There’s no better reason to turn down the electric lights than dinner or bath in the flattering, romantic, soft light of beautiful candles. I choose beeswax candles almost exclusively. They last a very long time, emit feel-good, air-cleansing negative ions, have a warm, sexy, golden glow and a natural, clean fragrance. They’re a vast and eco-friendly improvement over artificially scented, petroleum-based paraffin candles.
Even better, by buying locally made candles and honey, I’m supporting small beekeepers in my eco-neighborhood, helping them to raise more bees safely and humanely. The ongoing threat of decimated bee populations, or colony collapse disorder, is a real environmental crisis. We need healthy bees to pollinate crops, and they’re dying off in alarming numbers for reasons unknown, though theories include pesticides, viruses, genetically modified crops, and bad bee diets.
Vegans steer clear of bee products because industrial commercial beekeeping is not optimal for bees, but small farmers using organic practices treat the bees well and do no harm in harvesting wax and honey. Buying their products sustains these farms and colonies and helps them thrive.
My favorites come from the Niwot Honey Farm in Colorado; a little sleuthing will help you find a source near you. Try LocalHarvest‘s guide to honey and you’re likely to find candles, too (some herbalists say that eating local honey may help with allergies, by the way). If you can’t find local candles, try a quality bee-loving online source like Santa Fe Beeswax Candle Co.
Image: Santa Fe Beeswax Candle Co.