4 Ways to Be Kind to Humankind: The Candle Edition!
Be Kind To Humankind was created in August of 1988 by Lorraine Jara in Toms River, New Jersey.
The final week of August inspired Lorraine Jara to create Be Kind To Humankind Week. Lorraine decided to honour the memory of two deceased young men from her home town by creating a week., to encourage kindness among people. Many have recognised her for her efforts, including entertainers like Oprah Winfrey and Paul Simon as well as several U.S. Presidents.
If it’s being kinder to your family, friends or the neighbour down the street, any step towards a kinder world will benefit us all.
However when it comes to candles it’s hard to tell the mean from the kind. As much as we love the sight of that flickering light and the aroma of a sophisticated fragrance, we can’t help but wonder: What lasting affect will all that candle wax, colouring and oil dissolved into the air we breathe have on us? What’s the true price for great ambiance?
So here are our 4 ways to be kinder to the most important human around: Yourself! If you’re a candle lover like me, here is a few things you should know!
1. Finding the Kinder Wax of the Waxes:
When it comes to candle wax, the familiar words you’ll read are either stearin (animal or vegetable fats) or paraffin (petroleum waste). Either are great. However, the latter is actually really bad for both the environment and us.
Why is Paraffin Wax so bad?
As paraffin burns, it creates toxic benzene and toluene chemicals, both of which are known carcinogens. Breathing them in is known to be as bad for your health as second-hand smoke.
So what wax options are kind?
If you want a kinder candle, vegetable ingredients like coconut wax, rapeseed wax, beeswax or soy wax are the way to go. Although if you’re looking for animal cruelty-free and vegan candles, I would recommend removing beeswax from that list.
2. Dye it right:
We all love colour and candles aren’t exempt from our rainbow fantasies. However, many candle dyes contain artificial dyes, harmful chemicals which can be released when burning.
These toxic particles—not forgetting soot—that get released into the air in our homes has proven to cause awful things like lung issues, cardiac problems, cancer, autoimmune diseases, and allergies. Considering our health as well as the health of this plant, we’re obligated to make better choices.
Natural dyes are an option, however, research needs to happen when using or buying dyed candles. The safest option is to buy candles without dyes, or candles from sites that are entirely transparent with there candle components!
3. Smell Them Fragrance Oils:
Many candles contain artificial fragrances, which can release harmful chemicals when being burnt. However, even the smell of ‘cotton candy’ although a human-made smell can be created with essential oils & natural fragrances.
All I have to say here is, make sure you know what in your candle. Be suspicious of candles manufactured with synthetic fragrances. In opposition to synthetic fragrances, look for candles with essential oils & natural fragrant oils, created with all-natural extracts. This is the way to go.
Most plant-based oils in their concentrated form they’re very powerful and should be handled with great care. Essential oils are also often used for their therapeutic and nourishing qualities. It’s a win, win all around!
4. Cut out the Wicked Wicks:
You want to go for organic and eco-friendly candles with cotton or wood wicks. The wick should be lead and metal-free and made from natural and clean-burning things like cotton, hemp or wood. To maintain a clean burn you want to cut the wick before lightening the candle, and always keep candles away from drafts to prevent them from producing soot.
What we’ve worked out is this:
It’s usually the best and most sustainable choice to think Natural and Organic. However, even natural ingredients need to be responsibly produced. If the candle contains wax made from palm oil or soy, it’s extra essential to know it comes from eco-friendly and sustainable harvesting.
Is it biodegradable? Is it fair-trade?
Many candle makers buy in the bunk to create their product lines, purchasing containers for there products that can not be repurposed or recycled afterwards. Keep this in mind when selecting your candles.
The idea of made to order candles is something as a company we do a lot. Only creating limited scent runs and only producing what is needed, not to create any waste.
You want organic and eco-friendly candles? Then look for the candles with cotton or wood wicks made. Wax that is from natural, vegetable ingredients like our biodegradable soy wax candles. If they’re scented, make sure the oils are eco-friendly and natural. Be suspicious of candles manufactured with synthetic fragrances, toxic dyes, GMOs, pesticides, paraffin or parabens, and avoid ones made from unspecified blends, as they may contain synthetic ingredients or paraffin.
We know, it’s a lot, so at Robbins Candle Co. we make it simple by being completely transparent with all our candle components. We will also give you any information if requested, when buying our candles and hope that our kind approach to making candles help you Be Kind to Humankind, by being kinder to yourself when you purchase products.
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”
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