Candle review: Kiss In Rio by Jonathan Ward

A scented candle with purpose: to support BLM and female equality charities as well as making your home smell utterly divine.

The brand

Jonathan Ward are a luxury candle company making artisanal, hand poured candles in London with partners in Greece. A significant degree of thought has clearly been put into the brand, which includes a certified organic wax blend (coconut oil, vegetable wax and beeswax), double wicks wherever possible, and sourcing from ethical producers.

The company focuses on home scents: candles, room mists and diffusers.

This special, Kiss In Rio candle, was produced in support of Black Lives Matter and female equality charities. People were able to nominate their “unsung heroes” who then received a card with which they could imprint their own kiss and send back to the company. The company then printed these on the glass of the candle holder and have donated 100% of the profits to the charities. Here at The Sniff we were utterly thrilled to have been anonymously nominated as one of the pandemic’s unsung heroes. So thank you to both Jonathan Ward and whichever kind soul nominated me.

The packaging

The Kiss In Rio is a special collector’s edition candle, which arrived in a simple black, cardboard box. The candle itself is housed in a glass holder which has been printed with the kisses of unsung heroes as well as the Jonathan Ward logo. It’s both attractive and functional.

Kiss In Rio candle by Jonathan Ward

Listed notes

Olibanum oil, Bergamot, petitgrain, organic black pepper, cedarwood, jasmine absolut, obsidian leather, patchouli heart, oakmoss.

The scent

“Thrilling” isn’t normally an adjective one would necessarily associate with scented candles or home fragrances of any kind, but Kiss In Rio utterly justifies its usage. Even before you light the candle, it gives off wafts of its delicious fragrance just sitting there. Once you do light it, the beauty it perfumes the house with will only be amplified.

An uplifting flush of citrus rises from the bergamot as well as the resinous thrum of the olibanum. A luscious, fleshy jasmine sparks beautifully off the peppery facets before leading down into the leather, patchouli and oakmoss combination at the core of the scent, which is addictive, seductive and glamorous.

This is a really lovely scent, I would wear it as a perfume. It has all the drama of a skin fragrance poured into a candle. It sounds like hyperbole to say that it is one of the nicest home candles I have smelled, but it is still true.

The throw

The throw from this candle is exceptional. Within 30-45 minutes it had filled the room it was in and also the hallway and permeated upstairs too. The scent was noticeable, but there was nothing overbearing about it, it just made the whole house smell gorgeous very quickly.

The dual wick is a lovely addition to the candle, ensuring it burns evenly throughout. As we tested this, there was no sooting of the container or tunnelling observed at all.

The verdict

Kiss In Rio by Jonathan Ward is an exceptional candle. It smells utterly wonderful, as an object itself it is attractive, and it gives back to charities that are changing the world. Nothing has been scrimped or cut to make this a charity offering, it is luxurious through and through and the quality is impeccable. Buy it if you want your home to smell good, buy it if you want to help some amazing charities or buy it as a treat for yourself for getting through a really tough period of history.

Buy it

Kiss In Rio is priced at £52 from the Jonathan Ward web boutique, and, I cannot point this out often enough, 100% of the profits go to BLM and female equality charities. There is also a list of stockists available on the Jonathan Ward website, ready for when we can go to shops safely in person again.

The other stuff

We were anonymously nominated by a friend to provide one of the kisses which are printed on to the candle holder for Kiss In Rio. For being highlighted in this way we were also gifted a candle. Jonathan Ward provided this in good faith and with no expectation that we would produce a review, however, given how good this is, how could we not? We would like to offer again our thanks to our anonymous friend who nominated us, and to Jonathan Ward for running such an important and timely campaign.

I have subsequently donated to charity in thanks for the candle.

Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay.


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