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Burn for you — set the mood wherever you go with these 12 incense labels

best incense

Lighting a stick of incense is one of those simple century-old rituals that ground us and keep us centred. Whether it's to begin a yoga session or to cleanse a space, incense plays a huge role in the many little ceremonies of our lives. Once our incense sticks have been consumed by flame and all that remains is ash, we're left with a heady scent absorbed by our furniture, easing our mind and preparing us for what lies ahead. So whether you prefer your incense clean and crisp like those from Japan or delight in being wrapped up in the potent blanket of those from India, we've rounded up our favourite incense brands for you to enjoy.

From all across the world, spanning cultures and history, these are the 12 scents that ground us. So open the windows, lay down a record and let it burn.




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Firmly rooted in Ayurveda, Ayu offers five individual scents grounded in classic ingredients like patchouli, sandalwood and frankincense. Take comfort in that all Ayu's incense is fair trade and handmade in India.


Kuumba International


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Japanese label Kuumba is something of a renaissance-type figure in the world of incense; meaning they do it all. Truly! There are hundreds of different olfactory experiences to pick and all with names like Obama, Crunk Juice and Pink Pussy. What does Patti LaBelle smell like? Light her up and find out. All the incense is crafted from natural oils and essences and they contain almost no carbon. You can decide between varying lengths, each with a different burning time. So if you haven't already, thumb your way through Kuumba's excellent selection.


Bau Bau by Suku Home


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With the ceremonial burning of incense in Bali in mind, it seems fitting that Suku home's incense line is crafted by Balinese artisans. Each scent is redolent of a different theme; with Smoko Memories, Fresh Sheets and Nostalgia among the pastel-hued lineup.


Astier De Villatte


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Astier de Villatte has accrued devoted fans from all across the globe, actors to artists. The French homewares brand prides itself on continuing the country's olfactory tradition, and produces a range of incense that promises to transport you to different destinations around the world; providing sensory cues for cities like Tuscon, Stockholm and Aoyama. Each scent is hand made in Japan.




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A household brand loved for both its quality and affordability. Turn to Satya for all your Nag Champa needs – if it's good enough for our university days, it's good enough for us now. Crafted in India, a country where scent is inextricably linked to all of life's daily rituals, all of Satya's incense are hand-rolled, a style favoured over the 'dipping' technique for being longer-lasting and less harmful to the body.


Maison Balzac


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Australians are fiercely loyal to their local homewares label, Maison Balzac, and for good reason. Everything the brand touches is considered, visually arresting and boy, do they smell good. Their incense range is no different; Maison Balzac draws on elements of the natural world and more abstract concepts, reimagining their scent for our homes. While you're at it, why not check out the brand's marble incense holders? Monsieur Escargot is a tongue-in-cheek highlight.


Corey Ashford


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After spending half a decade as Dinosaur Designs' Head of Retail and Visual Merchandising Corey Ashford decided it was time to venture out on his own into the world of luxury lifestyle. Based in Melbourne, he works with one of the world's oldest incense ateliers in Japan to bring four different high quality incense scents to our eager noses. He also creates beautiful brass holders shaped from Sydney Rock oysters to nestle your incense of choice into.



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The Rolls Royce of the incense realm. Each Fornasetti scent is handmade in Japan and comes nestled in a decorative box, crafted from wood with a ceramic lid that doubles as an incense holder. Fill your four walls with Fornasetti's interpretation of a kiss or Bacio as it's called in Italy, but only if you're willing to take on a steep price.


Studio The Blue Boy

Is there anything more soothing to the senses than clean Japanese design and truly unique fragrances? Japanese homewares studio, The Blue Boy, has this combo in droves. Who could refuse the dreamy scenes titles like Harvest Moon, Golden Hour and Earth Tones conjure? Especially when our nose is more than willing to play along.


10. Bodha

Founded in 2014 by perfumer Emily L’Ami and designer Fred L’Ami, and based out of Los Angeles, Bodha explores the link between scent and therapy, and it's unique ability to foster a sense of calm. What separates this brand from most is its promise to deliver a smokeless burn. It also offers an assortment of minimal brass holders, if that's your kind of thing.


11. Aesop


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Aesop has always rated high on our list of well, just about anything beauty related, but especially in the realm of fragrance. Their Aromatique incense collection is considered and minimal, and arrived with a pumice holder. Personally, I enjoy the Murasaki scent for its delicate warm and woody presence.


12. Hibi

Once you use Hibi, you'll never want to go back. Painstakingly trialled and tested, Japaneses label Hibi fuses natural paper fibres, wax and charcoal to create a incense match stick. Strike and it will burn for 10 minutes on the reusable custom pad provided. Perfect for people who occupy small spaces.

Prefer to set the mood with a candle instead? Here are 10 of the best candle brands according to the team at RUSSH.

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