A bright idea, but probably not a perfect one.

By Tim Nelson
January 15, 2021
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A birthday cake is as much of a ritual as it is an actual dessert. It's a moment for the now-older recipient to (in normal circumstances) gather with friends and family to make a wish and blow out some candles. But at a time when we're all more cognizant of our germs and how they travel, traditional methods of blowing out candles come with some newfound concerns. 

While the obvious solution is to take (hopefully just) one birthday off from blowing out candles, those who really want to preserve the tradition can at least find a way to keep your cake (allegedly) free of disease thanks to TikTok, a highly credible source of scientific information. 

In @Krystal_Rochelle_'s post, the secret to a slightly safer birthday cake experience is to place the candles on top of the plastic cover shielding your store-bought cake. That lets the birthday party's guest of honor blow to their heart's content without worrying about their breath coming into contact with any cake. 

Credit: Jamie Grill via Getty Images

How do those candles stand up without getting smushed into the cake, you ask? Good question. It appears the secret is to light one candle, and drip a little bit of wax onto the plastic covering. Plop those candles right on top and go to town. Of course, the method only really applies to store-bought cakes, as using aluminum foil on top of something homemade would likely prove a bit flimsier. 

Further, this whole process overlooks another key issue: You're still breathing quite heavily, possibly in the direction of other nearby people. Not really the best idea in the world, especially if you're indoors with anyone from outside your household. 

If you're not into the awkward visual of someone blowing out candles while six feet away from everyone else, using some other form of wind power to blow out the candles on your behalf could be a viable alternative. There's no indication as to whether or not such an act would invalidate your birthday wish, but maybe it's time you stopped believing in that anyway.