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Choosing the correct size wick for container candles is a crucial step in ensuring successful and safe candle-making. I believe the wick plays THE most role in determining how well the candle burns, how little smoke is emitted and whether it produces a steady flame. Selecting the right wick size involves considering various factors such as the container size, type of wax, and fragrance additives, including fragrance oil. You can have great fragrance oil, super wax but if the wick isn’t correct it will fail.

Grab your ruler! the container diameter is where you start your candle making journey. Choosing the right wick for your container is where it all begins. If the wick is too small, it may not generate enough heat to melt the wax to the edges of the container, leading to tunnelling. On the other hand, a wick that is too large might create too much heat leading to shorter burn times.

To determine the appropriate wick size, a good supplier should provide guidelines or charts that correlate container size with the recommended wick diameter. These charts take into account the specific characteristics of the wax being used. For instance, a soy wax candle will require a different wick size than a paraffin wax candle of the same diameter. Start by measuring the diameter of your container.

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The type of wax used in the candle also influences wick selection. Different waxes have distinct burning characteristics, such as melt pool temperature and viscosity. Beeswax, soy wax, paraffin wax, and palm wax each have unique properties that affect how they interact with wicks. Therefore, it’s essential to choose a wick that complements the specific wax formulation to optimise burn performance.

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Additionally, if the candle contains a lot of colour, mica or other additives, it can affect the burning behaviour. Some fragrance oils with a thick viscosity like aromatherapy oils may require a larger wick to compensate for the additional energy needed to release the scent. It is advisable to test candles with different fragrances and wick sizes to find the right balance between fragrance throw and a clean burn.

Ultimately, achieving the perfect wick size for container candles involves a great deal of experimentation and testing. Conducting burn tests with various wick sizes and noting the performance of each can help fine-tune the selection process. It’s essential to monitor factors like burn rate, flame height, and the size of the wax pool. Below is just one of the burn tests you can conduct- choose a selection of wicks (clearly document a map of the wick plan on a separate piece of paper) put your wick in place and fill a shallow baking tray with wax. Light them all at the same time for 2+ hours then extinguish and measure the melt pool of that wick type.

There are so many wicks on the market it is easy to become confused – LX, ECO, CL, TCR, Stabilo, ECO, Woodwicks, Cotton wicks, TG, Tube wick and WEDO to name a few!!! 

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Join my Candle Making Made Easy beginners candle making today and start making great candles that smell great and burn cleanly to the end.

Hey candle lovers! 

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