Nothing sets a relaxing mood like lighting. Whether to enhance the mood or create a wonderful scent, everyone loves the idea of lighting candles in their bathroom. Unfortunately, these items can be some of the most dangerous things to keep in a bathroom. Scented candles that come in glass holders can fall and shatter, leaving bits of broken glass all over the floor and countertops. Without a jar or holder, those candles can leave piles of melted wax that is next to impossible to remove from bathtub ledges and countertops. The lack of a holder also leaves candles more prone to tipping, creating a potentially dangerous situation.
If you just love having candles in the bathroom, though, there is a solution. Small shelves can easily be installed above a bathtub or along an empty wall. These shelves are often less than 8” wide and they are a good way to hold candles or other small items that shouldn’t be knocked over near water and flammable curtains.
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There are a variety of shelves available -- some of our favorites are sold at stores such as Restoration Hardware and Pottery Barn. The shelves typically come preassembled, ready for installation. Choose a style that matches your decor, but also consider how you will use the shelf. Glass shelves with a safety bar are a particularly good choice for candles. The safety bar can prevent candles from accidentally falling off the shelf, while the thick, tempered glass is suited for holding large, heavy candles. Glass is also a material that is easy to clean of wax if you use candles without a holder. For similar reasons, marble shelves are also good choices, but they can be more difficult to install. For candles, you may want to avoid wood shelves, since they are flammable.
To install the shelves, use a stud finder to find the wood studs in your walls. Then, a drill and screwdriver should be all you need to mount the shelves to the wall. You may want to consider locating your studs before shopping for shelves, since the amount of space between the studs may determine the length of shelf that you can install.
After the shelves are installed, make sure that they are cleaned and dusted regularly. A build-up of dust on these shelves can create a dangerous situation if candles are left to burn on them for an extended period of time. After cleaning, make sure that the shelves are completely dry before igniting a candle on them.
These small shelves are also a great way to store bathroom supplies such as washcloths and hand towels for guests. When they're not holding candles, use them to hold small potted plants as a way to bring some greenery into your bathroom. The shelves look good and are a safer method of bathroom storage than utilizing plastic holders or bathtub ledges.