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Tips Explaining How To Burn A Candle Without Wick

Tips Explaining How To Burn A Candle Without Wick

Do you want to know how to burn a candle without wick? This post is for you!

A candle is an ignitable wick placed in the wax. It lights up and burns the wax slowly when lit with a match or lighter. 

Candles come in various colors, sizes, and shapes. Some even carry scents that waft into the air as the candle burns. Apart from household use, candles also fulfill religious and aesthetic purposes. 

The candle burns as long as it has a wick. So, what do you do when your candle is out of wick? Read on to find out how.

How To Burn A Candle Without Wick

Your candle stops burning when it runs out of wick. However, you can use substitutes in place of a wick to keep your candle burning. The following materials can burn candle wax in place of wick:

  • spaghetti
  • paper towels
  • cotton
  • tightly tied newspaper
  • toothpicks
  • old mop strands
  • yarn
  • twine. 

However, they’ll not be as effective or efficient as the wick. So, you can get a new wick instead and make a candle. How do you do this?

How To Put A Wick Into The Remaining Wax

If you have candle wax lying around without a wick, you don’t have to throw them away. Instead, you can make a new candle with a new wick. Here’s how.

  • First, melt all the wax in hot water or fire, and pour it into a container
  • Leave it for 10 minutes and remove it from the hot water. You’ll notice that the wax on top has melted.
  • Get a wick and dip both sides in the wax using a stick carefully. 
  • Then, insert one end into the end of the container using the same stick or pin. Make sure the tip is out, and you are standing straight. Allow it to solidify, and you’ve got a new candle.

Types Of Candles

Candles have since evolved, and there are various types of candles today. 

Pillar candles:

Pillar candles are made of palm wax. They’re thick and can be round or square-shaped. They burn for 3–4 hours because of their sturdiness. They can have three wicks on a single one and come in varying colors and sizes, ranging from 3 inches to 16 inches tall. They don’t emit smoke and require a holder, though you might want to hang a couple of them in the dining room for that perfect romantic glow.

Tea light candles:

They’re made of soy wax or palm wax and are 38 mm long. They’re small and lightweight. People also refer to them as “tea lights” because of their use in warming food or teapots. They come mostly in white, but you can also find other colors. They’re beautiful for house or church decorations and can burn for 2 hours.

Votive candles:

Votive candles are small and either round or square-shaped. They need a holder to light them. They’re often used in churches to send prayers to God. They come in various colors and burn for 6-7 hours. They’re made of beeswax, soy wax, or paraffin.

Taper candles:

These candles are 18 inches long and 1 inch thick. They’re slender and come in different colors. They can burn for long hours and are used for candlelight dinners. However, they can’t stand on their own without the support of a candle stand. They’re made of paraffin and beeswax.

Container candles:

Container candles are waxed in a non-flammable container with a wick in the center. They’re made of paraffin or soy wax and come in various shapes, sizes, and colors. Depending on how thick they’re, they can burn for 4–5 hours. Use a container that won’t break under heat if you’re making one.

Candle pots:

These are decorative candles used around the Christmas tree. Its holder is made of terracotta or any other piece of pottery. It’s to be filled with a candle wax mixture. Its height is 26 mm, with a diameter of 60 mm, and it can burn for about 14 hours. You’re allowed to paint and decorate the body of the jar as you please.

Floating candles:

They’re small, lightweight candles made to float on water. They are made of palm wax or paraffin and come in beautiful shapes, sizes, and colors. You can use them to decorate a dinner table, homes, offices, restaurants, etc.

Cartridge candles:

Are the most economical and used for emergencies or vigils. They’re made of disposable liquid paraffin and can last for 90 hours. They come in various colors, forms, and sizes.

Birthday candles:

As the name implies, they’re used for decorating birthday cakes. They’re made of beeswax and are 100% safe. They’re about 7 inches tall and come in various shapes and colors for beauty.

Glass candles:

These are glasses made of dragon glass, otherwise known as obsidian.

Choosing The Right Candle Wick

The wick you choose for your candle is very important because it determines how well or badly the candle will burn. There are different types of wicks, and they’re of different shapes and sizes. If you choose the wrong wick for the right candle, it will be a disaster. 

The best way to choose the right wick is by testing. For example, to choose a wick for a candle:

Select the wax type you’d like to use:

Not all wicks blend well with all wax types. There are various wax types, such as soy or palm wax, beeswax, or paraffin. Waxes have pros and cons, so the type of wax you choose is very important.

Select a wick type from the wick series:

The “wick series” gives you a list of wicks and the type of wax they’ll be good with. Know that not all wicks are suitable for all wax types. Aside from the wax type, other factors such as container, fragrance oil, and the dye may also affect the type of wick used. 

If you’re combining two or more waxes, check the wax series and look for the wick compatible with the wax with the largest amount in the mix. 

Measure the diameter of the candle or container:

The diameter should be measured in inches. The measurement is important because it’ll help you decide on a single or multiple wicks. Multiple wicks are used for large containers, which are anything above 3-inches.

