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What to Put On Your Candle Warning Labels

Updated 02/07/2022

Starting a handmade candle business is exciting — and while it's fun to create the scents and design custom labels for your candles, it's important to note there are safety labeling requirements that also need to be included on each candle.

It can be overwhelming to research exactly what needs to be included on a fire warning label to comply with U.S. safety standards, so we've gathered everything you need to know to ensure your candles are compliant with proper fire safety labeling.

The Development of Candle Fire Safety Warnings

The National Candle Association has played a key role in developing a set of key safety standards for the industry after candle-related fires increased in the 1990s.

These standards, published by ASTM International, dedicated to developing product standards to build consumer confidence in products — were developed to help reduce the number of fires caused by inappropriate candle burning.

A 2020 National Candle Association report revealed an annual average of 81 civilian fire deaths and 677 civilian fire injuries were caused by candles from 2014 to 2018. And the National Fire Protection Association reported an estimated 8,200 home fires are started by candles each year.

Since these safety standards were developed in the late 1990s, candle fires decreased by more than half, showing that the fire safety labels have contributed to reducing fire risk. That's why it's essential to continue adding these safety labels to all candle products.

Basic Fire Safety Warnings To Include

There are three basic warnings that should be included on each candle:

  1. Burn within sight.
  2. Keep away from flammables.
  3. Keep away from children and pets.

The National Candle Association developed specific graphic safety symbols that may accompany the above verbiage. You can download each PDF graphic for burn within sight, keep away from flammables and keep away from children to include on your warning label.

Additional Warnings

While not completely necessary, it is recommended to include candle-burning instructions on your warning label to reinforce the three basic warnings above. These instructions could include:

  • Whether it's necessary to trim the wick before burning
  • Maximum amount of time the candle should be left burning at a time
  • Types of surfaces considered safe for burning the candle

Here's an example: Trim wick to 1/4" before lighting. Keep candle free of any foreign materials including matches and wick trimmings. Only burn candle on a level, fire-resistant surface. Do not burn candle for more than four hours at a time. Stop use when only 1/4" of wax remains.

You should also include the official fire alert symbol along with the word WARNING at the top of the label. Take a look at some additional fire safety warnings you may choose to include on your warning labels.

Our candle warning labels template features important fire safety information and can be ordered in a variety of sizes, shapes and paper finishes. Alternatively, you can use the Maestro Label Designer to customize the text, colors, and fonts, and even change the label size/shape to design your customized warning labels.

Where Should Fire Safety Warning Labels Be Placed

These warnings should be clear and visible on the candle without obstruction and are typically placed either on the back or bottom of the candle. As long as the label is visible to the consumer and easy to read, you should be good.

Ensuring Your Candles Are Safe

To ensure your candle products adhere to key industry standards — including standards on container materials and other overall labeling — we recommend visiting the ASTM International and the National Candle Association for more information.

Aside from helping prevent candle-related fires, including a warning label tells the consumer you are a responsible candle-making business. Listing the basic warnings and candle burning instructions and knowing the industry standards of fire-safety designs will play a huge part in preventing potential fires.

To learn more about creating candle labels that'll stand out, check out our post, "Label Experts Discuss Best Candle Labels & Packaging". If you're a total beginner and looking for a place to start learning how to make candles, check our our Startup Academy video/blog on how to start your own candle business from home.

We also offer candle warning labels if you're looking to skip the hassle of creating one yourself.

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