NEWNESS UPDATE: Summertime Madness *UPDATED*

Thought BBW was done? Think again. There's quite a few things headin our way for summer

So a very mysterious collection popped up on social media recently; thanks to Lifeinsidethepage, we got a sneak peek of them. People have dubbed them the "cactus candles" as they seem to have a cactus/succulents theme going on. At first glance, it seems to be a watered down version of the ill-fated Desert collection; my guess is this is a feeble attempt to appease the conceptual lovers who were pissed that the collection didn't go wide yet are basic enough to lure in customers with less discerning tastes. The labels look cheap as hell, like CVS/Rite-Aid/Dollar General cheap but at least the names sound intriguing. Now I'm guessing that these have only hit a few locations as almost everyone I've talked to did not see them in their nearest test stores; I haven't even seen these on Ebay or Mercari. And for whatever reason, the few who have seen them are being very tight-lipped about the notes and such. a discreteness you very rarely find in the candle community when it comes to newness/test scents. Anyhoo, enough prattling on; here they are...


  • Blue Agave (I'm hoping this is Desert Rain)
  • Moonlit Lily (Cactus Lily?)
  • Peach Poppy - Soft Peach, Southwestern Poppies, Fresh Mandarin (sounds like Malibu Citrus Glow/Peach Bellini but nope! Word on the street is this may be Wild Poppies aka Poppy Sunshine)
  • Succulents and Sandstone - Sagebrush Leaves, Dark Tonka Bean, Desert Ironwood (sounds suspiciously like Black Tie/Sage & Cedar but again, nope! I was given a headsup from a friend that while it is a mandle, it smells closer to Bowties & Bourbon but not a repackage. The Desert collection a scent called Sedona Sandstone, it could be that.)
Returning scents include Cactus Blossom and Wild Sage and Aloe


Also, a very random last minute addition was recently thrown into the Mixed Materials collection...

  • Wild Huckleberry - Juicy Huckleberry, Ripe Blackcurrant, Green Leaves (oooookay, no clue what this has to do with "mixed materials" but whatever. The theory is that it may be Blackberry Bramble Tea )

Thanks to a reliable source, I heard that another collection is hitting stores. Much like the hot mess that is the infamous "Time New Roman" candles, it's all over the place - no theme, no cohesion. And speakin of Times New Roman, it's back with a vengeance with these candles

  • Sugared Citrus Sorbet - Zesty Mandarin, Icy Lemon Sugar, Juicy Red Raspberry (I'm hoping and praying that it's Slatkin's very popular Lemon Gelato from backintheday but who am I kidding, probably not)
  • Vanilla Berry Cone - Sweet Summer Berries, Golden Waffle Cone, Creamy Vanilla (if this is Berry Vanilla Bean from last Christmas, I'll be highly surprised)
Returning scents include Vanilla Beach Flower, Pineapple Palm Grass, Caribbean Escape, Driftwood Surf and Tiki Beach

Lastly, SAS is just around the corner and we are getting a lot of throwback. And as this seems to be an ongoing theme with BBW lately, the returning scents are random as hell. As far as I know, the following scents are just wf bulbs, no word on if there will be candles as well...

  • Pearberry
  • Plumeria
  • Juniper Breeze (yay!)
  • Fresh Cotton
  • Pink Lemonade Punch
  • Spring (yay!)
  • Lemon Mint Leaf
  • Kitchen Spice
  • Strawberry Vanilla
  • Caribbean Escape
  • Brazilian Blue Waters
  • Fiji White Sands
  • Black Teakwood
  • Coconut Sandalwood
  • Sunset Beach
There will also be summer additions to the WB Core line - Mango Coconut Cooler, Peach Bellini and Island Margarita...yawn! Hopefully we'll see more than that. 

WALK 'N' SNIFF: House of Blues and Mixed Materials

So last Friday I went to BBW hoping snag some newness while there was still a BOGO sale..alas, no. The SA very graciously brought me some candles out from the back but the computer wouldn't let her sell them to me for the sale price. I thanked her anyway and I left. Apparently this has happened to many others...which I'd like to time out to adress something...

Dear SAs...NOBODY is mad at you for not selling new candles. We get it, it's an edict from corporate that you must follow. When and if you hear anyone complain about this on social media, we are not mad at yall but rather the stupid things corporate makes y'all do!

Anyway, I was running errands today (Monday) and I decided to make a stop at BBW since I was in the area so that I could at least write a review. And so here we are.



