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Scented vs. Unscented Candles: Which Are Better For My Home?

Break out the box of matches, strike one and light that candle! Is there anything more relaxing than sitting on the couch or lying in your bed with your favorite scent filling the air? The warm and calm atmosphere created by candles are irresistible and even sometimes addictive, but not all candles are safe.

Scented candles could be considered one of the largest sources of air pollution in your home. Most of these candles come with artificial scents and dyes which release toxic chemicals when lit and they take a serious toll on your health. Some of the substances include:

  • Acrolein- this is a chemical commonly found in aquatic herbicides and biocide. It’s highly toxic especially when inhaled and can result in irritation of the respiratory tract.

  • Dioxins and Furan- these chemicals serve no purpose in the candles, but their risks include the health and immune system weakness, changes in liver functions and nervous system abnormalities.

  • Formaldehyde- this chemical is not considered as dangerous as some of the others, but can result in headaches and dizziness, loss of concentration, and nose, eye, and throat irritation.

  • Acetaldehyde- this is commonly found in the dye and scents of the candles and is released into the air when burnt. Similar to some of the others, it can cause eye, nose, throat, and lung irritation.

But wait, there’s more! Some of the scented candles come with heavy metals, like lead, in the wick. We’re sure you’ve heard of some of the dangers that come along with lead by now.

With all these things to consider, you may want to choose a unscented candle the next time you head down that aisle. Still, this does not mean you can't enjoy a romantic scent when still enjoy a candle lighting experience; you can always find other less harmful alternatives and naturally scented candles that won’t put you at risk.

At Rusk, we know that complete home comfort is about more than just temperature - it's also about maintaining a healthy home with indoor air quality. Air quality in your home not up to par? We can help!