Insider Secrets: How to Scent your Summer

Laura Slatkin, the nose behind Nest Candles, shares her favorite ways to light up

By Nikki Ostasiewski
Photograph: Courtesy of ABPR

What she’s burning right now
My favorites summertime Nest candles are Grapefruit and Wasabi Pear. I love walking in from the beach and smelling these refreshing aromas. We always burn Grapefruit in our guest room because after nearly two decades of being in the scent business, I’ve never met anyone that doesn’t like the crisp aroma of freshly sliced grapefruit. We opt for richer florals like Periwinkle Hyacinth and Pink Jasmine when entertaining friends in the evening, after the sun sets.

What she fires up when it’s cold out
I like to save rich, cozy scents for bitter winter nights when I’m creating an enveloping atmosphere. Wild Oats and Bourbon (which was inspired by a stuffing I make at Thanksgiving) is my wintertime go-to scent.

Where she find inspiration
In the kitchen! We recently had house guests and served them a wonderful salad filled with avocados, tomatoes, corn, asparagus, arugula, romaine, and fresh tarragon—all from a local farmer’s market. As we were eating, the scent of the salad was so intoxicating I thought to myself, this must be my next candle!

How to mix food and fragrance
If you’re going to burn a candle in the room where you’re dining, avoid heady, traditional florals  which can compete with the food. Citrus, herbal and spice-based candles are typically the most complimentary.

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