Though candles are not a requirement for doing spell work, witches have always found them to be a simple and mostly inexpensive way to add a bit more focus and energy to target our spells more effectively toward a specific goal. Whether inscribed with glyphs, runes, sigils, power words, names, or left unadorned, a candle is a simple way to add a bit more oomph to a spell.
Choosing a candle is a simple matter of finding the color that is most relative to the matter of the spell, itself. When using candles you may achieve a better result if you choose a specific color attuned to the magickal effect you are seeking just as you may choose to attune the magick to a specific day, hour, season, and/or moon/month. Remember that some colors are interchangeable, for certain effects, but others are not. For instance, when performing a spell for a cancer healing, you would certainly NOT want to use a green candle as it promotes growth focused healing. Experiment with your spells to find out which works best for you, personally. Bear in mind that any spell can create or destroy based on the intent behind the actual spell you are casting.
- Red: Element of Fire, passion, heat, sexual potency, lust, assertiveness, competitiveness, strength, vigor, sexual love, attraction, magnetism, energy, courage, protective magick, survival, war, conflict, binding, creating or dispelling anger, creating or dispelling hatred.
- Pink: Emotional love, loving friendship, romance, softness toward another, respite from arguments with loved ones, compassion, emotional healing, emotional unions, partnership, domestic harmony, protection of children, nurturing, universal good will .
- Orange: Strength, authority, legal matters, power, attraction, luck, gambling, promote winning, court related magick, success, self-expression, creativity, opportunity, investment, vitality, ambition, adaptability, speed, stimulation, swiftness of action, courage, energy, justice, career, business goals, professional growth.
- Yellow: Element of Air, travel, clairvoyance, divination, psychic powers, communication, intelligence and mental acuity, increase charm, personal charisma, memory, enhance study, increase learning, open the mind, break mental blocks, imagination, spoken or written eloquence, wisdom, fear, complexity, confidence, persuasion, air, the sun.
- Green: Element of Earth, money, health (growth related), youth, beauty, personal growth, improve finances, grow prosperity, improve employment situations, create or dispel greed, create or dispel envy and jealousy, grow success, personal business growth, luck, fertility, growth, abundance, gain acceptance, harmony, gardening, job seeking, need a raise, tree and plant magick, weather manipulation.
- Blue: Element of Water, Magick, occult wisdom, communication, focus, organization, truth, healing (non-growth related), the subconscious, sleep, meditation, patience, sincerity, forgiveness, fidelity, accept change, increase flexibility, provide inspiration, tranquility, personal or universal peace, quietness, increase will, raw energy, serenity, banish anger, peace to the home.
- Purple: Power, great fortune, luxury, ultimate victory, increase influence, ambition, career growth, contact spirits, spiritual guidance, healing severe cases, increase spirituality, increase intuition, increase psychic abilities, gain insight, increase inner strength or will power, independence, justice, might, exorcism, spiritual growth, telepathy, personal clarity, channeling, divination, dreams, psychic energy, astral energy and travel, increase occult knowledge.
- White: Protection, purification, positive outcomes, spirituality, peace, purity, truth, halting gossip, cleansing self, cleansing the home, consecration, balance, protection from nightmares, order, truth, invisibility, sincerity, chastity, happiness, higher self, working with the aura, moon magick. White is also a good “all purpose candle”. Since white is representative of all colors, when you need to work a spell and do not have the color you normally use, substitute white in its place.
- Black: Destruction of negativity, absorption of negativity, banish all things/people who are negative, turning, grounding, protection, complete change, break bad habits, healing severe diseases, invisibility, hidden or covert actions, reversing your and others spells, cause or cure discord, crossing and uncrossing, hexing and unhexing, repelling black magick, banishing, night, keeping or breaking secrets, binding.
- Brown: Animal magick and healing, neutrality, hesitation, blessing house or home, material goods, stability, locating lost objects, nature, real estate, construction, food, financial crisis, abundance, solidity, foundation, general spells for animals.
In addition, if you will be carving inscriptions into the candle, remember to keep the goal of the spell always in mind from beginning to end. Focus the intent of the spell deep into the candle as you carve your preferred rune, sigil, figure, words, etc. deeply into the wax. I usually use a very long straight pin for the carving. As long as it is not too ornate this works perfectly, but be careful when doing more ornate carving… I have turned more than one simple, straight-forward spell into a blood magick spell with the slip of a pin at the wrong moment. It is a bit painful, but very effective, of course in increasing the focus and power of the spell. I do not recommend using blood magick lightly and explain why in a different post. If you have a need to carve ornate sigils or figures, I would suggest getting a short handled awl to do the work with as it allows you better control of the sharp point and is less tiring on your carving hand.
Anointing your candle is a simple matter of deciding whether you are directing your spell to bring something or send something away. When using calling spells, I prefer to start at the top of the candle and use a deosil motion to dress the candle in my preferred oil from the top to the center of the candle. Always retain in mind the desired effect you are seeking from the spell. When this is complete, I move to the base and using the same deosil motion dress it from bottom to center. I feel this pulls the intent to the center of the candle and retains the desire within. When you are casting to send something away, simply reverse the process. Start in the center of the candle and using a widdershins motion dress the candle from center to top, holding in mind the intent of the spell and when finished go from center to base with the same widdershins motion.
Remember, just because a candle is not specifically written into a spell, does not mean that it cannot be used to strengthen an existing spell. It is the will of the witch as to what is included or left out of a spell. Many times I will add a spell to our blog and it may not call specifically for a candle, but that never means that one cannot be added to it if the individual witch wishes. Some spells may call for candles of two different colors and some call for several colors.
Just a side note here, be careful what types of candles you buy to do spell work with. The better the quality of candle the better the quality of spell work you will achieve. I prefer to use solid color candles for spell work. In an emergency, situation you may use a candle with a white center, as the color white is symbolic of all colors, of course, but personally, I feel that these do not have the same strength of effect or impact as the candles that have a uniform color throughout. This could be just personal experience based on my own expectations, though since confidence in your spell affects your results.
There is also some debate about the difference between using natural beeswax candles, which have been colored and using paraffin, soy or other plant based candles. I feel that this is a personal choice for each person. I know some vegans who will use only soy based tapers for obvious reasons. As long as the candle is not of a pre-scented variety, I do not experience a great deal of difference, personally.
I would love to hear your thoughts on the efficacy of various types of candles. When you cast with candles, do you have a specific preference? Does one style work better for you than another?