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How to buy the best candle for your personality this spooky season

TextDominic Cadogan

The ultimate guide, answering all your burning questions about candle care and what to look out for when buying

Now that we’re firmly in October, things are set to get a lot spookier, and given the hellscape that 2020 has been so far, that’s saying something. 

Whether you’re a full-time witch or simply just want to burn something, anything; candles are likely a big part of your arsenal. If you’re not in either of those categories, but are drawn to the gentle flicker of candlelight like a moth, there’s a few things you should know before spending a single penny. 

“For me, scent and candles are affordable therapy,” says Matthew Herman, co-founder of Boy Smells. “I’m a firm believer in the transportative power of scent, to activate and access emotions, thoughts, and moods. We’re staying put physically so much these days, candles have an immense power to unlock the tension created by being stagnant. Scent can let the mind travel when our bodies are not.” 

It might seem obvious, but scent is an important factor to focus on when looking to purchase a candle. “Buy a candle that speaks to you, make sure you have a personal connection to what you’re buying,” Matthew explains. “We strongly believe that scent and candles have the power of exploration, so many scents have unlocked journeys of personal growth for me.  Buy scents that inspire you, and allow you to dream bigger.” 

When it comes to candle care, Boy Smells gives clear guidance on every item it sells on how to get the best out of your burn. “The first burn of any candle should be long enough for the entire top layer of wax to liquefy,” Matthew says. This will ensure an even burn and stop the candle from burning only in the centre. He also suggests trimming the wick to ¼ inch before lighting to avoid smoking and overheating. His other top tips? Never burn a candle for longer than 3 hours at a time or near an open window or fan. Once the wax is less than ¼ inch, it’s done, for you to start all over again. 

“We strongly believe that scent and candles have the power of exploration, so many scents have unlocked journeys of personal growth for me.  Buy scents that inspire you, and allow you to dream bigger” – Matthew Herman, Boy Smells co-founder 

Not sure what the best scent for your personality is? Below Matthew pairs candles with dreamers, experimenters and everything in-between. His personal fave? “Cowboy Kush. It is raw and unbridled while still maintaining a sophistication,” he concludes. “My current obsession is Agua de Jardin though. It’s very green and alive but still very sexy. It’s the right amount of purity and optimism to combat the trauma of the daily news cycle.” 

So, burn baby, burn (responsibly).

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