax. That will “break the seal” or rather soften the driest layer of the wax and you’ll be able to smell the candle better. A general rule is, if it smells faint unlit, it will have a weak scent throw.
The other thing to look out for is the amount of fragrance oils in the wax. In some candles, you can see that the wax is not a uniformed color. It’s marbled or mottled with oils. Yankee Candle and Village Candle standard jars, for example, have marbled wax and you can actually see the amount of oils in the candle. If the wax in a uniformed color it doesn’t mean the candle won’t throw, it could be just a different type of wax that doesn’t show the oil. Yankee Candle soft wax tumblers, for example, don’t show the oils but in my experience also don’t throw as well as the standard jars.
How to get the most scent throw out of your scented candle
Another general rule about scent throw is – the bigger the wax pool the better the scent throw. If you get a wide and deep wax pool, more oils are being released and you’ll be able to smell your candle better. If the wax pool is smaller, it means less fragrance and weaker scent throw. That is why a two or three wick candles tend to throw more – the size of the wax pool is bigger.
Scented candles Scent Throw Issues are a big topic because people get super disappointed when they shell out a lot of money for a high end scented candle, burn it and it turns out they just can’t smell the fragrance.
I’ve been burning scented candles daily for over a decade and have had my share of scent throw duds. For the past few years, I tend to stick to major company candles to avoid duds and I’m rarely disappointed.
It took me a while to figure out why the same candle seemed to throw strong in one room and had hardly any throw in another. I know it’s probably a “duh” reason to most but it honestly didn’t connect in my head for months. The main reason I couldn’t smell my candles well was my air condition. I would start a candle in my living room in the morning, start the air condition, come in an hour later and I could barely smell the candle. The same candle on a cooler day, no air condition, and the room was filled with scent in about an hour. Of course, the air condition filters the air which means it filters the scent and naturally the scent will be weak if you have the a/c on.
If I do get a weak candle there’s always the wax melt solution. I know that it seems unfair, you bought the candle to burn it and not melt it but I’m saying if you like the scent and feel bad about not being able to smell it or wasting your money, melting the wax will give you the scent and you won’t be throwing any money away. Scented candles are meant to make you feel good, not upset and frustrated so don’t let a bad candle ruin even a minute of your day.
If I get a scented candle with poor scent throw, sometimes I just plop it on my office desk and burn it while I work so I’m like 20 cm from the candle and I can enjoy the scent. But if I want to use it in a bigger room or enjoy the scent through the room I’ll scoop out the wax – or use a butter knife to get chunks out – and then I just put a spoonful of wax on my wax melter and melt it using a tea light. If the room is really big I’ll light up three or four wax melters at a time and I’ll be swimming in scent in 15 minutes. That way I still get the points of light from the tea lights and I get to fully enjoy the scent. You can get absolutely gorgeous wax melter that will give you the play of light comparable to luminaries as well, they’re just smaller.
If you find that the butter knife method for getting the wax out of the jar isn’t something you feel comfortable doing you can always just melt the whole jar of wax in a pan on your stove, pour the melted wax into silicone molds and make a bunch of cute tarts in one go. I found this tutorial that’s pretty awesome. I personally can’t be bothered with the process unless the jar is cracked or broken.
I hope you don’t end up with any candles with scent throw issues but just in case you do, keep in mind you can always save it enough to end up enjoying the scent.
Strongest Yankee Candle scented candles
Yankee Candle is a company that has been getting a bad reputation in the past couple of years due to their candles getting weaker and weaker.
On the Yankee website I often see reviews saying that the candle is not scented enough and that while they love the fragrance the scent is much too weak to scent the entire room.
I’ve put together a list of strongest Yankees just in case you are looking for some that will really blow you out of the room.
10 strongest Yankee Candles
- Madagascan Orchid
- Lavender Vanilla
- Lemon Lavender
- Home Sweet Home
- Napa Valley Sun
- Nature’s Paintbrush
- Pain Au Raisin
- Riviera Escape
- Vanilla Bourbon
- Vanilla Chai
The official notes in Yankee Candle Madagascan Orchid are: exotic orchid.
What I get in Yankee Candle Madagascan Orchid is full on strong women’s perfume. It’s intense and sexy and really perfumey. It reminds me a lot of Viktor&Rolf Flowerbomb perfume or the newer Lancome La Vie est Belle perfume. Now to me, all orchids are exotic and I’ve sniffed a lot of them and the ones I’ve smelled had zero scent so I don’t know if this is true to an actual flower scent. It’s just a strong floral perfume and I almost want to say I get a white patchouli note that gives it that exotic and darker twist.
My medium jar version of Yankee Candle Madagascan Orchid burns clean and even in my hurricane candle holder, I get a nice wax pool after about two hours and the throw is a solid 10. I burned this in my main living room as a day candle and it completely scented the room in less than half an hour.
This is super strong, one of the strongest Yankee Candles I’ve burned. I won’t be buying it again even though I do like the scent but it’s just too perfumey for me for a home fragrance. Also, the scent throw is too strong for my rooms. I don’t have huge open plan rooms because I live in an almost 100-year-old house and even though the ceilings are crazy high the rooms themselves aren’t huge so a 10 in scent throw pretty much throws me out of the room. I’ll chuck this up in small tarts and melt it to tune down the throw and I’ll burn some of it outside on the deck in the evenings where I’m sure it will do fine.
The official scent notes in Yankee Candle Lavender Vanilla are: fresh lavender and warm vanilla with musk and bergamot.
