Best Aromatherapy Candles

Updated October 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
12 Hours Researched
2 Experts Interviewed
189 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 aromatherapy candles

An aromatherapy candle can bring a warm glow and pleasant ambiance to your space. With the right scent, it may even alter your mood. Aromatherapy candles contain natural oils with fragrances that may calm, invigorate, soothe, motivate, or affect your spirit in a number of positive ways.

Fragrance can trigger positive sense memories, and those responses vary based on aroma, potency, and person. You can keep several different aromatherapy candle scents on hand so they're available whenever your mood needs a little pick-me-up.

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Place your aromatherapy candle in the middle of a room, away from breezes, fabrics, and curious children and pets. This will allow the scent to disperse evenly and the candle to burn safely.

Key considerations

Scent

Let’s take a look at some of the most popular aromatherapy candle fragrances. Note that some candles incorporate a mix of the following and that this is by no means a comprehensive list.

Lavender: Among the most sought-after scents, lavender helps soothe, calm, and relax. It’s an ideal scent for unwinding at the end of the day or enjoying a bath.

Lemongrass: Uplifting and motivating, lemongrass is a worthy scent for morning or afternoon use. Other citrus scents, like orange and grapefruit, have similar properties.

Peppermint: This scent is known to have restorative properties, relieving stress and aches. Peppermint is also used frequently in the winter to conjure a festive spirit.

Eucalyptus: Another calming scent, eucalyptus can act as a decongestant, relieving head, nose, and throat stuffiness.

Jasmine: Like lavender, jasmine is a popular scent that helps to decompress and relax. Use this one after a long day at work.

Vanilla: A stress-relief scent, the sweet aroma of vanilla warms the spirit and mind and offers comfort.

Cinnamon: Similar to vanilla, cinnamon has a welcoming, comforting presence, aiding in exhaustion and fatigue.

Rosemary: For those working long and hard, rosemary is a worthy and embraceable scent. It’s known to help with memory and focus.

Type of wax

There are three main types of wax used in candles: soy wax, beeswax, and paraffin wax

Soy
Most aromatherapy candles are made from soy, a nontoxic, sustainable, natural resource. While these may be more expensive, they tend to last longer. When properly used, they don’t smoke or release any residue.

Beeswax
Another natural and sustainable source, beeswax has air-purifying qualities that make it beneficial for aromatherapy. Beeswax candles also offer a brighter burn than soy candles.

Paraffin
This wax is derived from oil, and while it’s an inexpensive and popular option for many candles, it does not provide aromatherapeutic qualities. Paraffin wax candles may release soot and smoke and are not made from natural ingredients. While some such candles may masquerade as aromatherapy candles, they are often of substandard quality, so use caution.

Blends
You may come across waxes described as “blends.” A blend can be a combination of soy, beeswax, vegetable wax, or other ingredients. Provided they are all-natural and not synthetic, these blends are suitable for aromatherapy purposes.

Composition

Scents are derived from oils that are blended into the wax of the candle. Aromatherapy candles use natural oils to achieve their positive traits. Those that contain synthetic oils may produce a familiar smell but are unlikely to possess the therapeutic properties you’re looking for. 

Size

The size of the candle informs how long it can potentially burn. Notably, smaller candles burn at a slower rate than larger ones and may be more economical. That’s because candles with smaller wicks take longer to heat up and burn down.

Candles that weigh under 10 ounces typically burn for six to seven hours per ounce of wax. Candles larger than that may only burn for four or five hours per ounce of wax. Note that listed burn times are for optimal conditions and require regular candle maintenance. Burn time may shorten significantly if the wick or wax is dirty or damaged.

Features

Pet-friendly

Aromatherapy can work on pets as well as people. Some candles are specifically designed for dogs or cats to help with stress or anxiety. However, if your pet suffers from separation anxiety, use the candle before you leave, and be sure to put out the flame before leaving your pet alone.

