I seem to always have candles burning when I am at home. I love the fire element. I usually snuff out my candles, but sometimes I blow them out because the snuffer is in another room and I’m lazy. Just out of the blue today when I lit my candles, I started thinking about this. When we were children, we would make a wish on our birthday and blow out the candles on the cake. If we blew them all out, our wish would come true. Like so many of our traditions today, these were passed down from generation to generation, and 99 percent of the time they came from Pagan traditions. If you think about hundreds of years ago, did our ancestor’s have candle snuffers? I’m looking at this in a different way today then I did yesterday. I feel that snuffing is snuffing out our intention. If we blow out a candle, we have both the fire and the air element and we are blowing out our intention to the universe.
Ooh, this changes how I think about it completely! I’m interested to see the other answers because this definitely gave me some pause on candles.
It might depend on the culture where the idea came from… like when I was learning about Hinduism, you didn’t blow out flames because our breath might have spit on it and that’s considered impure. Also the fire is a deity (Agni) so you want to show respect and not blow on it with your mouth.
Some people say that breath carries intention… so I guess it’s really the intention in blowing it out. Like if you feel disrespectful blowing it out, then snuff it. Otherwise, blow it out.
I always make sure to thank the flame beforehand either way.
Just my two cents!
I know right? Me too
That’s how I feel. I’m going to blow them out! Lol!
I love the idea of blowing out the intention to the universe
I’ve learned to snuff out the flame with my fingers. Doing it the first time wasn’t easy, I was very afraid! But eventually I started feeling more and more comfortable, feel the heat of the flame. It felt like I was getting to know fire itself That’s still my favorite way to extinguish a candle. Feels very intimate
I always snuff the flames of my altar rather than blow them as i read that blowing flames out is almost like one element overcoming the other i.e. wind over fire. I do like idea though that yoinare blowing the intention into the Universe.
I dint have a snuffer. I use a cinnamon stick
I love thoughts that come in and help us look at something another way! Thank you for sharing!
I have snuffed and blown. I like the idea of blowing the intentions out to the universe.
When I snuff, I intentionally release the smoke and visualize it carrying my intentions to all space and all times.
That helps me understand why some people say blowing out a candle is disrespectful to the element of fire.
That’s a great thought: blowing out a candle to make a wish/sending your intention out into the universe.
I am learning all kinds of things from yall! Thank you all for your Witchy Wisdom!
I think it’s just a matter of preference. The way we do our magick is as unique as we are!
I found a video online about snuffing out a candle using your fingers so I tend to do that. It doesn’t always work first time, which makes me laugh as I end up talking to the candle or whoever I feel is working with me at the time and joking that they didn’t want me to put it out quite yet. I don’t know where the video is but it talks through the steps which are basically:
- First attempt when you might not be comfortable wet your finger tips of the fingers ( I use thumb and pointer) that you want to use and pinch the flame quickly.
- When you feel confident enough attempt it without water.
I admit sometimes I do feel the heat from the flame but not enough to cause serious burns just a bit like when you touch a hot plate and you go ouch that’s hot. If that makes sense.
Hope that’s of some help.
I try to let the candle burn to completion, but, that’s not always possible for various reasons. Sometimes I would do as @terri6 mentioned with my fingers because I didn’t have a candle snuffer or I would gently blow it out.
I recently received a candle snuffer though with a candle magic… spell? Ritual? Through my Tamed Wild Box & the card that came with it explains snuffing out a candle this way:
"Using a Candle Snuffer to extinguish burning candles helps in avoiding problems associated with blowing on hot wax. Using a candle snuffer will allow the excess wick to burn away, preventing the wick from becoming too long. Not only for candle care, but when practicing ritual magick, candle snuffers are an essential tool representing the end of a ritual, spell, or candle magick practice.
It is said when one blows out a candle while spellcasting, one may “blow away” or disrupt the energy of a spell.