Yankee Candle Lavender Vanilla, this is a strong lavender scent. If you’re eyeing this because you like vanilla, you can move on to something else. It’s quite potent fresh lavender, I get a bit of bergamot and the vanilla is the same that’s in the Vanilla Lime fragrance, meaning it’s heavy and earthy instead of sweet and creamy. Overall this is a lavender scent with a slightly masculine twist, because of the earthiness of the vanilla and bergamot.
The scent throw on my old medium sized jar was a solid 8 and it scented my main hall in half an hour.
It’s a good cold day or evening candle. If you find lavender relaxing, I’d definitely get this for evenings and cooler days and keep a jar of Lemon Lavender in the stash for hot weather and mornings.
I have issues with lavender fragrance, it reminds me of mothballs no matter how well it’s made and I’m slowly training my nose and brain to stop immediately jumping to old musty coats every time I smell it, but I’m not there yet, so I’ll pass this up.
Yankee Candle Vanilla Chai scented candle was originally a part of a Fall collection. I have the small jar and a few tarts. It’s a very intense scent and I can only take it in really small doses like for an hour at a time at the most.
The notes in Yankee Candle Vanilla Chai are: ginger, cinnamon, and vanilla.
I get a lot of ginger and cardamom. I also smell a lot of cloves and a very light undertone of vanilla that softens up all that spices. It basically smells like the Garam Masala spice mix with a bit of vanilla. I don’t really get the chai note specifically but if you get the actually spiced chai drink the spices overwhelm the chai note there as well so I would say it’s very true to life scent.
I don’t love this scent. It’s extremely strong and intense and even melting a third of a tart at a time it’s still almost too much for me. I wish I could get the chai note and maybe a tad less of the ginger. However, it’s the perfect candle to burn when I’m having Indian food and since I cook Indian almost every week it gets quite a lot of burn time in my kitchen.
The small jar version of Yankee Candle Vanilla Chai burns clean and even, I get a nice wax pool after about an hour and the throw is extremely strong.
The tarts in this scent are so strong I only melt a third of a tart at a time and it strongly scents my entire hall.
Yankee Candle Pain Au Raisin scented candle is an EU Yankee Candle scent that was released in the Summer as a part of the Café Culture collection. It was paired with a coffee/chocolate scent and an apple pie scent so that you could have all the best Café smells in your home.
Yankee Candle Pain Au Raisin notes are: cognac soaked raisins, bakery, buttery vanilla dough, cinnamon.
I mostly get a really strong bakery note and raisins. I don’t get any cinnamon and the vanilla is very light and just adds some weight to the scent. The funny thing about it is that I get a burned note. Like when I actually bake stuff with raisins and a couple of them always manage to get burned. Or is that just me? Anyway, it’s a very true to life scent but a tad too true to life for me. I really could do without the burned raisin note and I wish I could get the cinnamon.
I have a tart and a votive of the Yankee Candle Pain Au Raisin and I won’t be getting any more scented candles or wax in this scent. I kind of want to get a couple of the Yankee Candle Café Culture gift sets with the three mini jars though. They are just so insanely cute and I love the theme. It’s such a perfect theme for all my coffee house hanging friends.
I checked some other reviews of the Yankee Candle Pain Au Raisin and no one else seems to get the burned note but as soon as my husband and my mum got a whiff of it they commented on it so it’s not just my nose picking it up.
Yankee Candle Pain Au Raisin is definitely a kitchen only scented candle for me. I don’t like food smells anywhere else and this scent is so true to life I wouldn’t burn it in other rooms.
Yankee Candle Riviera Escape is a part of a UK summer collection. It’s a classic Yankee take on a “beachfront” fragrance. I call these Yankee’s “ocean blue” scents since I feel they are in the same vein. It’s similar to Beach Holiday, Turquoise Sky, Coastal Waters…there’s pretty much a blue ocean themed candle out every year.
Yankee Candle Riviera Escape smells like a bit of bergamot on top with the base of cedar. The middle notes are ozone, salt, water and a faint floral mix with an emphasis on herbal verbena flower. The overall fragrance is fresh, watery upscale unisex shower gel. Due to the watery notes I find it’s more of a shower product than a perfume or cologne but it does lean into the personal fragrance territory.
It’s a good version of the “blue” fragrance, not overly masculine and well blended and it avoids being the generic “ocean fresh” scent that we all know well and run into during unfortunate public restroom visits.
It’s a good bathroom scent but you wouldn’t get weird toilet vibes if you put it in the living room. The scent throw on my wax melt is a 9 and I won’t be getting a candle in this since it’s not my kind of fragrance.
Yankee Candle Home Sweet Home is an autumn home fragrance favorite for so many people. The official notes in Yankee Candle Home Sweet Home are: cinnamon, baking spices, and a hint of freshly poured tea.
I get a ton of sugared cinnamon at first. It’s very cinnamon heavy and as cinnamon tends to do, it sort of overpowers all other smells at first sniff. After burning it for about an hour you get a nice scent development and I can start picking out individual notes like cardamom, cloves, and a soft black tea note as well. It’s a very warm fragrance, definitely made for colder and rainy weather. I love burning it in my main hall because it’s so strong it scents my entire house.
I’ve tried this scent in tart form and I’ve burned my medium jar a couple of times. I get a nice wax pool in my medium jar after about two hours and the throw is a strong 9. I most often burn this in my main hall as a day candle and it scents the house about an hour. I’ll put my Yankee Candle Home Sweet Home away for now and I’ll bring it out in November when it will be the perfect day fragrance.