As the weather cools into the DC area’s most tolerable temperature range of the year, I am revitalizing my hunt for my ultimate pumpkin spice candle. Call me basic, call me boring, but pumpkin spice is the scent of the season, especially in 2020 when I’m craving simple comforts in a tough time. Candle Fandom fans (AKA my friends and family lmao) know that I’ve developed a shortlist of eight of my favorites, but the list just got a little more complicated when I found out about a promising new contender from Basic Bee Candle Co. Simply titled “Pumpkin Spice,” this beeswax candle has a minimalist design… and a transformational scent that’s anything but.
Natural beeswax makes an effective scent carrier for Basic Bee’s blend of essential oils. Though natural candles are typically less aromatic than artificial ones, recognizable notes of cinnamon and clove ensure that this candle still makes a statement. Light on the sweetness and heavy on the spice, this iteration on the classic scent could easily transition from early autumn into a frosty winter. It’s less sugary than your average pumpkin spice candle, offering comfort without any dessert cravings.
What’s more, it accomplishes this aroma without any paraffin or fragrance oils. It’s a labor of love from a one-woman shop. Shaina Lewinski told me she started Basic Bee after researching what’s in her scented candles… and deciding she did NOT want to release those harsh chemicals into the air. She didn’t just decide to opt for natural candles instead—she decided to make her own.
“When I couldn’t find a candle I was confident in, I decided to make my own,” Shaina told me in an email interview. “It started out just for fun and personal use but then my friends really loved them and kept encouraging me to share them. I burn [my candles] myself, so I hold them to really high standards!”
But if you want to add this candle to your fall repertoire, act fast. When a reader (OK, my sister) told me that I just had to test drive this candle, I checked out the Basic Bee shop and discovered it was already sold out! It turns out that Instagram star Caitlin Covington gushed about this candle to her 1.2 million followers, turning this humble indie brand into the “it” candle of the season. Beeswax has never been so buzzworthy!
“The best feedback I’ve gotten is honestly from Caitlin Covington,” Shaina said. “She asked for natural candle recommendations on instagram and I reached out with a link to my company… After she tried my pumpkin spice candle she messaged me right away and told me how much she loved it. Hearing from an influencer you follow that endorses brands such as Nordstrom and Chanel—and hearing that she loves your product so much she wants to promote it—is pretty darn amazing.”
Basic Bee Candles are available on Etsy