A couple of random facts about bestofcandles.com:
I put up several candle reviews a week on this blog. That does not mean I burn all these candles at the time I’m publishing the reviews. I have been buying and burning candles for 15 years and while I didn’t have a blog or anything it was always a hobby I approached methodically and I have about 10 small notebooks containing notes on every single candle I’ve even burned, allowing me to write reviews of candles I burned years ago. Also, I happen to have a lot of friends and family members who burn candles regularly so when I visit and see a candle burning, I pull out a notebook and jot down the notes I need to write a review. I have actually burned or smelled every single candle I review, and I have a huge backlog of reviews that are waiting to be published but I’ll cut out the scents that are either gone or very hard to find.
I work as a translator from home, which allows me a lot of time to burn candles. I also live in a big, almost a century old house and even though I clean like a madwoman it has thick walls and a ton of wood and I feel it can quickly develop a musty oldish scent so I tend to have candles burning or scented wax melting in at least three rooms at a time.
I don’t burn candles in my or my children’s’ bedrooms. I keep the bedrooms aired out to within an inch of a dust bunny and I like sleeping in unscented air.
I do keep in mind that candle burning is not the healthiest thing one can be doing due to the chemicals and soot being released. I buy scented candles from known companies and limit the amount I burn around children.
When I was 20 years old I started working for the UN which allowed me to travel and live in a lot of amazing places. I left my job when I decided to have kids and didn’t want the “diplomatic” family life style. Since I worked for the UN for over 10 years and moved around a lot, most of my friends are actually my ex- work colleagues that know me well and know that I enjoy scented candles. They tend to bring me candles from the USA when we manage to meet up, allowing me to get my hands on American candles and staying away from ebay.
I don’t collect scented candles, I burn them. My scented candle collection or stash is always changing and usually consists of about 30 candles. I try to buy scented candles when they’re on sale but I live in Europe and buy from companies that don’t do amazing USA type sales here so I do pay full price or close to full price for a lot of the candles.
I have a monthly budget of 200 EUR for all things hobby. Sometimes I spent the whole budget on candles, sometimes I don’t. The amount doesn’t stretch as far as it would in the USA. It only gets me about 8 large jars and some votives or tarts since the deals and discounts in Europe are almost nonexistent. I do get a lot of candles as gifts so that keeps me well stocked.
I like variety so I try and buy as many different scents I can get my hands on. I rarely have backups of candles but I have repurchased some fragrances I fell in love with or have burned through really fast.
If I dislike a scent I give it away. I give a lot of the candles I burned a few times and disliked to my brother, whose fragrance taste is basically the exact opposite of mine. If I find a candle absolutely offensive and don’t think anyone would like it, I still give it to my brother because as an older sister, it’s basically my job to be as quietly annoying as possible.
My brother flips houses for a living and while he does all the boring construction bits, I do all the fun design and decorating stuff, allowing me to buy more home fragrance. While I tend to stick to about 5 candle companies for my personal use, my brother’s business lets me to explore other companies where I’m more aware of the packaging, prices and mass fragrance appeal.