A candle is one of the most popular decorating items, but you'd be surprised how little you really know about candles, how
they work and how to best to use them. Meghan Carter of http://www.AsktheDecorator.com visited Yankee Candle to discover the basics about the candle.
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Meghan: Candles are one of the most popular decorating items but guess what, we have all been picking them out wrong. Apparently you are supposed to smell the inside of the jar lid. Yes, I did not know that either and we are going to learn tons more candle information while I am here at Yankee Candle.
I am hitting the road, searching for answers and finding great design it is a quest of beauty, function and of course inspiration.
Rick: If you really want to smell the fragrance or smell the candle, the best way to smell a candle is to actually not smell it like this but actually smell the lid. And when you smell the lid—
Meghan: Oh my gosh! They actually do smell better.
Rick: There is a big, big difference and what has happened is the fragrance, when it is all condensed in here like this and trapped, it is called what is called creating head space and the fragrance actually accumulates in the top of the lid and when you smell it you actually get the full body of the fragrance. And believe it or not, fragrance is an awful lot like wine or you know as you are thinking about a great dish or something that you are eating.
Your taste buds, in general, they say is about 20% of when you eat and the other 80% is all your olfactory sense or sense of smell. And likewise, where you have a top, middle, and base note of the wine and that is why when people that are really wine connoisseur, they slash it around first and they smell it before they actually taste it. It is the same concept—you are getting the full body of the fragrance. And typically when a customer will smell the candle like this, all they are getting is what is called a top note. And when you smell it in here, you will get the full body which is the top, the middle and the base note.
Meghan: You know I have been struggling for years like—and you will practically put your nose all the way in because you cannot smell anything but when you smell here it is so nice.
Rick: And it is the same experience as if it was burning. So when you light a candle, what was actually creating the fragrance effect in your house is the wax pool. So when the wax—
Meghan: It is not the flame at all?
Rick: It is not the flame exactly. The flame will transition the wax from a solid form to a liquid and that liquid when it heats up, that what releases the fragrance in the air.
Meghan: I have heard that candle warmers make candles smell better. And is that because of the pool of wax?
Rick: Candle warmers are interesting and that they operate under a similar principle that some of our tart warmers or oil warming work which is they are warming the wax and in many cases will create a wax pool. And those work well at first, but the difference is white candles work really probably better than anything is the wax actually consumes as well because once the wax goes to liquid, the fragrance has released.
Once it solidifies again, if you have not burned off some of that wax all you have is unscented wax left and so what you are going to want to do—that is why candles actually the fragrance we use around here is not rocket science but it candle science and the whole idea is that the wax will actually serve as the way to get the fragrance in the air and then the flame uses the wax as fuel and so it burns away.
And so over time that is why the candle, you know, what goes down and the whole candle goes away whereas in a candle warmer it might be good that at first time or second time but overtime it is not going to work because it is driving all the fragrance out of the candle and all you are left with is unscented wax really.
Meghan: Basically, you do not want to use a candle warmer?
Rick: Well, again we recommend—the beauty of a candle is in part the flickering light.
Meghan: The ambiance.
Meghan: Everybody looks better in candlelight.
Rick: Exactly and you cannot beat a candlelight.
Meghan: Basically then, when you use a candle it takes a while for the scent to start to build because it takes a while for the wax pool to build?
Rick: That is correct. And depending on the type of can