What makes a manly scent worthy of a MANdle?

What scents do men really like? Which of those scents would a man want bottled in wax? Do we really need to differentiate candles into a manly and girly category?  These are just a few of the questions that run through my head on the daily.

Top 3 manly smells HE likes, but I don’t

Nag Champa

When my husband gets a wild hair and burns an incense stick from his ancient box of Nag Champa from college, I will. Mostly I think of how much I wished it would magically extinguish.

I wouldn’t say I don’t’ “like” the smell, it is just an overwhelmingly strong smell that, after burning for a couple of minutes, makes my head throb.

Chewing Tobacco

MANdle Candle Scent? 1 Vote for NO.

MANdle Candle Scent? 1 Vote for NO.

To be fair, I have to share some background information on this one. I grew up in a household with 5 brothers, 2 dads and 2 male hunting dogs. 3 of those brothers chewed tobacco. 1 of those brothers drove me to school everyday, up until my junior year of high school, and every morning I would open the door to find a gag-worthy, nasty chewing tobacco Sonic styrofoam spit-cup. Even writing “spit-cup” makes me cringe. That smell, OMG – that SMELL! Sweaty dank mint meets rotten ass tobacco plus bad-breath, day-old spit.


But what is the real reason I harbor such disgust for that snuff? One morning, he had it sitting on the seat and (wait for it) I sat on it. All of that nastiness broke free of the Route 44 nightmare and soaked deep up into my blue jeans and panties. And then, I puked. And puked.

The worst part? He wouldn’t take me home to change. I had to sit in the nurse’s office, all covered in this putrid funk, waiting for my dad to bring me my least favorite pair of jeans.

Fast-forward to today: My husband chews. The horror.


Simply put, it smells like a locker room without an actively employed janitor. Barf.

Top 3 manly smells we both like

Pipe Tobacco

Reminds me of my grandfather, Bud. He would sit in his favorite well-worn leather recliner and puff-puff away on his equally well-worn wooden pipe. He always smoked a cherry tobacco blend. Brings back so many very fond memories. Same goes with my husband, Brandon. His grandfather also smoked a pipe. Have you smelled our Stogie from Muskogee? Heaven.


Unique father's day gift

Sharing a Moment

Craft Beers & Microbrews

For Brandon, the “nose” knows. He loves the aroma of a good microbrew or craft beer. Sometimes I think he will never even get to drinking it! He just sits on his bar stool….sniffing. I used to think it was so weird, almost like watching a dog greeting. Today? I find myself doing the same thing. I have to admit it, I LOVE sniffing out a good brew and sharing it with Marsha, Barley & Hops Craft Candle scentmaster and candle pourer. In fact, this is a text she sent me from the other day!

“Prairie Bomb is DA BOMB!!!”

Espresso & Coffee

Man & Woman Approved ManDLE scent, Espresso & Coffee.

Man & Woman Approved ManDLE scent, Espresso & Coffee.

Working in coffee shops in every town I attended college was my “thing.” I lived, loved and appreciated a good bean. When I grew up, I lived in downtown Kansas City smack dab across the block from a coffee manufacturing facility. So did Brandon. I have yet to meet someone who DOESN’T like the aroma of freshly ground coffee beans. What makes the bean even better? You can find it’s roast aroma in most Stout beers! DOUBLE SCORE!

Do we really need to make it a gender thing?

This is the part of this “Making of a MANdle” section that is not meant to offend but instead, answer the question of,  “Do we really need to make it a gender thing?”

Do I really want to smear some freshly cut grass on my body and say, “Hey baby, mow me.”

manly-candles-tobaccoDo men really prefer or long-for the scent of gasoline bottled in wax? Don’t get me wrong, I admit that I love sniffing a little gas when I am filling the tank, but do I want to take it with me? Nope. Do I love the smell of freshly cut grass after my husband or I finally get to mowing? Sure! But do I want my house to smell like my mower? Again, no. And finally, both my husband and I love to cook and BBQ, but when it is all said and done and the kitchen has been cleaned – I really prefer the smell to be gone.

Brian Sinning says, “A Bacon candle? That would piss me off. I wake-up, I smell bacon, I get out of bed early and no bacon.”

I firmly believe that gender plays no part in determining if something smells good. Heck, before I put my nose to a microbrew, I simply assumed it would smell like yeasty funk. Today, after visiting countless breweries and sniffing hundreds of craft beers, I can honestly say that a craft brew candle is one of my favorite smells! Why should we assume that a woman would or could not enjoy the aroma of a good microbrew?

“Is my husband ashamed to say he likes the smell of the perfume Paloma Picasso? Hell no! He knows he’s going to get lucky tonight!” says one of Marsha’s good friends.

Balderdash, I say!



Categories: Ramblings


Leave a Reply

Avatar placeholder

Your email address will not be published.