Let's start with the House of Blues candles. as per usual, I will only talk about the new candles

Honey & Vanilla - so right off the bat, this is NOT a repackage of Honey & Tangerine or Sweet Honey Bee; as far as I can tell, this is a completely new scent...and it's not what you expect. I LOATHE vanilla scents and I'm not a huge fan of honey scents either so I was expecting to utterly and completely hate this one but I gotta say I was pleasantly surprised. So despite what the name suggests, there is absolutely no honey and the tinge of vanilla that's there is not the vanilla you're used to from BBW. As a whole, this scents smells like straightup melted white chocolate, like something you'd dip strawberries into; it almost has a Nestle's Crunch Cookies and Cream vibe to it. The vanilla is not vanilla/tonka bean or vanilla powdered sugar or marshmallow but almost milky; think French Vanilla coffee creamer. All in all, it's a very rich, indulgent and decadent scent; it's a good curl up in your blanket and read a book type scent. I'm a little annoyed at the name and marketing as it's a total misnomer; it should've been something like "Milk and Sugar" or "White Chocolate & Creme" or "French Vanilla White Mocha". Honey and Vanilla does it no justice.

Fresh Mint & Coconut - Again this was another scent that I was not expecting to like but it totally surprised me. And again, the name totally threw/turned me off - mint and coconut are not notes that I would think go together...then again I did like Lavender Coconut. Anyway, the scent is a little more complex than the basic name suggests - you do get mint, think freshly picked and slightly muddled garden mint/peppermint which gives the blend a freshness and yet it's surprisingly not very menthol-y. And you did get the coconut but it's more like coconut water as opposed to meat or milk. And there are some green grassy notes behind the mint that almost gives the scent a Green Grass/Snap Peas type vibe. Lastly, there is a faint ozonic seawater/sea air/sea spray vibe chillin in the background. I would say think of this as a summer version of Renew & Refresh, same type vibe but with coconut water. Again, BAD MARKETING. This should've been called something vague and conceptual like "Summer Fun" or "Sea Breeze" "Beach Vibes" or "Beach Shore"and put in the Spa Day collection or one of the beachy ones.


And now Mixed Materials, omitting Tea & Lemon (aka London Calling), Bergamot Waters and Rosewater & Ivy (which smells exactly like the wf bulbs albeit slightly less intense)

Vanilla Birch - so this one seems to have confused a lot of people, myself included. I thought for sure it would Peace ~ Iced Vanilla Woods as it was repackaged as "White Birch" last fall. There was also a Vanilla Birchwood back in the Slatkin days but after sniffing this, this can not possibly be that. After finally sniffing this, I gotta say I kinda surprised if not disappointed that no one figured this out except for Tinadivalicious who talked about it in his recent video   and I am cosigning. Vanilla Birch is a straightup repackage of Wine Cellar aka Smoked Berries & Incense..without a doubt, there's no denying it, I'm goin down swingin to defend myself on this one. I even sniffed other ones to make sure I wasnt just sniffing a mismatched lid but nope, they all smelled like Wine Cellar. VB is a little lighter, a little less robust but that's about it. I don't really understand how a spicy fruity wine scent all of a sudden becomes a woody vanilla scent..there's NO vanilla aspect at all. Speakin of which, this most certainly is NOT Wild Madagascar Vanilla as people have been saying on social. Once a-friggin-gain, BAD MARKETING! They could've called this "Wine & Spice" "Pomegranate & Saffron/Patchouli" "Red Fruit & Oak" ..hello friggin rename it SMOKED BERRIES & INCENSE!!!

Bourbon Sea Salt Caramel - so I initially wrote this off as yet another generic savory ooey gooey sticky sweet diabetic coma inducing caramel scent...it is kinda. It kinda gives me a Hot Buttered Rum vibe as it a rich caramel scent with a hint of salty savoriness and a splash of sweet dark liquor...although I'm hesitant to see it's a repackage/repackage with a twist. For the sake of argument, I'll just say it's new but familiar. And you do get a boozy kick that separates it from all of the other caramel scents over the years. And I dunno if my nose is trippin, but I swear I got a faint hint of almond but not like roasted almonds or amaretto; it's smells like the generic almond scented hand soap you get from dollar stores..which makes me think this may be a repackage of Toffee Glazed Popcorn/Toffee Crunch from 2012. I didn't like that scent nor do I really remember some another candle connoisseur out there will have to prove me right or wrong.

