Why Use a Candle Snuffer? (Explained for Beginners)


If blowing out a candle is your default method for extinguishing a flame, then you might ask yourself, ‘why use a candle snuffer?’ In short, old methods are not always the best methods. 

Blowing out a candle flame can get messy and smelly. Using a wax dipper can introduce debris to your candle, which interferes with a clean burn. Instead, candle snuffers are one of the safest and most effective methods for extinguishing a candle flame without blowing wax around or generating smelly smoke. 

Stick around and I’ll help you understand why.

Why Use a Candle Snuffer

Are Candle Snuffers Really Necessary?

You may wonder what makes candle snuffers more effective than simply blowing out a candle. Heck, it’s free to blow out a candle but snuffers can get expensive, right?

Well, there are a number of advantages to using a snuffer. It’s safer, you won’t splatter wax, there’s minimal debris and smoke.

The Safer Approach

It’s no exaggeration to state that leaning forward to blow out an open flame can potentially be dangerous. 

In leaning forward, there’s the possibility that your hair, apparel, or accessories might become ignited by the flame.

When choosing to blow out a candle, you have to always be mindful of what moves forward with you as you get closer to the flame. 

While it’s completely possible to avoid igniting your hair or anything else on your body if you’re vigilant when blowing out a candle, using a candle snuffer still decreases the likelihood of you starting a fire.

Limited Wax Splatter

Another safety feature of using this method is that you won’t splatter hot wax on your hand, face, or the surface beneath your candle.

Rarely does a gentle blow extinguish a candle flame. Usually the process requires you to become more winded than that.

With this stronger wind comes a force that moves your pool of wax, causing it to be pushed in multiple directions. 

Hot wax flying beyond the perimeter of your candle container becomes more of a concern with newer candles that have wax closer to the rim of the candle holder.  So this is when you want to be especially careful if you choose to blow out a candle.

Using a snuffer will prevent hot wax from landing on your skin or hardening on the table below.

Little to No Wax Debris

As you’ve probably read in my previous post, dust and debris can make a serene candle lighting experience feel more like a nightmare. Your flame might grow too high or pop and sputter because the foreign objects can cause the fire to burn hotter.

If you burn the candle too hot or for longer than four hours, then the wick might begin to mushroom. Soot builds up on the tip. If you then blow out the flame, that soot can fall into the hot wax and harden inside of it, which perpetuates the high flame problem.

Using a wick dipper can lead to the same problem. A wick dipper is a flat piece of metal with a curved tip at one end. You use that end to turn the wick into the wax in order to extinguish the candle flame. The next step would be to lift the wick so that it hardens in an upright position, in preparation for your next burn. 

In taking these steps, charred bits of your wick might fall into the hot wax, and then remain there as the wax hardens. Removing the bits before the wax hardens isn’t as easy as it might sound.

It’s also possible that the wick becomes buried if you’re unable to straighten it back up in time. 

To avoid all of this, you might opt to use a candle snuffer instead. It quickly puts out the flame without even touching the wick or causing debris build up.

Minimal Smoke Generation

There were times when I would keep a candle lit longer than I should in order to maintain the aroma that filled my home. I knew that once I blew out the candle, stenchy smoke would ruin a pleasant experience.

When you’ve lit a candle in order to fragrance your house, filling the home with smoke after blowing out the flame seems counterintuitive. All of those wonderful fragrance molecules – simply gone.

If you don’t want your space to shift from smelling like a midnight garden to a billowing forest fire, then consider using a candle snuffer.

You might notice a light stream of smoke rising from the snuffer, but it quickly dissipates, and its scent won’t remain or drown out the fragrance of your candle. 

Even More Convenient for Older Candles

When you have candles that have burned for several hours over time, they become increasingly difficult to both light and put out. 

Because candle snuffers have such long handles, you can more easily extinguish the flame of older candles by extending the metal instrument down into the container without burning yourself. 

How Do Candle Snuffers Work?

Candle snuffers are metal tools made of a long handle with a cone or bell-shaped attachment at the opposite end. They gently put out candle flames without creating a waxy mess or generating a stream of smoke.

In order to extinguish the flame, you hold the handle while slowly lowering the snuffer attachment over the flame until it goes out. Don’t allow the snuffer to sink into the wax. You also want to avoid touching anything but the handle as the snuffer attachment will be hot.

Candle snuffers are effective because covering the open flame deprives it of oxygen, making it impossible to continue burning.

Finding High Quality and Easy to Use Candle Snuffer 

Many candle snuffers are beautifully made, and you are sure to find one that coordinates with your home decor style. 

Sometimes considered a collector’s item, candle snuffers are made with lasting materials, like pewter, iron, stainless steel, and brass. 

You can find them at consignment shops, antique stores, and second-hand store chains, like the Goodwill or Salvation Army.

If you’re interested in purchasing a new one online, you can find them in many places online. They’re often reasonably priced, and you can find some that are part of a larger set. 

1. Basic Stainless Steel Candle Snuffer

As a starter snuffer, this one has a cylindrical design that’s about an inch wide and close to two inches long. Its moderately sized handle is 6.3 inches long. This particular one is made of black stainless steel, but alternative colors in this same design are bronze or gold.

2. Biedermann & Sons Antique Hammered Brass Candle Snuffer

If you’re looking for an antique snuffer without the collector’s price tag, then this hammered brass snuffer is one to consider. A delicate pattern is carved into its bell-shaped snuff that’s two inches long. Slightly longer than the last snuffer, this handle is 6.75 inches and is reinforced for a better grip. The brass has a smooth satin finish.

3. Hand-Forged Iron Candle Snuffer

For taller candle containers, you have this extra long handle that measures 12.7 inches.

Hand-forged, it’s made of galvanized iron, plated in zinc, finished with a black powdered electrostatic coating. This finish makes for a smooth and reliable coating that will last for years to come.

Combined with the long handle, the bell snuff at the end is loose enough to be extended and angled in a way that can reach and safely extinguish almost any flame.

4. Candle Accessory Set with Candle Tray

Proper candle maintenance is essential and this set includes all the tools you’ll need to effectively use and maintain your candles. In addition to a candle snuffer, there’s a wick trimmer, wick dipper, and a rechargeable USB-powered lighter. All of these tools rest on the included candle accessory tray.

Another bell-shaped snuffer, this handle is 8.2 inches long, which is still a good length if you tend to burn candles in taller containers. 

Final Thoughts

Candle Snuffers offer a simple but safe solution to keep your home smelling like the scented candle you burned, without the intrusion of lingering smoke. Snuffers also prevent wax splatter and come in handy when you need to extinguish candles that have already burned down pretty low.

You can find reliable candle snuffers for a decent price, or you can splurge and search for highly detailed, handcrafted models.

Either way, there are more reasons why you should use a candle snuffer as opposed to not using one, but as always, the choice is yours!

Grace Young

I love candles! I have personally tried over 100 brands of candles. The total burn time of these candles is over 5000 hours. I also talk about essential oil diffusers and reed diffusers. Essential oil diffusers and diffusers are also an important part of the scent in my home.

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