Ear Candling Or Ear Coning

About Ear Candling or Coning and History

Ear candling is a modern form of ancient ear coning techniques. Ear coning has been attributed to many different ancient and extinct societies to include Mayans, Aztecs, Atlantis, Native Americans, and Egypt to list a few.

Originally Ear Coning was done with a device made out of ceramic and hollowed out to permit and direct the flow of smoke into the ear canal. The modern form of ear candling uses a cylindrical candle tapered at the end to fit easily into the ear canal for the same purpose of directing smoke inside.

Reasons for using ear candles is to keep the ear canal clean, for regular maintenance, when an earache is present, vertigo, or even sinus congestion. The ear canal acts as an open air outlet for the sinuses. Cleaning out ear canals is very useful for sinus relief, Have you ever noticed your ears popping when blowing your nose? This is the reason why.

Ear Candles

Supplies needed for ear candling
Supplies needed for ear candling
a pair of ear candles
a pair of ear candles

How To Use Ear Candles

Two paper plates, a wet paper towel, a lighter and 2 ear candles are all that is needed. Ensure the plates used are paper, not Styrofoam or wax coated, its purpose is to catch ashes and protect while candling is being done.

This procedure is best done with a partner. Make a hole in the center of one paper plate about the size of the ear candle and put the ear candle through the hole. Lay down comfortably on the side not being candled. Turn the tapered end of the candle slowly between forefinger and thumb until the tip becomes softened then light the other end on fire. The ear candle will burn slowly like a typical candle and takes about 5 to 10 minutes per candle used. After smoke starts coming out of the tapered end, place that end into the ear and twist slightly, do not insert too deep, just enough to create a vacuum for smoke to flow into the ear canal. The best way to hold in place is to slide a hand under the paper plate, lying the hand flat against the ear, and hold the candle between the index and middle finger.

Watch as the candle burns down to ensure ashes fall onto the plate. It is very common to become so relaxed from this procedure you may even doze off, so pay close attention. You may experience many different things as the candling takes place. You may hear light crackling, popping, hissing or sizzling sounds. When there is about 3 inches remaining, use the wet paper towel to snuff out the candle. Remove the candle and place the expended candle on the 2ND paper plate. You can now un-wind the remnant as most everyone tends to be curious what is inside.

It is always recommended to do both ears at the same time, even if only one is bothering you. If needed or desired up to 2 candles in each ear can be done in one sitting. Unless symptoms are presenting indicating a need, candles should not be used more than once a month.

Pros, Cons and Cautions About Ear Candling

Ear Candling is a very controversial subject.  Many claim it is the wonder candle and cure all, while others claim it is harmful and could even cause deafness.  As in the case of most controversies the truth is usually somewhere in between the two extremes.

I would be remiss however, if I did not share the debates and cautions associated with ear candling.  Ear wax does serve a purpose of helping to protect the inner ear, to remove it all would leave the ear canal vulnerable.  It has also been proposed that rather than remove wax from the ear that it actually melts and puts more wax in the ear. 

Cautions associated with ear candling are similar to all therapies that they be used with care, if something doesn't feel right for you, it's not.  Just because it works for hundreds or even thousands, does not mean it should be used by everyone and does not guarantee getting the same results.  Consultate with your physician and or inform them of alternative therapies you indulge in.

My Personal Experiences and Opinions About Ear Candling

I was first introduces to ear candling a number of years ago. On a Friday afternoon I developed a terrible earache and was experiencing swelling going down the side of my throat, classic ear infection requiring a Dr's visit and antibiotics. Being that it was Friday, too late for a regular office visit and not ready to go to the ER or Acute Care, I stopped at the health food store and picked some up and decided to give them a try. After the first candle in the affected ear, all pain and discomfort was gone immediately, I felt great! In fact the side i had candled on felt light and the other side felt heavy, so I did the other side as well.

