Monday, October 03, 2005

The Case Against Burnout

So I'm back from my breather, and already I'm sucking down shots of Xango to keep myself from going under the crazy weather we've been having here on Oahu for the last two weeks. Already I've been able to enjoy whatever's left of my weekend before starting my next quarter of grad school: no partying (unfortunately - girl's gotta buy some textbooks) but a lot of lollygagging, and more Internet surfing than I would usually do on a non-school evening.

As I mentioned earlier, I am still looking for a scented candle for my apartment. I'm slowly beginning to see that candles are not the kind of thing I could skimp on price-wise: Right now there's this one candle I got from PriceBusters that started out nice but ended up totally waxy (irritating, since otherwise I get decent ones there), and the ones I saw at Ross aren't exactly appealing to me, either in terms of aesthetics or scent.

Part of the reason why my search for a good unscented candle hasn't yielded anything substantial has a lot to do with my respiratory problems, which means that I can't have anything that will result in tons of soot. I'm also easily annoyed by leftover wax, because I hate scraping the stuff off: I'd rather go for jars than pillars because I have a tendency to knock things over if I'm not careful, and even then I hate to be the kind of person who throws out whole jars with impossible-to-remove wax craters at the bottom. Also, no waxy buildup = no scrounging around looking for the wick before it all burns out.

So you could understand where I'm going with all of this. On the one hand, you have your Slatkins and Diptyques and Red Flowers, the ones that look and smell so good you don't even want to light them up: when you see them at the store you can all but hear them whisper, “I'm too sexy for your apartment.” On the other hand... Yankee Candle, which I would otherwise not mind if there wasn't so many Yankee knockoffs at Ross with the ugly jars and the overbearing fruity/foody “Grandma baking in kitchen” scents. (And it's a pity, too, because the other Yankee Candle fragrances are actually nice.)

Then there are soy candles, which I like - a lot - but the ones that I do like are a tad threatening to my pocketbook, like Soyology (mmm) and Malie Kauai (808 in the hizzy!) - yes, I know that soy candles burn clean and last longer, but ask me later when I'm not in such a financial bind.

While I'm still narrowing my search down for my next candle, I might as well go ahead and share a few finds along the way:

- Illuminations (at Ala Moana) is still my favorite candle store. I was pleased to find that they use vegetable wax for their candles, which result in a very clean burn - barely any waxy buildup at all. Their fruit and floral scents are pretty without being boring or obnoxious. And good deals are not that hard to find when things go on sale.

- Scents and Sprays (from Las Vegas) carries the best selection of scented candles that I've seen on the Web, plus they also have the matching bath and body stuff from the top brands. One caveat: Shipping to Hawaii (UPS or FedEx) will cost you buku bucks.

- Of course, you can also join me in counting the days until you can shop online at, since they'll never open a store here in Honolulu. Why, you ask? Henri Bendel candles - adorable and hip without the nosebleed prices.

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