If there is one thing about my home that is a constant, it is a burning candle! I love the ambiance, the light and of course the smell. Before I had kids, I used to burn any candle I could get my hands on with a great scent. However, once that little muffin came, I researched everything I could to keep her safe. During this time, I found out that my favorite household friend was actually super toxic!
What Kind of Candle Should You Use?
Most candles are made of paraffin wax, which releases toxic fumes that can be just as dangerous as second-hand smoke and can lead to lung cancer, asthma and even common allergies. Many candles also include lead wicks or wicks with a lead core, which can lead to dangerous levels of lead and lead poisoning.
When buying candles, the best bet is to look for those that are 100% soy or beeswax and made with essential oils. Avoid those with wicks that have a visible wire in the center, the good ones will usually say “made with a lead free wick.”
The Right Way to Burn A Candle
In addition to burning the right kind of candle, did you know there is a wrong way to burn a candle altogether? There is! First off, always keep that wick trimmed 1/8 to 1/4 inches long. You should do this when you buy a new candle and have those really long wicks as well as for every 4 hours of burn time. Make sure that candle is cool and hard to the touch first! If you aren’t trimming the wick, you run the risk of getting those icky burnt rings at the top of your jar. Luckily if you’re using a soy candle, this is less likely.
Tip: An easy way to trim your wick is actually with a nail clipper!
The Mistakes We Make
The biggest mistake most people make when burning a candle? They don’t let it burn long enough the VERY FIRST TIME it is lit. The first burn should be at least 1 hour but could take longer depending on the size of your candle. The key is to make sure the entire top layer is liquefied. If this first burn isn’t done correctly, a memory ring will appear. This means that your candle will continue to burn in a tunnel formation for the rest of it’s life. I try not to light a candle at all if I know I will be leaving the house or going to bed soon because I know that’s a memory ring waiting to happen!
Always keep candles away from pets, babies, paper, etc. where it won’t get knocked over or catch anything on fire. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried getting dried wax out of carpet, but trust me it is not fun!
Buying locally is huge and I found the MOST delicious 100% soy candles from Wax Buffalo Pure Soy Candle Co. I spoke to (the adorable!) Alicia Clark-Reisinger who stated all of their candles are made using either essential oils or fragrances that are phthalate free.
LOVE LOVE LOVE the scents they have and couldn’t resist picking up two new ones: Blood Orange and The Orchard. They smell just as delicious as they sound believe me. Check out their website at http://waxbuffalo.bigcartel.com/ to get one of these beauties for yourself or head on over to one of the many stores that carry them as well!