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Candle Cost Comparison

Posted by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 7:01 PM
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Candle Cost Comparison: Scentsy vs. Yankee

Before you say “Those are too expensive” take a look at the numbers, you may be pleasantly surprised to learn that what may initially appear expensive can save you hundreds of dollars each year.

“Candles – you’re either a burner or a duster.”  I’ve been in the candle industry 17 years; When looking at target markets that phrase “burner or duster” means either you burn candles or you don’t. It’s either being burned or melted in your home, or it’s sitting around with dust on it.

According to the National Candle Organization, 7 out of 10 U.S. households use candles. There are definitely more candle burners (and now candle warmers with the popularity in wickless candles) than there are dusters. It is safe to say that candles are big business.

With that many candles on the market, how do you choose a quality candle that won’t cost you an arm and a leg to scent your home? There are plenty of cheap candles out there. I mean cheap with regard to poorly made with little lasting scent and cheap as far as low in price.

There is an entire conversation that can be made on the merits of type of wax used, type of fragrance oils, length of burn and duration of scent throw. There are pro and con arguments on many sides of the fence.  Though for the purpose of this discussion, the focus is merely on the price point.

One objection periodically verbalized “I do love those candles; and I’d burn/warm them more often, but they’re so expensive.” Are they really? Or do they just appear so? Let’s take a look. For price comparison I’ll highlight a popular store brand and a popular consultant based brand.

The popular larger Yankee jar candles sell for $28 each and are advertised to last 110 to 150 hours. For the sake of discussion, we’ll split the difference and say 130 hours. So that’s about $.22 per hour. Pretty good deal, wouldn’t you say? There are 720 hours in a month. But let’s say you normally only fire up your candle after you get home from work from about 5pm -9pm and then maybe another 10 hours on the weekend; perhaps an average of 30 hours a week or about 120 hours a month, which is about $28 a month for a popular mall candle or $336 per year.

Are you with me so far?

Next look at the Scentsy wickless candles based on a full size warmer and a candle bar. A Full size candle warmer is $30. That’s your initial investment. They come in a variety of sizes and styles, to match any décor or personality preference. So you’re also accenting your home and you’re not throwing away a glass jar every time a wicked candle evaporates.

A Scentsy candle bar sells for $5.00 and contains eight (8) smaller cubes. Since they are warmed with a 25 watt light bulb the wax does not evaporate; for some customers the fragrance oil just keeps scenting a room longer than any suggested manufacture guidelines. For the sake of discussion we can use sixty to eighty hours per bar of eight cubes as a guide, split the difference and use 70 hours for the math. Some report they get many more hours than 80 out of one bar, while others prefer to swap out their wax more frequently. You control
how frequently you replace the scent -unlike a wicked candle where the fire evaporates your wax into the air, taking all the scent with it – leaving you no choice but to buy another.

A five dollar Scentsy candle bar divided by 70 hours of scent is $.07 per hour. Based on the 120 hours usage per month, you’d spend about $8.40 per month on Scentsy wax or $111 a year, plus your initial $30 warmer investment – for a total of $141 a year using a Scentsy warmer. But wait, there’s more. If you use a Scentsy electric candle warmer you also need to factor in the cost of electricity.

Energy consumption is measured in kilowatt hours.  If you use a 25 watt bulb for 1 hour, you’ve consumed 25 watt hours or 0.025 kilowatt hours of power (remember, kilo = 1000).  The electric company charges you for every kilowatt hour you consume. In the U.S. for 2012, the residential cost per kilowatt hour is 11.84 cents which means using a 25 watt bulb you’d pay $.003 per hour for electricity. Each month you’d have an additional $.35 electricity cost or $4.25 per year.  So now your annual cost to use a Scentsy warmer and wickless candle is $145.25.

Let’s review:

Competitor wicked candle from the mall $336 per year.

Scentsy wickless candle warmer and candle bar $145.25 per year.
($190.75 savings)

Sure sometimes the mall stores have sales and you can stock up. Though Scentsy also has the opportunity for you to host an online or in-person party and earn an entire year’s for free. Or if you choose to become a Scentsy consultant you could receive commission on everything you purchase and save even more than $200 per year.

I hope I didn’t lose you too much in this little math exercise. It is important to take a look at the actual numbers to see that what sometimes appears to be “too expensive” is actually considerably less than competitors and will offer you substantial savings by taking a look at the data.

The next time you find yourself saying “it’s too expensive” make sure you’re comparing apples to apples then pause a moment to consider more than just the price tag on one item. You may be pleasantly surprised.


by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 7:01 PM
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