Candles Non Toxic

Who doesn't love a good candle and the power of a single (or multiple!) flame?Candles have been a staple of homes for centuries, providing warmth, light, and ambiance. Today, candles can bring all of those into your home while also transforming your space through aroma.

However, it's important to note that not all candles are created equal and some are even toxic to your health.

toxic vs non toxic candles

If you're a huge candle lover who's already done your research, you're probably aware of a lot of the differences among candles.

But if you're newer to the candles & fragrance space or have always just bought from Target or another major chain or retailer, you may not be aware of what's actually lurking in some of the candles you've bought in the past.

Many traditional, widely available candles contain harmful toxins that can harm your health and the environment. This is why non-toxic candles are becoming increasingly popular, though still not as widespread as they should be! 

So, what are some of the common toxins that you should avoid in candles? Some of the most common culprits are paraffin wax, fragrances with phthalates, and lead wicks.

fragrance oils and essential oils in candles


Why Paraffin Wax is Bad

First off, let's start with why paraffin wax is not a clean candle choice:

Paraffin wax is a byproduct of petroleum and is commonly used in traditional candles because it is inexpensive and readily available.

However, when paraffin wax is burned, it releases harmful chemicals such as benzene and toluene (ick!). These chemicals can cause respiratory problems, trigger allergies, and have negative impacts on air quality.

natural soy wax candles

Non Toxic Candle

Non-toxic candles, on the other hand, are made from natural ingredients that do not release harmful toxins when burned. For candle wax, these cleaner-burning options can include beeswax, soy wax, and coconut wax.

  • Soy wax candles are our favorite, and a popular non-toxic option. They are made from soybean oil and are biodegradable and renewable. Soy candles burn cleanly and slowly, and they can come in a variety of scents because the soy wax is a great carrier of fragrance for the best scented candles.
  • Beeswax candles are a great non-toxic option, especially if you are not looking for a scented candle, since they do not hold scent well. They are made from pure beeswax, which is a natural byproduct of honey production. Beeswax candles burn cleanly and do not release harmful toxins into the air. 
  • Coconut wax candles are a relatively new non-toxic option. They are made from the meat of coconuts and are biodegradable and sustainable. Coconut wax candles burn cleanly and have a subtle scent.

soy wax candles

Non Toxic Scented Candles

When it comes to fragrance in candles, two of the best non toxic options are essential oil candles and candles scented with phthalate-free fragrance oils.

While essential oils sounds like a great option for natural candles, there are a few problems with pure essential oil candles, which we delve into in great detail in Fragrance Oils vs. Essential Oils: What's the Difference & What's Safe?

For our hand-poured candles here at Scented Designs, we love using fragrance oils because you can get such a strong-smelling candle from them, but we do make sure of two very important things:

clean burning candle

-they contain essential oils as part of the oil blend

-they are all phthalate-free

What does that mean? Synthetic fragrances are often added to candles to give them a pleasant scent that is stronger and more sustainable than just using essential oils. However, these fragrances can often contain phthalates, which are chemicals that can disrupt hormones and cause developmental problems.

Phthalates are often used in fragrances to help them last longer, but because some types of phthalates have been linked to health problems, it is best to avoid them for a non toxic candle.

Look for scented candles made with fragrance oils that specifically state they are phthalate-free. Hint: like the clean-burning candles from Scented Designs!


Which Wick?

Lastly, the wick. Lead wicks were commonly used in candles until they were banned in the US in 2003. Burning a candle with a lead wick can release lead into the air, which can cause serious health problems, especially in children and pregnant women.

Many candles today are made with cotton or wood wicks, but it's definitely worth paying attention to if you're looking for the perfect non toxic candle. 


March 20, 2023 — Kate De Palma

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