The Beginners Guide to Candle Magic

Although you may not know it, we've pretty much all taken part in a bit of Candle Magic in our lives. Find out how to unlock the true potential of Candle M


There has always been something magnetic and magical about a flame. It’s a fascination that can be traced throughout time, cultures, ceremonial practices and rituals. And although you may think that the ancient practice of Candle Magic isn’t common place any more, you’ll be thoroughly mistaken. How many candles did you blow out for your birthday this year?

Candle Magic can be as involved or as simple as you wish. That’s the beauty of Candle Magic; it’s a very sympathetic kind of magic and one that doesn’t take too much energy to practice and sustain. In fact, most of us have unknowingly taken part in Candle Magic.

It can be as simple as blowing out a candle and making a wish on your birthday, or lighting a candle in vigil for a loved one. Alternatively, it can be as intricate as a series of candles lit in close succession during a ritual blessing. But in both cases Candle Magic and its use is highly determined by your needs and feelings, at that moment in time.

Our fascination with fire is a long standing tradition. For Pagans, the fire festival of Beltane celebrates the fertility of the upcoming year. Zoroastrian’s ritually burn sacred fires maintained in Fire Temples (Agiaries) in order to purify their mind, body and souls. And for Native Americans, fire ceremonies performed under the light of a New Moon celebrate and help to introduce newness into life.

The comforting, flickering light of a flame can help soothe our spirit, warm us both literally and figuratively and even uplift and help us enter a hypnotic state. For these reasons alone, it is easy to see why fire and candles came to be used in magical practices.

Magic is the practice of achieving a desired effect by sending out a specific aim or desire out into the Universe where it can then be recognised and manifested. We are all connected to the Universe, and magic is just one of the methods we can use to connect to it on a deeper level.

Candles used in magic help us to focus our intention and are powerful magical tools that create a metaphysical link between our intentions and the Universal Mind. Their physical being - although being solid matter - can cross over the spiritual threshold which we ourselves cannot.

The Basic Elements of Candle Magic

If you have not delved into magical practices before, Candle Magic is a great place to start. In fact, it is probably one of the simplest forms of magic you can start off with. Unlike other magic practices there are few tools to rely on. You need nothing other than a candle and a flame to light it – and not forgetting yourself, of course.

Candle Magic can be deemed such a simple and effective magic tool even with so few elements because it is a complete form of magic. Think of Candle Magic in terms of elements. A candle used in this practice makes use of all four elements as well as Spirit. An unlit candle represents Earth. Once lit with the flame symbolising Fire the candle burns to create wax which signifies Water and creates smoke – Air. With all four elements bonded to one source - the candle – all you need is your own intention, your Spirit, to alight it and perform a ritual. All with one, single candle.

The act of burning a candle provides multiple benefits for the user or the intended recipient. By burning a single candle you can provide emotional healing, boost self confidence and increase your motivation. The list goes on.

Finding the Right Candle

While it is true that you can really use any candle at all in order to perform Candle Magic (think of birthday candles again!) it is also good practice to know what type of candles work better for certain situations. A few pointers to look out for when choosing a candle for magical purposes are:

Shape, Size & Wax

Try and find a candle that is uniform in shape. While a candle in the form of a leaf may look pretty, it can also be quite distracting while performing a ritual! Likewise, the size of the candle also matters. Try using smaller, fast burning candles for quick spells of under an hour. Alternatively, use short and stout candles for slightly longer spells, or use long, tall candles for more lengthy rituals. You should also try to take note of the type of wax your candles are made from. Natural waxes like beeswax are the best to use due to their roots in nature, but you can also use any other form of wax like vegetable wax, too. Make sure to note how fast burning the wax is however, as vegetable wax burns quicker than natural wax!

Cleansing & Consecrating Your Candle

As with anything when working with the Divine and Spirit, you must make sure that the tools you use are correctly prepared, cleansed and programmed for the task they are set out for. Cleansing your candle removes all the negative energies that may have come into contact with your candle since its creation (for this reason alone it is best to make your own candles!). To cleanse your candle, submerge your candle in sea salt and ask for the candle to be cleansed.

Once your candle is cleansed you can then program it with your intention. Dressing a candle in this manner lets you put your intention, vibration, thoughts and outcome into the candle and program its vibrational frequency. To do this, rub the candle with your chosen oil that enhances your intention. Start from the top of the candle and work your way down to the middle, and then from the bottom to the top. Using any leftover oil, dab your third eye and your third chakra (your breast bone).

From here you can hold your candle, concentrate your mind and intention - close your eyes if need be - and state your intention and wish into the candle. You’re now ready to burn your candle!

But wait! What about colour?

Candle Colours and their Meaning

Rainbow Candles [CC chichacha, flickr]


White, the all encompassing colour. Use a white candle for any purpose you wish, and also if you do not have the colour you need during a ritual. White is also the colour for protection, purity and healing. Remember the healing white light focuses and protects all. What better embodiment than a white candle!


Also a colour of protection, black candles should be burned when you seek retribution, power, strength and during banishing rituals.


Blue is a harmonious colour. Use a blue candle to promote peace and harmony, blessings, cleansings and even when you want to overcome addiction.


Brown candles can be used for anything to do with career advice and finances. This is a very grounding candle colour and can also be used to develop intuition, concentration and ESP.


Orange is the colour of encouragement, stimulation and adaptability. This is the candle colour to use if you want to reinvigorate your life and rebalance your energies. If you seek success, turn to orange candles!


Plentiful green promotes many things – prosperity, fertility and success just to name a few. Use dark green during ceremonies in order to banish negative thoughts and emotions from your sacred space.


A stimulating colour, red can increase lust and sexual vigour, our sense of courage and also our energy. Use red candles during rituals to increase magnetism.


The colour of attraction and charm, use yellow when you also seek to stimulate mental clarity and knowledge, as well as self happiness and promotion.


So now you know the basics, what are you waiting for! Find a candle that suits the purpose of your intention, program your candle and get that inner flame of spiritual voyage burning!


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