From that day forward I have been a firm believer in the benefits of ear candling and have shared with anyone and everyone who cared to listen. I had a friend once visit experiencing severe vertigo and had been taking medication with little significant improvement for a couple of days. My friend agreed to try ear candling, experiencing immediate relief, the vertigo was gone and also felt the lop-sided-ed feeling and had the other ear done. My 3 yr old nephew had drainage issues with his ears, had had tubes and the Dr's were considering tubes again. I used ear candles on him, he felt comfortable with the experience and cooperated. The Dr's checked him for 3 months following and found no fluid or issues and released him from further care at that time. He has never had ear candles used since or experienced ear infections or drainage issues either. The most common use however, is for sinus issues. There are so many people whom I have shared this with and that have used them, too many to even begin to recount each individual story.

I have never known anyone personally or even knew someone who knew someone who had anything except a positive, healing experience from ear candling. I have also never known anyone to include myself who uses them randomly or indiscriminately, only on an as needed basis.

Is this to say that they are safe? No, this is only stating my own personal experiences and knowledge.

My personal opinion is clearly that ear candling is very beneficial and can cure earaches, ear infections, vertigo, sinus issues and water on the ear. i have since learned energy movements that work as a preventative and healing benefit on the same issues,  I prefer the energy motions but still share ear candling with those who are more comfortable with a physical cure that can be touched.

Share Your Stories About Ear Candling

Have you ever used ear candles before?

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How Do You Feel About ear Candling Now?

Is Ear Candling something you would consider after learning this information?

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Comments 33 comments

Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA

I like your way you presented this topic. I met some people who are very pro ear-candling and am very happy if this method helpes them.

Personally, I do not feel that I need it.

Great Hub, thanks for the info...

Love and Light

Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 7 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

I have an ear candle but have always been scared to use it. Maybe now I'll try it!

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Share you experience. btw, do you have any reason to use it? Thanks for visiting.

Tina Richey 7 years ago

I've been using this method in my massage practice for about 5 years and seems to be great for 95% of my clients. Thanks for sharing Susan.

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Thanks for sharing your experiences Tina. I would be curious about the 5% though.

ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 7 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

This is the first I've heard of ear candling and awhile ago when I posted my ear hub and placed amazon there and a book came out with this topic. So I'm really glad you wrote this piece so now I have an idea what this is all about. :-) Thanks!

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

You're welcome. Thanks for your interest

Shirley Davis 7 years ago

I can see where this is benificial. I have lived with ear and sinus infection all of my life. I remember when I was just a little girl and would suffer from an infection, although my dad did not smoke, he kept a pack on hand, and would light one up and instead of inhaling, would blow the smoke in my ear. I remember that it helped so much, especially when a Dr. was unavailable. My mom was skeptical, but he made a believer out of her. It probably would not be as effective as the candles, but it was a bandaid for the moment.

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Very interesting, thanks for sharing your experiences. Coning is the original method, without the cone that is how it is done. The smoke is where the relief comes from.

Chopsticks 7 years ago

I am a user of ear candles and practice ear candling on others also, this is normally for sinus issues or earache and it's marvelous. Thanks for informing others how to use them responsibly. Nice! Blessings!

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Chopsticks, Thank you for sharing your personal experiences as well.

Lisa 7 years ago

I've used this on many in my family and even my children. The cone just barely sits inside the ear canal. No pressure and should not cause any pain. the sound is soothing like a faint campfire and the warmth and suction draws the excessive ear wax out and up into the candle. No pain ever. It's great to use when there's a lot of congestion and your ears are full and you need relief and to unplug. Easy and simple.

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Thank you so much for sharing your personal experiences with ear candling.

Suiiki profile image

Suiiki 7 years ago from City of the Newly Wed and Nearly Dead

I have never tried ear candles, but I think I will now! I've had an on and off ear infection for a while, and no healthcare. I was skeptical of them but have been doing research. (The skepticism comes from when my sister had an ear infection a few years back, and dad candled her ears. It didn't help, and she wound up going to the doctor. But we found out later that she had been ignoring the pain until it got unbearable because she did not want to go to the doctor and be put on pills. We were told that if we waited any long, the infection would have eaten holes in her eardrum and she'd be partially deaf in that ear for the rest of her life. I suspect that waiting too long is the reason the candle did not work.)

