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Facts & Figures

About the Candle Industry

  • U.S. retail sales of candle products are estimated at approximately $3.14 billion annually. (Source: Mintel, 2013).
  • National Candle Association member companies account for approximately 80 percent of all candles made in the United States. 
  • Candles are primarily sold in three types of retail outlets:
    • Speciality or gift shops
    • Department and home décor stores;
    • mass merchandisers (discount stores, drug store chains, grocery stores, etc.)
  • Approximately 35% of candle sales occur during the Christmas/Holiday season. Non-seasonal business accounts for approximately 65% of candle sales.
  • More than 1 billion pounds of wax are used in producing the candles sold each year in the U.S.
  • It is estimated that more than 10,000 different candle scents are available to U.S. consumers.
  • Candles come in an endless variety of sizes and shapes, from tapers, votives, pillars and tealights to container and jar candles, floating candles, liturgical candles, outdoor candles, novelty candles, utility candles and birthday candles.
  • The retail price of a candle generally ranges from approximately $1.99 for a votive to $35 for a large pillar or jar candle. Impactfully scented candles in exceptionally beautiful containers and elaborate boxes can be $200 or more.

Consumer Preferences 

  • Container and jar candles are currently the most popular types of candles with American consumers.
  • Candle industry research indicates that the most important factors affecting candle sales are scent, color, cost and shape.  
  • Fragrance is by far the most important characteristic impacting candle purchases today, with three-fourths of candle buyers saying it is “extremely important” or “very important” in their selection of a candle.
  • Consumers are increasingly purchasing candles as a focal point for their home décor, and for aromatherapy-like relaxation and stress reduction.
  • The majority of U.S. consumers use their candles within a week of purchase.
  • Nine out of ten candle users say they use candles to make a room feel comfortable or cozy.
  • Approximately three-fourths of candle users say they typically burn candles for 4 hours or less per sitting.
  • Candle users say they most frequently burn candles in the living room (42%), followed by the kitchen (18%) and the bedroom (13%).
  • Approximately one in five women say they use candles to decorate the yard, patio or other exterior areas, as well as the interior of their home.
  • Both men and women consider candles to be an always-acceptable and highly appreciated gift for a wide variety of occasions.
  • Candle purchasers say they view candles as an appropriate gift for the holidays (76%), as a housewarming gift (74%), a hostess/dinner party gift (66%), a thank you (61%) and as adult birthday gifts (58%).