Autumn and Winter home decor wouldn't be complete without scented candles. Trust us, we love them as much as the next person (we even tested all the best pumpkin spice candles!), but recently discovered information has us seriously considering whether they're such a good idea after all. Woman's Day and The Daily Mail have published results from multiple studies that link scented candles to major health risks — as serious as lung damage and birth defects.
What's even worse is that candles aren't the only culprits; scented aerosols, gels, and plug-ins are among "an array of hazardous substances which may cause lung damage and tumours, interfere with our hormones, and cause such lifelong problems as asthma," The Daily Mail reports. You don't even have to light the candles to be affected because the studies suggest "simple evaporation" can release the pollutants into the air. The fault lies, allegedly, with chemicals found in some candles that can even change the structure of your DNA.
Expectant mothers might want to be especially cautious when it comes to the types of candles they bring into their homes. Some studies' evidence suggests that hazardous substances in these products can affect hormones, and in turn, cause problems with babies' hormonal development. Popular brand SC Johnson, which makes Glade products, is just one company that has faced backlash for its reportedly harmful synthetic ingredients, but the company directly addresses this information on its site and assures it uses "the most comprehensive database worldwide of safety evaluations for fragrance materials."
Of course, no study or statement is all-encompassing, but this information is unsettling at the very least. There are, of course, chemical-free natural candles that may be a better option for those who're concerned by these findings. Will you think twice about your favorite scented candles, or is this habit just not worth giving up?