As temperatures start to drop and dark evenings draw in, it's safe to say that my motivation to do just about anything has hit rock bottom. While post-work activities were abundant during warm summer evenings, as soon as autumn hit, I started spending my weekday afternoons battling energy slumps and counting down the minutes until it's deemed acceptable to go to bed.
It's true that summoning the energy to do anything at this time of year can be tricky. Even cooking dinner after a long day at work can feel like a mountain climb. However, while physical motivation is no doubt lacking, that's not to say that our brains switch off quite so easily. While our bodies are crying out to be horizontal and swaddled in blankets, the everyday stresses of work (and life in general) can remain racing around our minds. And with fewer social activities to take our minds off of it, relaxing can sometimes prove just as tricky now as any other time of the year.
However, while we Brits have a wonderful way of complaining about short days and cold climes, there is something to be said for the comforting cosiness of autumn evenings, and there are ways to unwind your mind so that you can make the most out of your autumn evening. My go-to method? Lighting a good ol' relaxing candle.
While lighting candles en masse in the autumn might be deemed a total stereotype, as someone whose entire home is filled with candles (and who seriously struggles to unwind), I have come to accept that their power is most definitely best utilised for relaxation.
After coming to terms with the notion that this makes me an autumn stereotype, I have dedicated a substantial amount of time to finding the most relaxing candles out there so that I can spend my cold evenings in a state of blissful zen. Keep scrolling for the 13 best relaxing candles out there. (Trust me—I've burned them all.)
This newbie from cult candle brand Cire Trudon is proving itself to be one of the most divine candles I have ever come across. Inspired by the works of Mary Shelley (I mean, doesn't that just scream cosy vibes?), it's deep, spicy and woody. Come nightfall, I challenge anyone to light this beauty and not slip into a state of fantastical calm.
If you haven't experienced the all-encompassing relaxing effect of This Works's Deep Sleep collection, you are seriously missing out. While the pillow mist might be the best-known product in the line-up, this candle is the star of the show for me. With soothing notes of lavender and camomile, it fills the room with a powdery, heady aroma that will have you battling to keep your eyes open.
3. Molton Brown Orange and Bergamot Scented Candle
You might typically associate the citrus notes of orange and bergamot with being more energising than relaxing. However, the creaminess and warmth of this particular candle makes it the perfect way to wind down.
Crabtree & Evelyn is not a brand that usually springs straight to mind when you think of powerfully aromatic candles, but this little guy has become one of my favourite candles of all time. A warming blend of ginger, nutmeg and cedarwood envelopes the room, leaving you in a divinely dreamy haze.
Subtly floral but oh so calming, The Ritual of Jing Candle contains jujube seeds, which are used in traditional Chinese medicine as a stress reliever. It's delicately sweet and milky, soothing the mind as it burns.
Few things are more relaxing than sitting in front of an open fire. But for those who aren't lucky enough to have a fireplace in their homes, this candle is the next best thing. Like burning firewood, it's a spicy, smoky delight.
If you ask me, this is the most underrated Byredo product out there. Better known for its clean, muskier scents, Byredo has created a deep, woody masterpiece with Tree House. Like a just-built tree house, it has a rich freshness to it you'll struggle to find elsewhere.
Another aromatic sleep range worth knowing about is Perfect Night's Sleep from Neom. It contains lavender, jasmine and basil, so light this tranquil blend an hour or so before you plan to sleep and prepare to be amazed at just how quickly you doze off.
Aromatherapy Associates candles have recently had a revamp, and they now look chicer than ever before. Not only does this sleep-inducing candle make for a great bedside table ornament, but it also smells incredible and has a powerful intensity.
The name says it all. Specifically created to help you nod off, this soy wax candle blends lavender and vetiver with cedarwood and bergamot to give off a deep, powerful scent with a nose-tingling zing, which means you'll never want to blow it out.
If you ask me, this little guy is destined for cult candle status. It's gentle and very subtle but has a milky, creamy warmth that soothes the soul and makes you want to stick the kettle on and dig out a book.
13. Jo Malone Lilac Lavender & Lovage Townhouse Candle