A candle is a simple yet fascinating household staple. It lights up the mood with its mesmerizing flickering, and the room too, literally during a power outage.
Not forgetting how heavenly they smell, candles are excellent air fresheners. Some of their fragrances, while tantalizing our olfactory senses, are also therapeutic for the mind and soul.
But rarely do you think about how to burn a candle. Not until you unbox a gift of double-wicked candles, and you are left wondering whether there’s a right way to do it.
Burning two wick candles is still beyond many people’s scope of experience, and it always leaves them with the question: Do you light both wicks on a candle? Yes, you light both wicks on a candle for an enhanced glow and an even burn.
But how do you burn a two wick candle? To burn a two wick candle properly, trim both wicks and light at the same time (or light one and tip the candle to spread the flame). Ensure the candle is placed in a safe location. Burn the candle until the wax melts the circumference of the candle evenly the first time. Extinguish safely.
If you’ve been wary about burning two wick candles, you are in the right place. This article will be of immense help as it provides the guidelines on how to burn two wick candles efficiently and safely.
Why Make Two Wick Candles?
Contrary to classic candle making, modern candle makers now often put two wicks instead of the traditional single wick for candles. Why?
Candles have two wicks to double up on the brightness, heat, and scent throw (for scented versions). So you have one candle doing the work of two. Some candles are made too large, such that the intensity of a single wick is not sufficient enough to keep it burning effectively or successfully. Two wicks solves that problem.
In addition, two wick candles burn more efficiently and give you value for your money. The wicks generate ample heat that distributes as far as the circumference goes for a wider melt pool. The candle melts entirely to the sides. It diminishes uniformly to the very bottom of the jar, leaving no room for wastage.
As cool as it sounds, candles will always be a fire hazard. Now, you might be wondering whether a dual wick candle doubles up that risk since there’s now two flames.
The truth is even the tiniest spark can light a massive fire. It doesn’t matter whether a candle is single or double wicked, tall or short, pillar or jar. All candles are potential fire hazards and must be burnt with care.
That said, if you would like to enjoy your new candle (taking safety precautions), let’s explain how to burn two wick candles the right way.
How To Burn Two Wick Candles – Step By Step
Burning a dual-wicked candle is not so far different from burning a single wicked candle. And if you already know how to do the latter right, then two wick candles will be a walkover.
But if you’re intrigued about burning double or single wicked candles the right way, these are the 6 easy steps to follow:
Step 1: Start by giving the two wicks a trim.
The very first thing to do once you unwrap a twin-wick candle from its packaging is to trim the wicks. Using a sharp trimming tool like a small pair of sharp scissors, shears, or even a nail clipper, snip off a quarter or eighth of the wicks’ tips.
When the wicks are too long, they cannot draw the liquid wax all the way up to the top. Consequently, they char and release soot. Trimming your wicks will yield a brighter, stable, and cleaner flame.
This practice is not a one-time thing and should be repeated with every burn. You can buy a dedicated wick trimmer for the job. Opt for a fancy one in a beautiful color that will be conveniently placed as a reminder to trim your wicks and be within easy reach when needed if you like.
Do not forget to carefully discard these trimmed tips and not let them fall on top of the candle. They can easily catch fire, causing a dangerous candle.
Step 2: Choose a spot.
You want to avoid unnecessary and avoidable movement of the flame or the candle as a whole after lighting it. Therefore, you must choose or create a cozy and comfortable space for you that is also suitable for the candle.
When the flame sways around a lot, it deters the wax from being consumed evenly. Also, you’ll get unsightly soot stains on your jar. It is best to avoid placing candles near open windows or near something like a fan.
Physically switching the position of the candles when at full melt pool is also highly discouraged. The disturbance might cause one or both wicks to be engulfed by the melted wax, extinguishing instantly.
Step 3: Light the wicks.
After trimming the wicks and stationing your jar, you can now ignite them. These candles are created with an extra wick precisely so you can light both of them at the same time.
When one wick is left unlit, it throws the flame of the lit wick off of position, causing uneven melting of the wax and tunneling on one side of the candle. The candle diameter will also be too big a threshold for one wick resulting in wick drowning.
For that reason, you should always light up both wicks to burn simultaneously and get the maximum benefit from your two wick candles.
Igniting both wicks without a slight brush with the tip of the first flame is tricky. Many beginners often find themselves burnt by the first flame as they attempt to light the second wick.
This is particularly true when the wax is far below the brim of the container. To get around this, simply light one wick and tip the jar such that the flame elongates in shape and ignites the twin wick.
Step 4: Set the pace for the candle.
Once your wicks are lit, allow ample time candle to burn, allowing for the wax to melt all the way across the candle diameter. This is one of the most critical steps for an initial burn as it stores this memory for the subsequent burning of your candle.
Therefore, if you are in a hurry, you better not light them at all and wait for when you are available to watch over the candle. You have to ensure that the wax melts all the way to the container’s edges before taking the wicks out.
Candles have some kind of memory from the first burn. So, once you fail to melt the wax across the candle, it starts to tunnel in the middle where the initial melt pool reached.
It keeps getting lower and lower while the wax on the walls stays intact. In the end, you have a lot of unutilized candle wax that’s technically useless. Ensuring the melt pool is from edge to edge the very first time is the only way to burn your candle efficiently and that means wholly.
If you’ve done this step before with a single wick candle and it took hours, you’ll be delighted to know it melts much faster with two wick candles. Subsequent burns do not have to take that long though.
Step 5: Enjoy your candle (but for no more than four hours).
As much as you enjoy the amplified ambiance of the two wick candles and indulging in scents, there’s a limit to how long it should last. Typically, the candle should not exceed four hours of burning.
When you burn your candle beyond the stipulated time frame, it starts to accumulate carbon around the wicks. The wicks mushroom, the flames grow larger, become vigorous, and produce a lot of smoke. The last thing you want is two uncontrollable candle flames close together.
Step 6: Extinguish the candle appropriately.
Blowing a candle is the most natural thing to do to put it out. You’ve probably done it for ages, maybe even still do it.
But sometimes, the usual things we do are actually not the right way to do them.
For one, you can send ashy particles and hot melt wax flying on the surrounding surface; that’s clean-up time you probably hadn’t scheduled for. Also, the act of blowing doesn’t entirely extinguish the wicks. It leaves them smoldering for a while, bellowing unpleasant smoke. That’s not the way to end a blissful, relaxing aromatic session.
The wicks might also be blown into a bent position and get stuck in the candle after the melt pool has cooled.
To avoid any such events, you can invest in a candle wick dipper or snuffer. These accessories are not just for displaying style and sophistication to your circle, as most people think (though we must admit they are indeed elegant tools to flaunt). They are designed to put out the wicks in an easy, smokeless, and dignified manner.
If your candle jar or tin came with a lid, you could use that as well to cover the two-wick candle. It cuts out the oxygen supply to the wicks, puts out the two flames, and contains any smoke.
That’s how to burn two wick candles and get the most out of them. Remember, when you utilize your candle to less than an inch of wax, it is time to get a replacement.
Double wicks generate a lot of heat. So burning such a candle gets the container super hot and you could accidentally burn your hands or char the surface beneath.
That said, always ensure the two wick candles, like any other candle, are burning from a heat-resistant top and away from anything flammable in the vicinity like curtains, books, oil etc.