8 Best Practices to Make the Most of Your Scented Candle
After purchasing your scented candle, you might think there’s nothing more you need to do than light it up. It’s not enough that you’ve searched far and wide for the best scented candle out there. But in order to get the most out of your favourite candles, there are a few tricks you need to learn and remember.
For sure, you’d want your scented candle to last longer, or at least as long as it can possibly can. You would also want to be able to enjoy the fragrances and the therapeutic benefits of scented candles. And you wouldn’t want for it to have a lopsided burn, nor a sooty glass.
Here are eight candle etiquette and tips to help you make the most of your candles:
1. Burn your candles long enough
Make sure the candle spools completely across the top before extinguishing it. If not, it can result in candle tunnelling and wasted wax around the candle's inside edge. When burning pillar candles, in particular, allow at least one hour for every inch of diameter.
In case you didn’t know, another factor that can lead to tunnelling is a wick that is too small. Even if you have the best scented candle, if the wick's diameter is insufficient for the diameter of the candle (or the area of the candle it's supposed to burn, if there are multiple wicks), it will leave wasted wax around the inside edge of the candle.
Allowing the wax pool to reach the edges of the glass jar will also ensure you get the most of the essential oil aromas in Innerfyre candles. This is because the scent throw (the strength of fragrance of your candle) is affected by the size of the wax pool. If the wax pool is too small, you might not be able to get the most out of the essential oil aromas.
2. Trim the candle wick
Before lighting any candle, always, trim the wick to 1/8 - 1/4 inch.
Even with soy candles or coconut wax candles (which do not produce black soot), if the wick grows too tall, the flame will grow too tall and leave black burn marks on the glass. If the flame touches the glass container, it may cause it to crack. The cracked glass and hot liquid wax may not result in an enjoyable cleanup.
This is where a wick trimmer comes in handy, especially when working with tall, narrow, and deep candles (such as pillars) and candle containers (like some candles that come in beer bottles). If you don't have a wick trimmer, you can use scissors (toenail clippers will also do), though this can be difficult once the candle has burned down.
Once you’ve determined the best scented candle for you, you may be thinking of buying accessories. And if you could only buy one candle accessory, make it a wick trimmer.
3. Cool your candles
Some say that you should cool your candle by freezing it. Others say you should wrap it in foil or cling wrap (to keep the wick from absorbing moisture) and place it in the refrigerator for about an hour before lighting.
Yet, some also believe that this theory is not true.
Based on our observations, cold candles do burn slower. But this was just upon noticing how our candles burned longer when the ambient temperature was cooler. That said, you should also know that putting the candle in the freezer may cause it to crack. The best scented candles are also perfumed, which means the candle scent may also migrate to the sides and top rather than being evenly distributed throughout the wax.
What we do suggest is that you keep your candle in a cool, dark area when not in use. For Innerfyre candles, we use a high concentration of essential oils, so proper care is needed to ensure that they don’t oxidise or degrade.
4. Don’t burn your scented candles for too long
So although we said you should burn your candle long enough, there is also such a thing as burning your candle for too long.
Make sure that you don’t burn your candle for more than 4 hours at a time. After 4 hours, the candle becomes too hot and begins to evaporate fragrance oil, causing it to burn out faster. We recommend that you burn in 2 to 3-hour increments.
If the candle becomes too hot, the wax can completely liquefy. When this occurs, the glue holding the wick can release and move across the bottom of the container. This may also cause the flame to come into contact with the glass and make it crack. This is also why you should put out a candle when only 1/2 inch of wax remains.
For some of us, 4 hours isn't long enough because we simply can’t get enough of the best scented candles. The best way to go about it is to have multiple candles on hand so you can rotate through them if you want to burn candles for longer than 4 hours. You can choose to rotate fragrances or keep an extra of your favourite on hand at all times.
5. Avoid drafts
There is a draft if you notice the candle flame flickering in any direction other than straight up. Therefore, you should place your burning scented candles away from heating and air conditioning vents, as well as open windows.
A calm, centred flame evenly distributes heat, resulting in a clean and even burn. It eliminates excessive smoking, tunnelling, and wasted wax around the inside edge of the candle. This also improves fragrance throw, and it extends the lifespan of your candle by burning slower.
As a pro tip, you can put candles in a hurricane or lantern to help keep drafts at bay. This works well for us at breezy outdoor events, but it's also useful indoors near vents or as a decorative accent.
6. Extinguish your candle properly
When it comes to extinguishing a candle flame, you have three options: blow it out (duh! ), use a candle snuffer, or use a wick dipper.
When blowing out a candle, place your index finger in front of the flame and gently blow. This prevents hot wax from splattering and causes air to surround the flame.
A candle snuffer and wick dipper serve the same purpose: they extinguish the flame without causing the wick to smoke. When using a candle snuffer, you simply place the snuffer's bell over the flame to exhaust its supply of carbon and hydrogen, effectively extinguishing it.
You use a wick dipper to push the wick into the hot wax pool and then lift it out for the next burn. Although wick dippers are less well-known, they are generally less expensive than candle snuffers and perform just as well.
7. Make sure to clean up
Spills happen, and when they do, the first thing you should figure out is what kind of wax your candle is made of. Paraffin wax can be quite difficult to remove. But the best scented candles are usually made from biodegradable waxes such as soy and coconut wax — and these can be easily cleaned with soap and water.
For most spills:
- Allow the wax to harden and scrape off the excess wax. You can use a hairdryer to heat the wax and blot up as much as possible with paper towels (they are the most absorbent). Any wax drippings can be hardened with an ice cube, making them brittle and easy to scrape off. To scrape off frozen wax, use a credit card or a stiff plastic spatula. Make sure that you use a credit card you don't care about because it may snap in half!
- Clean up the spill with a soft, absorbent cloth and hot soapy water, or a solution of half white distilled vinegar and half water. If wax has been spilt on the carpet, use a paper towel and an iron to remove it. Cover the spill with a paper towel. Place a paper towel on top of a heated iron. The heat from the iron will melt the wax, which will be absorbed by the paper towel.
- If wax got on your clothes or any fabric, you can remove it with a paper towel and an iron. To soak up the wax, place a paper towel over the spill and underneath the fabric. Otherwise, it will soak into your ironing board and transfer the wax to the next item ironed. Lift the paper towel up after 30 seconds to see how much wax you have absorbed. Move the paper towel to a new spot and continue until the paper towel no longer absorbs wax from the fabric. This means you have absorbed as much wax as you can.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Do not leave the iron on the wax-soaked paper towels; it is extremely flammable.
8. Keep it safe
Although the quest for the best scented candles is about your preferences, safety should always be your priority.
Candles should always be burned in a well-ventilated area. Make sure you place lit candles away from window treatments and other flammable objects. Keep all lit candles away from children and pets, and never leave a burning candle unattended.
Place candles on coasters or plates, as well as in hurricanes or lanterns, for added safety and to protect your home furnishings. Learn more scented candle safety tips in this article.
Enjoy the best scented candle for you
With these tips, uneven melting and rapidly evaporating wax are no longer your concern. So go ahead and enjoy your scented candles and the relaxing atmosphere they bring.
If you have an Affirmation Crystal Candle, you can enjoy the full, immersive Innerfyre Co experience by checking out our Spotify account to see the corresponding playlist for your candle!
Shop for Scented Candles in Singapore today.