Candle enthusiasts (like us!) are those who enjoy every single thing about candles. So, we had to research facts about candle history to see how it all began! From the most commonly known facts about candles, or the most obscure tidbit of information about them like their vague history, we enjoy learning more about it and hope you will, too!
Candles are so much more than what meets the eye. It has a simple yet intricate way of working and the principles behind how a candle works are quite fascinating. We talked more about the science of scented candles and how a candle functions in a previous article on our website... Click here to read! Simply put, scented candles are, in a way, deceiving with the way they look because the principles that govern their function involved a lot of processes. There are more facts about candles that a layman may not know, and this article aims to explore some of those lesser-known facts! So, without further ado, let's get into it!
Facts About Candle History & More
The Earliest Candles
Let's start with the history of candles... The earliest use of candles is attributed to Ancient Egypt when they made use of rushlights and torches by soaking the cores of reeds in melted animal fat. These rushlights, however, are not a typical candle because they do not make use of wicks which are almost always found in modern-day candles.
The history of candles is veiled with mystery because of the little information we have about them, but ancient Romans are the generally accepted developers of the wicked candles. They made use of rolled papyrus and repeatedly dipped it in beeswax and melted tallow and used the end product to light their homes, aid travelers during their journeys at night, as well as religious ceremonies. The ancient Romans often used these candles to honor the birth of the goddess Artemis on the sixth day of every lunar month. Artemis is known to be the goddess of the hunt. They make use of candles in ceremonies to pray for a good yield in their hunts as well a bountiful harvest for the days to come.
How to Burn a Candle
Did you know that lighting up a candle is more complex than you could imagine? You may often encounter this problem known as tunneling where you have plenty of wax around the candle still, yet your candle only melts in the middle. Maybe you thought that the manufacturer scammed you of your money because they gave you poor quality of the product because your wax is not burning efficiently. You might have wondered: why does this happen?
The answer is simple: it is all about that first burn. The first burn of the candle is the most important because it can impact the way your candle performs in a massive way. That first burn will create what is known to be the memory ring of the candle, which is the indent made by the first burn of the candle. This will mark the edge of where the future burns will reach, and if your first burn was done wrong, then your candle will have a poor memory ring which will subsequently lead to tunneling.
In order to avoid such a problem, the first burn of the candle must last long enough. A good indicator of whether or not you burned your candle long enough is when the whole of the top layer of your candle has melted and turned liquid. That may take several hours depending on the type of your candle, the size of your candle, or even the material or the type of wicks and wax used by the candle that you have. This will ensure that your memory ring reaches the edge of your candle and all your subsequent burns will be even as well.
How to Save a Tunneling Candle
Another fun fact about candles is that you can save one that's tunneling! If you realized the previous point too late, do not fret because there are ways to save your candle! You can cover your candle with aluminum foil and cut a hole in the center where the wick is. If you light your candle, the foil will encourage the hard outer wax to melt together with the center where the tunneling occurred. This is because the foil will insulate the heat and disperse it to the outer edge of the candle that was not a part of the candle’s memory ring.
Another option that does the same thing is to use a candle topper. This is more expensive, but it will surely up your candle game because not only will this candle accessory prevent drafts from disrupting your candle’s flame, it can also do the same thing the aluminum foil does which is to encourage the top layer to melt evenly. In both cases where you use either aluminum foil or the candle topper, you should burn your candle for several hours until the entirety of the top layer is liquid. Only then can you turn the candle off, which you should do properly. This leads us to the next point where we discuss why you should not blow out your candles in order to turn them off.
How to Blow Out Candle - the Right Way
With the question of how to blow out candles properly, our best advice is not to blow it out! There are three reasons why you should not blow out your candle. The first is in connection to our previous point: blowing out your candle can cause tunneling as well. How does this happen? Blowing out your candle can make your wax uneven and eventually push it to certain areas of the candle where it will harden in an irregular shape. This will ruin all the time you spent melting that top layer so that your candle will burn evenly later on. Furthermore, you can also blow the wick in a weird direction and leave it buried in the wax. As the wax hardens, you may find it harder to relight the candle because of this buried wick.
The second reason why you should not blow out your candle when you turn it off is that it will lead to the development of smoke and soot which can be quite unpleasant for your candle. It can even replace the fragrance that came from your scented candle and can overpower the pleasant odor you spent hours trying to achieve.
The final reason why you should not blow out your candles is that it can be hazardous to your or to others besides you. It can send sparks flying which is flammable in itself, so if it reaches an area, it can spark a fire that can hurt others. Furthermore, the liquid that has melted can also be blown away in the direction of other people, causing painful burns due to the hot wax hurting them.
The right way to turn off your candle is through the use of the correct tool called a candle snuffer. It puts the flame out by depriving it of oxygen, stopping the combustion process from continuing. There are other tools you can check out in order to elevate your candle experience. We talked about this in detail in an article published previously titled “Must-Have Candle Accessories for Candle Enthusiasts”. You can find that article by clicking here!
Candlemakers are Called Chandlers
You might be thinking about the infamous character in the hit series Friends, Chandler Bing. However, he is not the only chandler that matters! Chandlers are those who make and sell candles to other people. It comes from the old French word “chandelier”, which may sound familiar to you. The traditional chandeliers people used made use of several candles fitted into a decorative piece and fixed on a ceiling. This was before the development of electricity.
Conclusion of Facts About Candle History & More
Candles have evolved into something beyond what it was intended for. Instead of being simple sources of light, candles now play a huge part in our lives even in this era where electricity is very abundant. This is because candles have other functions that they can do. With this evolution came the rise of enthusiasts like us who enjoy everything a candle can possibly offer. We hope that after reading this article of fun facts about candle history & more, you are better able to appreciate candles by knowing these tidbits of information about them!
Thank you so much for reading our blog! We hope that we were able to help you in some way to enrich your candle experience. Don't forget to check some of our incredible smelling and unique hidden message candles by visiting our shop which you can do by clicking here! Be sure to tag us on Instagram @HiddenCandleCo so we can enjoy your candle with you!