What Are The Different Types Of Wicks For Candles

You may know about the things involved in the candle-making process, like wax. However, still, there would be many other things you would be finding answers for. 

Such as questions relevant to candle wicks are often asked.

  • What types of candle wicks are there? 
  • Which should I use? 
  • What diameter is suitable for my candle? 
  • What are the different types of wicks for candles? 

We will answer all your questions in this blog.

So, let’s get into the discussion without any further ado.

Different types of candle wicks: which should I use?

The wick is a fundamental element when making candles, and a good choice is a mandatory step for correct combustion. 

What is the function? Let the candlelight and the wax melt slowly.

Here is a complete catalog of different types of candle wicks: waxed, ecological, braided cotton, flat, and unique for candles. 

Below we explain their characteristics and the type of preparation each one is recommended.

Types of wicks for candles

different types of wicks for candles

There are several candle wick types, and each one is recommended for different elaborations, so you will have to choose one or the other depending on the candle you are going to make. 

Let’s meet each of them!

Waxed wick: 

It is a cotton wick soaked in paraffin, ready to be placed in the candle. It is the most common when making candles and works very well to make scented candles, decorative candles with shapes, candles, candelabra candles, etc. 

Wax-free cotton wick: 

It is natural, made of cotton, and mainly used to manufacture natural and carved candles. It can be used without waxing, but we recommend waxing it because it lights up much better.

Ecological wick: 

It is a round wick of non-waxed cotton with a rayon heart made of eucalyptus paper. It is mainly used to make ecological, massage, or natural candles.

Flat wick: 

It is made of cotton and is ideal for making large candles with a diameter between 10 and 15 cm.

Tea Candle Wick: 

A special wick is used to make small candles as it helps the candle to burn slowly and last longer. It is a braided wick that is advisable to wax with the same wax used to make the tea lights.

Gel candle wick: 

A waxed wick gives outstanding results with gel paraffin, as it does not change its properties, especially its transparency.

What are the best candle wicks?

different types of wicks for candles

Now that you know what types of wicks for candles are and what each one is recommended for, it’s time to explain how to choose the right thickness. Doing it well is essential for good combustion.

Three main aspects must be taken into account to choose the diameter of the wick:

  • What will be the diameter of the finished candle?
  • The melting point of the wax used.
  • The use of additives

Other factors, such as ambient temperature or the dye used, can influence it, so it is not an exact science.  

But, of course, with the guidance we provide below, it will be easier for you to know which highlights to choose from.

  • To find out the diameter of the candle, you need to measure the width of the mold you are going to use or the width of the container. For example, if the candle is about 6 centimeters wide, it would be wise to choose a 6 to 7-centimeter wick.
  • This is not always the case, as other factors, such as the melting point of the wax, play a role. For example, the higher the melting point of the wax, the harder it is and, therefore, more expensive to burn. For this reason, the candle may need a slightly thicker wick.
  • The same goes for additives. Most have a high melting point and are used precisely to stiffen candles. Thus, if an additive is added, choosing a larger wick diameter is common.
  • In practice! For example, to make a 7 cm diameter candle with 74º paraffin, it is advisable to use a wick of 8-9 cm. However, if you’re making a 3-inch candle with low-melting soy wax, it’s best to use a 6 to 7-inch wick.

How to put the wick in candles?

Now let’s see how to place the different types of wicks for candles! First, we show the most common techniques and explain them step by step:

Threading the wick: 

It is ideal for working with silicone, plastic, or methacrylate molds. You have to insert the wick through the hole in the mold in the base, pass it from one side to the other and hold it at the other end with a wick holder. Some silicone molds may not have holes, but they can easily be made at home with a sharp object.

Guide rod + wick holder: 

When the mold has no base, a guide rod is placed in the center and held on top with a wick holder. A little wax is poured over the base to seal it, and after a few seconds of waiting, the mold is filled. To remove the guide bar, you can use pliers; you will only have to place the wick in the hole left by the guide bar. This technique is the most common when making candles.

Once the candle is finished: 

In some cases, especially in small candles, the best candle wicks can be placed at the end of the preparation with the help of a guide rod. Fill the mold, wait for it to solidify and, without completely cooling, remove the candle from the mold. It must be done at the right time: when it is solid enough not to break but still warm inside to pierce the candle with the guide rod and thus place the wick without problems.

Candles in Container: 

For glass candles, there are two options. The simplest is to insert the wick directly into the center of the candle when the top layer starts to solidify, but the inside is still warm. With the second technique, the wick is placed, and then the wax is poured. In this case, the wick is cut to the size of the glass and inserted into a hole. Next, it is glued to the bottom of the glass, well-centered, and filled with wax.

How to wax the various types of wicks for candles:

Before, we mentioned that it is advisable to wax the cotton wicks so that they can burn better. Do you want to see how? 

Do not miss the details of this procedure, and you will see that it is effortless; it will only take a few minutes.

  • Cut the wick to the length you need and leave a small margin for a good grip.
  • Melt the wax over low heat, and when it melts, transfer it to a tall container to work better. It is advisable to wax the wick with the same wax you will use for its preparation.
  • Dip the wick in the wax, remove and wait a few seconds. Depending on the thickness and the candle wick types, you can repeat this process several times. 
  • When the wick is waxed, let it cool completely, and it’s ready to use.

What happens if the wick is not suitable?

If the chosen type of candle wick is not satisfactory, the candle will likely not burn well. For example, it may form a puddle of melted wax because it burns too fast, or it may only burn part of the candle because it does not have enough strength to melt all the wax.

Have a solution? Most of the time, yes, as with a bit of skill, the wick can be removed. If you notice that it doesn’t burn well, replace it with thinner or thicker types of wicks for candles and check the results.

Conclusion: 

We have been manufacturing handmade candles for many years, and our experience in the different types of wicks for candles and other candle-making stuff is high, so we can say in all honesty that there is no exact and foolproof formula for choosing the thickness of the wick. We always advise doing small tests before making candles on a large scale.

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