How To Make A Candle Wick At Home and What Wicks To Use
Wicking your candle is one of the most important parts of candle making, but is also thought to be the most difficult. You may have picked the best type of wax, fragrance, and dye, however, if the incorrect wick is selected your candle will not burn properly.
When choosing candle wicks, you should strive to achieve:
· Consistent flame size
· Minimal or no blooming (carbon deposits)
· Consistent moderate container temperature
· Well-formed wax pool with no dripping
Where do I start?
So now you know what to look for in your wick, where do you start? Below are some highlights of our frequently used wicks:
LX Series Wick- a solid flat braided wick made from pure ring spun cotton yarn. Further stabilised with rigid structure threads for easy wax pouring. Designed to improve the burning of scented and coloured container, votive and pillar candles, the LX Series offers a reduced afterglow, smoke, and soot. This series is very popular for paraffin waxes.
TRC Series Wick- a flat braided wick, cored, with an exterior jacket that provides a high level of stiffness, made from pure long strand ring-spun cotton and paper. Designed for Soy and vegetable wax, it ensures an excellent burn profile with vegetable-based waxes, such as soy wax and rapeseed wax. The TCR series offers a reduced afterglow, smoke, and soot.
Wedo Eco Wick- similar to the LX series, it is also a flat, coreless wick. The wick is made of pure cotton and thin paper filaments interlaced for a more stable and consistent burn; it consists of specially treated paper threads providing controlled curling of the wick. Suitable for both paraffin and vegetable waxes, this wick is robust enough to deal with high concentrations of perfume and dye.
Wood Wicks- an innovative alternative to traditional cotton wicks. Not only do wood wicks burn cleanly and disperse fragrance excellently, they also generate subtle crackle sounds, creating a captivating acoustic ambiance. Our wood wicks are made from Maple and work well with most candle waxes.
What size should my wick be?
So you’ve chosen what wick will work well with your candle, but now you’re given size options and you don’t know what to choose? Don’t worry you can find the recommended container to wick size the by clicking on your chosen wick product page!
Candle 1 is under wicked, meaning the wick is too small for the container. What is happening to this candle is known as tunnelling. Because this wick is too small, the flame is not generating enough heat. This means the wax around the edge of the container is not melting, the scent will not be properly dispersed, and the candle will burn down a 'tunnel' to the bottom of the candle. The wick may also distinguish itself before the candle has fully melted.
Candle 3 is over wicked, meaning the wick is too large for the container. It is obvious when a candle is over wicked at first glance because the flame will be too large and will regularly flicker. The melt pool is well over 2 cm deep. The end of the wick is also 'mushrooming.' This is because the wick is producing excess carbon which causes the carbon to drop off into the melt pool, this will collect throughout the burn period. An over wicked candle will burn down very quickly and causes the scent to be dispersed even quicker. The container may also become very hot and could potentially cause the container to crack!
Candle 2 is wicked correctly. The flame is an appropriate size and doesn't flicker. The melt pool extends to the edge of the container. The wick has no carbon build-up. The melt pool is just over 1 cm deep... This candle will burn cleanly, last much longer, disperse fragrance gently... Perfect!
Making Your Own Candle Wick
You may choose to make your own candle wick which can be beneficial, making your own gives you the flexibility to make custom wicks to fit specialty candles in varying sizes. Just follow these steps to create your own custom homemade wicks.
- Undyed cotton twine
- Tongs (or anything you can use to pull the wicks out of the warm wax)
- Wick Sustainers (optional)
- 2 tablespoons of salt
- 4 tablespoons of boric acid powder
- 1.5 cups of warm water
- A wax melter or a pan inside a pan
- Candle Wax
Step 1: Prepare your wick
When making your homemade wick you need to decide how thick and long you want it to be. Small candles only need single wicks while medium candles require a wick made from three strands of twine braided together.
For a single wick, measure and cut the twine to be three inches longer than the height of your candle. If you plan to braid your wick, cut three equal lengths of twine that are four inches longer than the height of the candle the wick will be used for.
Step 2: Soak the twine in the solution
Add the salt and boric acid powder to your warm water stirring the solution until everything has dissolved. Then soak the lengths of twine in the solution for at least eight hours or up to 24 hours.
Step 3: Drying your wicks
After soaking for 24 hours remove your twine from the solution and hang or drape the wicks where they can dry (up to 48 hours).
You may see some small white crystals will form on the wicks as they dry - these are harmless and can easily be brushed off.
Step 4: Melt the wax
Add your chosen wax to the double boiler or heating pot and melt your wax whilst stirring gently.
You'll need enough to cover your strings/braid.
Step 5: Tip the treated twine
Carefully soak the twine in the wax for about a minute coating as much of the twin as possible. (If you use tongs you can completely submerge the tine whilst protecting your fingers.)
Step 5: Dry the wicks
Remove the wick from the wax (using tongs if you fully submerged the twine) and hang to dry.
TIP: As the wax begins to cool and before it hardens, gently straighten the wick so it is completely straight when the wick is completely dry.
Step 6: Repeat (Optional)
If you would like a thicker coating of wax repeat steps 4 to 5.
Note: The twine doesn't really "absorb" the wax, therefore, repeating the step only thickens the wick with wax.
Step 7: Adding wick sustainers (Optional)
If you wish to add a wick sustainer to the bottom of your wick, simply thread the wick through the hole and crimp using pliers to secure the tab to the wick.
Store the finished wicks in a cool, dry place. Congratulations you have made your very own wick!
Can I make a wick without using Boric Acid?
Soaking the twine in a solution of water, salt, and boric acid strengthens the wick and helps it to burn steadily. You can make wicks without this solution, but they will burn faster and can cause your candle wax to melt unevenly.
New To Candle Making?
You've come to the right place! Follow our step by step guide to candle making here.
Feel free to leave a comment or question below with your experiences in achieving the perfect candle scent throw.