The Ultimate Wedding Sparklers Guide

wedding sparklers

Thank you for visiting our website!  I hope you will find this wedding sparklers guide useful. It is filled with every bit of information I can possibly think of – every question I have been asked over the last 15 years to help you decide if sparklers are right for you. But that is an easy answer – of course, they are! 

Where else can you spend less than $100 (or more if you want, of course) and have the most impactful addition to your perfect wedding – the one moment your friends will remember. I also assure you that these will be the best photos you have ever seen!

You are on this page because you are engaged, dreaming of becoming engaged, or are the parent or friend of someone engaged. There are so many details to plan for the wedding day and I know the process can seem daunting. 

Please allow me to be here to answer every possible question about sparklers and relieve the anxiety you might have about deciding what to do for your exit or sendoff as they are often called. This is supposed to be fun, so let’s take some time together and get you excited about the prospect of using sparklers for your wedding.







What You Need to Know First About Sparklers

What is Wedding Sparkler?


Wedding sparklers are simply used at a wedding. I like to think that wedding sparklers are long lasting – ones that last long enough for a sendoff that is not in the least bit rushed or a first dance. Wedding sparklers are the same thing as a sparkler – except it is used on the wedding day. Some companies have fancy packaging – I keep mine plain and simple mostly because the boxes are specially designed to keep them safe during shipping and prevents them from breaking.

How Do You Use a Sparkler at a Wedding?

There are absolutely no set rules of how they should be used. I started this business dreaming that a bride and groom would use them the way I used them – for my wedding exit. I had my guests – or at least the ones that were remaining – form two lines and each hold a lit sparkler. I then, with my husband, ran in between the rows of guests holding the sparklers to the cheers of my very excited friends!

Some people like to use them for their first dance – if they are having the wedding outside. The 36 inch wedding sparklers are the best option for this activity as they last as long as most songs. This is such a romantic way to use them. The bride and groom will glow in the four minutes of the first dance and the guests will all have a youthful energy surrounding you with such fun sparkle. I love this idea but know this is limited to only outdoor weddings.

Other people use the wedding sparklers to introduce the party at the reception. This must be a Northern thing, because we don’t introduce people in the South. I have spoken to many couples who are using them this way – I would love to see a video of it for myself. Send me videos, friends!

I would say the last way people use them are as a favor to the guests. Not the best idea because they cannot be taken on airplanes and I would hate for someone to accidentally pack them into a suitcase.

How Long do Sparklers Last?

The best question of them all! We have sparklers that have been made in the same factory in China for over 100 years. I am trusting of their process, as I have used them for 15 years as my supplier. I genuinely love them and can guarantee that you will as well.


How Many Sparklers to Order For a Wedding?

This is in response to the 20 and 36 inch sparklers: There is no general rule for how many wedding sparklers to order. Some people are pleased with the idea of one per person. No questions asked – they will order one for everyone and simply enjoy the left overs if there are any. 

Others reduce the number by 50 or so depending on the number of guests. So if you are having a wedding of 200, I suggest 150 and sometimes only 100. It is the end of the evening and some of the older guests might have not chosen to stay until the very end. For a wedding of 300 people, I would suggest 200.

If you are using them for your first dance, I would suggest one per person.

For the 10 inch ones, you need at least 4 per person. The guests start to light them themselves and too early – so you need to make sure you have enough to last until the grand exit.

What Size Sparkler Should I Order?

I wish this was an easy question. I know so many brides who are exasperated with this decision. But really, it is such a matter of personal preference. Some venues have size requirements, so I would certainly suggest asking before you order. It is such a personal decision depending on your stress level, budget and space constraints.

Let’s start with what I used and why. I used the 36″ ones. Why? Because they were free. Really. But, I now am a huge fan of these because they last for 4 minutes allowing you plenty of time to line up your guests, get every sparkler lit, reapply your lipstick (thanks MOM!), and have a joyful wedding send off.

We probably could have gotten away with the 20″ ones time wise, but we had 200 people there at the end of the night and I know some of them would not have been lit in the end.

The 20″ ones are perfect for weddings of around 100 people (maybe 150). They are a great size – not too long, as well as a great price that fits most budgets. I also suggest the 20″ ones for birthday parties and other celebrations. While I know I am not supposed to suggest the use of sparklers with kids – my kids, under careful supervision – love these the best!

How Many Sparklers are in Each Package?

The 36 inch and 20 inch sparklers come 4 to an individual box. That individual box is then shrink wrapped with 6 other individual boxes. Then in each order we send, you receive two shrink wrapped packages.

