Picture: Pinterest
Picture: Pinterest

Candle care tips that will allow them to burn for longer

By Sacha van Niekerk Time of article published Apr 12, 2021

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Candles are relaxing, romantic, and they offer the home a beautifully warm glow which is especially appealing in the cold, winter months.

From how to trim the wick to how to prevent tunnelling and the wasting of wax, in order to keep your candles burning for longer, so that you can continue to enjoy their soothing scents for a long burn, you’ll need to follow some specific rules.

5 important rules to follow for candle burning:


As far as candles go, there’s nothing more disappointing than when they begin tunnelling down the centre, while all the wax around the edges remain perfectly untouched.

This is both a horrible waste of wax and the beautiful scents infused inside, that you won’t get to enjoy for longer.

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To avoid this phenomenon, referred to as tunnelling, you’ll need to ensure that the entire surface of the candle has melted during its first burn.

This means that you’ll have to light it for a longer period of time. Thereafter your candle should burn pretty evenly, so no waste will occur.

Black soot settling on jar

That black soot that settles around the jar of your favourite candles is caused by carbon.

A lit wick produces carbon and the more fierce the flame, the more carbon that is made, starving your candle of oxygen. The hot gases cause an updraught that starves the flame of oxygen and stifles the spread of air.

To prevent this soot from causing your pretty candles to appear used and old, move your candle out of the draught, as they burn best in still air. Also, try shorting the wick if it appears too long or crooked.

A steady wick creates a more balanced flame.

Lastly, consider the jar your candle is burning inside. If the candle jar is too small, it can cause carbon to take over, one that has holes on either side or is big enough for the flame to flourish will be far better.

Maintain a short wick

The importance of keeping your wick short and trimmed is vital for the longevity of your candle burning.

When a wick becomes very long from burning wax, it can no longer draw wax all the way up to the top of the wick, resulting in the wick itself starting to burn.

Trimming the wick allows the flame to have a clearer and brighter burn. Continually trimming your wick will also allow your candles to have a cleaner burn, with less smoke.

Don’t burn all the way down

As tempting as it may be to use the entirety of your candle wax, try to avoid burning your candle in a jar too low as it needs a solid base of wax to avoid overheating the glass jar.

If the jar overheats, it risks cracking and breaking, which could lead to disasters beyond a mess of broken glass and wax, all over your furniture and floor.

Keep wax clean

For aesthetics and appearance, and so that it doesn’t interfere with your decor, ensure that you are keeping your wax clean.

Only trim your candles once the wax has begun to harden to avoid black soot from crumbling into the wax and drying, or the wick from falling in and getting stuck.

Keep your candles in an area out of a draught where debris can fall into it. Clear, clean wax will keep your candles looking in tip-top shape for longer.

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