They say that mother knows best, but when it comes to my mom, Sharon, it’s not some trite sentiment: It’s the truth. Whether I’m learning how to sew on a button or propagate plants, I turn to her for everything. After 30-something years hanging around her, I’d like to think I’ve inherited some of her qualities. Some might say I’ve taken on her attention to detail, and I’d say I got her whip-smart sense of humor, but everyone can agree on one thing: I definitely inherited her penchant for candles.
Whenever I receive compliments on my candle cart in my home office (yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like: A cart full of candles), I always quip, “You should see my mom’s collection.” Because, of course, my mom doesn’t have a mere cart of her favorite flames; she has a floor-to-ceiling storage unit with dozens to choose from. Although her preferred scents and brands have changed over time, she always burns her candles inside a glass hurricane (a flame-resistant cylinder that essentially acts as a barrier between a candle and the rest of your home). And now, so do I.
For my mom, using a hurricane was first born out of necessity: In order to burn a candle in her Manhattan office, she had to use one to contain the flame safely. “I was hooked on this new habit immediately, so much so that to this day I will only burn a candle if it’s in a glass hurricane,” she explains. “Let’s face it: Candles burning in a hurricane look very elegant and chic, plus they can provide a sense of coziness!”
A hurricane can enhance the glow of the candle and complement any decor, but it’s practical, too. “If you like the idea of burning scented candles in your home but worry about the exposed flame — especially with young children or pets around — using a hurricane might make you feel more comfortable,” she adds. Additionally, it can also prevent candles from getting extinguished by a light breeze. (A major plus if you’re lighting one outside, my mom adds.)
While most options are made with glass or metal, you’ll also need to think about the exact construction. “Some hurricanes are only open at the top so a candle can be placed directly inside,” my mom says. “Others are open at the top and bottom so they are placed around the candle. With this option, you will need something placed under the candle to protect the surface from heat.” However, her biggest piece of advice is to find a style that’s bigger and taller than the candle you’re using.
I rounded up a few hurricane ideas below to instantly enhance your own candle collection, starting at $18. And if you’re interested in more candle care tips, my mom also suggests keeping your wicks trimmed to prevent tall flames and soot buildup. From there, all you need to do is strike a match and enjoy!
To get my mom’s look, consider this classic style from Crate & Barrel. Not only does it have a frills-free silhouette that puts the candle front and center, but it also features a pedestal base that keeps your surface below from overheating.
Or, for something a touch more contemporary, I swear by this one from Wayfair. With a marble base and ribbed detail, this pick brings a sleek-meets-subtle attitude to my apartment.
Yes, hurricanes are even a good idea for teeny, tiny tealights. The cool blue tone of this lantern from AYTM will make an awesome addition to your next tablescape.
Calling all maximalists: The speckled design on this hurricane from West Elm is a surefire way to embrace your bold streak.
Decked out with a subtle gold trim, Serena & Lily’s hurricane promises to give your space the Midas touch. Even better? When lit up, the scalloped details will almost look like illuminated seashells.
If glass isn’t your thing, why not try a metal-like finish? This mercury glass option from Amazon will let your candle shine at full wattage.