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  • Writer's pictureLily Smith

Has your candle tunnelled? Here's how to fix it...

If your favourite candle has tunnelled, fear not! There are some simple tricks you can do to save it...

We've all been there: you go to light your favourite candle and you notice a gaping well in the middle. While it may not look that bad now, that tunnel will only continue to grow, causing an uneven burn and lots of wasted wax. Luckily, there are some simple tricks to fix this...

1. The hairdryer trick

One simple way to melt down the wax on the edges of the candle container is to blast it with a hairdryer. Ramp your hairdryer up to the highest heat setting and point it at the candle until the entire top layer has liquified.

Once the wax has re-hardened, you'll have a 'blank canvas' to start again. (Just make sure you follow our tips above to prevent the candle from tunneling again!)

2. The oven trick

If you don't have a hairdryer (or you don't fancy holding a heavy hairdryer for that long!), another way to melt tunneled wax down is to use the oven.

Set the oven to around 80 degrees Celcius (175 degrees Fahrenheit) and carefully place your candle into the oven on a baking tray. Remove the candle (using oven mitts!) after roughly 5 minutes, or when you can see the top layer of wax has melted. Allow the wax to harden, then light the candle as usual!

3. The foil trick

Don't fancy getting the oven or hairdryer involved? Try using the candle's own heat to melt down the wax!

Simply light the candle, then carefully place a foil 'tent' on top of the container. This will evenly reflect the candle's heat onto the entire wax surface, causing it to melt. Once the wax is fully melted, carefully remove the foil using oven gloves, then use your candle as normal.

Safety note: Be sure to poke a small hole in the foil tent so smoke can escape. Monitor your candle very closely when using this method, as it can quickly cause overheating. For all of these methods, make sure your candle's container is fully heatproof.

candle tunelling old leftover wax
Try removing the leftover wax from a tunneled candle to make wax melts!

4. Physically remove the unmelted wax

If you don't fancy getting heat involved, a safe way to save a tunneled candle is to simply remove the wax from the sides of the container. This can be done using a spoon or blunt knife.

Simply scrape the wax away from the sides of the candle, until you're left with an even surface of wax. Then, light your candle and enjoy! Just make sure you let the top layer fully melt this time.

5. If all else fails...make wax melts!

Unfortunately, some tunneled candles are beyond repair. However, this doesn't mean they are entirely useless. If you do have an old candle that won’t light, but still contains leftover wax, why not make your own wax melts?

Simply remove the leftover wax and melt it down (click here for our guide on removing leftover wax from a candle!). Then, pour the liquified wax silicone molds. Allow the wax to re-harden, then pop your homemade wax melts onto a wax burner and enjoy!


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