15 Cool Candles That Will Double as Art in Your Home

You've never seen candles like this

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Best cool candles: A collage of artistic candles
Dasha Burobina for PureWow

Candles have been a mainstay of home decor since the time of Ancient Egypt, and their popularity has yet to wax or wane (see what we did there?). Candles themselves, however, have come a long, long way from the days of Cleopatra. No longer limited to simple tallow or beeswax sticks, the candles of today are practically works of art and come in just about every color, style or scent you could imagine—and beyond. (Greek mythological candle, anyone?) Whether you want one that will double as functional sculpture or turn a guest's head from across the room, we've found 15 of the most cool candles the world has ever seen—and they're all available on our list below.

The 15 Best Cool Candles at a Glance


Best Food Candle

Friends NYC Baguette Candle

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Best Cat Candle

PyroPet Cat Candle

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Best Fancy Candle

Soho Home Trento Leather and Oud Candle

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Most Statuesque Candle

Neos Candlestudio Artemis Candle

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Best Sculpture Candle

Thompson Ferrier Buddha Candle

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How We Chose the Most Cool Candles

Our methodology for selecting the best cool candles was very scientific: We simply asked ourselves whether the styles in question would look out of place on display in a fancy art museum. If the answer was "yes," we tossed it from the virtual heap. If the answer was "no," we threw it on the list below. We also took into account each candle's wax type, burn time and scent, as well as any other awesome standout features.

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Best Food Candle

1. Friends NYC Baguette Candle

Friends NYC

  • Why We Love It: unscented, lifelike construction
  • Wax Type: paraffin

It's no secret that baguettes are having a moment—we're still trying to get our hands on the Panera Baguette bag that sold out in less than 20 seconds during its last drop. But while the sandwich-shaped purse is seemingly out of our grasp (for now), the best-selling Friends NYC baguette candle is very much in them. After seeing this natural paraffin wax piece in person, Briese wholeheartedly confirms that it looks *just* like the real deal. (Which should come as no surprise, considering that it's crafted in Italy.) While it doesn't smell like bread (it's unscented), it will stay good on your counter far longer than your typical baked goods and be a real conversation-starter with guests.

Best Cat Candle

2. PyroPet Cat Candle


  • Why We Love It: burns down to reveal skeleton, non-toxic, eco-friendly packaging
  • Wax Type: paraffin
  • Burn Time: 20 to 25 hours

While most of the candles on this list are so pretty you're unlinkely to actually want to go near them with a lighter, this one actually gets cooler as it burns, changing from a geometric cat to a grinning skeleton once it's burned, making it the perfect decor pick come Halloween (or any time of year that suits your fancy). We also love that it comes in eco-friendly package, lessening its footprint on the environment.

Best Fancy Candle

3. Soho Home Trento Leather and Oud Candle

Soho Home

  • Why We Love It: one-of-a-kind holder and scent, long burn time
  • Wax Type: vegetable
  • Burn Time: 35 to 40 hours

Fancy, schmancy! This luxurious vegetable wax candle's holder is made of French gold marble and the variations in the stone means every one will be unique. Not only that, but its unique scent of oud, patchouli and sandalwood was created by a master perfumer to recall late nights at Hong Kong’s exclusive Soho House. Size wise, it's large enough to be a nice focal point in your bathroom, kitchen or entertaining space. 

Most Statuesque Candle

4. Neos Candlestudio Artemis Candle

Neos Candlestudio

  • Why We Love It: indie female designer, cruelty-free
  • Wax Type: soy
  • Burn Time: three hours

A bright and colorful ode to Artemis, the Greek goddess of the hunt and the moon, this statuesque candle is not only artistic, but comes in several eye-catching hues that will be impossible to ignore. (See more colors here.) Better yet, it's made from pure soy wax with no chemical additives (something you want to watch for with soy, which is reportedly only required to be made up of 51 percent soy to be labeled as such), and provides up to three hours of burn time. (Psst—the brand strongly suggests using a tray to catch any drips.)

Best Sculpture Candle

5. Thompson Ferrier Buddha Candle

Thompson Ferrier

  • Why We Love It: hand-crafted, sculpture-like holder, good throw but not overpowering
  • Wax Type: soy
  • Burn Time: 220 to 240 hours

The beautifully crafted silver, white or gold ceramic exterior of this oversized candle, which is big enough to serve as a sculptural table piece, is filled with a quality soy wax blend with one of three essential oil scents: Cassis Pomegranate, which boasts notes of  guava, grapefruit, black currant, ruby pomegranate and coconut milk, French Gardenia (cashmere petals, citrus, bamboo, jasmine, rose, wood and amber) or Palo Santo (palo santo, tobacco flower, vanilla,  creamy woods, white birch, timur and pepper). PureWow Commerce Director Nicole Briese has the silver Cassis Pomegranate version, and says it strikes the perfect balance of having good throw without being overpowering, like many higher-priced candles tend to be. (It also looks great in her living room.) More than that, this baby is huge, so you'll get roughly 220 to 240 hours out of it, according to the company. (That's about nine to ten days for those of you doing the math.)

Most Artistic Candle

6. Jonathan Adler Muse Noir Candle

Jonathan Adler

  • Why We Love It: exterior can be reused as a bowl, vase or planter, cool black wax
  • Wax Type: soy and paraffin
  • Burn Time: 48 hours

With a trippy-but-elegant porcelain exterior that features an infinite angle of a woman’s face that glows when lit and jet-black wax that's designed to melt into a reflective pool, this candle is as artsy as it gets. Its wax is made from a soy and paraffin blend to provide a cleaner burn and a stronger throw, and the double-wick design reportedly provides 48 hours of burn time. 

