Are You Lighting Candles Correctly? Tips For Keeping It Safe

Earlier this month, Ashley Brawley, 29, blew out her Bath & Body Works three-wick candle. According to video evidence, a fireball then burst in her face, leaving her with third-degree burns.

You can watch the video, recorded on Brawley’s Nest security system, here. As of this post, the video has been viewed more than 2 million times.

Scented candles are smell great, look pretty, and can help you relax. But whenever there’s fire involved, we have to think about safety first.

I personally have several Bath & Body Works three-wick candles (my favorites are Peach Bellini and Winter), and even after watching the video I will continue to use them. However, I’ll play it safe by practicing the following few simple candle safety tips:

  • Never blow a candle out. Use a wick dipper. A wick dipper is a small steel implement for extinguishing a candle. You simply hook it around the lit wick to dip it into the melted wax in order to avoid splatter and mess.
  • After lighting a candle, stay in the room. Never leave a candle unattended. Always keep an eye on an open flame so if something goes wrong, you’ll see it.
  • Don’t light a candle on a windowsill. It could set your curtains on fire, or a draft from the window could spread the flame outside the candle votive. No matter where you do light it, keep your candle away from flammable objects and out of elbow-knocking reach.
  • Keep the wick trimmed to ¼ inch before burning. Candle flames uncomfortably high? It’s likely because your wicks aren’t trimmed. Trimming the wick (with a simple pair of scissors) keeps the flames low and also makes the candle last longer.

Candles are a fun, simple way to add mood lighting and a signature scent to your home. And as long as you play it safe, you’ll have nothing to worry about.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez

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