  • 4 x 6 individual boxes = 24 shrink wrapped
  • 2 shrink wrapped packaged per box = 48

The 10″ ones come 6 to a box. Then 12 boxes per shrink wrapped package. You then receive 4 shrink wrapped packages.

  • 6 x 12 individual boxes = 72 shrink wrapped
  • 4 shrink wrapped packages per box = 288

How Do You Use a Sparkler?

Simply light the tip with a match and its lit instantly – or within a few seconds, it will light. They are so simple! The hard part will be lighting just one!

What Does a Wedding Sparkler Look Like?

This is actually a really good question! If you have never seen one, how do you know what to expect! They are physically silver in color. It is a long iron wire and is exactly the length of the size you order: 36″, 20″ or 10″ long. The box identifies them as GOLD colored. But the color when lit is more like a white, yellow, gold, silver color.

What is The Best Way to Light a Sparkler?

They light instantly off another sparkler. This is simply the most convenient and easy way to get a large number of them lit at a time. Sometimes, using a match you might need to give them almost 8 seconds. Please try out your sparklers before the big day. As I have mentioned before, we never anticipate any issues with our sparklers, but if something seems strange, let us know and we will send replacements right away.

How Long do Sparklers Last / When Should I Order?

They last for over 10 years! They are something you can order in advance and they will have the same superior quality in 3 months as they will in 3 years. This also makes leftovers fun – nice to gift to another couple or keep for a 4th of July or New Years Eve party! I have my very first box I ordered from my supplier 15 years ago and each year I light a few just to verify they still work well.

I have so many moms, brides, grooms and lastly dads – the dads are the ones that kill me. They say they spoke to me a few weeks ago and then forgot to order them. Now the wedding is 2 days away and they are desperate. Remember, we legally cannot ship via air, so there is no way to expedite shipment. 

I always say, if you know you want sparklers, go ahead and order a box or two. Shipping is free, so if you decide you need more, simply place another order. If you forget to order that extra box, no worries, you already have some on hand.

What You Need to Know When Buying Sparklers!

Where Can I Buy Sparklers Year Round?

Lucky for you, you are in the right place. You can buy sparklers every day of the year from me at Sparklers Online. I am pleased to have a website that has been in business for over 15 years. Literally since I started this business, I have moved to 3 different cities, had two babies one of which is now a teenager!

We have an excellent reputation and track record from our past clients. We are devoted to making your ordering and ship process as smooth as possible. The website is simple and direct and the checkout process takes mere minutes. 

We send you a confirmation immediately and an email with your tracking number so you can keep on top of delivery. Most orders will ship the same day, and we can get orders to 75% of the United States population in 3 days. On top of that we have free shipping.

Why Should I Not Get Sparklers at a Firework Tent?

Tents often have leftover product that has not been sold for years and years. And while the product might look dry to the visual eye, it could be three years old and have withstood a severe summer storm. I am exasperated with companies that sell cheap sparklers for cheap prices – then on your one big day, they don’t work. 

Spend a little more money and order from a trusted source – me, a past bride, someone who genuinely knows how important it is to get it right the first time when you have one shot for a spectacular exit.

Can You Buy Sparklers at Walmart or Party City or Amazon?

Occasionally these websites sell them, but they are usually only the type that go on a cake. Sometimes around the 4th of July, Wal-Mart will sell them but they are usually included in an assortment package. As for Amazon, you never really know what you are getting. 

Again, this is the big day. I strongly suggest you buy from us because we buy directly from the people in China who make these by hand and are not a 3rd party vendor. We are devoted to offering the highest quality available. This is the only thing we sell!

Where Can I Buy Sparklers in Bulk?

You can buy in bulk from us as well. We offer additional specials for certain situations.

Sparklers In Your Area

Because so many states do not have year-round fireworks laws, it is most convenient to order online. We offer same-day shipping, the highest quality, low prices, and the shipping is free. Don’t worry about the hassle of running one more errand, order yours online in our easy to use system, and check it off your list.

How to Plan For Shipping Times

Can You Ship Sparklers Overnight?

We simply cannot overnight them because they are not allowed to be shipped via air. I wish this were not the case because we could have saved the day for many weddings over the years. We do ship daily and ship from Tennessee. Enter your zip code on our delivery time estimator to get your shipment in time.

Sparklers in Canada

Yes, we can ship to Canada. We do offer free shipping, but the duty and tax fees are passed along to you. I wish it was not so expensive shipping outside of the United States.

