As with many handmade companies, Happy Little Flame was born in my home kitchen. I've always loved burning candles, so my goal was to create a cleaner, healthier option after discovering how toxic regular candles can be.
With a toddler at my feet and a 6-month old baby on my hip, I began experimenting with soy wax and fragrances. What started as an outlet for my creativity and passion for business, quickly turned into an exciting, frustrating, fun, and fulfilling journey. Although I knew that I could easily duplicate what was already on the market and launch a business quickly – I didn’t want to. I wanted to offer something different. Something healthier. Something honest. Something better.
After spending eight months experimenting, testing, and refining my recipe, I was finally ready to launch in May of 2018. By September of that year, my products were in two local stores, with a website and growing online presence. In February of 2019, business had grown so much that I needed help. Luckily, my sister Elisabeth was available and willing to help me, and we've never looked back! Her help with production & fulfillment allowed me to focus on the creative aspect of the business and growing our reach.
In July of 2020, we moved into a 2,000sqft commercial space in Libertyville, IL and out of Elisabeth's basement where we had previously been doing all of our production, labeling, and shipping. And that November, we opened our own storefront in a small portion of our space - just in time for the Holidays!
The HLF Team is currently made up THREE mamas. Our kids all range in age from 5-8, and one of the benefits of our location is the space we designated just for them! These days they don't spend as much time at the shop, but during the 2020/2021 school year, four of them attended class (taught by a teacher who was out of work at the time) in a room we converted into a classroom. They made it through an entire year of in-person school and we got to focus on growing the business while the rest of the world was shut down. What a blessing!!!
It's been such a wonderful experience for them to watch their moms build a business from the ground up AND build lasting relationships with each other.


The most common wax used for candles today is paraffin, which is a petroleum waste product. When burned, paraffin candles release highly toxic chemicals into the air, including benzene and toluene – both known carcinogens. That combined with synthetic fragrances and other additives can be pretty icky for our air. Over the last decade, soy wax has grown immensely in popularity as a cleaner option for candles. However, it has become increasingly difficult to source these waxes without additives or other waxes (like paraffin or palm) added in by the manufacturer. Because of this, most candles (even many labeled “all-natural”) contain things like UV inhibitors to prevent fading, and Vybar, a polyalphaolefin added to enhance color and fragrance.
Many of our customers ask why we don’t make our candles with essential oils. While this was originally my plan (and I  had a very hard time letting it go), during my extensive research I found that essential oils should never be used in candles. In fact, essential oils should not be heated at all as heat and sunlight can change the chemical composition of the oils. Not only can they become toxic, but they lose their beneficial health properties (learn more about this from the Wiley online library as well as doTerra & Young Living).
So what’s the alternative? Using superior quality, phthalate free fragrance oils infused with essential oils that are designed for candles and SAFE to burn!
All of our products are hand poured in small batches, and then cured for a minimum of two weeks to ensure quality, consistency, and top-notch fragrance.