Aroma candles are made with essential oils and have aromatherapeutic properties. That is to say, aroma candles are made for holistic therapeutic care — for providing well-being to the body, mind, and spirit. Aromatherapy is a curative that people have, for centuries, used to gain energy, relieve stress, enhance concentration, and manage pain. The fragrances of essential oils are emanated in order to stimulate the senses. Some aromas can even lower systolic blood pressure. Basically, aroma candles are used, not just for their pleasant fragrances, but also for their ability to change our mood — to help us feel good.
Research has shown that the negative emotions we attach to certain situations can be altered or eliminated by aromatherapy. According to Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, in the same way that meditation can produce changes to physiological responses, certain scents can also produce changes to physiological responses. This is because scent has a complex relationship to the brain. Smell has the capacity to cross the blood-barrier and travel to the central nervous system. Through the olfactory system, scents have direct access to the limbic area of the brain, which is termed the “emotional center of the brain.” Our emotions and our sense of smell are highly attached. So, when you inhale an aromatic candle, a very complex relationship between your sense of smell and your brain is triggered, a powerful relationship that has the ability to enhance your health and your mood.
Aromatherapy candles can lead to a path of wellness. Aroma candles come in a wide variety of scents. Here’s a list of some of the most common scents people use to positively affect their sense of well-being.
- Lavender: A soothing and relaxing scent, lavender has the ability to relieve anxiety, depression, and stress. It is used also to treat headaches and insomnia.
- Citrus: Orange, lemon and grapefruit all have powerful citrus scents that help to brighten the mood and increase concentration.
- Vanilla: A sweet and warming scent, vanilla is soothing and comforting. It also helps to relieve stress.
- Cinnamon: Known to help nerves, fatigue, and exhaustion, cinnamon has a very inviting scent that smells like freshly baked cookies.
- Geranium: A scent that reminds people of being outdoors, geranium has a wonderful effect on the nerves, having calmative properties that help with relaxation.
- Jasmine: One of people’s favorite scents, jasmine is calming and relaxing.
- Sandalwood: Having some of the same benefits that people claim to receive from meditation, sandalwood helps sooth irritation and lifts depression.
- Eucalyptus: With a minty and uplifting smell, eucalyptus helps decongest the nose and provide relief from colds, sinusitis, and allergies. It is emanated also to build energy.
- Peppermint: A scent that everyone is familiar with, peppermint aroma candles can relieve muscle pain, headaches, and digestive problems.
How Is an Aroma Candle Made?
An aroma candle has three main components: wick, wax, and essential oil. A good aromatherapy candle has a wick that is made from either cotton or hemp. The wicks do not contain toxic elements, such as zinc and lead because these elements can spread into the air and enter the body through the respiratory system.
Soy wax, beeswax, candelilla wax, and rapeseed wax are all used to make all-natural aromatherapy candles. It’s best to avoid candles made of paraffin wax. This type of wax is derived from petroleum and contains toxic chemicals, such as formaldehyde and benzene.
A real aromatherapy candle contains natural essential oils instead of chemically derived oils. Candles that are labeled “parfum” or “fragrance oil” are indications that the candle is likely made with synthetic oils. The key to getting real results from aromatherapy is to use pure, therapeutic-grade oils, rather than oils made with synthetic ingredients. In fact, if an aromatherapy candle is not made with 100% natural ingredients and with pure essential oils, then it is not an aromatherapy candle.
Organically made aroma candles are slightly more expensive than regular candles, but they come with many more benefits than common fragranced candle. They burn less soot; they burn slower than most candles; and, their major benefit, they emanate a real sense of well-being. Organically made aromatherapy candles are healthy and healing.
Of course, not all aroma candles are equal. The quality of essential oils used and the region in which the plants are grown influence the quality of the aroma candle. It is helpful to research where the ingredients come from before buying an aroma candle.
The Many Benefits of Aroma Candles
Aroma candles can benefit those with digestive upset, PMS, skin problems, blood sugar fluctuations, joint pain, and cancer. These candles can also conjure up memories. You can choose a scented candle to conjure a good memory and to remind you of something pleasant from your past. An aroma candle can also help show off your personality. Show off your sense of self by choosing a scent that represents who you are. If you’re the outdoorsy type who loves to hike or bike, choose a candle with a floral or pine aroma. If you’re a fan of cooking, choose a candle with a sweet or fruity smell. If you are together on a night with the one you love, choose an arousing scent that is meant to inspire a presence of romance. Scented candles are made for more than just their medicinal properties. And it’s easy to find one that suits your specific needs. Because there are so many benefits to aroma candles, it comes as no surprise that aromatherapy is all the rage today.
As a final note, these candles should be burned for about one hour each time they are used. This allows the flame the needed time to melt the wax and helps the candle burn down evenly. It’s also important to keep the wick trimmed, as a long wick can cause the candle to smoke.