Can Sparklers be Taken on a Plane?

No. They cannot. At all. They cannot be checked in luggage or carried on the plane in your carry on luggage.

Posting Your Wedding on Social Media


We love posting our customers photos and amazing ideas to Pinterest. We also get a lot of inspiration from this amazing site (and maybe a little sidetracked too – recipes, house, hair ideas). Please look on our Pinterest page for the very best ideas and send us your images so we can post as well.


Will you repost our photos? Um…yes! Of course we will. Our hearts are so happy when we receive sparkler photos we can share with the IG community.



Again, please use this medium as a place to ask questions, read interesting articles about all things weddings and share your wedding sparkler photos on our Facebook page!


How to Write With Sparklers

You would not believe how many calls I get from people wanting to order a large L and O and V and E sparkler to spell out the word love. I will let you in on a secret, there is no such giant sparkler shaped like a letter. Secondly that would never work because it burns like a fuse and the entire letter would never be illuminated at the same time.

Capturing writing is a magical way to add some creative pictures to your collection. Make sure it is completely dark – not a hint of evening light. The jist of this process is a long shutter speed. Instead of the camera going “click” it will instead go “clllliiiicccckkkk”. So, your camera takes a few seconds to achieve the blur of the sparklers. You will also certainly need a tripod.

As suggested by Make sure that the area you are going to write in is big enough for the word you are writing, and that your camera lens is wide enough to capture it all. The settings that I typically use are: shutter speed: 8-15 seconds, aperture: 3.5, ISO 100. 

The key is to allow the shutter speed to be the setting that allows the light in. Keep the ISO at 100, because as it is so dark, the slow shutter speed is what captures the light and motion.

Writing with sparklers is more difficult than you might think. Have the person writing to have their back to the camera and write out to the side so their body does not block the letter they are working on, otherwise if they face the camera, they will need to write the letters as if they were reflected in a mirror (not fun!). 

You might also want to use the timer on your camera to make sure it does not have any shake, which will result in blur, from you taking the picture. If you have a child that is too young to write a word, have them do their first initial or just wave the sparkler around in a pattern, the results are sweet because, hey, it’s your child!

How to Photograph Sparklers

I will give you three different pieces of information from three professional photographers.

The most important piece of advice we can offer is to be prepared. There are many ways to capture the exit. Take into consideration your gear, level of experience, and timeline, and decide on your plan of attack before showing up to the wedding. 

It goes without saying that using a camera with low-light capabilities is recommended for wedding exits. If you don’t have one, make sure you’re equipped with the necessary lighting to get your shot. If you’ve never done a sparkler exit before, practice with cheap ones from the dollar store ahead of time.

Being prepared will mean you need to slip away from the reception early to scope out the path of exit and get your gear calibrated for the available light, or get external lighting set up. 

Ideally, see if you can steal the couple away before their big exit to get a few test shots and get some creative shots with just them and a few sparklers.

Shooting an Exit Using Only Ambient Light and Sparkler Light

If the venue is in a tent, or if the couple has soft lighting in their path of exit, using it can be a great way to get good exit images. Here’s an example of one image that was taken by Mastin Labs user, Jennifer Hawkins using only the light from the sparklers, and the soft lighting from string lights on the roof of the venue. She shot her Cannon 5Diii with the sigma art 35mm lens at ISO 4000, f/1.4 and 1/100 sec. She also manually adjusted the white balance using kelvin 2500.

Some exits happen when it is still partially light outside. While total darkness yields a more dramatic image, you can get a beautiful effect before the sun has fully set. For example, Mastin Labs user, Stephanie Mballo took this image when it was still partially light outside to get a well lit, lovely effect. She took this image at ISO 4000, f/2 and 1/160 sec.

This is usually the safest route for capturing a shot that works. It’s less technically challenging and leaves less room for error. If you use an in-camera flash, adjust to a lower ISO with a moderate shutter speed to get a sharp photo. 

Fine-tune your shutter speed to your camera’s light meter and shoot. Mastin Labs user, Gillian Martin got this shot using ISO 100 f/2.0, 1/100 sec on her Canon. She used only her camera’s flash.

If you have a second shooter, take advantage of that! Shoot your images without a flash, and have them shoot with a flash. This will give you two sets of images with two different looks, and give you room to be more creative knowing that you have a backup.

Shooting an Exit With an External Flash

This can be the most complex way to capture the exit, but the images can turn out striking. Only choose this approach if you have experience doing wireless flash photography. 

