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Can Candles Get Wet?

can candles get wet

Candles themselves are fine to get wet in terms of coming into contact with a liquid while not burning. If the candle is hot and it comes into contact with water, this can cause a reaction, and the hot wax could splatter.  

If you see your candle “sweat” or have moisture on the top, this is likely because of the oils within the candle, usually used to add scents or the natural oils in soy or coconut waxes.  

There may appear to be wet spots on your candle if it is in a glass container. Wet spots happen when the wax doesn’t adhere to the glass correctly due to a temperature change.  

How Do You Fix a Wet Candle? 

If all you’re worried about is a candle with some water on it, then the solution is as simple as wiping off the top surface. You might need to heat the wick with a heat gun or blow dryer before you can light it. 

You can also wipe the top of the candle if the issue is the oils collecting on the surface. Oils are more challenging to deal with than water. You can always pour the excess oil out if the candle is in a container and proceed to light the candle. Oil on the surface shouldn’t affect its ability to burn.  

Wet spots are slightly more difficult to deal with since they mean that the candle’s wax has contrasted after it cooled down.  

How to Prevent Sweaty Candles 

While you can wipe the top of the candle to get rid of any oils on the surface, it can be a bit annoying if you have to do it every time you go to light your candle.  

Sweating happens more often with soy wax candles as they are more sensitive to changes in temperature. It can also occur in candles when incorrectly adding the scented oils.  

To avoid sweating as much as possible, you should keep your candles away from anything that will change the temperature, such as a radiator and next to a window. 

You should especially avoid windows as direct sunlight is harmful to your candles in general, but it will also warm the top surface of the candle. 

If you try this and you still have a sweaty candle, then you should check which fragrance oils are in the candle. Some types of wax can hold more scented oils than others, so it’s best to check how much is in your candle.  

Soy wax, for example, can’t have more than 8% to 10% scented oils, or the oils will continue to rise to the surface.  

What Causes Wet Spots?

Wet spots appear when the wax of the candle has pulled away from the sides of its container.  

The wax expense when it is heated and contracts when it is cooled. Since candles melt into liquid before being poured into their container or mould, they will go from an expanded form, the liquid, to a contracted state, the solid wax.  

Wet spots can happen easily by letting the candle set and are practically impossible to get rid of after they appear. While they can be a bit of an eyesore, they don’t affect the candle’s ability to burn.  

How to Prevent Wet Spots 

Since candles go through temperature changes every time you light them, wet spots are difficult to avoid altogether.   

However, if you’re making your own candles, there are some things you can do to prevent them, at least during the candle-making process.  

  • Make sure your container is clean before you pour the wax in. Any dirt or water left in the container will affect how well the wax adheres to the edges of the container.  
  • Preheat the container with a heat gun and heat the wax to a cooler temperature. Preheating the container will bring the container and the wax to a similar temperature to expand and contract at a closer rate.  
  • Pick the suitable wax for your container. Different types of wax will adhere to different types of containers better than others. Coconut wax works best for jar adhesion. 
  • Limit temperature changes while the wax is setting and while storing it. If the candle continues to expand and constrict, then it is more likely to get wet marks.  
  • If you’re shipping your candles, include ice packs, so they are kept at a lower temperature while travelling.  

What Do You Do With Wet Candle Wax? 

A little water won’t do much to your candle wax. Simply letting it dry should be enough to get it back to its original state. However, you’ll want to avoid keeping your candles in places with a lot of moisture. 

It might be nice to have a candle by your bathtub, but leaving it there even when you’re not using it will affect the wax and cause it to age faster. 

You should store your candle in a dry place and keep them from temperature changes, like avoiding steam from showers or heat from cooking appliances.  

If you’re still having trouble lighting your candle or keeping it lit, then it could be because of flooding the wick. Flooded wicks happen when too much melted wax has built up in the top of the candle.  

You can fix this easily by pouring out the excess wax and trying to light the wick again. 

If the wax has hardened over the wick, then you can use a heat gun or blow dryer to melt the wax again and pour it out.  

Final Thoughts 

Overall, it would be best to keep water or other liquids from coming into contact with a burning candle as there is a chance that it could cause the hot wax to splatter. 

However, wet candles, in general, aren’t much to be concerned about. Whether it’s a flooded wick or wet spots on your candle, there is little you can do to fix it indefinitely.  

Some moisture is inescapable as melted wax can build up, and oils can come to the top of the candle over time.  

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