Keeping Your Candle Burning!

This page will give you the highlights of good candle care to get the best out of your candle!

Ensure Your Candle Burns Evenly

When you light a candle for the first time, let it burn for a while. You want to ensure the entire surface of the candle melts before you put it out. If you don't, your candle could end up with a rim of solid wax that never ends up melting. (This is called tunneling, and you've probably seen it happen.) If you want all the wax in your candle to burn, let it burn evenly before you put it out.

Trim the Candle's Wick

If you want a clean, even burn, make sure your candle's wick is the right length. This might require some trimming. Before you light your candle, double-check your wick's length. If it's longer than the recommended 0.25 inches, use scissors (or a wick trimmer) to neatly trim it. Try to be as precise as you can. A too-short wick can get lost in a sea of melted wax and fail to light.

Retire Your Candle With Wax in It

You should stop using a candle before it completely runs out of wax. Why? If you let your candle burn all the way down, it could overheat its container—which could damage the container, create a mess, or both. Most candle experts recommend retiring your candle while there's still 0.5 inches of wax left in it.

Store Candles in a Cool, Dark Place

Unfortunately, your candles can expire over time. And while they're unlikely to spoil the same way food does, they can lose their fragrance, become discolored, or otherwise grow stale. Temperature fluctuations can speed the aging process up—and light can, too. Find a cool, dark place to store your candles between seasons. (Brown recommends storing your candles at room temperature.) And whenever possible, try to light your candles within 12 to 24 months of buying them.

Dos and Don'ts of Candle Care

Do Let It Burn for About 3 to 4 Hours at a Time

One of the most common candle mistakes LaVanier says she sees: letting candles burn too long—or not letting them burn long enough. "Candles are developed to be burned three to four hours at a time," she says. So you'll want to get as close to this burn duration as you can to get the most out of your favorite romantic candles.

If you go too short, your candle may tunnel, or it may not smell very fragrant. "Fragrance is emitted via evaporation from the pool of hot wax," LaVanier says. "So the larger the hot wax pool, the more it can emit." If you go too long, your candle may get too hot, and its wax may get too thin. The heat can damage some of the fragrance oils in your candle, and the thin wax can cause your candle to put off soot. A great alternative is to use flameless candles when you want candlelight beyond four hours.

Do Put It on a Heat-resistant Surface

This one may seem obvious, but it bears repeating. Be sure your candle is on a steady, heat-resistant surface before you light it. Otherwise, you may damage your furniture. (And of course, keep your candle away from flammable objects such as the books etc in the below image!—and away from any children or pets who might knock it over!)

... and of course don't forget to keep your own inner flame going, check out our self care section for more!

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