Can Candles Relieve Anxiety? Here’s What You Need to Know

Candles are the best way to relax. Whether it’s the flickering light, the soothing scents, or the beautiful glow of a candle—they make us feel at ease. So can candles relieve anxiety? 

After all, there are some studies that say scented candles can help reduce stress and boost mood. And since anxiety is marked by feeling stressed-out and cranky, maybe inhaling some lavender while holding a lit match isn’t such a bad idea after all.

candles relieve anxiety


Candles and Anxiety

For some people, candles help them feel relaxed and calm, but for others, candles can cause anxiety. Why is that? Well, it depends on the reason you light a candle in the first place. If you’re lighting scented candles to help calm your nerves, then yes—candles can relieve anxiety. Scented candles are especially helpful if you are experiencing an episode of mild or moderate anxiety because they help activate your parasympathetic nervous system (the one responsible for relaxation).

But if you have severe anxiety or suffer from panic disorder, lighting a scented candle may not be such a good idea. According to clinical psychologist David Klow, “scented candles have negative connotations” for those with panic attacks because being around strong smells during an episode can trigger more anxiety. But if it’s the only way you can calm yourself down, then by all means—light a candle!

In fact, some therapists have found that scented candles are an effective coping tool for people who suffer from anxiety because they provide “sensory stimulation.” In other words, inhaling calming aromas while watching a flickering flame has proven to ease symptoms of mild and moderate anxiety.

However, some experts say there isn’t enough clinical evidence to support the claim that candles relieve anxiety or stress or help reduce panic attacks. So before you buy a whole bunch of lavender-scented candles in bulk, it might be best to consult your doctor first!


Best Candles Relieve Anxiety

There are a ton of different scents out there, and it can be hard to pinpoint which one will help you relax the most. For some people, lavender calms their nerves. For others, an earthy scent like sandalwood or cedar brings them comfort and ease. No matter what kind of candle you’re looking for or how big your budget is, we’ve got you covered! Here’s our top five list for best candles to relieve anxiety:


Sandalwood Vanilla Candle by The White Barn Candle Company

This soy-based candle has a warm, woodsy fragrance with undertones of bourbon vanilla, and cotton candy that will quickly become your new favorite candle.


Eucalyptus Spearmint Candle by Paddywax

This candle is perfect for the person who lives in a city and misses the great outdoors. The earthy eucalyptus scent can transform your living room into a mini spa, while the minty freshness of the spearmint will bring you back to your childhood in grandma’s backyard.


100% Soy Wax Candle by Bath & Body Works

Throwing dinner parties or hosting game nights with friends? This long-lasting soy wax candle is infused with patchouli, sandalwood, and cotton musk—three powerful scents that are commonly used to help people relax. The best part about this candle is that it comes in an array of sizes (including hand warmers), so you can pick the one that’s right for you!


Calla Lily by CB I Hate Perfume

This candle is a great choice if you have an affinity for florals. It combines the scent of calla lilies with mint and cypress, which helps to soothe nerves and clear the mind. This candle will also make any room (or car) smell like it’s been freshly cleaned—even after you blow it out.


Lavender Chamomile Candle by Paddywax

A Lavender Chamomile Candle is a soothing combination of calming chamomile and lavender essential oils in a soy-based jar candle.  Relieve stress and anxiety with this scented, which has notes of calming bergamot and soothing chamomile,  and is a great addition to any home.


Can Candles Relieve Anxiety: In Summary

When it comes to asking if candles relieve anxiety, it’s best to let your nose decide what scent will soothe you the most. If you’re on a budget but want a candle that smells good enough to eat, try Bath & Body Works’ vanilla-scented pick. However, if you have severe anxiety or panic attacks and need even more help to overcome those stressors, then perhaps consulting your doctor before buying scented candles is the right choice for you.

In addition to calming aromas, another common way people relieve their anxiety is by listening to music. Many people find that putting on their favorite slow jam can really help calm them down, and you should try to do so too!

What are some of your favorite ways to relieve anxiety? We’d love to hear about it so leave us a comment below. And of course, don’t forget to share this article with your friends and family on Facebook!

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