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How to get the best out of your candle and how to prevent tunnelling.

So you've bought another candle, so your other candles won't be lonely? Well, let's be honest, you can never have too many candles can you?

How can you get the very best out of your new purchase?

We have all at some point I imagine, experienced a candle 'tunnelling'. This is where the wax burns unevenly, creating a tunnel-like hole in the centre while leaving substantial wax residues on the sides of the vessel.

This not only wastes wax but also reduces the candle's overall burn time, leading to sadness and frustration.

Before I started making candles, I thought this happened because of the candle being made incorrectly. Now while this can be the case, for example if the wick is incorrect for the candle, the issue can be caused by user error.

'Tunnelling often results from improper burning practices'.

A very common mistake is extinguishing the candle before the entire surface has melted, leading to a memory ring that dictates future burns to follow the same narrow path. This is particularly problematic with larger candles, where achieving a full melt pool can take several hours. Additionally, drafts and uneven surfaces can exacerbate the issue, causing the flame to flicker and burn unevenly.

To prevent your new candle from tunnelling, try following this method:

  • On the first burn, allow enough time for the candle to form a melted wax pool that reaches the sides of the candles vessel. (Or as near as possible). Please be aware that for larger candles this can be a few hours.

  • Before each new burn, trim your wick to about 5mm. The trick here is to get rid of the dead carbon build up. (If you don't have wick trimmers, you can use your fingertips to pinch of the carbon build up).

  • Employing candle accessories, such as wick trimmers, can also contribute to a more consistent burn, ensuring that your candles provide maximum enjoyment and longevity.

  • If you do have a candle that has tunnelled, you can wrap a bit of foil around the top of the candle in a chimney shape to encourage the wax on the sides of the candle to melt down.

  • Try and burn your candle for sufficient periods during each use, ideally allowing the wax to melt evenly across the surface.

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