Best Cute Candle

7. T-Shin Strawberry Candles


  • Why We Love It: real strawberry scent, natural, realistic
  • Wax Type: soy
  • Burn Time: four to six hours

You could easily be convinced into thinking these mouthwatering-looking little votives were *real* strawberries, given their realistic shape, size and texture. But don’t be fooled—they’re actually made from soy wax with a light, natural strawberry scent that will be the perfect addition to a romantic evening in.

  • Why We Love It: conversation piece, slow-burning, unscented
  • Wax Type: paraffin

This set of orange paraffin wax legs will go from bent to laying down flat as their flames burn. They burn pretty slow, according to the company, so you can really enjoy the changing shapes as your candle burns down, and they're unscented, too, making them a good choice for those with allergies or scent sensitivities.

Best Crystal Candle

9. Crystal Stone Amethyst Candle


  • Why We Love It: handmade, soothing vibes
  • Wax Type: gel wax

These gorgeous, sparkly candles are designed to look like healing crystal gemstones, and the result is so realistic that they're bound to bring a calming and soothing vibe to any room. Each one is one-of-a-kind, so it will be unique to your home, and reviewers say they make great gifts, too. Note that these are currently on backorder and expected to arrive between the end of March and early April.

Best Flower Candle

10. Anaelle Rose Ball Candle


  • Why We Love It: Pretty design, more than 40 scents
  • Wax Type: soy

Hand-poured in Puerto Rico from soy wax, this gorgeous ivory or blush candle is shaped like a ball of roses and comes in more than 40 scents (You can also choose an unscented option should you prefer.) It's pretty enough that you can put it on display in your home or even as the centerpiece of your springtime tablescape.

Best Bubble Candle

11. Hutip Bubble Candle


  • Why We Love It: cool design, floral scent
  • Wax Type: soy
  • Burn Time: four to eight hours

Have you ever looked at a Rubik's cube and thought, “If only this made of wax, I could use it as a candle?” Well, your wish has come true. These aesthetically pleasing wax bubble cubes have roughly the same shape, albeit with a range of floral scents. While they're on the smaller side, you'll still be able to enjoy their airs for a good four to eight hours per bubble.

Most Eccentric Candle

12. Uncommon Goods Candle

Uncommon Goods

  • Why We Love It: slow-burning system, included copper plate
  • Wax: beeswax
  • Burn Time: 60+ hours

This coiled candle, which looks like something of a seventh grade science experiment, feeds its flame in small increments to extend its burn time. We also love that it comes with a chic copper plate, which will keep this unique piece from dripping all over your furniture. And when it burns down to the wick? You can simply buy a stand refill for for $18.

Best Succulent Candle

13. GiftExpress Succulent Candle Set


  • Why We Love It: includes 18 candles, miniature sizing
  • Wax Type: paraffin
  • Burn Time: four to five hours

A cute alternative to a traditional tea candle, these tiny little cactus- and succulent-shaped candles are every bit as adorable as you might expect. They come 18 to a pack, and the paraffin wax burns for roughly four to five smoke-free hours, according to the company.

Most Whimsical Candle

14. Amantia Mushroom Candle


  • Why We Love It: sophisticated scent, works as a bookend
  • Wax Type: sasol and paraffin
  • Burn Time: 26 hours

This whimsically-shaped mushroom candle has a deep, sophisticated scent of dark fig nectar, peppered cassis nestles and leafy green vines, which will make you feel like you’re living in a fairytale forest glen. An added bonus? It will double as an adorable bookend.

Best Geometric Candles

15. Cindeer Twist Candles


  • Why We Love It: natural and non-toxic, unique shape
  • Wax Type: soy
  • Burn Time: three hours

This candle pack comes with four geometric candles in muted oranges, greens, browns and beige. Made from soy wax and scented with amber and coffee, each one features two wicks and a three-hour burn time, but we have a feeling you’ll want to keep it as modernist decor for a while before you test that out.

Types of Candle Wax

According to Weekday Candles, there are four main types of wax: paraffin, soy, palm and beeswax. Here's a bit about each type below.

  • Paraffin wax: One of the oldest forms of candle wax, paraffin is a byproduct of crude oil production. It's also one of the most common forms of candle wax you'll find today, since it's very readily available and holds color and fragrance well. While there has been some debate as to whether paraffin candles release pollutants into the air upon burning, they've been deemed safe by various studies and organizations, including the National Candle Association and the Journal of Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology.
  • Beeswax: All-natural and made from honey bees, beeswax is naturally sweet-smelling and has a clean burn. It's readily available, biodegradable and compostable, too. That said, it's typically the most expensive option and should be collected from the excess of honey that bees do not need—something that can be hard to ensure if you're not sure of your candlemaker's beeswax source.
  • Vegetable wax: Non-toxic and plant-based, vegetable wax has a lower burning point than paraffin, which means it will burn longer and hold scent better.
  • Soy wax: Derived from soy beans, this natural vegetable wax is non-toxic, burns clean and is extremely popular. It can also have a stronger throw than paraffin wax. On the downside, it may shrink in cooler temperatures and isn't a good match for all fragrance oils.

purewow author

Freelance Writer

Caroline Thompson is a writer, editor and PR professional based in Chicago, IL. In addition to covering commerce pieces for PureWow, she is a regular contributor to VICE and...

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Freelance Writer

Avid coffee drinker, writer and dabbler in UX, Dagmara Cintron is an NYC native living in Los Angeles. She covers fashion, local LA stories, home decor and more for PureWow. She...

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