What’s the Difference between Essential Oils, Incense and Scented Candles?

What’s the Difference between Essential Oils, Incense and Scented Candles?

James Cooper |

A beautiful-smelling home is easily achieved these days. Scented candles, incense sticks or cones and essential oil diffusers can be placed anywhere in your home. In fact, emerging evidence suggests that pleasant scents can promote wellbeing. Ambient scents like flowers, herbs and spices can help us relax and sleep better at night — making us more productive and energised during the day.

There are many different options to add fragrances to your home, but it can be a little challenging to maintain a pleasant scent over other odours. Essential oil diffusers are a great way to maintain an aromatic scent without worrying about the smoke.

Let’s get into the differences between incense sticks, scented candles and the joys of lavender essential oils for improving sleep with this handy guide.

Incense sticks and cones

Incense cones and sticks can be traced back to ancient Egypt and, when lit, produce a strong, heady aroma. They’re made of flammable plant-based ingredients like bark, seeds, roots, resins and flowers. Incense can be adjusted to scent preferences, with fragrances like frankincense and sandalwood frequently added.
Incense provides an instant fragrance burst — so it's preferable when you’re short on time. Incense sticks burn for under an hour and provide an aromatic scent. However, incense is also messy; unless you have an appropriate incense stick or cone holder, ash can get everywhere. In addition, incense burns to release its smell, so you’ll need to be present while it's burning, as it shouldn’t be left unattended.
Unfortunately, mounting evidence also suggests incense is carcinogenic in small quantities and increases the risk of cancer. Therefore, incense sticks might only be the right scent option if you burn them in a ventilated area.

Essential oil diffuser

Essential oils can enhance aspects of your wellbeing. For instance, lavender essential oil has been shown to relieve headaches and anxiety and eucalyptus essential oil is well-known for its medicinal properties. Electric essential oil diffusers dispense essential oil vapour in the air through vibrations on the plate base. This causes ultrasonic waves, dispersing tiny particles of essential oils into the surrounding air.

Essential oil diffusers are easy-to-use and will humidify the air in your home while adding a calming ambience. Our Purify and Balance Ceramic USB Diffuser is beautifully elegant in design with a quiet ultrasonic operation that won’t disturb your relaxing time. This essential oil diffuser comes with a misting timer, allowing you to control how often you want to mist. In addition, you don’t have to be around to turn it off. This diffuser also has an automatic shut-off function if water levels are too low or it starts to overheat.

Scented candles

Scented candles are made from a combination of wax and fragrant essential oils. When lit, these candles release their stunning aromas into the air.

But it’s not just about the nice smell. The flickering flame from your scented burning candle creates a peaceful atmosphere.

For centuries, candles have held special spiritual significance and they’re still a wonderful way to create a cosy atmosphere in your home and enhance your sense of wellbeing.

Which is best?

There’s no right or wrong answer to this, as essential oil diffusers, incense sticks and scented candles all produce beautiful fragrances. Scented candles, incense cones and sticks can be a little messier, and if you don’t like the idea of inhaling too much smoke, they might not be for you. Incense sticks and scented candles are also short-term scent solutions.

Essential oil diffusers, on the other hand, have the benefit of releasing mist regularly and don’t require supervision when left unattended.

You are the only person who knows yourself best, so experiment with different aromas until you find your signature scent — or research which essential oils might help you relax or sleep better.

Purus Life has curated a range of products to enhance your sense of wellbeing. Browse our complete collection, from stunning scents to aromatic accessories.