Best Flameless Candles

Updated June 2021
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

30 Models Considered
30 Hours Researched
2 Experts Interviewed
134 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best flameless candles

The low, flickering light of a candle provides a cozy comfort that can only be rivaled by a crackling fireplace. But the flames can be a hazard, the wax can be messy, and the smoke may trigger coughing or sneezing in some individuals. All of these drawbacks can ruin the mood. The solution: get some flameless candles.

The best flameless candles look and feel like traditional candles because they've been dipped in wax. But they take a cue from modern technology and can be operated via a remote control that has an on/off switch, a timer, and color-changing functions. If you prefer a candle with a pleasant aroma, you can even find scented flameless candles on the market today.

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Higher-end flameless candles don't just set the mood, they are sophisticated devices that can flicker and produce pleasing aromas. Additionally, some models may be controlled remotely or may feature Bluetooth connectivity for streaming music.

Considerations

Shopping for flameless candles is a lot like going to a buffet. There are no wrong choices; you just need to find what you love the most from the wide assortment of options.

Candle type

There are three basic types of candles: votives, tapers, and pillars. Votive candles are small round or square candles that you place in a glass container. Taper candles are long, thin candles that you place in a holder. Pillar candles are larger round or square candles that do not need a container (if they are flameless). Pillar candles may also feature more than one wick.

Consider the space you have available and the mood you are trying to create. Then, decide which type of candle is best for your needs.

Design

Flameless candles come in a wide variety of designs. Choose the look that is the most pleasing to you and best fits the style of your room. If you are going for elegance, you may want a burgundy candle that has been dipped in wax. If you’re looking for something festive for winter, a happy snowman candle might be the best option for you.

Features

Steady flame vs. flicker

If you just want accent lights, the flameless candles you purchase can be on/off items that produce a steady glow. If you want to create a mood that involves the flickering light that a traditional candle provides, however, you will want to purchase a flameless candle with a more realistic flickering effect.

Timer

Besides a simple on/off switch, some flameless candles allow you to select how long the LED light will remain lit. If you often fall asleep with a flameless candle turned on, using a timer to shut it off can help extend the battery life.

Remote

Many flameless candles feature a remote. With it, you can control every aspect of your candle while seated comfortably on the couch.

Color-changing

Besides turning them on and off and selecting a brightness level, a remote can be used to choose the color of a color-changing candle. Most often, the bottom half of the remote will feature a number of colored buttons that you simply press to create the proper mood.

Scented

If the pleasant smell of a burning candle is something you enjoy, consider a flameless candle with a fragrance pod that uses a small fan to disperse the aroma.

Wax-dipped

If you want the most realistic flameless candle, choose one that has been dipped in wax. These flameless candles look and feel a lot more like traditional candles.

Indoor/outdoor

Not all flameless candles are designed to be used outdoors. If you will be placing your flameless candle outside or in a room with a great deal of humidity, make sure you purchase a model that will not be damaged in that type of environment.

Bluetooth

Believe it or not, there are some higher-priced flameless candles that include a speaker with Bluetooth technology so you can stream your favorite music directly to your candle.

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For your safety
The primary benefit of using a flameless candle is safety. Not only is the risk of fire nearly eliminated, but so is the chance of your child or pet getting burned.
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Flameless candle prices

Inexpensive: At the low end, you can get a basic flameless candle or even a package of several flameless candles for under $15. These models will be simple tea lights or plastic candles that are not extremely realistic and probably have an on/off switch and not much more. However, they will still help create ambience.

Mid-range: Your best bet for discovering value is in the $15 to $25 price range. These models can be a mix-and-match proposal, featuring a little of everything from a remote control to color-changing capabilities. The options in this price bracket look a little more realistic, but in most instances, it is still easy to see that they are flameless candles.

High-end: From $25 to $40 and above, you can get flameless candles that have been coated in wax so they look and feel like traditional candles. In this price range, options such as scent-producing candles and Bluetooth connectivity are available.

Tips

Using flameless candles instead of traditional candles immediately makes you safer; an open flame is a fire hazard no matter how careful you are. Still, there are a few tips and practices that should be observed to gain the best experience with flameless candles.

  • Do not expose flameless candles to extreme temperatures. Cold can crack the candle, and heat can cause melting, especially if your flameless candle is coated in wax. Additionally, certain types of candle batteries may be damaged in extreme temperatures.
  • Indoor candles should remain indoors. Flameless candles may be designated for indoor use or indoor/outdoor use. Exposing an indoor flameless candle to the elements, even briefly, could ruin it.
  • Remove batteries before storing. If you are only using your flameless candles for the holiday and plan to store them for the rest of the year, be sure to remove the batteries before putting your flameless candles away.
  • Never mix battery types. Mixing different types of batteries can lead to undesirable results, some of which may create a safety hazard. Always replace all batteries at the same time, and only use similar types.
  • Shut them off when not in use. Although the risk of fire is low, you do not want to waste power. If you can't remember to shut your flameless candles off or you find yourself falling asleep with them on, consider putting them on a timer.
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Since there is no scent or smoke when using unscented, flameless candles, they do not trigger sneezing, wheezing, headaches, or watery eyes, making them a much better option for people with allergies and/or asthma.

FAQ

Q. How long do flameless candles last?
A.
There are two factors to consider when answering this question: bulb life and battery life. Modern flameless candles use LED bulbs. On average, an LED bulb will last at least 50,000 hours, though there are some companies that claim their bulbs can last as long as 100,000 hours. With a lifespan that long, chances are good that other parts of your flameless candles will wear out long before the bulb. This is especially true if the candles are stored in an attic with extreme temperatures.

The second factor is battery life. This can vary greatly depending on the type of battery that you use. Read the product specs to discover an approximate battery life expectancy before you buy.
 

Q. Which type of battery should I use in my flameless candles?
A.
If you want to get the battery with the longest life and the lowest chance of leaking, choose a lithium battery. These batteries last longer than other types of batteries, are lighter in weight, and are best equipped to handle extreme temperatures. Lithium batteries are also more expensive.

Alkaline batteries would be your next best option; just remember to remove the batteries when storing your candles, as alkaline batteries tend to leak when they are not being used.

Rechargeable and other types of batteries may be used, but their life will be appreciably shorter, and the LED bulbs may not burn as brightly.

The important thing to remember, no matter which type of battery you choose, is to not mix them. In the best situation, mixing different battery types can lead to reduced performance. In the worst case scenario, it can create a hazardous situation of increased temperatures, leakage, or rupturing.
 

Q. Do LED lights get hot?
A.
A common myth is that LED lights do not produce heat. They do. However, the heat is mostly produced within the device itself, not in the form of infrared radiation, which is what makes other bulbs feel hot to the touch. Consequently, LEDs in general are safer to use than incandescent bulbs. And, when comparing them to traditional candles, there's no debating their relative safety, as an average of 23 household fires are started by candle misuse or accidents each day.

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