It might be the faint fragrance of lavender or the gentle flame of a tea light, but a carefully selected luxury candle can help create the right ambiance and it adds the finishing touche to your interior decoration. The candle industry is already worth over £1.9 billion in the UK and perfumed candles are continuing to grow in popularity.
As demand rises, so does the choice on offer and choosing the ideal fragranced candle is more complicated than one might have first thought.
It is with this in mind, that we have written this essential guide to luxury scented candles. We will not only discuss what you should consider when buying your luxury candles, but also how to make the most of them.
After all, Edith Wharton said: “There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or mirror that reflects it.”
What Type Of Luxury Candle Should You Purchase ?
Of course, everyone’s reasons and surrounding circumstances for wanting a luxury scented candle are different.
Therefore, we have created a table that can be used as a reference to better inform your decision.
|Candles in Glass||Are poured into containers, usually glass.
The most common type of perfumed candle.
The molten, hot wax releases the perfume.
|Pillar Candles||Are formed into cylinders from firm wax that can burn free-standing.
Can be placed on a heat-resistant (& possibly decorative) dish.
Often used to enhance a beautiful living room mantel piece.
|Taper Candles||Made from firm max shaped to be much taller and thinner.
Typically, they are found in a classic candelabra or a typical candlestick.
Commonly positioned as a centre piece upon a dinner table.
|Votive Candles||Typically small, square or cylindrical.
Commonly presented in a small cup or glass jar.
Suited perfectly for bedside tables, bathroom units or bookshelves.
|Tea Lights||Usually are small and round.
They are recommended to be scattered across flat surfaces in the home.
Ideally placed in clusters.
Different Types of Wax In Luxury Candles
The main criteria for assessing the quality of a candle are:
- wax: is the wax petroleum derived or from a sustainable source?
- clean burn: does the candle soot and smoke when it is burning?
- strong fragrance: does the fragrance fill the room? Is the odour of soot or smoke perceivable?
- beautiful appearance: is the wax beautifully white or creamy? Is the surface smooth?
- no drip: does the taper candle drip?
- type of wick: is made from cotton? Does it contain a metal filament?
The type of wax that a candle is made from, is often overlooked by most of us and yet for luxury candles, the wax has a significant impact on their quality.
Paraffin wax is the most common type of wax. It produces more smoke and soot than other waxes. Contains ‘toluen’ and ‘benzene’ which are known carcinogenes. On the other hand, it is the cheapest of all waxes, easy to dye and very suitable for making highly scented candles.
Beeswax has a natural honey-like aroma and emits a warm glow when lit because of its colour, i.e. reduces the need to add dyes to the wax. This means they are a good choice for those with allergies or looking for a natural wax. Due to its high melting point, beeswax is also less likely to drip.
Soy wax is natural and renewable. Essentially, it is the sustainable choice. The wax is made of soybean oil, which is biodegradable but also burns cleanly for extended periods of time. Any spills can be easily washed away with soap and hot water.
There are many other types of wax that are very suitable for perfume candles: palm, sunflower, coconut, flower wax, avocado, stearin, …
Their popularity varies between regions, e.g. stearin is the most popular wax in Scandinavia, and candle formats, e.g. stearin is more popular for taper candles and soy wax is mainly used in container candles.
For a more in-depth overview, you may enjoy reading through our ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ about candles:
Luxury Candles & Fragrance
The Scent Thow
Is the ‘Scent-Throw’ strong enough so that the fragrance of the candle fills the room?
When it comes to the fragrance of luxury candles, there are a few things that should be considered
- the bigger the space, the more candles are required or the larger the candles should be
- a candle wax with higher meltpoint will result in a stronger fragrance
- the more perfume mixed into the wax, the stronger and longer lasting the fragrance. Cheap candles frequently only scent the uppermost layer of the candle.
All luxury candle waxes have a saturation point, meaning that there is a certain limit to the amount of fragrance that can be added due to safety concerns, i.e. if the wax is oversaturated, the flame may ignite the essential oils that seep out of the wax.
The fragrance of luxury scented candles is a very personal experience and preference, which will invoke different feelings and memories in each of us. There are infinite combinations of fragrances so we invite our customers to explore the ones that appeal to them.
As wax cools and solidifies, it shrinks and cracks or holes appear.
A second layer of wax, i.e. like a top coat, is normally applied in order to create a smooth finish.
Some companies only scent the wick or use scented wax during the second refill, which is why you may stop smelling the candle after the top layer of the wax has burned off.
For a candle fragrance that lasts, we include the maximum amount of concentrated perfume oil that is technically possible and we fragrance the entire wax, i.e. from top to bottom and not just the ‘top coat’.
How To Maintain Luxury Candles
When the perfect candle has been found, only half of the work is complete. Even the best scented candle still needs some tender love and care to ensure it performs at its best.
Tip 1: The First Lighting Of The Luxury Candle
This is possibly the most important time in any candle’s life and should dedicate a little of your time to it. You need to watch until the wax starts to melt and form a ‘pool’ up to the edges of its container. You should not extinguish the candle before it has developed a full meltpool, i.e. the entire surface of the wax has turned molten.
This prevents ‘tunnelling’ or the phenomenon where the flame ‘tunnels’ down into the wax without ever forming a full meltpool. Tunneling eventually leads to a candle that extinguishes itself before the entire wax has been used up.
If possible, a luxury candle should be extinguished with a sniffer as it will help to ensure that the wick stays centred.
As a result, whenever the candle is lit again in the future, it will burn cleanly down the sides of its glass container.
Tip 2: Invest In Some Wick Trimmers
When you buy luxury candles, it is very likely that the candle maker would have trimmed the wick for the first lighting If this is not the case, trim the wick to 4mm and again after each burn.
Trimming the wick down to 4mm will ensure that your luxury candles will last longer but there will also be less soot in the wax than if the wick was longer.
As well as avoiding soot, in order to avoid flaring, we recommend keeping the liquid wax free of wick trimmings or match ends.
Tip 3: Good Luxury Candle Burning Habits
Avoid burning the last centimetre of wax in order to protect the candle container, e.g. it might crack, and the surface that you have placed your candle on.
Wicks can become deformed and develop ‘mushrooms’, if they are burned too long. We recommend not burning a luxury candle for more than four hours at a time.
Pairfum London Luxury Perfume & Soy Candles
One of the advantages of our Pairfum Luxury Candles is that they have multiple wicks and they are made of cotton (or linen). High-quality luxury candles use finely woven cotton wicks, free from metal filaments to keep them upright. Metal filaments have been proven to be carcinogenic.
Instead, seek out candles that use wick with either a special weave or paper filaments to keep them upright while they are burning.
Our candles tend to release a more powerful fragrance and provide a beautiful glow. The burning time of a candle depends on the quality and size of the candle. The longer burning time of our luxury candles is a sign of quality over cheaper candles.