Clean Burning Candles 101

Clean Burning Candles 101

Feb 08, 2022Inés vom Schemm

It’s no secret scent, music and mood are closely linked, and burning a candle while listening to a playlist can bring a room to life, create good vibes and bring a calmer state of mind. But, as with everything in life, some candles are better than others. 

Here’s what to consider when you are buying a new candle, how to decode labels and what to know to choose a clean-burning one. 

Clean burning candles rely on three main characteristics: 100% natural base, natural essential oils or non-toxic fragrances for scents and natural wick. 


It is important to look at both the size of the wick and the material it is made from. It is important to search for natural wicks such as cotton, wood or hemp that are not bleached or soaked in anything that could be harmful. It was far more controversial before lead wicks were banned. 

The size of the wick is important because, a wick too thick or tall will produce large amounts of soot and can get too hot; the other way around, if the wick is too short the fragrance throw will not disperse correctly. 

We have 100% cotton wicks and make sure their size and placement are optimal to maximize throw and burning time. 

Tip: look for 100% cotton, hemp, or wood wicks.


At Scandle we use 100% natural soy wax for our candles. Soy wax is becoming increasingly popular as it provides a slow and clean-burning, non-toxic and biodegradable natural base for candles. The importance is in purchasing a 100% natural pure wax such as soy, coconut, palm or beeswax. On the other hand, paraffin wax candles (the traditional ones) are petroleum-based, man-made, non-biodegradable and toxic as they contain 11 toxins and carcinogens. 

When searching for a new addition to your candle collection watch out for wax blends as they are very common in candle making and sometimes not all materials included are disclosed. Some candle manufacturers add paraffin or stearic acid to the soy wax because of its ability to stabilize the final candle making them not clean burning. 

Tip: look for candles with no blends, no paraffin, just 100% natural wax. This is probably the most important thing to pay attention to while candle shopping.


There is an endless amount of low-quality, low-cost fragrance products flooding the market that contain a range of allergens and toxic ingredients. When a candle containing allergens and toxins is burnt, these harsh chemicals are released into the environment. 

It is important to look for non-toxic fragrances and essential oils. Essential oils are extracted from whole plants and, hence, they are natural. In case synthetic fragrances are used look for a guarantee that they are highly purified with a natural oil base and are free of phthalates, paraffin and UV inhibitors. 

Tip: look for phthalate-free candles derived from 100 per cent essential oil. Any synthetic ingredients should be certified non-toxic. Transparency is key, prioritize candlemakers willing to show full ingredients list.

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