As 2013 comes to a close, I made my traditional round of store checks to sniff out some holiday home fragrance offerings. Being in South Florida, how is it not possible to be in a jolly mood with the weather so wonderful, far away from the Northeast’s snow and freezing temperatures?
From ribbed colored glass candles at Pier 1 to oversized metallic filled candles at Walmart, there appeared to be something to light up the season for all budgets. The household aisle, where mass marketers traditionally showcase their wares, was adorned with holiday/winter collections from Glade, Febreze, and AirWick. I became lost in the differences between Frasier Fir, Christmas Wreath, Glistening Pine, and Shimmering Spruce – how can anyone choose given this forest of variants? On retail shelves were the typical holiday-fare glass candles filled with a variety of evergreen scents, from pine to spruce to fern and berry combinations. I even overheard two women arguing over the nuances between Glade and Febreze tree candles – was it spruce or fern? Who knows, I thought to myself.
Most retail outlets offered home fragrance products at various price points, but surprisingly, higher priced products were creeping up in stores like Walmart. While people are not clamoring for $60.00 candles, they certainly seem to be willing to spend more for a candle than in previous years. This appeared to be reflected by the prominence of the latest candles from luxury French perfumer Diptyque within the cosmetics department of Bloomingdale’s.
However, it wasn’t the in-store offerings that most impressed me this year, but rather what is being offered online. From the inspirational “This is My Wish” TV spots by Glade to the beautiful candles that grace the websites of Candle Delirium within their holiday gift guide, and Candles off Main’s range of stylish holiday products, online sales are poised to play a significant role in the home fragrances market this year. According to our annual Home Fragrances: U.S. Market Analysis and Opportunities report, last year’s Internet sales were a major driver in the growth of the candles market, and we are confident that this year is continuing the trend.
A few honorable mentions this holiday season go out to Yankee Candle Company for their new Easy to Clean Up Wax Melts, Bath & Body Works for their incredible fall and Christmas wallflower merchandising displays, and Walmart’s Better Homes & Garden line of wax melt diffusers.