Sweet Spearmint - so there was a failed test scent of the same name in the Fresh Picked collection back in spring 2014. I'm pleased as punch to report that this is the same scent albeit lighter..which is par for the course with BBW. I stupidly passed on this one when I first moved up here and saw it in GSP back when it was still a test store so I'm glad it's back. The scent is straightforward, it's literally sweet spearmint. Think of this as a spring/summer version of Twisted Peppermint, Twisted Peppermint's twin. You get a Doublemint Gum-esque spearmint note, the same spearmint note you get in Winter Mint & Spruce. It's cooling and refreshing and ever so slightly sharp. And it's sweetened and toned by a sugared vanilla bean note, not as creamy as it portrays itself to be. And that's it. This would make a nice cool you down on a hot spring/summer down kinda scent. Again, BAD MARKETING..that seems to be a friggin theme! Why exactly makes this scent "mixed materials"? Shouldn't the name suggest that? "Mint & Sugar" or "Vanilla Spearmint" Personally this scent doesn't belong and should've been in either the Lattice or Hit Refresh or Summer Fresh collection.

TEST SCENT REALNESS/THIS IS THE BOMB.COM: Prickly Pear Sugarcane



Products: candle   
Area used in: living room
Time Period: end of April - June

Description: Bring home a blend of luscious prickly pear fruit and sugarcane inspired by the exotic flavors of Mexico

Trivia: this and Mayan Caramel (aka Cayenne Caramel) were the only failed test scents from what I call the "Taco Bell" collection - because the chosen scents were as authentically Mexican as Taco Bell

Somehow, thru sheer luck, I managed to snag one lone Prickly Pear Sugarcane long after the collection came out and had every intention on keeping it in my "sniff only" collection. However, luck struck again, I was able to snag another one and I just had to burn that sucker. I figured sometime around Cinco de Mayo would be the most apropos time for it and waited patiently to get my burn on...and I'm soooo glad I waited that and that I had an extra one to burn because it is f***ing AMAZING!!!!

So right off the bat this sucker is STRONG! Even the cold throw is intense; you pop off the lid and it's an instant KO. A few times I had it unlit and sitting on a table and I can still smell it as if it was lit. When I lit it the first time, the scent throw wasn't as strong however after a few subsequent burns, the throw started getting stronger and stronger. I was a bit concerned as it had the wax covered rope wicks with no post burn mushroom tops and that for sure that it would burn like crap but nope I was wrong; perfect burns every single time. 

As for the scent, it's very straightfoward - it smells like legit prickly pears/cactus fruit. I own a bottle of prickly pear syrup  and the candle smells just likes it. If you don't know prickly pears smells and/or tastes like, think a mix of pear, melon and raspberry...very unique. And unlike what the color of the wax may suggest, prickly pear fruit and meat is actually a bright fuchsia/magenta. The notes mention pear as opposed to prickly pear...kinda of annoying that BBW doesn't know the difference. That said, perhaps whatever pear fragrance oil when mixed with other unmentioned hidden notes creates something that smells like prickly pear...who knows. As for the sugarcane, there is a natural smelling drippy syrupy sweetness to the blend. And I get some wet and lush green notes in the background - definitely sometime cactus and/or aloe and maybe a hint of cucumber/melon. As a whole, the scent is perfectly balanced - it's sweet without smelling like candy, fresh without smelling laundry detergent/fabric softener and lush and green without smelling grassy or outdoorsy. It's crisp and juicy and succulent, its one of those scents that makes you feel a little indulgent and decadent.

This is one of many instances that makes you wanna scream "BBW, what the f*** is wrong with you?!" Why, oh why didn't you release it?! Like all of the other unicorn candles of the past, it was a guaranteed hit and there's no excuse why it failed. And unlike all of the bland and basic scents that did go wide this collection, PPS actually had something to do with Mexican culture; hell prickly pear is actually on the damn Mexican flag! But no, instead you release friggin Pineapple Lily, which was STANK and smelled nothing at all like actual pineapple lilies...which is a good thing because they smell like rotten ass. Furthermore, they grow in Africa not friggin Mexico..which you geniuses in the marketing department would know if y'all actually did research! Anyway, I doubt BBW will ever bring this back as good scents always disappear so if you see this on Ebay or Mercari (and it's reasonable) or you have a friend who will sell you one, don't think about it, JUST BUY IT!!!!

CANDLE SPOTLIGHT: Tobacco Flower


Products: candle   
Area used in: living room
Time Period: end of April - June

Description: Tobacco Flower, Black Peppercorn, Spicy Orchid, Warm Tonka

So this review is gonna be super brief cuz I don't really have too much to say about this scent. I really only bought this scent because I wanted a spicy cologney mandle for the boudoir to go with my current Cinco de Mayo/tribute to Mexico theme...and beacuse my bf liked it.