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Thank you for visiting. I hope they work well for you. They don't work miracles, as you noted, but they do have their good purposes. Glad to know your sister turned out okay as well.

PJ_Deneen 7 years ago

Great hub. Ear candles have really helped me in the past. Like you, I think the truth to the controversies lies somewhere in between.

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

PJ: Thanks so much for contributing to this hub, I really appreciate it!

EverythingMouse profile image

EverythingMouse 7 years ago

My husband did this and it produced really good results. I have to admit it is a little scary until you get used to it!

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

EverythingMouse: thanks for sharing your experience. Once you get over the fear it is really nice isn't it?


EAR CANDLING IS FAKE!! Do not ever go out and pay to get ripped off buy people who use this alternative method for cleaning ear wax. You can puncher your ear drum or even burn your ear drum so don't let them fool you like it's your earwax that is in the burnt bees waxed funnel, it's the burnt bees wax. I wish someone told me this a long time ago.

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author


Thank you for sharing your perspective....I have heard many things, many directions as I wrote in the hub. Do you have any examples you would like to share? Have you or someone you know had a bad experience? Education is about knowing all of the facts. This hub claimed to know a few options and many have shared their experiences...what works for one, may not work for another....If it doesn't feel right, don't do it. Thanks


I have read that scientist did a study on ear candling and while the ear candle was lit there was no suction what so ever at all! I'm not the professional, i'm just a guy that was told to get the treatment buy a female cop..lol. When I went and got it done they told me, ok don't forget to come back tomorrow and get the other side done....Of course for another payment? Ok, so should I burn the building down or just take it that I got played...lol Jk. Thanks luv you all.

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Thanks for your feed back. I am not the professional either. I am however a believer of the results myself and others have received. I have never payed to have it done, it has always been a Do it Yourself concept. Maybe belief is what works not the candle itself. I Appreciate as you shared your own personal experience...it is truly different for everyone and one size does not fit all.

ladyeagle_cdc profile image

ladyeagle_cdc 7 years ago from San Juan City, Philippines

I know few people who suffers from earache however, they are kind of scared with ear coning.

Thanks for sharing us your experiences on this matter. Blessings!

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

Thank you for visiting and commenting...so glad to know you don't know of people haaving bad ear experiences. Blessings to you as well and let your light shine!

frogyfish profile image

frogyfish 7 years ago from Central United States of America

I have not personally used ear candles, but know a person who uses them sporadically with 'great success'. Another person I know had an utter failure with them and called them quackery afterwards. Your experience is interesting, so my vote is still waiting to be cast. Thank you for sharing this!

emohealer profile image

emohealer 7 years ago from South Carolina Author

frogyfish: Thank You so much for your sincere feedback. Ear Coning is not for everyone, what works for one person may or may not work for another. Our gut instinct almost always knows what is right for us if we listen to it. Sounds like you are more in tune with your inner voice and less swayed by outside influence...Good For You!

NCFRUIT 4 years ago


Ali 4 years ago

I hve been using ear candling for a few months now, on myself & my children , all who hve benefited , my 7yr old son who gas ADHD loves it & it's the only time he stays still & has even fallen asleep on 2 occasions , wld defo recommend it !

Carrie 4 years ago

My daughter has a big build up of wax which is getting quite painful I have tried all different things from the doctor but they arnt really working. She is 12 and half years old would she be able to have this done or would she be to young. Thanks Carrie

emohealer profile image

emohealer 4 years ago from South Carolina Author

Using smoke to loosen wax is always a good option.. just ensure to take your time and possibly take her to someone who does this rather than start out with a do it yourself option. There are more and more alternative wellness places doing these practices for us adn teaching. Hopefully you can find someone locally. I have personally used this technique on as young as 3 yrs old, based on how easily they can hold still and are willing. i hope you have found some relief. Thanks for asking.

Bobcat 2 years ago

I really wish there were more arelicts like this on the web.

emohealer profile image

emohealer 10 months ago from South Carolina Author

Thank goodness for Hubpages this is one of the many reasons articles like this are available ... from the many resources outside of mainstream news.

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