I'm a master perfumer: why is a tomato candle my favorite Loewe scent?

Luxury brand Loewe have recently started making candles, which start from $110. Somehow, the tomato scent is my favorite - here's why.

Loewe tomato candles on a table
(Image credit: Loewe)

Unapologetically luxurious, Loewe are experts in indulgence. From bags to perfumes, it's easy to love the Spanish brand's iconic products. They've been around for nearly 180 years, and yet their foray into candles is a relatively recent success.

You've probably seen these candles in luxury homes without realizing it. Their subtle branding makes them look more like designer earthenware than some of the best candles on the market. That why I tested two of their most popular scents in my own home, so that I can give you feedback on which to buy. 

The first is a fairly obvious, standard scent - honeysuckle. It's a classic floral. The other, however, is a little more surprising. Loewe's tomato leaf candle, for my money, is the best of their collection. 

You'd be wise to have some reservations when buying candles online. I've taken my perfume expertise and tested Loewe's tomato and honeysuckle candles, so I can give you a representative review and ensure you end up with money well-spent.

What’s so special about Loewe candles?

Loewe candles and a soap on a ocuntertop

(Image credit: Net-A-Porter)

When it comes to luxury candles, I have high standards. My snobbery, however, is well-founded. I worked in luxury fragrance for years, whilst also qualifying as a Master Perfumer. That means I can tell a good candle from a poor candle at a glance. Lots of luxury brands will use fancy glazing, glass, and copious amounts of tissue paper to convince you that their cloying chemicals and paraffin wax are worth upwards of $150. 

Thankfully, Loewe are true to their their brand. They use vegetable wax and cotton wicks. Vegetable waxes are much better than mineral waxes, and tend to give a cleaner, longer burn. The same applies for cotton wicks, which burns without leaving black up your walls. 

Don't get me started on the earthenware candle pot, either Inspired by a 5th Century BC Greek mug, the ribbed terracotta pots are handmade and hand-glazed. Lots of people would pay $110 for the pot alone. Jonathan Anderson, Loewe's creative director says that ‘everything about the candles has been crafted in some way'. From the fragrance to the pot, it's clear that the process to production was well-considered and refined. Although the pot is based on old crockery, it looks modern and minimalistic too.

What is tomato leaf like?

Loewe tomato leaf candle with the box

(Image credit: Faraday's)

Let's start with looks. The shade of red is like no other. On the mantel or a coffee table, it's an unmissable pop of color. I enjoyed looking at it so much that I didn't burn mine for three weeks. Open to the air in my lounge, it naturally diffused a light scent across the room. I'd happily have one just for admiring, never burning.

However, when I finally lit the wick, I didn't regret it. The tomato leaf is exactly as promised. It's earthy and green. If you've ever eaten tomatoes off the vine, it's exactly like that. It such a refreshing change from the same old lavender, vanilla, and rose notes you find in many luxury candles. 

Gourmand fragrances have been trending in the perfume world for a while now, but lots of brands go overboard with very 'edible' fragrances. This steers clear from passata and ketchup, instead it's warm and fresh, like a summer garden. One of the noses behind this candle, Nuria Cruelles, described it as making her feel 'full of energy'. I completely agree; it's uplifting both to look at and to smell. 

The candle burns really well. I used mine for well over 50 hours and, because of the quality wax and wick, didn't have any blackening inside the pot or on my walls. As you get to the bottom, you'll need longer matches to reach all the way in, but these can look very stylish too. The candle's throw wasn't as far or strong as I thought it would have been. After a few weeks unlit, the tomato leaf scent had filled my room, so I expected it to be a strong candle. It's not weak, but it won't overpower pet smells, for example. 

What is honeysuckle like?

Loewe honeysuckle candle with soap

(Image credit: Net-A-Porter)

Loewe's Creative Director said that he created this scent to 'capture the olfactory memories from my childhood'. He sought to evoke 'the smells you might encounter throughout the day when shopping for vegetables'. Many of us have honeysuckle in our gardens, but if you aren't acquainted, it's definitely sweeter than tomato leaf. 

If you like notes of tuberose, jasmine, and vanilla, you'll like this. It's delicate, refreshing, and not as heady as the real honeysuckle flower. If a summer's day had a scent, it would be this. However, there's a richness to this honeysuckle that makes me want to burn it in the early evenings rather than the daytime. It's also much stronger than tomato leaf.

As for aesthetics, the warm yellow terracotta pot is a more subtle mantle staple than the tomato leaf, but I loved it just as much. 

Head to head

My Loewe Wishlist

Where can I buy a Loewe candle?

They're available in lots of retailers, but Net-A-Porter have an extensive collection of Loewe's candles. They'll also deliver on the same day to the Hampton's, so you don't need to wait very long for your candle.

What do Loewe candles smell like?

The entire Loewe range is crafted to emulate the outdoors, so most of them are very fresh and uplifting. Even the liquorish candle is refreshing. Remember, you can order a sample set if you aren't sure which scents you like.

Are designer candles worth it?

Sometimes. I'd always make sure to investigate the ingredients of my candle before buying it. Some designer candles are made from poor-quality packaging and they use a luxury label to make a massive profit. However, Loewe make excellent quality candles, so I think they're worth the money. You do pay more for the designer label, but that's the case with lots of luxury goods.

What are Loewe candles made from?

The wax is vegetable oil and the wick is cotton. These are both premium ingredients that will pay-off with burn time and burn quality. Price isn't always a guarantee of quality, but in this case, it is.

My Verdict

Loewe candle collection in different sizes and colors

(Image credit: Loewe)

With prices starting at $110, Loewe candles are an investment. However, I speak from experience when I say they're worth it. I've bought two, burned two, and I plan on making my way through the whole collection. From cucumber to pea, I'll try them all and keep you updated when if any topple these two from my favorites list. 

Laura Honey
eCommerce Editor

Laura is our eCommerce editor. As a fully qualified barista, she's our expert in all things coffee and has tested over thirty of the best coffee makers on the market. She has also interviewed Q-Graders and world-leading experts in the coffee industry, so has an intimate knowledge of all things coffee. Before joining Homes & Gardens, she studied English at Oxford University. Whilst studying, she trained as a master perfumer and worked in the luxury fragrance industry for five years. Her collection of home fragrance is extensive and she's met and interviewed five of the world's finest perfumers (also known as 'noses'). As a result of this expansive fragrance knowledge, she always puts quality and style over quantity and fads. Laura looks for products which have been designed simply and with thoughtful finishes.