Maker we love: Borealis Candle

Maker we love: Borealis Candle

If you're looking for candles that are non-toxic to your furfriends, look no further! Borealis Candle is your brand. We are excited to carry Norah's products and tel you more about  her.


Norah Whitmore, Owner


Highland Park

Tell us about your brand and why it’s the best

I started Borealis because I wanted to create high-quality and design-forward candles that are also nontoxic (both to humans and to pets). 

All candles are proudly hand-poured in Pittsburgh's East End me -- Norah Whitmore. I use a clean-burning, nontoxic blend of soy and coconut waxes, along with a cotton-core wick and a combination of ethically sourced fragrance and essential oils. The addition of coconut wax provides a stronger "scent throw" than soy alone; both waxes are vegan and sustainably grown in the U.S.

Each element of a Borealis candle has been obsessively researched and thoughtfully sourced. From wax to wick to jar, it's extremely important to me to protect the health of my customers, ensuring that NO harmful phthalates, dyes, preservatives, or lead (unfortunately common to store-bought brands) are incorporated into my candles. Environmental stewardship is also top-of-mind: Borealis's signature amber glass jar and gold lid are both beautiful and recyclable in Pittsburgh; when shipping products, I use ONLY recyclable packing materials.

What is your background and the story behind why you started Borealis Candle?


I started making candles during a short stint in graduate school at Chatham, during which I realized that my desire to own a business (and work with my hands) far exceeded my desire to pursue a career in psychology. What started as a "creative outlet" to balance hours of dense reading quickly evolved into a full-blown preoccupation. As a consummate researcher and experimenter, I became obsessed with creating a "perfect" candle; which meant that it had to be 1) completely nontoxic to humans and pets; 2) environmentally sustainable; 3) high quality and design-forward; and 4) sold at an accessible price point.

What one product do we need to know about and why?

The North Woods 4 oz travel candle is definitely a crowd pleaser (and a bestseller). It's also special to me because my pursuit of that particular scent was what drove me to start making candles in the first place. I challenged myself to capture a very specific time (autumn) and place (northern Michigan), and when I achieved it, I knew I had something good going! I describe North Woods as warm and inviting, with a touch of ruggedness. If you love the outdoors and/or enjoy a good cabin weekend, this one's for you.

In three words, Why do you love Pittsburgh?

Character, hospitality, and vision. (I'm a Pittsburgh transplant, and these are the qualities that drew me to the city from my former home in Washington, D.C.)

How can people find out more about Borealis Candle?


Instagram: @BorealisCandleCo


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1 comment

I am looking for a creative candle maker who can duplicate a sent for our nonprofit, the National CARES Mentoring Movement. Need to create an additional income stream to sustain this movement.

Susan L. Taylor

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