The 10 Best Scented Candles
10. Wax & Oils 3-pack
- great choice for meditation
- several scent combos available
- aroma could be more powerful
|Brand||Wax and Oils|
|Rating||3.9 / 5.0|
9. Smell My Nuts
- funny and useful gift
- straight-burning wick
- recommended use of 2 hours at a time
|Brand||Our Own Candle Company|
|Model||Smell My Nuts|
|Rating||4.0 / 5.0|
8. I & Candle Aromatherapy
- all-natural cotton wick
- best for small rooms
- burn time less than claimed
|Brand||I & Candle|
|Rating||3.6 / 5.0|
7. Old Factory Candles Man Cave
- self-trimming wicks
- lead-free for safety
- money-back guarantee
|Brand||Old Factory Candles|
|Rating||4.2 / 5.0|
6. Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Geranium
- popular name in household products
- never tested on animals
- somewhat pricey choice
|Brand||Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day|
|Model||Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day|
|Rating||4.2 / 5.0|
5. Aspen Bay Capri Blue Volcano
- sold in popular boutique-type shops
- fresh and modern blue-and-white tin
- not completely even-burning
|Rating||4.3 / 5.0|
4. Bath & Body Works Stress Relief
- pretty green-tinted glass jar
- three wicks for even burning
- smell is overpowering to some
|Brand||Bath & Body Works|
|Rating||4.2 / 5.0|
3. Nest Fragrances Classic Grapefruit
- approximately 50 hours of use
- simple and classic votive shape
- floral blends also available
|Rating||4.0 / 5.0|
2. Seracon Products Maple Syrup Candle
- burns cleanly and evenly
- crackling wooden wick
- distinct and eye-catching tin
|Rating||4.7 / 5.0|
1. Trapp Signature Home Collection
- high-quality wick burns slowly
- votive candles also available
- smells pleasant even unlit
|Rating||4.8 / 5.0|
How To Choose a Scented Candle
On the surface, a scented candle can provide a pleasant aroma for your patio, office, or home. But a scented candle can also add to the ambiance of any environment, especially if that scent is a reflection of the decor, the time of year, or the mood.
A pumpkin-scented candle is perfect for October through November, for example — months when people welcome trick-or-treaters or Thanksgiving guests into their homes. The same goes for purchasing a peppermint- or a holly-scented candle for the holiday season, or purchasing a cinnamon-scented candle for Valentine's Day, and on and on.
Homeowners should think of a scented candle as being like a well-chosen fragrance. "Wood Fire" or "Sandalwood" might work well inside a mountain chalet, for instance, whereas "Ocean Breeze" or "Midnight Tide" might complement a tiny boathouse on the shore.
You may want to give some thought as to how long you plan on burning a specific scent. If you plan on burning one scent constantly, then you'll probably want to purchase several canisters of that scent in bulk. If you've found a scent you're happy with, make it a point to always buy that scent from the same manufacturer. Different manufacturers use different materials, and different materials can lead to different results.
Several Keys to Proper Candle Etiquette
You might be surprised to learn that keeping a scented candle lit during a dinner party is actually considered poor form. Every course of a formal dinner should be savored, and a scented candle can take away from the enjoyment of the food. It's best to wait until dessert for lighting any scented candles. This way, the candle can suggest a more relaxed — if not intimate — mood.
A lot of people prefer to keep scented candles along an outdoor porch for summer evenings. This is actually inefficient in that a scented candle's aroma can — and probably will — get lost whenever burning in the open breeze. It's better to burn a Citronella candle when you're outdoors and to save your scented candles for burning during indoor occasions.
Over time, candle enthusiasts may discover that they can mix two or more scents to create a unique aroma. Casual candle users are warned against this, however, just as they are warned against burning two different scents in the same area at once. In addition, candle owners should never leave a burning candle unattended, and they should store any matches in a child-proof cabinet or drawer.
When it comes to using scented candles as a reflection of "mood," the proper etiquette is to choose a scent that mirrors the mood you would prefer to be in. The thinking is that a scented candle can have the same effect on a person's outlook as music, or changes in lighting, both of which have been proven to have a sustained impact on a person's well-being.
A Brief History of The Candle
The earliest candles were invented by the Chinese around 200 BCE. The Chinese made their candles out of whale fat. One can imagine the smell. Europeans were the first to craft their candles out of beeswax. Beeswax candles were considered an extravagance up and through the age of Ancient Rome. European churches were particularly fond of lighting candles that were made out of either beeswax or tallow (a form of mutton fat). Church elders equated fire with a divine being's presence on the earth.
By the end of the Middle Ages, candle-making had become a common craft. For a time, a village candle-maker would travel door-to-door, using a family's preserved cooking fats to make a candle while in their home. By the end of the 13th century, candle-makers had begun using beeswax so they could charge more per item. They had also begun selling candles out of their own stores.
Beeswax candles continued to be an extravagance until the 1830s, at which point a British metalworker named Joseph Morgan invented a machine for mass-producing candles based on a preset mold. During the 1850s, a Scottish chemist named James Young invented a process for distilling paraffin wax, and this — combined with mass production — led to candles costing a great deal less.
Obviously, candle sales were hurt by the invention of the light bulb. Despite that, candles remain an extremely viable industry. Today, candle sales are largely relegated toward home decor, outdoor illumination, religious rites, and aromatic smells. There are considerable side markets for homemade candles and specialty candles, as well.