Three (3) Things To Consider When Buying Candles if You Have Allergies
If you’re a person that has allergies, you know how difficult it is to have to avoid your irritants. If you have food allergies, you'll have to be diligent to steer clear of those particular foods. If your skin is sensitive, you'll have to be careful not to let your skin come into contact with that substance. There are millions of people who suffer from fragrance allergies or asthma. Many of them, however, are not affected by scents. The main symptoms that can occur if you are affected by fragrance allergies are headaches and difficulty breathing... So if you have a perfume allergy or have asthma, you have to be careful what scents you're exposing your lungs to.
Even if you have fragrance allergies or asthma, that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying home fragrance products! Here are some things you should consider when purchasing candles if you have fragrance allergies.
Disclaimer: Jackpot Candles is here to provide helpful advice when it comes to candle selection, but if you have fragrance allergies, be sure to consult your doctor or healthcare professional first before introducing anything new into your environment!
1.) What Type of Wax is it?
In order for us to appropriately evaluate candles, we first have to discuss what type of candles are currently in the market. There are three (3) main types of waxes used in candle-making: paraffin, beeswax, and soy-based. All three have different properties that explain why they may or may not be better for someone with allergies.
Firstly, paraffin is a petroleum-based wax that is created using crude-oil (aka fossil fuel). While paraffin-based candles aren’t necessarily bad for you, the emissions the candles release can compromise air quality in your home. Paraffin wax can emit harmful fumes like toluene and benzene and have been linked to the exacerbation of asthma symptoms. One of the only benefits of paraffin-based candles is that most fragrances were made to be paired with them, so they blend better during production.
Beeswax candles have been a favorite of candle lovers throughout history. Beeswax is the natural wax made from homeybees. For at least 1,000 years, beeswax candles have been used for light and ambiance by churches, royals, and people of nobility. Its non-toxic properties and clean burn (meaning it produces little to no soot) make it a great choice for someone that may have allergies or asthma. When buying a beeswax candle, check the ingredients to ensure it's made of 100% natural beeswax - some companies have been known to mix with paraffin.
The third wax, soy, is made from soybean oil and other non-soy materials. Soy wax is a natural product that was created in 1991 as a cheaper alternative to beeswax. Since soy wax candles are cheaper to make, they usually offer a wider variety of scents. They tend to burn cleaner and longer; especially when paired with essential oil fragrances, they make an ideal choice for your home.
2.) What is the Wick Made out of?
Another important factor for a person with fragrance allergies is the type of material that is used in the wick.
The most common type of candle wick is a cored wick - a braided or knitted wick that uses a core material to keep the wick straight or upright while burning. Since this materialhas to be sturdy, candle companies can only use specific material like cotton, paper, zinc, or tin. Nothing is particularly wrong with these materials used for wicks, it just solely depends on how they’re made. For instance, some cotton wicks are not made out of 100% pure cotton. They are made out of chemically grown cotton which could cause harmful materials to be emitted in the air when lit.
Another type of wick is a wooden wick. These natural and unique wicks are made of a renewable resource - wood! They burn cleanly and often produce an incredibly pleasant "crackle" when lit.
3.) What Do They Use to Make the Scent?
Unscented candles certainly exist, but most candles incorporate fragrances. These fragrances are typically a combination of natural fragrances like essential oils and synthetic aroma chemicals. Just like when other products are made from synthetic chemicals, you should be wary of candle companies that use chemical fragrances in their candle products.
Candles made from essential oils are healthier for those with allergies than those with just synthetic chemicals or combination fragrances simply because of its burn-ability.
Birthday Cake Wooden Wick Jewelry Ring Candle
Mystery Wooden Wick Jewelry Ring Candle
Mermaid Daydream Wooden Wick Jewelry Ring Candle
4.) How Does It Burn?
In regards to burn-ability, another important factor you have to consider when buying a candle is how cleanly it burns. Have you ever lit a candle that emits a stream of black smoke? That has a lot to do with how the candle was made.
Most candles will have a small amount of smoke or soot simply because of the flame. However, a candle should not burn black continuously or leave black residue if it is made well. Candles that put out a significant amount of dark smoke show evidence of poor chemical reactions. Different types of candle wax will burn differently as well. 100% beeswax and soy candles burn cleaner than chemical paraffin candles.
So, What does it all Mean?
Does this information mean you shouldn’t use candles at all? No!
It just means that you should consider these factors when you purchase a candle. To sum it up:
- Consider buying candles that use essential oils for the fragrance. They reduce the chance that you’ll have a reaction to the scent overall.
- Invest in clean-burning and environmentally-friendly candles made of soy or beeswax. They burn cleaner (and longer - bonus!) which can reduce the effect that it has on people with allergies.
- If possible, stick to candles that only have one scent. Candles with multiple scents can potentially overload your senses or cause a negative reaction.
- Think of alternative ways to use the candle instead of lighting the wick. If the candle has a rich fragrance, it may be better to burn it in a well-ventilated area or use a candle warmer. That way, it can evenly distribute the scent without overwhelming your body.
All Jackpot Candles are made from 100% premium natural soy and essential oils. They also crackle ever-so-slightly because of their wooden wicks. If allergies/asthma is something you're concerned about, Jackpot Candles could be your answer - be sure to check them out.