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You have found the perfect candle. It checks all of the boxes of your must-haves: unique fragrance, not overpowering or cloying and doesn’t trigger your allergies.
So, off you go to acquaint your newest luxury to your home. Within mere moments, your emotions transform from excitement to fright.
A quick scan of a room filled with an uncomplimentary medley of fragrances spewing from partially used candles with soot, uneven wax and broken wicks make you fear the worse. This is not the future you’ve envisioned for your beloved candle.
To keep you from becoming a serial conspirator of staged candle crime scenes, we have come up with 5 surefire ways to help you enjoy and extend the life of your candle.
1. Examine your wick. If it’s longer than 1/4” (roughly the length of one long-grain rice), trim it before you burn it. Burning a longer wick can shorten the life of your candle. Why? A longer wick will produce a higher flame causing the candle to burn at a faster rate.
Moreover, the height of the flame may cause soot to form inside the candle’s vessel and also on room walls if placed within close proximity. Care to add a $50 can of paint and restoration time to your to-do list?
2. Encourage candle memory. Candles have an exceptional memory. This memory is established upon first use.
By not allowing your candle to establish a full liquid pool extending to the edge of the vessel will create tunneling. When this occurs, the candle will burn straight down the center leaving a portion of unused wax and money behind.
3. Adhere to the 3-4 hour candle burn rule. Burning a candle for 3 to 4 hours will definitely give it enough time to reach a full liquid pool. This, as previously noted, is paramount the first time you burn your candle to create candle memory.
Three to four hours is also a generous amount of time to allow a fragrance to permeate within a room and to linger for some time after the flame has been extinguished.
As for prolonged use, if you were to burn your candle every day using this rule, it will last anywhere between 17 and 23 days for a candle with a burn time of up to 70 hours. This sure beats burning a candle all day and only getting a couple of days of use out of it!
4. Put a lid on it. After the candle has reached room temperature and has had an opportunity to solidify, replace the lid. Adding the lid will keep the candle free from dust, debris and an impromptu chorus of snap, crackle, pop, which mind you, will not be delivered by a trio of cereal mascots.
5. Refrain from turning your candle into a bonfire. What was once a beautiful candle with loads of potential is now contained with unsightly debris and used matches embedded within the solidified wax.
This layout does nothing but acts as a breeding ground for inciting a small fire near the candle’s flame. Not the best method for toasting marshmallows, right?
Bonus tip: One way to extend the life of a candle, is to purchase one with a generous burn time.
Burn time is the average amount of time you can expect your candle to burn during its lifetime. This information is typically found on the candle’s label or on the manufacturer's website.
Now that you are more knowledgeable of candle care as it relates to prolonging its use, is there a rule or two that you have unknowingly broken? If so, which one(s)?