Scented candles are the universally accepted gift for almost every occasion. They keep us feeling warm and cozy in the winter, and they can even promote a fresh and clean atmosphere in the summer. We know their role now, but have you ever wondered who created the first scented candle, why they did it, and how scented candles have changed throughout the years? If so, we've got the resource for you- a little scented candle 101!
When were scented candles invented?
The Egyptians are credited with crafting some of the first wicked candles as far back as 3,000 B.C., using waxes created from plants and insects. However, scented candles weren’t used until the Middle Ages, when beeswax candles were brought to Europe. The beeswax burned pure and cleanly (it didn’t create a smoky flame), and it produced an enjoyable, sweet aroma rather than the unpleasant odor of tallow, which was widely used in household candles at the time. Due to the prohibitive cost of beeswax in the Middle Ages, few people other than the wealthy could afford to burn them at home. There was a brief stint in colonial America when women used bayberries to create a sweet-smelling wax, but the process was very tedious. So, scented candles didn’t end up taking off until the mid-19th century when advancements had been made in wax and mechanization of candle production. [National Candle Association]
To learn more about the history of candles, click here.
How does a scented candle work?
When you light the wick of a scented candle, the heat from the flame begins to melt the wax. When the fragrance molecules in the wax are heated, they emit an aroma. The scent grows stronger as more of the wax melts, so the larger your candle, the greater the fragrance you can expect once its wax pool extends to the edges of its vessel. The best way to make sure your candle melts evenly is to confirm that the wick is in the center of the candle, the candle is on a level surface, and the candle is out of the way of drafts.
For information on how to get the most out of your scented candle, click here.
Who makes the best scented candles?
We’re a little biased, so we won’t give you our opinion. Here’s what we’ve heard:
“This [red currant] is the best candle I’ve ever had. Slow burning and smells unlike any other.” -Tonya B.
“Almost 20 years ago, my friend put this [red currant] candle in the guest room when I came to visit and I fell in love!!! So happy to see that after all these years, the aroma has not changed. Seems to still burn clean and it's my favorite aromatherapy!” -Lisa C.
“This is the best candle I've had [red currant.] It is a favorite in my family. It's hard to describe the fragrance other than sublime. Everyone who walks into the house wants to know what that wonderful fragrance is.” -Joey B.
“This [black ginger] candle is a wonderful exotic scent. Reminds me when Giorgio made a candle and the scent filled the whole house--it's like that..” -Sally B.
“We found our first Votivo candle in 1996 and never looked back!” -C. Gaines
“I’ve lit my first fall candle, Spiced Chai! It smells divine!”- Angelle M.
“I love my Votivo Champaca!” -Heather M.
“I purchased Joie De Noel in Reykjavik, Iceland, and it brings me back there every time I light it.” - S. Skierrn
Recommended For You:
❤️Everyone’s Favorite: The Red Currant Shop
🤓Fragrance Education: Fragrance Families