“ Brand: Molton Brown / Type: Candle / Category: Home Fragrance „
Black Pepper by Molton Brown is one of my all-time favourite smells. For me almost nothing in the world can beat the musky and spicy fragrance of the men's Eau de Toilette. Knowing this a friend bought me the Black Pepper candle for my birthday. I had no idea until then that there was even a candle so I was really pleased to be able to smell my favourite fragrance whenever I wanted to with my new candle.
~~~~~ Packaging ~~~~~
The Candle (or candela as Molton Brown refer to it) comes packaged in a brown box which was wrapped with a Molton Brown ribbon. Inside the box was the candle which is white and housed in a brown hand blown glass jar. The glass jar is absolutely gorgeous and if nothing else said this was expensive then the quality of the jar itself should tell you that this isn't your usual candle from Tesco and is something a bit special.
~~~~~ Black Pepper ~~~~~
Black Pepper is an amazing fragrance and one that I could easy smell for the rest of my life. It contains notes of petitgrain, bergamot, ginger, cedar, lily, musks, amber and vetiver. It is incredibly warming and exotic while being one of the most masculine fragrances you can get. It is an unusual fragrance and completely unique and I have yet to smell anything similar.
~~~~~ The candle ~~~~~
The first thing I noticed about the candle besides its beautiful packaging and glass jar was that the smell is different to the Eau de Toilette and the shower gel. It is very similar but there is a distinct difference. Before I even lit the candle though I could smell it and I personally thought it smelt amazing and I was looking forward to using it.
It didn't smell too strongly and I had to really put my nose into the candle to smell it but I just assumed that this was because it wasn't yet lit. The candle has one wick right in the centre and when I first lit the candle it took a while for the wick to burn down and start to melt the wax. I was expecting the room to fill with the intoxicating smell of black pepper and left it for half an hour or so while I did some things around the house.
When I returned I assumed that the room would now be filled with the smell of Black Pepper but when I entered it I was so disappointed to find that the fragrance had barely penetrated the room and that I could hardly smell it. Close to the candle the smell was a bit more fragrant but it hadn't projected to any discernible degree and even just sitting a couple of metres away I struggled to be able to smell it.
I left the candle burning for ages but no matter how long I left it burning the scent was still incredibly subtle and I had to bring the candle right beside me to be able to smell it at all.
The candle has a burn time of 40 hours but because it is so weak I found myself burning it for hours at a time and managed to completely finish it in just a week which I thought was really disappointing.
~~~~~ Price and availability ~~~~~
I knew being a Molton Brown product that the candle would be expensive as Molton Brown is a luxury brand but I was shocked to discover that the medium candle which is the one that I have retails at a whopping £36. To say I was floored by this price would be an understatement.
You can find the candle at Molton Brown stores in major cities. Molton Brown are quite selective in who they let sell their products so other than their own stores you will need to check the more upmarket department stores such as Selfriges or House of Fraser. Of course you can find them on line too but don't be expecting to get a large discount as the prices are pretty much the same across the board.
~~~~~ Recommendation ~~~~~
I really cannot recommend this candle as it was a huge disappointment and I find the price to be exorbitant. I assumed a candle no matter the brand would be a maximum of £20 especially as it wasn't even that large. The hand blown glass is a nice touch but not something that I would want to pay money for. Even if the fragrance hadn't been so weak and disappointing I would still have thought it was far too expensive.
Unfortunately it just didn't live up to the other Molton Brown Black Pepper products which is a real shame as the candle had so much potential as it is such an amazing fragrance but the weakness of the candle was just too weak for it to be worth even buying even if it had been a lot cheaper than it actually was. If you like the fragrance then stick to the shower gel and the Eau de Toilette as these are much better quality and more of the luxurious products that you would expect from Molton Brown.
I have purchased all the molton brown candles numerous times over the last few years. The black pepper has to be my favourite.
In stark contrast to the previous reviewer, what i like about these candles is you get a lovely subtle fragrance not the thick sickly smell that engulf the house like many of the cheaper ones. You get a warm spicy fragrance that quickly spreads around the house. When i have visitors, i like the house to smell pleasant without an overpowering smell that makes it look like I've made an effort.
The candles look great in any setting and you don't have to look too far to see them as decoration in many home makeover programs, catalogues and brochures which shows their appeal.
I find the burn time to be around 70-80 hours and they seem to burn best when burnt for a good few hours the first time.
The candles look stylish and burn well not just in a tunnel down the middle like many cheaper candles. Although not cheap, i still feel they provide good value as the burn time is very good so they last a long time. As well as this, the glass that is left from the candle is very easily cleaned and reused for other purposes. I have used them as small vases, storage pots, and remade my own candles with them. The glass is thick and chunky and doesn't chip easily. The glass i understand is hand blown, they are beautifully constructed and the candles do not leave behind that awful smokey parrafin smell which makes the cost more justified.
All in all, a good buy and i would happily purchase again. If you can afford £50 on a candle then i would recommenced it, however if £50 is a lot of money to you, then don't bother, the candle wont change your life, its just a nice candle.
