I'm a bit cautious when it comes to new releases; usually I'll wait to see whether a product is worth buying before handing over my precious pennies. However one brand whose latest collections I await with eager eyes is Yankee Candle. Of course their sampler votives and wax tarts coming in at less than the price of your daily latte makes it kinder on the bank balance. It means I can test out entire collections guilt free.


Yankee Candle's Quarter 3 (Q3) release, Out of Africa, is very much in the same vein as last year's offering (the Indian Summer collection), and this time they have brought out four scents inspired by African flora, mountains and sunsets. The four scents in the collection are named Kilimanjaro Stars, Serengeti Sunset, Madagascan Orchid and Egyptian Musk.
 



Serengeti Sunset (along with Kilimanjaro Stars) is a fantasy fragrance; one that doesn't smell like an actual object i.e. cherries or laundry. Yankee Candle say of Serengeti Sunset: "the enticing blend of fruit, citrus, lotus flower and amber celebrates the haunting beauty of the African sky". This is a complex blend with fruit (I detect orange and raspberry) at the forefront. It almost smells a bit fizzy, and the amber brings a lovely warmth to the scent, matching the gorgeous sunset tones of the label and wax. This scent really reminds me of the Ghost Eclipse fragrance, one of my summer favourites, so it's natural that I'm a fan of Serengeti Sunset.

Madagascan Orchid is "intense and intriguing...The exotic perfume of this rare orchid holds an irresistible allure". Madagascan Orchid is deep, dark and sexy, and will 100% become a winter burn for me. It definitely boasts similarities to the Tom Ford Velvet Orchid fragrance, which has become a favourite of mine for the cooler months. I can definitely recommend trying a mixology of Madagascan Orchid and Black Coconut, which transforms the scent into a multi-layered, flower bomb with echoes of coconut and cedarwood.

Egyptian Musk is described as "A prized treasure...A captivating musk with hints of vanilla bean and cedarwood". Where Season of Peace is a cool, icy white musk, Egyptian is the warm, summer equivalent. There's a hint of something sweet and dare I say floral in there, which transforms the scent. Personally I don't enjoy white musk scents in general, so sadly this was never going to be my favourite out of the bunch.

Finally, one for the guys is Kilimanjaro Stars. It is described as "like nightfall on the ice covered peak, crisp clean mountain air is laced with cool mint and earthy patchouli". To my nose, Kilimanjaro Stars smells like the lovechild of so many Yankee scents. I detect a hint of the aquatic Turquoise Sky, and a certain sweetness it shares with Aloe Water. Not forgetting there will always be the comparison to Yankee's resident aftershave scent, Midsummer's Night. These references to other fragrances make Kilimanjaro Stars a comforting, familiar scent. I love to burn these kinds of outdoorsy, masculine fragrances with the windows wide open so you get a bit of a breeze, and it really helps you feel at one with nature. Whilst I'm doubtful Killimangaro Stars can compete with November Rain (the aftershavey scent always has my heart), it is definitely a strong contender and is already proving popular.

Overall my favourite scents from the Out of Africa collection are Serengetti Sunset and Madagascan Orchid, as I predicted. I think Out of Africa comes in as a strong collection as a whole; their clever branding and label designs make it a great one to collect. After a bit of a boob with the Life's A Beach collection, Yankee  Candle seem to be firmly back on track and I have no doubts that there will be many more awesome collections coming our way.