Candle Maintenance 101

Candle Maintenance 101


If, when you have lit your candle, you notice the flame is flickering and there's a wisp of black smoke, it's likely that the wick is a little too long.

If your candle wick is too long, the flame begins to burn the wick itself, rather than the wax and this creates excess smoke.

Burned Candle Glass

* an example of what happens if the wick is too long! Excess wick material is burned by the flame, creating a black soot around the inside of your candle glass. Trim your wicks!

The remedy is simple. Blow out your candle gently, allow it to cool completely and the wax to dry across the top. Take a wick trimmer or a pair of good quality scissors, proceed to trim the wick to around 1/4 inch or 1cm above the wax. Enough for you to re-light but not enough for the wick to burn, before it's started melting the wax.

Generally, our Illumigi candle wicks are self trimming and do not require much maintenance. However, from time to time, it's best to ensure your candle wick is trimmed to the above lengths before or after each use.


We recommend that you periodically clean the top of your candle, when it is cool and dry. Do not attempt to clean your candle when it is in use, the small flame gives off EXTREME heat. 

There should be very little debris around your candle wick, when the candle is in use. Perhaps a little bit of debris from the wick but certainly nothing else.

Please ensure the wax is relatively clean before use.


Please read the instructions on the relevant product page or in the booklet, contained within each package. 

It is recommended that, in general, candles are burned for no longer than 4 consecutive hours. This is due to the extremely high temperatures they reach and the volume of wax burned per hour of use.

Tealights are recommended to be burned for between 2 and 4 hours. Again, please ensure you read any documentation included with your order.


Note: This is for soy wax candles using eco soy wax in the UK. There are many different types of wax and each has different requirements. Please confirm with the retailer used when purchasing your item.

If you notice that your candle has a large amount of wax around the inside of the container, it's possible that you have not burned the candle for long enough or perhaps the first time you lit your candle, you only allowed it to burn for a few minutes.

The first burn is very important. Candle wax has memory, believe it or not. So, to get the most out of your scented candle, it's important to ensure that your first burn uses the maximum recommended burn time and melts as much of the wax around the wick as possible. As the wax begins to melt, it creates a melt pool. Ideally, you want this pool to reach the entire diameter of the candle. This would mean you are burning the most amount of fragrance oil per inch. 

Some candles, like ours at Illumigi, are handmade. This means our wicks are not always completely central (sorry! We try but everything is done by hand and our wicks are sometimes 1mm slightly out). So, your melt pool might not always reach the full extent of the candle but don't worry, the longer the candle burns, the more heat is generated within the container. As our candles are made from natural, eco soy wax, the melting temperature is relatively low, so, after a few more uses, the majority of the remaining wax will melt away and release even more luscious scent in to your home.


If you notice that your candle smells of burning or there's a slight hint of chemical scent, don't panic. 

This could simply be a case of your wick being too long. Sometimes, if a candle wick is longer than 1/4 inch (approx 1cm), you will be burning the wick instead of the fragrance filled wax. 

In these instances, it may be best to extinguish your candle and trim the wick to 1/4 inch, before re-lighting. Allow the chemical smell 10 minutes or so to disperse and then you should start to smell the fragrance oil.

Remember, it can take up to 1 hour for your candle to begin fully burning. You really want to see the top of the candle has melted in to a wide wax pool, almost the width of the entire container. This means the maximum amount of fragrance oil and wax are being burned. The chemical or burning scent should be gone by then and your room will be filled with the smell of beautiful and rich fragrance aromas.


Note: This is for soy wax candles using eco soy wax in the UK. There are many different types of wax and each has different requirements. Please confirm with the retailer used when purchasing your item.

For our natural, eco soy wax candles at Illumigi, if there is a little residue left on the container, you can use some warm water, a little soap and a cleaning cloth to wipe away any excess. Our natural wax candles have a very low melting point (around 40 degrees), so warm water and soap will gently remove any excess wax.

If you find that there is a lot of wax still left in your container, you can sometimes use hot water from a kettle, pour this in to the container and wait a few seconds for it to warm the wax. Turn the container upside down in a sink or somewhere that will not be damaged by water or wax and wiggle the container gently until the wax drops out. Please ensure that you DO NOT pour wax down the sink! Wax dries quickly on contact with cool surfaces and can end up blocking u-bends etc. It is also not recommended that wax be disposed of via a sink, if it contains fragrance oils, which can be harmful. 

Depending on the volume of wax left, it can either be wiped away with a cloth or disposed of as a lump of wax in to your general rubbish bin.


If you purchase your candles or tealights directly from Illumigi, recycling is super easy!

Our glass candle holders can be recycled by placing them in your glass recycling bin, or taking them to a recycling centre and placing in the glass bottle skips. Always ask a member of staff at the recycling centre before doing this! 

Our concrete candle holders and tealight sets can be disposed of at a recycling centre, by asking a member of staff where to place them BUT why would you do this? Our beautiful, handmade concrete items are products of love and time, we would really like you to keep them. They can be used for pen holders, succulent holders or decorative pieces around the home. Our concrete tealight holders can be used with tealights purchased from virtually any other retailer and they're super long lasting and durable. You can even place them outside and bring some light to your summer evening garden parties!

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