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  • Writer's pictureTina

Don’t Fall for the Gimmicks

I keep seeing advertisements on social media for candles with "three times the fragrance" or "double the fragrance oils" and have to laugh. A consumer that doesn't know the science behind candle making might think this is a positive thing - a really strong fragrance! Don't fall for it!

There are different kinds of wax out there. All candlemakers are using one of these available waxes. Each wax has a maximum amount of fragrance it can safely handle. A long time ago, the maximum fragrance to wax was 3%. Today, waxes generally hold 10-12 maximum. The science behind candle making tells us that using the maximum amount of fragrance isn't guaranteed to deliver the strongest scent. I know that's hard to wrap your head around, but depending on wick choices and wax choices and whether or not color is used, the maximum load might not smell when lit at all, and a lesser amount of fragrance goes a long way. Believe it or not, wick size is the most important part of making a great scented candle. Overloading a candle with fragrance is dangerous because the oil won't completely bind with the wax and tends to leak out, usually in the form of tiny beads on top of the candle. Fragrance oil is flammable, and those tiny beads will light up the entire candle jar like a torch. We certainly don't want that to happen.

So, if all candlemakers use the same waxes, and each wax has a maximum fragrance load, everyone is using the same amounts of fragrance in their candles. I'm always curious - 3x what? Double the fragrance than what? In one example, their "double the fragrance oil" just meant that they made a candle that is twice as big, so of course it has double the fragrance oil. It also has double the wax. Sometimes, they compare it to the waxes of olden times and their 9% is three times more than the old 3% maximum. Also beware of the claim to be "all natural." All natural does not equal better. Essential oils are all natural. Most of them also are not safe to use in candles because they emit toxins when burned. There is a huge line of clean fragrance oils made specifically for burning in candles that is a lot healthier to breathe than some "all natural" options. The clean oils don't contain the major toxins that some national brands might have, but they do contain a small amount of essential oils, as deemed safe by the experts.

One of my biggest pet peeves, though, are companies that show a photo of their largest candle, and have it listed with the price of their wax melts. I find that deceptive. When you get to the candle you actually want, it's so much more than the $6 that drew you in. I understand that when you have a dropdown menu with variations of size, you can only list one price at the top. I listed all of my prices with the price of our 6 ounce jars (the most popular candle size we carry).

Last point - when choosing a candle, think of your house. The larger the diameter, the larger the room the scent will fill. Our 6 oz candles are great for smaller to mid-sized rooms. If you have vaulted ceilings or a very large room, the 10 oz will be a much better choice. I want people to buy my candles because they smell great and last a long time, not because of some half-true gimmick. We are always grateful for honest feedback. If you love our candles, we want to hear from you, but if you found something less than satisfactory, we really want to hear from you. We want a great product we can stand behind. And we appreciate every one of you that come back again and again to purchase more.

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