So the performance is good stuff - sturdy wicks, mushroom tops, deep even pool yada yada yada. The throw is soooooo light; you have to hover it to get any fragrances and what little scent has been thrown dissipates  almost immediately after blow the candle out. Even the wf bulb is light; you really only smell it if you're standing next to it. It's one of those scents that you have to step out of the room and then re-enter to get any semblance of fragrance.

Most folks do know this but TF is a repackage and it's a repackage of a failed test scent that few are familiar with or even remember - Mad about Madrid ~ Under the Spanish Moon from spring 2014 and would later be repackaged for fall Tailgate (totally different from the original 2013 failed test scent version) To be honestly, I didn't really care for then and my feelings/opinions about it hasn't changed now.  As you know, I luv me some cologney scents however there's something about this one that rubs my nose the wrong way. I think it's because it's of the warm and spicy variety which is not the kind of cologne scent or even regular cologne that lean towards (my bf likes the spicy cologne/cologney scents whereas I like the fresh/watery or woodsy/herbal ones). The tobacco and black pepper obvious gives the blend the spice. There's also a drippy, polished, almost drippy cedar note and a hint of musk. As for the orchid and tonka...yeah I can't say that get either of those notes. I get the vibe they were going with this scent (even back in the day as MAM); it is a sort of exotic scent but I dunno if I get a Spanish vibe from this. To me, it just smells like a men's cologne; sometimes it confuses me sometimes and makes me think I have similar smelling cologne on.

I think out of all of the cologney mandles that have been on the market over the years, this is probably one of least offensive and most guest friendly ones; it's sweet and warm and exotic. For those who enjoy the spicier cologney scents or if you're typically anti-cologney scents, this is good scent to experiment with.  And that's really all I have to say about it.  

NEWNESS UPDATE: More Random Ridiculousness

So in the past couple of years, BBW has always had a very annoying habit of releasing one collection after the next back to back at neck breaking speed, especially in the spring and summer. This year is not the exception and if anything the habit is even worse and kicked up to hear gear. That being said...

We're getting more candles!!!

Fairly soon, we'll be getting 2 more collections. Don't get too excited though. Like all of the collection we've seen since SAS, it's just more thrown together "fan fav/crown pleaser" candles thrown together in with no rhyme or reason collection with no theme or cohesion. BBW refuse to waste any time putting any thought into their candle collections and coming up with a singular theme with scents that go together; they just throw candles together and hope that they stick.

Anyway, the first collection is the House of Blues collection, I'm guessing it's called that because the labels are watercolor meant mimic textiles and art styles with the main color being blue. New scents are...

Honey Vanilla - Rich Vanilla, Warm Tonka Bean, Wildflower Honey (believe it or not, this is neither Tangerine & Honey or Sweet Honey Bee)

Fresh Mint & Coconut - Creamy Coconut, Bright Mint Leaves, Deep Sea Water (I've heard it smells like Copper Coconut and Mineral Springs...blegghhh) 

Returning scents include Blue Ocean Waves, White Gardenia and Bowties & Bourbon

Do y'all out there get the theme cuz I sure as hell don't!


The second collection seems to be an addition to the WB core collection, like the marble collection. And they also have "White Barn" on the label. And like the marble collection, these candles have a cheap looking wrap around label with mixed textures, ie marble and wood. "New" scents are...

Tea & LemonEnglish Tea Leaves, Bright Lemon, White Cane Sugar (yep, you guessed it - London Calling. I'm glad they changed the name cuz LC has not/does not smell like hot proper English black tea with milk)

Sweet SpearmintGarden Mint Leaves, Crystallized Sugar, Creamy Vanilla (I'm hearing this is the same as the Fresh Picked version that tested and failed in 2014)

Vanilla Birch (I'm gonna assume this is Peace ~ Iced Vanilla Woods especially since it was repackaged as "White Birch" in a failed test collection last fall)

Bourbon Sea Salt Caramel (I guess this is either Maple & Sea Caramel or Bourbon Butterscotch from the Artisan collection back in the day

returning scents include Mahogany Stankwood (eyeroll), Bergamot Waters and Rosewater & Ivy (which I'm hoping we get the candle and not just the wf bulb)

With the exception of Sweet Spearmint and Bowties & Bourbon, I'm not even a little excited about any of these. It's like BBW is hellbent on getting money out of me...well it's a -workin!

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