Do you enjoy the occasional bath surrounded by a bunch of scented candles? Or perhaps you light up a few “warm vanilla sugars” to enhance the mood during sexytimes? Well, you’d best stop that right now, because a science guy quoted in The Daily Mail says it just might spell your death. Sort of. If you vastly overuse them for your whole life and forget to ventilate the room.

According to The Daily Mail, a recent study revealed that scented candles of the cheap, paraffin variety, give off “an alarming range of volatile organic compounds (VOC’s), substances that can be problematic to health.”

Via The Mail:

When U.S. researchers burnt a range of candles in a laboratory for a study published two years ago, the chemicals released in harmful amounts included human carcinogens and chemicals known to cause asthma attacks, such as toluene and benzene.

Dr Amid Hamidi of South Carolina University, who led the study, showed that paraffin-based candles produced ‘clear sharp peaks’ for many chemicals, mainly because they do not reach high enough temperatures when being burned to destroy the hazardous molecules they emit.

‘An occasional paraffin candle and its emissions will probably not affect you,’ he said. ‘But lighting many of them every day for years, or lighting them frequently in an unventilated bathroom, for example, may cause problems.’

So basically, unless you’re a total scented candle addict with an aversion to opening windows, you’re probably fine. And if you are…well, you’ve probably got bigger things to worry about than a gradual decrease in lung health. Live a little and shell out for soy or beeswax. You’re worth it!

Beyond the obvious sensationalism at play, I take issue with the statement that “they’re many women’s favourite indulgence.” Really?? More “favourite” than alchohol, marijuana, cocaine, sex with strangers, or chocolate cheesecake? Clearly I’ve been shopping at the wrong candle store.

I leave you with this not at all disturbing video of an enthusiast in happier times, reviewing various items from his “Yankee Candle haul.”