Gwyneth Paltrow Reveals the Backstory Behind That Vagina Candle

The $75 Goop product started as a joke.

Product, Face, Skin, Beauty, Botany, Blond, Material property, Tree, Plant,
(Image credit: Morgan McMullen)

Turns out that even when Gwyneth Paltrow jokes about her vagina, it makes money. The Goop founder sat down with Jimmy Kimmel on Monday, February 24, and shared the backstory behind the “This Smells Like My Vagina” candle that went wildly viral after debuting earlier this year.

Paltrow revealed that the unique scent came about when she was collaborating with Douglas Little, the perfumer behind the Heretic Parfum label.

“One day, we were smelling different fragrances, and I was joking around, and I smelled something and I said this, as a joke,” The Politician star said, referencing the candle's now-iconic name. “But then, I was like wouldn’t that be cool if somebody actually had the guts to do that. What a punk rock feminist statement to have that on your table."

Little made the candle, baring the cheeky moniker, a reality—which Paltrow first assumed to be a joke. "The next thing I knew, it was on my website,” she revealed. (If you spend a lot of time on said website, don't forget to grab a Goop promo code before your next visit.)

The late night host did ask if the team at Goop verified the scent, but Paltrow assured that the candle won't make your home smell like a gynecologist's office.

“It smells nice, it smells a little bit masculine, really,” Kimmel said, to which the entrepreneur responded, “Well its not really supposed to smell like a vagina. I think a lot of women have grown up with a certain degree of shame or embarrassment around this part, so we are kind of like ‘Yo!'”

A post shared by goop (@goop)

A photo posted by on

Goop's website describes the product as containing notes of “geranium, citrusy bergamot, and cedar absolutes juxtaposed with Damask rose and ambrette seed" and suggests it will put you “in mind of fantasy, seduction, and a sophisticated warmth.”

The $75 home decor item instantly sold out when it dropped (thanks, in part, to Elton John buying the candle in bulk). But Paltrow announced on Monday that it's now back in stock. So run, don't walk—and don't hold your breath for a male-version of the candle that smells like balls.

For more stories like this, including celebrity news, beauty and fashion advice, savvy political commentary, and fascinating features, sign up for the Marie Claire newsletter.

subscribe here

Entertainment Director

Neha Prakash is Marie Claire's Entertainment Director, where she edits, writes, and ideates culture and current event features with a focus on elevating diverse voices and stories in film and television. She steers and books the brand's print and digital covers as well as oversees the talent and production on MC's video franchises like "How Well Do You Know Your Co-Star?" and flagship events, including the Power Play summit. Since joining the team in early 2020, she's produced entertainment packages about buzzy television shows and films, helped oversee culture SEO content, commissioned op-eds from notable writers, and penned widely-shared celebrity profiles and interviews. She also assists with social coverage around major red carpet events, having conducted celebrity interviews at the Met Gala, Oscars, and Golden Globes. Prior to Marie Claire, she held editor roles at Brides, Glamour, Mashable, and Condé Nast, where she launched the Social News Desk. Her pop culture, breaking news, and fashion coverage has appeared on Vanity Fair, GQ, Allure, Teen Vogue, and Architectural Digest. She earned a masters degree from the Columbia School of Journalism in 2012 and a Bachelor of Arts degree from The Pennsylvania State University in 2010. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and dog, Ghost; she loves matcha lattes, Bollywood movies, and has many hot takes about TV reboots. Follow her on Instagram @nehapk.