home, household, oils

Candles + Carcinogens.

If there was a rehab group for candle addicts, I would have definitely been a member. When I tell you I was up obsessed with candles, I’m not lying. Every season (and day) brought a new opportunity to buy a new candle. Christmas wreath, pumpkin spice, springtime flowers, island ocean blue salt calm water candle… whatever it was, I bought the candle and fully enjoyed it. There was just something so cozy and comforting about coming home after a long day, getting a blanket and lighting a candle. My obsession got so bad that I actually got Mike on board with it and he would come home with candles he found at the store that he thought smelled really good.

We were now a candle team and life felt right. 😂

It was great until I started realizing how many things are actually in candles. And how we were inhaling them at least once a day if not more. I never thought about how candles were actually made but when I realized how toxic they were, we stopped.

To get me to stop using candles, you know there had to be some pretty bad ish in there. Here’s what’s not so great about them:

  • Most scented candles are made of parrafin wax, which creates highly toxic benzene and toluene when burned (both known carcinogens). These can damage brain, lungs, and central nervous system.
  • Many wicks contain lead, which can create high levels of airborne lead when burned. Lead is not good and is linked to hormone issues, behavioral problems, learning disabilities and health problems. Candles are “supposed” to be made with cotton wicks, but studies showed that more than 30% of candles had heavy metals in the wicks. They release 5 TIMES the amount of lead considered hazardous for kids. WHAT.
  • Fragrance: this an obvious one. It’s never good to have synthetic fragrances because they can be made of SO many shady toxins and the company can just write “fragrance” as an ingredient and never has to tell you what chemicals actually make up that fragrance. Fun, right?!

So what did we do? We switched to more natural ways of getting smells in our house by using diffusers and quality essential oils (I say quality because most oils have synthetic fragrance and chemicals added to them so you’re really back at square one). It’s been SO fun to try out different essential oils & combine them for whatever scent or mood I’m feeling that day.

Here are some of my favorites:

Now that fall is just around the corner I’m trading in my old pumpkin spice & apple candles for more natural options such as essential oils like cinnamon, clove, orange, ginger, nutmeg, and Christmas Spirit because it’s never too early for Christmas!

Hopefully this post will inspire you to throw out your candles and get rid of the toxic chemicals we are inhaling on a daily basis! Just last week, we were miles away from the Yankee Candle factory and the thought didn’t even cross my mind to go. I know it’s hard (pretty sure I shed a tear throwing mine out), but trust me, it is SO much better for your and your family’s health.




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