Lifestyle & Leisure

Scented Candles – A Guide to Their Uses and Benefits

Scented candles are an easy way to add ambiance and relaxation to your home. But did you know that they also have health benefits?

Certain scents can stimulate the production of “happy hormones” to make you feel more happy. However, the effect may vary from person to person. This is because each individual metabolizes odors differently.

They Uplift Your Mood

Candles have been used for light and decoration for centuries, but they have also been popularized as a source of therapeutic value. The scents and fragrances they produce can boost serotonin and dopamine levels, resulting in feelings of happiness and positivity. For this reason, many people use candles as a way to help them deal with depression.

Luxury scented candles can significantly improve your mood, whether it’s a fresh, clean scent like lavender or a more tropical and fruity fragrance like mango. They’re also ideal for a relaxing ambiance and help you fall asleep easier.

However, some people are worried about the safety of scented candles because they can release volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which may have short- and long-term adverse health effects. To minimize VOC emissions, it’s advisable to burn them in well-ventilated spaces away from drafts and vents, trim their wicks to 3mm to avoid smokey scents, and never leave them burning unattended.

For respiratory patients, scented candles can trigger irritant reactions, especially if they contain chemicals such as phthalates and parabens. In such cases, you should choose a non-scented candle. Also, you should note that scented candles can trigger allergic reactions in pets, especially those that contain essential oils. However, the risk of such reactions is low if you use a natural and high-quality scented candle in a well-ventilated space.

They Create a Relaxing Environment

The gentle flickering light of a candle can help you focus on the moment and enjoy the scents surrounding you. When combined with relaxing ingredients such as lavender, sage, and eucalyptus, scented candles can create a calming atmosphere that helps ease stress, depression, anxiety, and tension.

Incorporating a scented candle in your evening routine can help you prepare for bedtime, fostering a relaxing transition into the deep sleep that your body needs. A scented candle can also promote meditation and yoga by providing a focal point that helps you focus and let go of the day’s worries.

A scented candle can transform it into your sanctuary when placed in the fitting room. Candles made from natural ingredients can create a cozy and calming environment, especially when mixed with soothing aromas like chamomile and lavender.

However, it is essential to note that scented candles can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) when burned. Therefore, Choosing a scented candle made from naturally derived substances such as soy, coconut, or beeswax is advisable. This will ensure the scented candle releases minimal VOCs and soot particles into the air.

This is particularly important for people with respiratory conditions such as asthma and COPD. It is also recommended to keep the candle away from flammable objects and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for safe burning.

They Enhance Memory

Researchers have found that scents can affect your mood and evoke memories. This is because the sense of smell is directly connected to the brain’s emotional center. Choosing a scent that reminds you of positive feelings or happy memories can help improve your focus and concentration when studying.

Odors such as lavender, ylang-ylang, and jasmine have been found to stimulate the mind and boost energy levels. Alternatively, try fragrances like lemon, chamomile, or rosemary if you want something to calm the mind and reduce stress.

Scented candles can also create a relaxing and calm environment for meditation. A candle with a pleasant fragrance can enhance your experience of mindfulness, mainly when you use it in conjunction with a guided meditation app or podcast.

A study of unlit and lit candles found that the emissions from scented candles are much lower than those from unscented ones. However, it’s still important to know the toxins and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that may be released when burning a candle.

You can reduce your risk of health problems by choosing a reputable brand of scented candle and making sure it’s burned properly. A good rule of thumb is to allow the candle to burn to a liquid pool before blowing it out.

They Make You Feel At Home

Throughout history, candles have been used as light sources and for home decoration, but today, they also play an essential role in our daily lives, serving as tools for relaxation, stress relief, and more. Many people use scented candles as part of a routine, lighting them when they have a headache or to help calm the mind and relax the body.

In addition, candles can be used for special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries and during religious rituals such as lighting a menorah for Hanukkah or the nine-branched candle of Kwanzaa.

When used correctly, scented candles can help transform your house into a comfortable and welcoming home. While many homeowners focus on enhancing lighting fixtures and decorating their homes with stylish furniture, they may overlook the importance of using scented candles to enhance the mood of the space.

The best-scented candles should be made with natural ingredients and have low levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), known to cause health problems like drowsiness and irritation. Soy or coconut wax is recommended when purchasing candles, as they emit significantly less VOCs than paraffin wax candles. It would help to avoid scented candles with high perfumes, as they can contain harmful chemicals that may irritate the skin and eyes.