By Ana Vice
What do you desire? What’s your wish? Here’s how to work with wax effigies, image candles, and colors to help you focus your intention.
Image candles come in all different shapes and colors and allow you to more easily visualize your desired outcome. There is a long history of using wax effigies in magical practices that dates back thousands of years to the ancient Egyptians, but some experts say the word "effigy" has only been around since the 1500s. The word originates from Latin and means "a copy or imitation" of something (for example, the likeness of a human person). Image candles are made from wax, but visual-based magic can take on many different forms, figures or effigies. Clay, wood, or rope can also be used to represent a person or spiritual intention.
Figure candles are a specific type of image candle and work much like voodoo poppets (dolls) by making use of sympathetic magic to assist in spell casting. A figure candle can symbolize the individual doing the spell work or another individual, energy or abstract spiritual concept that the practitioner is working towards or with.
Image candles are typically anointed with oil (various oils are available for purchase at Enchantments) and can be made specific to an individual by carving their name and astrological sign into the candle. Some kinds of image candles include but are not limited to human figures, skulls, cats and gender candles. Image candles are often used in Rootwork (also known as Hoodoo or Conjure) is a term synonymous with African American folk magic. Incense may also be burned during the time of the ritual to augment your work. Enchantments has a variety of wood-based incenses that are also available for sale.
What is the Right Color for Your Image Candle?
As with candle shape, candle color is an important part of candle magic. Candle colors are chosen for the energies we want to work with and by the symbolic meaning of the color used. People who cast candle spells use different colored candles for different purposes. Image candles can be purchased at Enchantments along with our handy Guide to Planetary and Magical Significance for Colors and Days of the Week.
Here’s a general guideline for selecting candle colors for your rituals:
White: purification, clearance, uncrossing, blessings, clarity, and healing.
Red: lust, passion, sex magic, strength, physical energy, and motivation.
Green: money, prosperity, creativity, fertility, wellbeing and luck.
Pink: love attraction, love affection, friendship, family, love healing, and self-love.
Black: banishing, loss, absorption of negativity, breaking hexes and for exorcism.
How to do a ritual with an image candle?
Like with any ritual, set aside what space and time you need to do your preparation and work. A cleansing bath or shower should be taken before doing any work to remove negativity and clear your mind.
The candle color is chosen to match with your desired outcome. The name of the person the candle is supposed to represent along with additional symbols, sigils, or markings can be carved onto the candle during preparation for the ritual. Please keep in consideration that we do not advocate work that would be manipulative or malefic in nature. It is always good to have consent before doing rituals for or including others.
The candle then can be burned by itself or with other candles depending on what work is being done. As the candle burns visualize your intention and desired outcome. Remember to finish your ritual – even if your desired outcome manifests before the candle is done burning. Like other candles, image candles can be burned straight through. They take much less time to burn than a 7 day pillar candle. When using black image candles please use them with caution and do not hesitate to ask an Enchantment’s witch to assist you with providing available options and alternatives.
Stay tuned for Ana Vice’s Basic Introduction to Using Wax Image Candles, Part 2 – which includes examples of specific rituals to help you focus on positive outcomes rather than manipulative or negative ones.