Wicks

While most aromatherapy candles have a single wick, some feature two or three wicks, which can create a unique aesthetic appeal. Extra wicks don’t necessarily mean the candle is more potent or will burn longer, however. Note that all wicks should be lit at the same time to avoid an uneven burn.

Jars and boxes

Most aromatherapy candles come in a jar or other container that may be simple or decorative. Some containers, especially the fancier ones, can be repurposed as gift boxes or other items after the candle is used up.

Accessories

Bath caddy: Royal Craft Wood Luxury Bath Tray
Enjoy your relaxing aromatherapy candle in the bath with a handy bath tray. This elegant model from Royal Craft Wood is perfect for setting up a soak with a candle, book, and drink.

Bath bombs: Beauty by Earth Natural Bath Bomb Set
Those who love aromatherapy may wish to harness the diverse power of the bath bomb. This Beauty by Earth set offers six charming bath bombs to enhance your mood and soften your skin.

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Did you know?
Typically, soy and beeswax candles have a milder scent and throw than paraffin wax candles.
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Aromatherapy candle prices

Inexpensive: For under $15, you will find some small aromatherapy candles that can burn for five or ten hours.

Mid-range: Most aromatherapy candles cost between $15 and $30. You’ll find items with long burn times and a range of scents here.

Expensive: Aromatherapy candles that cost over $30 are larger items that often come in decorative jars or gift sets.

Tips

  • Set the scene. Take time to create an environment that matches the scent. Turn down lights, play music, get away from screens, or take a bath when the candle is lit.
  • Read ingredients carefully. Choose candles that are 100% natural. Those that use synthetic oils or other synthetic ingredients will not provide therapeutic results.
  • Light safely. Some aromatherapy candles are especially calming, but you don’t want to get so relaxed that you fall asleep with a candle still aflame!
  • Match the candle to the room. Every room calls for a different scent and mood. Light an inspiring candle for the office or kitchen and a relaxing one for the bedroom.
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Feel free to light two different candle scents in a room for a unique combination. Avoid using three candles with different scents, however, as that can be overwhelming and hinder any positive properties.

FAQ

Q. How do I best maintain aromatherapy candles?
A.
Before lighting the candle, trim the wick so it's only about a quarter of an inch long. This will prevent smoking and allow for an even burn. The first burn should run for at least three or four hours, or enough time that the entire surface has had a chance to melt. Subsequently, burn for an hour or two at a time to avoid tunneling.

When putting out the flame, avoid blowing on the candle, as that could damage the wick or cause the flame to smoke. It’s best to use a candle snuffer. Alternatively, you could use a wick dipper to bend the wick into the wax. If you don’t have either of these tools, you could use the lid on the jar to smother the flame, although it may blacken the lid. Lastly, when not in use, cover the candle so it doesn’t attract dust or dirt, which could dampen the scent or ruin the wax.
 

Q. Are aromatherapy candles safe for pets?
A.
Pets can be particularly sensitive to certain scents and oils, especially cats. Aromatherapy candles are typically safer than infusing essential oils, but it’s important to note that not all oils, even when mixed with candle wax, are safe for dogs and cats. For example, eucalyptus and tea tree oil can be harmful to dogs.

Consult your veterinarian and research essential oil-based candles before selecting them. Monitor your pets for adverse reactions when using aromatherapy candles, especially the first time. Light your candles in a spacious, well-ventilated area. It may be wise to invest in exclusively pet-approved candles.
 

Q. What is tunneling, and how can I fix it?
A.
Tunnelling occurs when candle wax burns unevenly, resulting in a portion along the sides that stays solid while the center melts away. This can happen with any candle. To fix it, leave the wick longer than normal to promote a higher flame that will burn the edges. Burn the candle longer than usual so the top layers can melt. You may also need to cut down the sides, either removing them or spreading them across the top of the candle so they can melt anew.

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