Did you know that burning candles can be harmful to your health?
Most candles are made out of paraffin. When they are burning, toxic benzene and toluene are released into the air. Both of these are known carcinogens. Burning paraffin candles can also cause respiratory problems and will irritate asthmatic, lung and heart conditions.
If the candle is artificially scented, it could be putting out chemicals that are just as dangerous as second hand smoke. Yikes! "What's that deadly smell coming from the bathroom?" "Oh it's just my candle." ;-) Which leads me to artificial home fragrance.....
Synthetic air fresheners, including artificially scented candles, release VOCs into the air. VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, are those toxins that we try to avoid by buying low or no VOC paint, carpeting and other building materials. Seems kind of silly to go through that trouble only to pollute indoor air with synthetic fragrances.
Okay, so I know at this point you may be feeling conflicted because you've really been enjoying getting into the cozy season spirit by lighting that pumpkin spice candle in your living room. I totally understand. I have a soft spot for sweet & spicy scents as well as anything with fir or pine. It was painful for me to give up my beloved Yankee Candles.
I admit that I still enjoy opening and smelling my favorite Yankee Candle scents when I see them in a store, but that's where I draw the line. I enjoy them there but don't take them home to pollute the air in my home. My home is my sanctuary and I strive to keep it as restorative and healthful as possible. But am I willing to let go of the warm cozy glow of a candle or the inviting smell of home fragrance? Oh hell no!
So here are my personal solutions. I hope you find them helpful:
- Burn only 100% beeswax candles
Be sure the label say 100%. Sometimes paraffin is mixed in.
Beeswax candles are more expensive but they do have longer burn times....plus they naturally smell awesome!
- Only use essential oils to fragrance your home
Essential oils are totally natural, smell amazing, and have therapeutic properties too!
I use aroma-mists that I make using water and essential oils in a small mister bottle. I keep one in my living room, one for my bedroom and one in each bathroom. They are easy to make yourself or you can purchase one of my tried and true beloved blends at the Beauty Temple.
I also use essential oil diffusers. There are many types of diffusers but my preference the one shown below that simply plugs into an electrical outlet like a night light. There's a cotton pad that slides out that you apply drops of essential oil to. When you plug it in there's a ceramic tile inside that gently heats the pad that releases the aroma. I love the simplicity and effectiveness. It adds natural aroma to a room for hours that isn't overpowering or harmful. I add about 4 - 10 drops on mine everyday and it brings me a lot of joy. I keep one in my bathroom and one in my entry way / living room and now have a couple in the Beauty Temple. They work amazingly well!
I also have one made to plug into a cigarette lighter in my car. No toxic air freshener in my vehicle. In fact, I love these little aroma gadgets so much that I set up a wholesale account with the manufacturer and now have both versions for sale at the Beauty Temple! At $14 each or 2 for $20 now through December they make really excellent gifts.
I hope you found this post to be both informative and helpful and that you feel inspired to make healthful choices when it comes to candles and home fragrance. I encourage you to share this info with your friends and loved ones so that they too can make healthy choices.
If you have suggestions about healthy candle and home fragrance options that you use and love please share them in the comments section below. Sharing is caring. :-)