The shimmering glow of sparklers makes a great backdrop for pictures of your ceremony or a fun reception send-off, and knowing how to light sparklers at a wedding is essential for a successful experience. These tips can help you get all your sparklers lit at just the right moment.

1. Choose the Right Lighter

Please do not use matches to light sparklers! To get wedding sparklers going, you need butane lighters or a propane torch, the kind typically used for lighting a barbecue grill or fireplace. These lighters have a long barrel that keeps your hands safely away from the tip of the sparkler. Sometimes the first sparkler you try lighting takes a while to get going, so you need a steady flame that won’t flicker out before you’re done. Propane lighters also shut off immediately once you release the trigger, making them safer to use than a match that needs to be extinguished after your sparkler is lit. 

2. Choose the Right Location

Sudden breezes and damp conditions can make it harder to light your wedding sparklers, so choose a location that’s dry and sheltered from the wind. Find a place that has enough room for you to hold the sparkler and lighter away from your body so hair or clothing doesn’t accidentally blow into the flame. Keep a bucket of water or sand nearby in case of an emergency. You can use the same bucket later for guests to dispose of their sparklers after the event.

3. Optimize Your Lighting Process

Light your sparkler at the top end to keep the flame as far away from your hand as possible. Angling the tip of the sparkler just a slight bit downward can help jump-start the lighting process. Flames typically move upward, so keeping the stick at an angle helps the first spark that catches travel up to ignite areas further along the sparkler. Keep in mind that there’s no need to rush the process. Because the extra length of these sparklers (20 to 36 inches), they burn much longer than classic store-bought sparklers, you have some extra burn time built in. Taking your time to light each sparkler safely and efficiently ensures that you get the final effect you want.

4. Coordinate Your Lighting

Before you start lighting wedding sparklers, plan out how you will get all of them lit quickly and efficiently.  The easiest way is to use the sparklers that are already lit, to light the other sparklers. By simply touching a lit sparkler to another, it will almost light instantaneously. Using your lighter to light each one individually could leave you with some half-finished just as others are starting to sparkle, but you shouldn’t try lighting more than one sparkler at a time. Instead, arrange wedding guests into small groups that can work together to get all of their sparklers going. Choose a “designated lighter” to get a sparkler from each group started. Guests can then use a lit sparkler to light the others in their group instead of using lighters to light each one.

5. Safe Sparkler Disposal

Used sparklers remain hot, so be sure to use proper disposal methods to prevent them from becoming a fire hazard. We recommend submerging spent sparklers completely in a bucket of water. After soaking overnight, roll the sparklers up in a plastic bag to stop them from drying out. Now, you can safely dispose of them in the trash. 

Long event sparklers from Direct Sparklers add a fun, festive touch to your big day, but you need to keep safety in mind during the lighting process. With pre-planning, the right kind of lighter and a basic understanding of how to light a sparkler safely, you can make your send-off or photo op go smoothly.