Scented Candles Add to Indoor Air Pollution

Scented Candles Add to Indoor Air Pollution:

A bit of vanilla, zest of lemon, some autumnal cinnamon, irresistible caramel, and some exhilarating mocha to uplift your mood- who doesn’t like scented candles anyway, especially around the holiday season?

 With more than 1 billion pounds of wax being used for scented candle production and sold each year, and 10,000+ scent variants available, it’s fair to say that America is obsessed with scented candles. With countless articles across the internet, ads, and media showing snippets of scented candles as a part of a pampering, luxurious bath ritual, scented candles have become synonymous with self-care and relaxation.


1 Billion pounds of wax for candles every year

Surprisingly, this innocent-looking, lit self-love affair has a rather dangerous side. Scented candles add to indoor air pollution by releasing toxic and harmful airborne compounds that deteriorate your indoor air quality while posing varying levels of health risks.

When ignited, paraffin releases benzene and other toxic gases, a significant component of tobacco smoke. Another 2001 EPA report revealed that scented candles also emit dangerous organic compounds like acetaldehyde, acrolein, formaldehyde, and naphthalene. on burning.

Additionally, some candles also use metal to keep the wick upright, thus, adding lead to the list of contaminants. Most scented candles use paraffin wax as the base made from oil shade, petroleum, or coal.


  • Acetaldehyde: Chronic intoxication of acetaldehyde; resembling alcoholism
  • Benzene: Harmful effects on the bone marrow, decrease in red blood cells, anemia
  • Acrolein: Respiratory congestion, nose, throat, and eye irritation
  • Formaldehyde: Nose, throat, eye and skin irritation, poses a risk of carcinoma
  • Naphthalene: Vomiting, diarrhea, vomiting, malaise, nausea, headache, coma, anemia, confusion, jaundice, convulsions

As the scented candles burn, these dangerous particulates become airborne that give rise to the above-mentioned health problems as they enter our system while respiration.



While its no thrill for us to rain on your self-care parade if having a warm relaxing bath with scented candles for a spa-like retreat is your thing, here are a few ways you can fine-tune it

  1. Instead of paraffin wax-based candles, opt for alternatives like soy wax, coconut wax, and beeswax
  2. Place them in well-ventilated spaces and don’t use them frequently
  3. If possible, consider switching to some other self-pampering and relaxation tools
  4. Install an air purifier and smoke eater at your room to get rid of all toxic gases from inside and out
  5. Look for a lead-free label while buying candles
  6. Minimize candle soot by cutting the wick regularly

Apart from resolving the health risks posed by scented candles, a home smoke eater/ air purifier will also filter out the other nasty particulates coming from your surroundings while diminishing your indoor air quality standards. If you would like to learn how these intelligent systems can help you and your family breathe fresher, safer, and healthier air, browse our website or request a quote here.