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Key Terms for Candle Makers

Air Bubbles or Wet Spots 

Air bubbles also known as wet spots occur in a candle when the wax cools fast and shrinks. When the wax shrinks it doesn’t fully stick to the container and creates holes. To avoid the formation of air bubbles, you can warm up your container before adding the wax. 

Another option is that you allow the candles to cool at a higher temperature. If you choose to pour the wax slowly into the candle container at a higher temperature you are more likely to avoid creating air bubbles. Tapping the container when the wax has not yet cooled down can help eliminate air bubbles. 

Burn Pool

A burn pool is the collection of hot melted wax in the candle around the wix. This melted wax occurs when you light the candle. The wax goes up the candle wick and is destroyed by the flame. 

A burn pool that is too small for the candle causes the candle to tunnel and melt unevenly. When the candle melts unevenly it reduces the amount of burn time. Unevening melting occurs when either your wax is too hard or your wick is too small.

 A burn pool that covers the whole candle is efficiently burning. 

Cracks in the Candle 

Cracks can form in a candle when it cools down too quickly. The cracks occur on the exterior of the candle. A solution to this issue is to reheat the candle using a hair dryer. An alternative option is to submerge the candle in hot water. 

Some people purposely choose for their candles to have cracks for aesthetic purposes. If you would like cracks in your candles you can simply cool your candle at a lower temperature using your fridge or freezer. 

Drowning Wick

Drowning wicks are when the wicks cannot effectively burn. It occurs when there is too much candle dye or fragrance in the wax. In addition, it can occur if the wick is too small.

The solution for a drowning wick is simple: add less dye or fragrance or using a larger wick. 

Flickering/Sputtering Flame 

A flickering flame occurs when there is air in the wick or the wax. To ensure this doesn’t happen make sure the wax is not contaminated by any other substances and that there is no air in the wick when it is waxed. 

Flame too Big or too Small 

If the flame is too big or too small it is directly related to the size of the wick. A flame that is too big indicates the wick is too big. If the flame is too small then the wick is too small. 

Mushrooming Wick

A mushrooming wick happens when there’s an excessive amount of wax fuel for the wick to combust. The mushrooming is a build up of particles that cannot burn. The particles that are unable to be burned off lead to carbon accumulating on the wick. 

A mushroom wick can occur under a couple of circumstances. When the wick is too large for the candle and more wax is sent to the flame than it can tolerate to burn. Another scenario is when the wrong type of wick is used for the type of wax used. 

Re-pour Not Blending

A re-pour that doesn’t blend occurs because you have poured the wax into the container at a different pouring temperature than you did the first time round. Wax must be poured in at a consistent temperature and the original poured wax must not have set. If you cannot get them to blend together, you can use a hair dryer to melt and blend the wax.

Smoking Candle Flame

A smoking candle flame occurs under multiple circumstances: if the candle has been made with too much fragrance and dye put in the wax creating a chemical combustion and if the wick of the candle is too big.

Sink Hole 

When the wax of a candle cools down it shrinks in size and this can lead to sink holes forming. To avoid this from happening you can pour the wax into a warmed up container or mould. If a sink hole occurs you will have to reheat wax and repour it into the hole as the candle begins to harden.