For most hair care lines, if an inviting fragrance happens to be mixed into the formula, it’s something of an added bonus. But from the very beginning of Ouai, the sophisticated minimalist brand helmed by celebrity-hairstylist-turned-actual-celebrity Jen Atkin, it was always just par for the course. Ouai products notoriously smell good — not just clean, but like a legitimate perfume — which makes its entrance into the actual fragrance space a very natural one. On the heels of a full-scale perfume line and scent-first collaboration with Byredo, news of Ouai’s first-ever candles launching early this September spread through the beauty universe.
“Candles were hands down the most requested product we constantly received from our community for years, especially after we launched fragrances,” Atkin explains to TZR. “Our fragrances have developed cult followings, so we decided to create two candles in our most popular scents: Melrose Place and North Bondi.”
North Bondi, found in products like Ouai’s best-selling Wave Spray and Leave-In Conditioner, is like a collision of every beautiful, exotic beach in the world with warm, sensual notes of florals, light white musk, Italian lemon, and violet — in other words, this candle is the answer for everyone panicking that summer is coming to a close as it’s essentially a surf-side date in wax form.
You’ll notice the simple, stone-effect candle housing was designed and selected with the same commitment to intention as the scents themselves. Atkin tells TZR that “chic and simple” were the operative words for the packaging design, inspired by Erick Garcia’s minimalist wonderland of an interior design studio, Maison Trouvaille — “my constant inspirations,” she says. As for the candle itself, Atkin and the Ouai team developed a chemical-free wax formula calibrated for an even burn and long-lasting scent with serious throw.
The other scent getting the home fragrance treatment is fellow best-seller Melrose Place. Named for the legendary West Hollywood drag dotted with endless boutiques running the gamut from majorly upscale to downright funky. The scent is both rich and very fresh with rose, champagne, and lychee notes that play together in perfect olfactory harmony.
As home fragrance lovers everywhere (Atkin included) can tell you, lighting a lush-smelling candle is an ideal way to cozy up your space and kick off an evening of self-care. “I have candles in pretty much every room of my home,” Atkin shares, “but I love to keep some in my living room and light one (or two, or three) before settling in with my family for a night in.” She also learned a lot about candles from the research and design process, and offers this key tip: “The first time you burn a candle, make sure the wax melts all the way across so that you don’t get a funnel effect,” she explains. “So when I’m breaking in a new candle, I know it’s going to need to burn for a few hours which means more downtime — which, with a baby at home, is rare but very needed.”
Ouai candles retail for $44 and are available in early September. If you’re much too eager (totally understandable), you can add your name to the waiting list here.