Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Here’s how to enhance a candle’s glow, safely and cheaply

Along with the beauty comes a bit of danger, so being wise a must.

First Published Jan 09 2013 06:50 pm • Last Updated Jan 09 2013 08:37 pm

Votives, tealights, pillars, tapers — candles are everywhere — especially during winter months. Follow these tips from Good Housekeeping to buy and burn them wisely.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Eye before you buy

When shopping, check that the wick is tightly braided and feels secure (give it a tug). Loosely twisted or poorly anchored wicks cause candles to burn unevenly or flames to flicker wildly, potentially igniting nearby items. Inspect jars or votives, too. Thicker glass is less likely to crack. For any, read the label for recommended burn times and a "Keep out of reach of kids and pets" warning. Including this info is voluntary, but it’s a sign that a company cares about safety.

Up to snuff

To put out candles, use a candle snuffer (find one for less than $3 on Amazon or at IKEA). Or, when (gently) blowing out any candle, place your hand behind the flame to keep wax droplets and smoldering carbon from scattering.

Mind your measurements

Trim wicks to 1/4 inch every time you light them. A short wick means a more controlled flame. A flame should be only an inch or two high, and steady. Lots of flickering may mean the candle is in a draft and should be moved (or that it’s of poor quality), and too high a flame is a fire hazard: Toss the candle.


story continues below
story continues below

Location, location, location

Never leave burning candles unattended, and always put them on heat-resistant plates or in stable holders. Avoid holders that seem top-heavy, as well as candles that wobble and could topple over (dripping wax into the bases won’t do the trick). Place candles so their flames are at least three inches apart (to keep one from melting another) and away from flammable decor (drapes, garlands, etc.) and walls (to avoid soot stains).

Watch the clock

Don’t burn pillars more than one hour for every inch of diameter — longer, and the pool of liquid wax can get so big that the candle can lose its shape and spring a leak. And never burn any candle (except tealights) all the way down, lest the surface underneath be damaged. Throw out tapers and pillars when they’re within two inches of the holder, and jar candles that are within a half inch of the bottom.

Short-wick trick

Got a half-burned jar or pillar candle with a hard-to-reach wick? Prevent singed fingers by lighting the end of a piece of dry spaghetti to use as a long-handled match.



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.