Candle Shelf Life

Do Candles Expire? 

Burn the good candles! When I was planning the launch of Whiskey & Woof, I was interviewing a graphic designer who wanted to move into the luxury space. We were getting along well when she told me she had used the same Yankee Candle to scent her apartment for ten years. It had never been burned and she opened the jar for half an hour to scent the room when friends were coming over and then she would replace the glass top on it. 

My lungs felt a sympathy pang. I could only imagine what she was smelling and what she was putting her friends through.  After ten years, the condition of a candle is likely to be significantly compromised. Here's what typically happens:

  1. Wax Deterioration: The wax will likely degrade extensively, becoming brittle, discolored, or even developing a rancid smell. Natural waxes, such as soy wax, may deteriorate faster than paraffin wax.
  2. Loss of Scent: Any fragrance in the candle will have likely dissipated almost entirely. Both synthetic and natural fragrances break down over time, especially with prolonged exposure to air and light.
  3. Color Fading or Changes: The color of the candle may have faded or changed due to exposure to light and environmental factors. Dyes used in colored candles are particularly susceptible to degradation.
  4. Wick Deterioration: The wick may have degraded, becoming brittle or disintegrating entirely. This would make it difficult or impossible to light the candle.
  5. Safety Concerns: After such a long period, there could be safety concerns about using the candle. The structural integrity of the candle may be compromised, increasing the risk of accidents such as collapse or flare-ups.

Overall, after ten years, a candle is likely to be well past its prime and may not be safe or effective to use. It's generally advisable to replace candles after a few years to ensure optimal performance and safety.

When I advise you to “burn the good candles,” I do want you to relax but it is also to protect the integrity of what is being burned and your health. 

How to increase longevity for your candles:

  1. Store in a dark place to prolong fragrance and color integrity, shielding from UV light exposure.
  2. When first lit, allow the wax to melt entirely, from side-to-side. Depending on the circumference of the vessel, it will be between 1-2 hours for a 7-9 ounce candle. 
  3. Trim the wicks when cooled between burns to reduce soot in the burn
  4. Aim to use candles within 12 to 16 months of purchase to maintain fragrance and color. 
  5. Be mindful of degradation signs: faded color and altered scent indicate expiration.
  6. Still usable? Assess burn performance; if satisfactory, continue use despite aesthetic changes.

Whiskey & Woof uses a coconut wax blend and always researching and keeping current on blends that come out to provide the highest quality products that you have come to expect. 

Have further questions? Message

Wishing you good smells, 

Founder of Whiskey & Woof

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