Are Scented Candles Actually Bad for You?

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What is a spa day, romantic dinner, or cozy night in without a candle or two to set the mood?

For over a decade, headlines have warned consumers about toxic chemical exposure when burning candles indoors, but new research tells us that our worries might be overblown.

A study found that burning paraffin wax releases potentially dangerous chemicals like toluene, and some scented candles contain cancer-causing chemicals like benzene and formaldehyde.

While very high concentrations of these chemicals might indeed be harmful, recent research has found that the amount of particles and vapors emitted from burning household candles...

is lower than the limits recommended by the World Health Organization.  Yes, toxicity will increase if multiple candles are lit in poorly-ventilated areas for prolonged periods of time...

but normal use is not generally a cause for concern.  Nikaeta Sadekar told The New York Times ...

that exposure to chemicals emitted by scented candles “is so low that they pose no significant risk to human health.” Soot — the byproduct of incomplete combustion — has been a source of concern as well.

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