If you choose to use external flashes, the best route is to set up two or more flashes. Set one along the side of the path of exit, and the other at the end of the path, faced toward it. For the most diffused lighting, set them 5-10 feet off the path and angled toward the path.

It goes without saying that using a camera with low-light capabilities is recommended for exits. If you don’t have one, make sure you’re equipped with the necessary lighting to get your shot.

For The Best Chance of Nailing the Shot Ask Your Couple To:

  • Plan the exit away from harsh lighting such as the entryway lights or streetlights.
  • Pause a few times through the procession. Have them pause at the top of the path and strike a pose so you can take a quick test shot before rapid fire as they exit down the rest of the path. Suggest a dramatic kiss, or that they wave to their friends and family.
  • Mastin Labs user, Gurinder Singh Paul suggests having the couple stop about ¾ of the way through the line, that way they’re well lit from all directions.
  • Walk slowly and enjoy the last moments of the reception. Tell them to resist the urge to run.
  • Redo the exit. If you failed to get the shot. Yell “Encore!” and wave them back to the start, encouraging them to enjoy themselves and do it again. Many couples love to bask in the attention for a few extra moments before taking off.

Having the right gear helps. Some will tell you that you need an off camera flash or an assistant holding this over there and this and that. Some of that might be true. I think most of the time it’s over kill. Ultimately it comes down to personal style. For me, I like the consistency of using natural light.

You absolutely can set up a flash and get fantastic images every time. If you care to, set up an off camera flash to the side, roughly 5-10 feet away, (off to the side angled towards them, use an umbrella to soften the light) set your camera’s ISO anywhere from 400-800, set the shutter speed to 125, shoot at 2.8 to 3.5 and call it a day! 

Again I LOVE the look of using the sparkler and other natural or ambient light to help style the image. I shoot the exit just like I shoot the wedding day. Exclusively with my Canon 5D MK3 and my 50mm 1.2… all day every day

To recap – I shoot almost exclusively, again, in Aperture mode and my ISO is always set anywhere from 800-3200, I spot meter, and always shoot wide open at 1.2

There is a Sparklers Effect in Photoshop.

Do you know that you can purchase a sparkler writing font in Photoshop? This process certainly takes the fun out of actually using the sparklers at a wedding but is an interesting idea.

How to Photograph Sparklers with an iPhone

Have you ever heard of the Slow Shutter Cam app? Apparently, it is amazing and you can capture simple photographs of sparklers or do something more elaborate and do sparkler writing.  Read this tutorial from Steven Sand.

While he has written this tutorial about photographing fireworks specifically the kind that go in the air and burst, this also applies well for sparklers.

In this case, you’ll find that Slow Shutter Cam has a built-in mode that is perfect for capturing all of the fireworks action — it’s called light trail mode. While most of us aren’t too excited on capturing the upward climb of the fireworks shells, we love the explosions that sometimes last for 5 – 10 seconds. 

With Slow Shutter Cam, you can point your tripod-mounted iPhone in the right direction, focus with a tap on the dark sky (the app has an automatic exposure and focus lock), and then tap on the Settings “gear”.

You’ll see tabs for the three capture modes of the app – Motion Blur, Light Trail and Low Light. What we want to dp is tap Light Trail to select it, the adjust the Light Sensitivity and Shutter Speed. I like to keep the ISO (think of it as the “film speed”) set on auto, then play with the other two settings. 

Since most fireworks explosions are over in just a few seconds, you probably want to set the shutter speed to either 4 seconds or 8 seconds. The 15-second exposure time works well if you want to capture multiple airbursts that are happening.

The tough part comes in when you try to click the shutter button and take your photo without shaking the iPhone during the long exposure. Fortunately, Slow Shutter Cam has a self-timer built into it under the settings. The timer can be set to 1, 3, 5, and 10 seconds; I find that using either 3 or 5 seconds works best when shooting firework pictures. 

Listen to the launch “boom” of the shells, then tap the shutter button. The shell reaches its apogee after 3 to 5 seconds, then explodes. If you find that the fireworks show is using a lot of high shots, then 5 seconds is probably better than 3.

As an alternative to the self-timer, you can also plug your Apple earphones into the iPhone and use the “+” volume button as an external shutter button. Even better, if you have an Apple Watch there is a companion app that lets you use your watch to “push the button.” 

However, the Watch companion sometimes seems to have issues with connecting to the iPhone…so take along that set of EarPods just in case.