Choose your wick size:

You can choose three-wick sizes and try them on three different candles to see which is best. Remember that getting the right wick is good, but it’s a lot of trial and error. So while trying, have the benefits of getting it right at the back of your mind, so you don’t give up and settle for anything.

Select a candle design:

When you’ve selected your candle design, you can add other things like the fragrance oil blend, color (optional), fragrance load, container, or molds (they should all be the same). You can now form your candles and move on to the burn test.

Burn tests your wicks in your candles:

If it’s for commercial purposes, burn test the finished work to ensure it’s okay before selling it. This test should be done thoroughly, as it’s one of the most important steps.

There are various testing methods: the Industry Standard burn test, the Chaos Test, and the Normal Burn Test.

Make any necessary adjustments:

Before asserting that the candle wick is perfect for the candle, you need to be sure that the following questions are answered correctly:

  • Did you burn the candle completely?
  • Is it safe? Does it pass all the criteria in your test?
  • How much wax was consumed throughout its life? Was it much?
  • Did the candle have the right hot throw?
  • Was the candle free of soot, tunneling, or too much heat?

If the answer to all these is not yes, then you’ll need to get new sets of candles and wicks to start all over. It could also mean that no wick is a match for your candle. If you’ve tried and it’s still not working, the likely cause of this may be the fragrance oil.

So this time, make an ordinary candle and try the wicks used earlier. If it burns well, then the fragrance oil is the problem and should be reduced. If it doesn’t, then you need to find the right wick.

Types Of Wicks

Cored wicks:

These are self-supporting wicks, mostly used in votives, pillars, novelties, and containers. They’re knitted wicks that use a core to ensure the wick is standing straight while burning. Core materials used can be paper, zinc, tin, or cotton. Pre-wax the wick before use for more rigidity.

Wooden wick:

This wick is made of pure wood, semi-wood, cotton, wood combinations, and fibrous material. And it’s fast becoming a favorite. Why? It’s due to its beauty, and the crackling sound it produces as it burns. It’s available as a multi-layered, curved, single-ply, or decoratively shaped wood.

Flat wicks:

This is the most popular type of wick. They’re mostly used for standing candles, such as pillars and tapers. They’re flat-plaited wicks, made from three bundles of fiber. They burn well, and are designed to curve when burning to reduce mushrooming.

Square wicks:

They’re knitted and round in nature. They are also designed to curve into the flames when burning. This wick type is mostly used for beeswax candles, pillars, and tapers.

Specialty wicks:

These are specifically designed to meet the burning specifications of special candles, such as insect-repelling candles and oil lamps.

Tips To Make Your Candle Burn Evenly

Ensuring that your candle is burning evenly is important. Otherwise, the wax will start melting in an irregular pattern, causing the flickering flames to produce dark smoke stains. 

Pillars and taper candles will drip excess and finish faster if you don’t position them evenly. So, how do you position your candles to burn evenly? Try the steps below. 

1: Place the candle on an even and stable surface:

Ensure the candle is sitting on an even surface that’s fire resistant. Placing a candle on an uneven surface and allowing the wax to drip on a flammable material may lead to fire hazard.  

When placed on an even surface, candles burn neatly. You won’t witness dark smoke stains caused by the flickering flame. However, this is common in candles placed on an uneven surface.

2: Light candles with long matches:

An ideal way to light a candle is to use long matches or lighter. If you don’t have long matches or lighter, get a long stick and light it. Then use the stick to light the candle. 

Blow the matches or stick away from the candle. And ensure particles from the matches or stick don’t get into the candle. If you notice any, turn the candle off and remove them. 

Note that the pieces of matches inside the wax may cause it to melt in an irregular pattern, causing the candle to finish quickly or produce dark smoke stain. 

3: Place your candles in a breeze-free area:

Place your candle in a non-breezy area. In other words, place it away from things like fans, air conditioners, windows, and passersby, including any source of moving air.

Besides the fact that it will burn faster, placing candles where there is moving air is risky. The breeze could blow your curtain or a piece of paper (other flammable material) directly into the candle. 

4: Cut the wick to size before lighting the candle:

Trimming the wick to size should be the first step to take. The wick will cut to size on its own when you light it. However, this isn’t the best thing to do.

You need to cut the wick to around 1/8 to 1/4 inch. This way, it will burn neatly and not produce dark smoke that causes stains. 

A Handy Tip: Endeavor to trim the wick of the candles before every use. This way, your candle will burn neatly and produce a stable flame. 


We have explained how to burn a candle without wick, and provided other information about candles.

When your candle’s wick runs out, it will stop burning. However, you can use some materials in place of a wick to keep your candle burning.

Materials like spaghetti, cotton, toothpicks, paper towels, and old mop strands are viable alternatives to consider if your candle runs out of wick.

Candles come in different sizes and colors, and you can make them. We’ve provided a procedure in this article.

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