Around Christmas 2009 I treated myself by visiting a Molton Brown store in Glasgow. Their store in Edinburgh has always appeared to be a bit smaller and they never seem to have anything in stock despite the fact that most of the department stores like Jenners, John Lewis and Frasers also happen to sell most of the same products if you are looking for bath and shower preparations. Up until now though I've only ever been amazed by Molton Brown's Black Pepper ranges and over the years when I first received a gift of their men's shower gel I've been hooked on this fragrance ever since.
Whenever I've visited their stores however the actual shops themselves sell candles that serve as additional merchandise and are usually only sold at the shops against the ranges on offer at department stores. Molton Brown stores themselves are classy stores with tons of products you can try as well as walk around being entertained by sales staff on hand which conjures up a rather personal yet inviting service. So when it came to buying a gift for me, I knew my mum's friend would give me the usual shower gel as a Christmas gift and with my love for candles, plucked for the rather expensive large "Black Pepper Candela," priced at a rather expensive £49! I have been dying to try this candle for quite some time now but I've never felt quite right parting £50 on something so expensive. It is after all, just a candle! Little did I know my mum had bought the same candle a week later for me, meaning I'd have two rather large candles to contend with over the Christmas and New Year season. For me, this is an absolute treat to have as I usually buy Yankee Candle to see me through.
The Black Pepper Candela by Molton Brown weighs in at 1559 grams and is quite a weighty object on it's own accord helped by it's thick classy dark brown clear glass tumbler of which MB claim has been "hand blown from Lithuania." It is naturally heat insulated and comes in a pre-wrapped thick cardboard gift box with an orange "Buckram," paper/nylon branded ribbon that travels all around the box. It is this ribbon that I had quite a time of taking off to get the actual box open, not helped by the fact that it is glued down and the opening to the box on the underside has a looped finger pull by which logically should give way the moment you insert a finger to open the box. Not so! It took me quite a while after mild profanity to get the box open before I could get to the candle and the second box I bought for myself was just as difficult to get into without destroying part of it which seems a pity as the box itself is a lovely design and keep sake. Instead of worded content you get a little fold out booklet with diagrams to show you how to use the candle; putting on a level surface, a duration time of 80 hours and obvious dangers such as be wary of children whenever the candle is being lit. A removable sticker on the base of the glass has the same warnings but in words!
Naturally I couldn't wait to smell this candle since the Black Pepper scent has always been a rich and inviting scent backed by acres of its chili accents and slightly burnt black pepper lower tones. The content of scent wax that Molton Brown have added here are supposed to be mixes of something called "Galbanum," followed by Vetiver, Petitgrain and Egyptian Basil. It's totally dark brown in colour and the wax is soft to the touch generally. With so many claimed ingredients I was really on edge to get this candle lit, sat on a level shelf with a favourite book and a glass of my favourite wine ready to bask in the promises of Madagascan Black Pepper amidst the other additives.
About an hour had passed and I couldn't smell anything. I had remembered to take out the plastic "wax protector" disc when I placed my candle on a flat surface before lighting it but I wondered what was taking the time for this candle to spread its scent. Indeed from the cardboard box you can use the actual recessed lid to the box that acts as a classy orange mount if you want a contrasting look; an idea I nicked from what they do in the MB shops. Another hour had passed but as I walked up to the candle I could suddenly smell a little Black Pepper emanating from the glass rim. I decided then to leave the candle lit for three hours in my bedroom whilst I was working away in the next room and expecting the same kind of scent hugeness I've since experienced with Yankee Candle and Ikea's Tindra candle. Well, after I opened the door to my bedroom and walked back in, I got nothing but the small and understated detection of Black Pepper as I had done when I initially checked the candle the first time. Forget the basil and anything else Molton Brown would have you believe; this candela simply isn't worth the money and this isn't the first time Molton Brown have let me down. Even with Candela number 2 burning in my mum's room, it doesn't shift tobacco or strong smells and that in my opinion is a major downside.
If there is one upside to this whole affair, at best whenever scent comes off the candela, Molton Brown's product here doesn't leave Paraffin after tones. However at its rather expensive price despite the limited edition appeal of its glass tumbler, the scent in this candle just isn't worth considering. It isn't as strong as Yankee Candle and it burns down too quickly with a wick that falls off too quickly too. At least the wax, after it has all burnt down can be supposedly washed out. After two full dishwasher programs there is still wax sticking to the bottom of the glass which makes for a rather difficult use to find for this beautiful thick glass holder.
Having two Black Pepper Candela Molton Brown products at my disposal that have been purchased from two separate MB stockists doesn't generate immediate assumption that I may well have dud candles, but against the promise and the price, the brown wax candle just doesn't dissipate much scent at all and for all the packaging effort MB have gone to, their candela just doesn't deliver on its promise. Perhaps I'm being overly assuming that because of the price and weight, Molton Brown's Black Pepper Candela should be as strong and inviting as other scented candles I've purchased. But like most of their products, I've realized that what I'm paying for is simply for the look and the name rather than actual product. Whilst you do get some scent I feel in my experience that the kinds of scented candles you get in pound shops are about on the same level as Molton Brown's £50 "premium," rip off.
This candela doesn't soothe, doesn't inspire and doesn't caress and Molton Brown couldn't care less. As such please don't make the same mistake: you have been warned! For the same amount of money I could have walked away with several medium or large candle jars of Yankee Candle! Thanks for reading. ©Nar2 2010