Who made the first candle? Credit is generally given to the ancient Romans, but it’s possible that the ancient Egyptians were making wicked candles as early as 3000 BC. All across the world in places like China, India, and Japan, early civilizations had their own version of the candle.
With so many years of history spread out across the entire world, it’s no wonder that there are a lot of different types of candles.
But how do you choose the right candle for your event or for your home?
Come with us and we’ll learn about the different kinds of candles. Whether you’re trying to brighten up a room in your house or decorate for a party, there are candle types for every desired mood.
What Are Candles Made Out Of?
Candles are most commonly made out of paraffin wax, which is a petroleum byproduct. Other popular candle materials are beeswax, soy wax, and palm wax.
The wicks of candles can be made out of cotton, paper, metal, or wood.
Cotton and paper wicks are often used in wax filled glass candles, as they produce more melted wax. Metal wicks are commonly found in votive and pillar candles. Wooden wicks burn more cleanly than the other options and you don’t have to trim the wick when using longterm.
What Are the Different Types of Candles?
When you’re planning an event, it’s easy to let the little details be an afterthought. Candles are a critical part of setting an atmospheric tone, so it’s worth putting some thought into.
What shape and style of candle should you go with? Should you use unscented or scented candles? We’ll dive into all the big questions below.
Taper candles are tall, slender, and elegant. These long-lasting candles can burn for 10-12 hours. Though commonly white or ivory, taper candles are available in many colors.
Also known as window candles, taper candles can’t stand up on their own and require a stand of some kind. These candles can make a classic centerpiece or a sophisticated decoration for the mantle.
Pillar candles can stand up on their own, but it’s quite pretty to use them on a candlestick or in a large lantern.
Coming in a variety of different sizes, shapes, and colors, pillar candles are smokeless and can burn for 3-4 hours. You can either use them alone for a simple centerpiece or you can arrange them with a combination of different candles of assorted sizes to create a custom display.
These small candles are generally 2.5 inches tall and 2 inches in diameter. They are great for decorating at parties and around dining areas. You can display them in a multi-candle stand, a small glass holder, or even in a wall sconce.
Burning for 6-7 hours, these candles are often used in churches, religious ceremonies, or for prayer.
Similar in some ways to votive candles, tea lights are often used in restaurants and churches. Depending on the brand and type, these candles can burn anywhere from 2 to 6 hours.
You can generally purchase tea lights in a multi-pack, which is great because when used in clusters they create a wonderful intimate atmosphere.
There are few places that tea lights wouldn’t set a calming mood. You can use them as a table centerpiece, set them around the bathroom while you take a soothing bubble bath, or place them on the windowsill or mantle to help your home feel cozier.
These small, skinny candles come in a lot of different fun colors and are used to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries. Birthday candles can be used on deserts of any kind and guests can make a wish before they blow them out!
Sometimes similar to taper candles, sometimes more short and stout than taper candles, cartridge candles are sophisticated types of candles that prevent the wax drippings that occur in taper candles.
Floating candles are sold in many different colors and sizes. Because of the way they are molded, they float easily in water without tipping over. Place these candles in their own container or in a large container with several other floating candles to create a beautiful centerpiece.
An aesthetic and practically worry-free candle method, these types of candles come in a container, so dripping wax isn’t an issue. Use these kinds of candles at your event inside or outside to create a relaxing and classic ambiance. This is the most popular type of candle in America.
People can feel strongly on both sides of this issue. When choosing candles for an event, you might want to take into consideration the nature of the occasion, whether a meal is being served (and if the candle scent will interact positively or negatively with the aroma of the meal), and whether the crowd is likely to be sensitive to fragrances or scents.
Scented candles can be of variable strength, so it can be a good idea to test them out before the big night.
If you’re worried about having real candles at your event, there are also some realistic options in the world of battery-powered candles. Available in many different styles, such as votive, tea lights, and pillars, these candles are a great way to shape the mood for any occasion.
Use Candles to Cast a Lovely Glow in Your Home or on Any Holiday
Depending on your purpose or occasion, some types of candles may be more or less appropriate. I hope you found different types of candles that you like here!