Massage candles are becoming increasingly popular with people who want to merge more of their senses with a relaxing massage.
The soothing wax, warming essential oils and delightful aromas all help to create a heightened experience that can offer more than a traditional massage.
To see how, we’ve put together a guide about everything you need to know about massage candles, including their benefits, how to use them and some safety tips to bear in mind.
What is a massage candle?
Massage candles use a combination of ingredients to target the senses, helping you to centre yourself in mind and body.
Essential oils or fragrance oils are used to create a relaxing scent that fills the space, and when the wax is at the right temperature it can be poured onto skin and gently massaged in to provide aromatherapeutic benefits.
How are massage candles different from normal candles?
The main difference between a massage candle and a traditional candle is that the wax used in a massage candle is skin-safe as they burn at lower temperatures.
Most massage candles are made from soy wax, which burns slightly higher than average body temperature at 39 degrees Celsius.
They are mixed with shea or cocoa butter, jojoba oil and essential or fragrance oils, which all help to create a soothing and sensual experience.
How do massage candles work?
Using a massage candle is easy, as most of the hard work is done for you by the candle itself.
After the candle has been lit, allow the fragrance to fill the space for 15-20 minutes, which will set the right tone and mood.
The wax should be sufficiently melted by this time, so you can then blow out the flame. If the wax is warm but not burning, then it is ready to use.
Carefully pour a small amount into the palm of your hand and massage where needed into the recipient’s skin.
What are the benefits of massage candles?
Some of the best benefits of using a massage candle include:
1. Relieving aches and pains
You can use an essential oil infused massage candle to relieve aches or pains that are causing you irritation or discomfort.
Combining a massage with the natural properties offered by essential oils can help to relieve joint and muscle aches, helping to improve circulation and range of motion.
And by hydrating the skin, there’s every chance you’ll feel more energised and refreshed by the time you’ve finished.
2. Helping to relieve stress
Aromatherapy and candle massages go hand-in-hand, giving you the ideal way to lower stress and anxiety levels.
It allows you to relax your mind and body as one, so as your muscles and joints are relieved of pressure, you can regain clarity of thought and allow yourself to drift towards a calmer place.
Scent is strongly tied to emotion and memory and using the right candle fragrance can help to give you some reprieve from the daily stresses of your life.
3. Working as a mood booster
It’s usually true that we are in a better mood when there is less stress to deal with.
Not only can a massage candle be used to reduce stress, but researchers have also demonstrated that aromatherapy massages can improve symptoms related to anxiety and depression. 
A combination of the right candles, soothing fragrances and calming background music can ensure you experience a massage that helps to improve your overall quality of life.
4. Improving intimacy between partners
If you want to enjoy a romantic evening and improve intimacy, massage candles can help you along the way.
Not only can the fragrance help to set the mood, but having the option to massage the scented wax into the skin can also improve intimacy and bring couples closer together.
Even if the massage element isn’t something that interests you, the release of the fragrance can help you to relax and unwind in the right way.
5. Being very easy to make and use
Another great thing about massage candles is that you don’t have to be an expert to make or use them.
Creating your own massage candle may seem daunting, but if you use the melt and pour method, it will only take 30-45 minutes to make the wax mixture.
Using a massage candle is just as simple, as you only need to light the flame, allow the wax to melt and when it is at the right temperature it is ready for application.
Are massage candles safe to use?
Massage candles are completely safe to use, as they are designed to keep the wax temperature at a manageable level.
The key to safely using a massage candle is to test the temperature before attempting to massage it into the skin.
You can do this by touch, or with a digital thermometer, which will help you to minimise the delay between the scent being released by the candle and the warm oil treatment.
Normal candle safety rules also apply to massage candles.
This means that you should never leave it unattended or lit close by to a flammable material or surface.
Ensure that the wick is properly maintained and never extinguish the flame with water or any other liquids.
Massage candle care tips
Use the following tips below to get the most from your massage candle experience:
- Place the candle on a secure, stable surface before lighting.
- Allow enough time for the wax to melt to the edges of the candle to avoid tunnelling.
- Avoid letting the candle burn for too long as this will increase the temperature of the wax.
- Always blow out the candle before attempting to pour into the palm of your hand.
- Let the wax cool for 1-2 minutes before pouring.
- Keep the candle out of the reach of pets and children.
Whether you want to lower stress levels, alleviate aches and pains or enjoy more intimacy with a loved one, massage candles offer a simple solution that ticks all three boxes.
You don’t have to have any experience with candle making to get started and they are even easier to use, requiring only a little patience to allow the wax to melt and the right temperature to be set.
And if you follow the care and safety tips provided above, the only thing you’ll have to think about is how much they will add to your evening.
 Jennifer Edge (2003) A pilot study addressing the effect of aromatherapy massage on mood, anxiety and relaxation in adult mental health https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S135361170200104X