The Ladies Love a Candle

I’m a sucker for brands just like a lot of people. Apart from the perceived kudos of a brand there is that nagging voice in your head trying to convince you something is better because it is more expensive. Cars, watches, outdoor walking gear, you name and it I’ve convinced myself spending twice as much on a well known brand was worth it despite, in most cases, the cheaper alternative being perfectly capable of doing the job just as well, albeit without the looks or swagger. However, I do draw the line with some things.

Ordinarily, one of those things would be candles. A candle is made of a vegetable based wax, sometimes some paraffin wax and maybe a bit of beeswax but just wax nevertheless. Some candles have some scent in them, some scent is better than others I’ll grant you but it is just scent made from readily available materials. Then there is a wick, cotton or something I imagine. Not worth much, so why spend a small fortune on one when you can get a good quality candle that does what a candle is meant to do for not much money at all?

Jo Malone Candles

Ladies that’s why. Ladies love a nice smelly candle, well at least my wife and daughters do and as far as they are concerned nothing smells as good as a Jo Malone candle. Here I do have to concede a little, they do last a long time and they do smell rather good, better than most I would say. However, and there is a bloody big HOWEVER, they cost £45 each. FORTY FIVE FLIPPIN’ QUID!! For a small glass filled with wax and a wick with a bit of smelly. Not a glass hand blown and rolled from silver crystal, not wax personally extracted from active beehives by bear armed virgins, not a wick lovingly woven from the finest silk and gold thread by fairies. A regular mass produced glass container, regular wax, regular wick and some smelly stuff.

But the girls like them, so I bought two online for my daughters, ordered and paid for on Sunday with 2-5 day shipping. Great, just in time for Christmas. Ah, no, only got the shipping notice this evening, Wednesday. So, it took them 3 whole days to put a couple of candles in a box and ship it out of the door? When you are charging me £45 EACH! Must have been tricky getting that wax from the hives, rolling those wicks takes time you know. Seriously, that is far from good enough when you are charging proper premium prices for a candle with actual cost of goods probably in single figures, possibly even pennies. If you mean 5-8 days bloody well have the decency to say so! Yesterday evening I ordered 3 bottles of booze from Amazon and they were delivered this evening! I even ordered an inflatable Santa off eBay from a bloke in Leicester operating out of his garage and that arrived within 48 hours. See that Jo, that’s how you are supposed to do it, that’s what people expect these days and that’s just for regular shopping. (Edit: Just to correct this slightly, the candles arrived on Friday so a full 5 working days from ordering the previous Sunday but within the quoted time scales, although I’m still not sure how it takes a company with the international prestige of Jo Malone 3 days to put two candles in a box)

Now I can’t rely on these presents arriving in time for Christmas so I’m going to have to find something else. The only silver lining is just how hard can it be to find something more impressive than a candle for £45?

Just as a point of reference here’s something else that cost £45.

The ASUS H110M-K Motherboard

Quite apart from the insane level of technology just in the design and build, the number of transistors, what it is actually capable off, all things that would blow my mind if I thought about it too much, this relatively cheap motherboard contains gold, silver, platinum, palladium, copper, nickel, tantalum, aluminium, tin and zinc amongst a whole bunch of other stuff that some poor sod had to dig out of the ground for less money a month than the price of a Jo Malone candle. It is probably several thousand times more powerful than the computing power that put men on the moon.

The world has gone more than a little crazy. These candles will be going back, simply because I need presents for Christmas but the whole experience has really made me think. Next time you get the desparate urge to make your life complete and spend a ridiculous amount of money on smelly wax, think what else you could do with the money? Make sure a homeless person has a warm coat and a bite to eat, help ensure a blind person gets a guide dog and multiple other things more meaningful. Ninety quid for two candles for crying out loud, what is the world coming to when we need that sort of fulfillment?


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