Candle magick has been practiced for centuries. When working with candle magick you’re crafting a spell that calls on the four elements, encapsulated in a single candle. The flame represents the fire element , the oxygen that feeds the flame calls upon the element of air , the wax as it melts conjures the element of water , and the solid wax, the grounding element of the earth In one simple candle a spell can be cast, and intention manifested, or a ritual altar can be created."
I use the snuffer when I’m not able to let my chime candle or tealight burn all the way down from previously using my dampened fingers. If it’s a jar candle or other type of candle with a set intention, sometimes I will use it, and other times I will gently blow it out to let the smoke release the negative energy or excess energy of the candle from being burned.
Today I hope to do the recommended candle… magick that came with the box I received. It just so happened after my last… week… my mystery candle was one for self-love & a corresponding loose tea blend for the same reason. The 3 candles that came with it to perform the magick:
- Blue - to connect to the magick of winter & Imbolc
- Green - to call in abundance
- Purple - to connect to my intuition
I also received the mystery candle:
- Pink - to cultivate self-love
These are all things that I need to work on again after having a tough week with some things & feeling a bit off & blocked. They came at just the right time for me
How interesting. I never thought about blowing them out. Sending the intention out into the universe by blowing the candle out is a great way new perspective for me. I have always pinched them out or snuffed the flame. I was taught if you blow them out you scatter the energy, therefore it is not as focused to your intent.
My husband and I are huge Dr. Who fans and in one of the episodes the Doctor has to give a sacred gift. He doesn’t have anything with him, but quickly breathes all over the individual and says, “I give you air from my lungs!” I guess blowing out a candle makes me think of that… air from my lungs… a gift.
I think that whatever makes you feel most comfortable is probably the way to go!
I’m gonna be 100% honest here – I always blow out my candles because I don’t have a snuffer and I don’t see any reason to get one. I don’t view putting out my candles a specific way as any sort of intention. If I do need to put out a spell candle or something similar for any reason, I always say so beforehand and use my intent that way, if that makes sense.
Full disclaimer: I never had a snuffer until I received this box. When I read the card, it definitely made me think. Then reading others replies also kind of opened up a whole other school of thought on it. I either blow them out or pinched them out… kind of depends on the type of candle & my thinking… if I blow on this… is there a chance the wax is going to get on something? So snuffing candles is very new to me too, as well as reasons behind why you would do either one.
I had honestly never thought of it as… scattering energy, sending the intention to the universe… it was a very… either the candle burned to completion, or I had to put the candle out for some reason so I blew it out or pinched it… whichever happened to be the way I did it.
Now I’m kinda curious… have you ever blown on a candle so hard that you’ve sent the wax flying all over the place? I couldn’t imagine such a thing… I guess my blow is so gentle that it would not take the dust off a pixie’s wings!
…yes, yes I have I know you weren’t asking me but I have actually done this.
Oh, I should have specified, it was an open question for everyone, so your answer was very welcome
Interesting! I know that growing up I’ve learned to tread lightly in the world not to disturb others. Even literally, I thought people were joking when they talked about the pain of walking into a Lego block! I mean, can’t they tell when they’re taking the step, not to put their full weight on it? Might be the same kind of thing with the candles, I’m very conscious of the wax under the flame.
@CelestiaMoon yes I have. It was a tealight & I quickly blew it out but it didn’t completely go out so I did blow a little harder & because it was so liquid a few drops landed on my altar cloth but it was still very much liquid & had soaked into the cloth before it hardened.
When I started kind of tweaking how I use candles, offerings, making oils, jars, etc… I now use a pie plate under the items that catch the liquid when I am crafting them so that I don’t get anything on the cloth & easy cleanup afterward.
I also now put my chime candle holders inside a clear votive holder. I melt some of the bottoms into the chime holder to get them to stand more upright or sturdy & have gotten wax on the cloth… this way it lands in the votive holder & if it drips at all (rare but it happens) it will also go into the votive holder.