Proper care is essential to a clean burning candle. Many problems can be avoided, once you know how. We offer the following suggestions to help you get the most from your candles and prevent many of the most common causes of poor candle performance.
1. Trim your wick to ¼" or less before each time you burn your candle. This practice is crucial to proper candle performance and a clean burn. If your wick becomes too long, the candle can not consume all of the wax being fed to the flame and the result is smoke. Contrary to what many manufacturers of soy and palm wax candles would like you to believe, the fact is there is no such thing as a smoke/soot/care free candle. We can't say it enough. Trim your wicks.
2. Protect your candle from drafts. Drafty conditions cause incomplete and uneven combustion. Brief puffs of smoke can result. Drafts can also cause the flame to unevenly melt the side walls of your candle which frequently ruins a perfectly good pillar candle. If the candle flame is dancing, the candles life is being shortened. This is the most common cause of blowouts, where your candles spills out all over its candle holder. You can prevent this problem by using a glass hurricane. If you cannot find or afford one and must burn candles in a draft, be sure to turn them occasionally to ensure even heating.
3. Remove foreign matter from the wax pool. Items such as match heads, bits of wick, moths and other foreign matter along with becoming an unsightly mess can become secondary wicks and create an inferno when you least expect it, often ruining a perfectly good candle or worse.
4. Straighten your wicks. Many people don't realize that braided cotton wicks tend to curl as they get hot. The wick will curl and lean to one side as the candle burns and will eventually cause uneven heating of the candle walls. To prevent this problem, after extinguishing your candle and before the wax pool solidifies, take a tooth pick or other similar item and gently nudge the wick back to the center of the wax pool. This will set up your candle for it's next use and prolong it's lifespan.
5. Always use a non flammable candle holder. Most candles contain fragrance oils and color dyes which when placed on bare counter tops and furniture can bleed color and stain. Using a holder protects your furniture and counters from staining and also helps clean up of minor wax spills.
6. When extinguishing, always snuff your candle. Many candles will continue to smolder when blown out. It is important to make sure your candle is extinguished completely for two reasons. One, a smoldering candle has the potential under rare circumstances to re-light itself. Two, the smoke that comes from a smoldering candle contains unburned particulates that can build up on surfaces in your home. This can be avoided by gently pinching the wick with moist fingers. Snuffing also prevents the possibility of blowing molten wax all over the place.
7. PLEASE use common sense when burning candles. We could list about 500 things you shouldn't do when burning candles, most of them are matters of common sense and safety. Don't ever leave a burning candle unattended. Don't burn your candles near curtains, blankets, shower curtains, lace lingerie, Christmas trees, aerosol sprays of any kind including hair spray, or anything else that could possibly catch fire, including children, pets, girlfriends, sleeping bags, rocket fuel, gasoline, kerosene, lacquer thinner, etc, etc.
FAQ... Here are a few answers to some commonly asked questions: Do your candles put out toxic emissions when they burn? No. According to The National Candle Association, many of the world's finest wick manufacturers and the EPA who have all conducted extensive research on the subject of candle combustion along with extensive laboratory test burning and analysis of the emissions produced by all types of candles, it has been documented that a well made candle when burning properly emits primarily two by products of combustion. Water vapor and carbon dioxide. The same two things that you emit every time you exhale. It is important that the consumer understand the importance of proper combustion. In other words, keep your wick trimmed.
What causes a candle to smoke? The most common cause of smoke in a properly formulated candle is an untrimmed wick or drafty conditions. If the wick is too long, the flame cannot consume all of the wax being fed to it. Much like tossing green leaves on a fire, the result is smoke. You should always trim your candle wick to ¼" or less before lighting. If your candle's flame is tall and begins to smoke, extinguish it, let it cool and trim the wick. Drafts can cause brief puffs of black smoke which is primarily pure carbon. Other factors can include too much scent or too much oil in the candle, excessive amounts of low quality fragrance oil, fragrance which is not designed for candle applications, including some essential oils and soap fragrances, or a wick which is not properly sized for the wax formula. If you have trimmed your wick and removed your candle from drafty conditions and the candle still excessively smokes we suggest you immediately extinguish it and throw it away.
What causes candles to spill out onto the holder? Many times this problem is easily avoided with proper care. Always protect your candle from drafts and wind. The candle flame should be still when burning. If the flame is dancing around it is unevenly heating the side walls. If this is allowed to continue the side wall will break down and "blow out" the side often times ruining a perfectly good candle. We recommend using a hurricane to protect your candle while burning. If you cannot find one, be sure to turn your candle every so often to prevent uneven heating. We also recommend that you limit the amount of time your candle is allowed to burn. A good rule to go by is never burn your candle more than 1 hour per inch in diameter. If your candle is 3 inch in diameter, don't burn it more than three hours at a time. Another very important habit to get in to is straightening your wick when you extinguish your candle. Most candle wicks are made from cotton and become soft and bendable when hot. They will tend to bend to one side, often positioning themselves off center. After extinguishing your candle, take a toothpick and gently center and straighten your wick while the wax pool is still warm. This will ensure that your candle is ready to burn at it's next lighting and will give you many added hours of enjoyment.
Do I have to use a candle holder? We HIGHLY recommend that you always use a non flammable candle holder, even when not burning your candles. Almost all candles contain fragrance oils and color dyes which when placed on furniture, counter tops or other unprotected surfaces can bleed or leave marks. The holder not only enhances your candle display it also helps protect from any wax which might spill during burning. Let us know what you come up with, we love to hear from our customers.
How is soy wax made? After soy beans are harvested, they're cleaned, cracked, de-hulled & rolled into flakes. The oil is extracted from the flakes & hydrogenated. This process converts some of the fatty acids in the oil from unsaturated to saturated & changes the melting point of the oil making it solid at room temperature.
What happens to the leftover bean husks? They are commonly used as animal feed. (Talk about a low waste & efficient process!)
What are the benefits of choosing soy candles over paraffin candles? ~Soy wax is easy to clean up if there’s a spill. (Warm water & soap will do just fine!) ~Soy wax is sustainable. Soybeans are grown right here in the USA. ~Soy wax is biodegradable which makes soy candles an eco-friendly alternative to paraffin candles. Eco-friendly products are cool!