Candles are basically one of life’s simple and affordable luxuries – something we all need and deserve in our lives. We want every scented moment to be special for you so hopefully our answers to your questions will enhance your burning experience.
How do I choose a candle? What to look for when buying candles?
- Wax type - Candles can be made from a variety waxes, all of which have different properties which will affect overall performance
- Wick type - Cotton wicks tend not to soot as much as other wick materials
- Fragrance - Fragrance is extremely personal. The best advice to give is to choose a scent that compliments your space, the mood you would like to create, and something you know you will like! Choose something that resonates with you and gives you pleasure
- Space - Where do you plan to burn the candle? The size of space is important. If it's a large area or has high ceilings you may need a larger candle for maximum fragrance throw. For a small space like a bathroom a small votive, tin or jar should be sufficient. The fragrance strength is also important with space, for example you may want a subtle approach in a small study so chose a softer fragrance
- Candle Design - Like fragrance, this is very much a personal choice. Candles are not only a way to fragrance your home but they can also decorate your space. Go for something that sits with your home decor and style
Why should I burn a candle?
We know you expect us to be a tad biased when it comes to the benefits of burning candles, but honestly, there are lots of (independent!) studies out there that show candles are great for the mind, home & soul! Candles definitely have the ‘X-Factor’ and we’re not just talking about the illumination factor. There are so many reasons why you should burn a candle - from chilling out to adorning the home, they are an affordable and life enriching addition to any space and lifestyle.
Not persuaded? Take a look at this you will soon be a candle convert
How many hours burn time do I get from a candle?
There are numerous factors that will affect a candle’s burn time including wax type, number of wicks, burning environment, shape and size of vessel. As an approximate guide smaller scented candles like a single wick votive will burn at a rate of 7 to 9 hours per ounce/28 grams of wax. Larger multi-wick scented candles will average 5 to 7 hours for each ounce. Here’s a few examples of the burn times you can expect from Apsley Candles. Our smallest Apsley and Company duo wick 400g Luxury Candles Australia will burn for up to 60 hours. Our largest 4 wick 2.4kg Luxury Candle will burn for up to 240 hours. Our single wick 220g Crisp White Linen Abode Aroma crystal candles will give you around 30 hours of burning pleasure.
Which candle wax is best?
Unfortunately, we can’t really answer that as each wax type has its own properties which will affect factors like fragrance throw, burn time and burn quality. Take a look at our blog ‘The Wax Facts’ for an overview of each types’ pros and cons. The wax you go for is ultimately down to personal preference and ethical priorities. We produce our fragranced candles with the utmost care possible, ensuring we give you only the finest quality products crafted in the most sustainable of ways. We use a premium vegan blend of botanical soy and food grade wax for our scented candles. This formulation allows us to have a generous amount of fragrance throughout the entire candle and a longer lasting burn time, ensuring you are getting the absolute best during your candle burning experience.
Why is my candle tunnelling? What am I doing wrong?
The first burn is the most important. Wax has a burning memory. When lit a candle’s wax pool will only extend to the same diameter it reached on the previous burn. To avoid tunnelling, on that first burn ensure you light all the wicks and allow the wax pool to reach the edges of the container to enable an even burn when next lighting it. If you don’t do this the candle will tunnel and you will be left with unused wax around the circumference of the vessel, shortening the life of your candle.
Why is my flame flickering?
- The wick is too long - ideally you should trim your wick to 3/4 inch (0.6cm) before every burn. Our Candle Accessory Set includes a wick trimmer making this an easy job. During a burn you may need to extinguish the flame and re-trim the wick (ensuring the wick and candle has cooled before doing so)
- The candle is in a drafty area - drafts blow the candle flame making it flicker and give off soot
- The candle has been burning for too long (See ‘How do I know how long to burn a candle for? ’)
- The container needs a clean - soot from previous burns can build up on the vessel, fall into the wax and heat up.
- The wick needs to be re-centred - once you've put your candle out and the wax is still liquid re-centre the wick ready for the next burn. To do this we recommend you use a Wick Dipper, available in our Candle Accessory Set
What is candle soot/smoke?
- Small amounts of soot/smoke are a natural part of the burning process. The wax is the fuel, the wick is the fuel-delivery system
- During the burn the melted wax is drawn up through the wick, fuelling the chemical reaction to keep the flame alive
- The chemical reaction involves the combustion of the wax's carbon with the air's oxygen making carbon dioxide and water vapour (steam)
- Unburned particles of carbon released when the hydrocarbon chain of candle wax breaks down. When the candle is lit, most of the carbon gets burned to carbon dioxide, but some escapes.
What causes a candle to soot?
- It can be caused by too much fragrance or other additives in the wax affecting the candle's combustion
- A flickering flame - flickering affects the amount of wax being used. When there's too much wax for the wick/flame to consume combustion of the carbon with the oxygen is incomplete leading to soot
- Lack of air flow - sooting tends to increase when the candle starts to near the bottom of the jar. The closer to the base, the less oxygen is available to the flame causing it to change in size, reducing the liquid wax's flow up the wick and causing it to soot
- Wick size - the chemical reaction is affected by the wick size, whether that be too big or too small, and too much carbon is produced
- Wick clogging - too many additives in the wick can cause it to clog, preventing wax flow. This causes it to mushroom and smoke
- Wick type - opt for cotton wicks rather than zinc-core wicks. Cotton does not tend to soot
How do I get the most out of my candle
We have a great to help you with this. ‘For the love of candles – how to get the most out of your candle’ offers lots of advice on candle care including wick maintenance, where to put a candle, how to extinguish a flame…
Can I make a candle smell any stronger?
You absolutely can, and guess what, we have an short blog on how to do just that ‘Top tips to make your candle smell stronger’ Scent throw is helped with lots factors like length of burn time, size of candle & the room you’re burning it in, candle placement, candle care & fragrance fatigue (yes, it’s a thing – your nose will become desensitised to fragrances over time)
My candle glass is marked – can I clean it?
Soot can build up on the vessel, which spoils both the appearance and performance of your candle. Simply rub the black stains with a wet cotton pad and warm soapy water. Ensure the surface is totally dry before lighting your candle
What do I do if I spill the wax?
To remove wax from fabrics or carpeting, let any spilled wax solidify so that when it hardens it can easily be removed in pieces. Place a bag of ice cubes in a plastic bag on top of the wax to harden it, then use a spoon or butter knife to scrape off the excess wax. To remove any wax residue left behind, spread a damp cloth (some recommend a brown paper bag) over the wax stain then use an iron on low heat on the cloth/bag. The iron against the damp cloth will create steam which will suck the wax right into the cloth.
As you can see, there are so many questions and just not enough space to answer them in. If your questions haven’t been answered above, drop us an email we’ll be only too happy to help! We wish you many hours of happy burning!