Cutting your candle’s wicks before lighting is crucial and is also an extremely frequent errors made by candle burners. The wick should be cut to less than 1/4 an inch prior to lighting, and even prior to the first light. Some candles are pre-trimmed; others do not, so be certain to verify. Be sure not to cut too much or the wick could not stay burning.
In order to trim your wick, you may make use of an wick trimmer, or for some, nail clippers. When you have cut the wick, make sure the surface of your candle is spotless and free of wick debris and wick trimmings prior to lighting your candle.
What is the correct wick size for a candle?
That question can be answered with another question: How large is the flame?
As a general rule, the thinner the wick, the smaller the flame. That’s because less fuel is burnt when there’s a thin wick. A thin wick also burns more slowly, so the wax in the candle creates a more significant flame instead of melting away.
There’s no one ideal wick size for all candles. Instead, you need to consider the size of the flame, the type of wax, and how much burning time you get out of the candle. Then you can choose a wick dipper that helps achieve your lighting and scented-ing experience.
Here are some standard wick sizes and their appropriate uses:
Skinny: 1/16 inch (or 0.6 millimeters) – For tiny candles made with delicate, high-melting point wax like soybean or safflower oil. This wick size ensures the candle burns slowly and lasts a long time.
Small: 1/8 inch (or 0.32 millimeter) – For candles made with a medium-melting point wax, like sunflower or peanut oil. This wick size gives a nice, controlled burn with plenty of fragrance.
Medium: 3/32 inch (or 0.23 millimeters) – For candles made with a fast-melting point wax, like coconut oil. This wick size will give you a bright flame and a quick burn.
Large: 1/4 inch (or 0.64 millimeters) – For candles made with oil wax and those made with beeswax. This wick size gives a nice bright flame and a good burning time.
How to trim a wick
It’s easy to cut the wick when making a candle, but tricky to cut it too short. Here’s how to get it just right.
- Measure the height of the candle. Place the candle on a flat surface. Use scissors to cut the wick to a size that’s 1/4 the length of the candle. For example, if the candle is 6 inches long, trim the wick to 1 inch.
- Light the candle. Watch how the flame burns.
- When the flame is the height you want (usually 1/4 the length of the candle), extinguish the candle flame. Allow the candle to cool until it’s solid enough to handle.
- Use scissors to trim the wick to the length you observed in step 2. This will ensure a good, clean burn.
How to insert a wick
You’ll need one of these two methods to insert the wick into the center of your candle: the “rapping” method or the “threading” method. Use whichever works best for your particular project.
The rapping method
This is a simple technique that works with most types of candles.
- Roll the wick into a thin cord.
- Insert the end of the cord into the bottom of the candle mold. Wiggle it back and forth until it reaches the bottom. The rough surface of the wax will keep the wick in place.
- Pour in your wax solution until the candle is half-full. Allow to set until firm.
The threading method
This technique is best for candles made with Corinthian wax, which is a tricky material because it sticks to anything but beeswax. Also, this material comes in ribbons rather than chips, so you’ll need to cut the wick into short sections to use this method.
- Dip the end of the wick into hot wax until it’s covered lightly. Allow the wax to set slightly.
- Thread the wick through the center of the candle mold. The wax will hold the wick in place.
- Pour in your Corinthian wax solution, allowing it to fill the mold halfway. Allow to set until firm, then add more wax to fill the mold. Allow this to set fully before using your new candles.
When your candle is used up, trim the wick before lighting to ensure a clean, proper burn.
How to make candles for Christmas, home decor, or gifts
You’ll need a few items to make candles of every variety. So, stock up on these items before you get started:
You’ll need a long wick for tall candles and a short wick for flat candles. More comprehensive wax solutions require thicker wicks. You can purchase pre-made wicks or make your own by sewing lengths of wool together.
You have a world of options for wax for candle making. But, first, choose the suitable wax for the job by considering these factors:
Hardness – Harder waxes are more challenging to work with, but they’re more durable. So, they’re better for seasonal or permanent candles. Softer waxes are easier to work with but may only last for a short time.
Choose a color that matches your decor or theme.
Scent – You can add scented wax to make your candles smell delicious or enhance your home scent-therapy program.
Choose a scent that matches your decor or theme.
Temperature – Adjust the temperature of your wax solution according to the wax you use.
Other items you’ll need depending on the type of candle you’re making:
To trim candle wicks, carefully slice each of the wicks using small scissors or the cutting wick. To get the best outcomes and for security reasons, cut the wicks once they are at temperatures of room temperature. If you didn’t trim the wick before burning your candle, for instance, allow it to cool in time before cutting.