Oh, and one final tip — clean the lens on your iPhone before taking your fireworks photos. Our hands tend to get grease on the lens, and any blurriness that’s cause by that will be exacerbated by the longer exposure. I use a little lens cleaner on a piece of tissue to wipe off the iPhone lens before taking pictures.

About Our Smokeless Sparklers

Are They Smokeless?

Such an often asked question and something that is important to consider. 

Yes, the sparklers for wedding we sell are smokeless. They do not produce smoke. There is a negligible amount of smoke that will be seen when initially lit, but you can also expect that with something as simple as a candle too. 

I can say with confidence that you will not at all have an issue with smoke with our products. I also know that it is hard to imagine one that is called smokeless but one that I say potentially might produce a negligible amount of smoke like a candle does.

That is why we suggest you order in advance of your wedding and have a chance to try one our sparklers for wedding. Not only to relieve your worries about smoke, but to also make sure it is what you expected. 

We offer a 100% guarantee for that very reason. We know the product may not be what you expected (but we actually hope it exceeds your expectations), we know you may change your mind, we know your wedding might be postponed (it happens, and we also know that someone might forget to bring them to the reception. That also happens, sigh!

Please refer to this page on our website for the most in depth information you could ever desire on the idea of smokeless sparklers.

Online Reviews

We are extremely proud of our online reviews. These get posted immediately – good or bad. I work hard to earn those good reviews. Take note that the reviews appear online almost daily. 

You can know from the fact that we are an active and involved company that ships daily and communicates with customers daily via phone, email or text. 

One review that delighted me today from Tracy said ”After looking at some of the sketchy online reviews of other sparklers, we are so grateful that we went with You guys were awesome to work with, and within 3-4 days of my original order I had received the sparklers. 

You’ve made life a little more stress-free, and I will definitely go online and give you a glowing review. We look forward to having fun and being able to show everyone the wonderful pics using the sparklers! Will post those on your site after the wedding.”

How Do You Know Your Wedding Sparklers are High Quality?

A few years ago, I ordered sparklers from all the copy cats out there (yes, I can say that because the idea of sparklers at weddings came from me! It is what I used for my wedding sendoff in 1999). Others were smoky, did not last as long as they promised, and the composite fell off in chunks.

We offer a quality sparkler that we are genuinely proud to call ours. These are the traditional sparkler you are envisioning – with a wide sparkle effect that you remember from childhood. They are not smoky, they hold up well because they are double dipped in the composite when made. 

These wedding sparklers are also 100% guaranteed, meaning if for any reason you are unhappy with your purchase, if the wedding is called off, if it rains, if you change your mind, simply call me and you can return them for a full refund.

Additional Items to Add to Wedding Sparklers


I think sparklers look adorable when tied with a matchbook. There are so many wonderful resources for these matchbooks and so many styles of matchbooks. There is a flap style, box style and a barrel style. 

I will admit that most people just keep the matchbooks as a souvenir because the wedding sparklers light so easily off one another. However, it is a creative way to personalize your wedding exit.


Another cute way to personalize your wedding is to put the sparklers in a sleeve or tie a tag around them. Some of the cute ideas are Let Love Sparkle, Let’s Light the Way for Jim and Jane, Send off at 10:00pm. We sell tags right here on our site! Check out our sparklers tags.

Buckets for Wedding Sparklers

When it comes to your wedding, every detail will make your big day feel so special. You can use wedding sparkler buckets for an easy and chic look to hold your sparklers. Check out our sparkler buckets.

Legality and Safety

Are Sparklers Legal?

Sparklers are considered a novelty item by the Department of Transportation. We are allowed to ship them legally via UPS Ground. Please check your county laws before ordering and also consult with your wedding venue to put yourself at ease. Most venues like them because they are not messy and are easy to clean up!

Are Sparklers Safe?

Sparklers have been around for over 200 years. They instantly evoke a smile on the holder’s face when being used but safety is a huge concern. We do not recommend them for use by children. We also love the long-lasting ones because the guests can light one and hold them up in the air.

Can Sparklers Burn You?

Of course. I would be inconsiderate to not state the truth. Sparklers at weddings should be used responsibly. 

The most important aspects of sparkler safety is to never point a lit one at another person, do not lay them down on the ground or a table, never hold one by anything except the wire handle, and never hold multiple ones and light them at one time. 

Please make sure there is a designated place to put the extinguished ones and have your wedding planner be sure to gather all of those in a safe place. Often a bucket of sand works as a great place to display them before they are used and a place to extinguish them when the sendoff is over.