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Wick Guide - How to Choose the Best Wicks for Your Soy Candles

Part 1 – Why it’s Important to Select the Right Wick
Part 2 – The Four Attributes of a Properly Wicked Candle
Part 3 – The Factors Which Determine the Size of Wick Required
Part 4 – Selecting the Best Wick
Part 5 – When to Double Wick
Part 6 – How to Tell if You Are Using the Wrong Wick Size

Here at Crafty Candle Supplies, our customers frequently ask us what size wick to use for soy candles. So we created this 6 part guide to give you everything you need to know.

Part 1 – Why it’s Important to Select the Right Wick

Choosing the best wicks for soy candles is key to a high quality candle. It ensures the candle burns at its most optimal level with a reliable and effective scent throw. So if you want to know how to choose the right wick for soy candles – this is the guide for you.

Part 2 – The Four Attributes of a Properly Wicked Candle

  1. An even burn pool spread to the edge of the container and approximately 1 cm deep
  2. Has great scent and fragrance throw
  3. Has a small flame that does not flicker
  4. Has a consistent and reliable burn time

Part 3 – The Factors Which Determine the Size of Wick Required

There are a number of factors which determine the correct size wick to use. It is important to understand each of these factors before you set out to select the right wick for your candle.

The Diameter of the Candle

This is the most important factor that determines the size of the wick required for your candle. Put simply - the larger the diameter of your candle, the larger the wick required.

The Type of Wax Used in the Candle

This is the second most important factor when selecting your size of wick. The various wax types (e.g. soy wax, pillar wax blends, paraffin wax, gel wax, beeswax etc.) have different densities and melting points. These variances mean that the wax type influences which wick size is the most optimal for your candle. The denser the wax type and the higher the melting point, the larger the wick required.

The Amount Fragrance Oil and Colouring Used in the Candle

The more fragrance oil and colouring used, the larger the wick required.

The Intended Burn Time of the Candle

If you intend for the candle to be burned for shorter time intervals (i.e. 1hr – 1.5hrs intervals) then you will need a larger wick. This is because the wax in a candle first has to burn outwards (forming the burn pool) before it starts to burn down. If the candle is intended to be burned for shorter time durations, it may not burn for long enough to form the full molten pool. Therefore, a larger wick size will be needed to allow the burn pool to develop faster.

Part 4 - Selecting the Best Wick

As you can see from Part 3, there are many different factors which effect the type of wick required for your candle.

Below we have created a set of guiding principles you can use to give you the best starting point when selecting the right wick. It is important to note that while this guide will give you a great starting point, you may find that your first choice of wick burns slightly under or higher than what you anticipated. A multitude of various factors make the burn process unique and different for every candle, thus it is always important to experiment in small batches when making a new type of candle (i.e. new container, wax blend, colour/fragrance etc.) and when discovering the wick size that is best suited to that candle.

Select a Base Wick Size Using our Wick Size Guide

The first step in selecting the best wicks to use for your candles is to match the wax type and diameter of your candle to the burn diameter of your selected wick. Use the Wick Chart below to discover the recommended base wick size for your candle.
The chart includes both cotton wicks as well as wooden wicks.

You can purchase our range of cotton wicks here.

You can purchase our range of wooden wicks here.

Note: Many factors can affect the burn of the candle and therefore it is vital that you conduct proper testing to determine the best wick size before producing larger batches. It is often best to experiment by buying a wick that is one size higher and lower than your selected wick, this way you can test a few different sizes and determine the wick that works best for your candle.

Part 5 – When to Double Wick


While single wicked candles are the first choice for wicking, there can be certain instances where a double wicked candle may produce a more even burn pool.

When Should I Double Wick?

When Containers are Larger than 9cm - When you have a larger container with a diameter of 9cm or more, it is often more beneficial to use two smaller wicks to achieve an even and measured burn.

When the Container is Irregularly Shaped - Double wicking is also useful when the container you use has an irregular shape, such as an oval or square where the diameter of one wick will not reach all sides of the container.

How do I Choose my Wick Size When Double Wicking?

To double wick, the rule of thumb is to divide the diameter of the candle in half and choose a wick size that would sufficiently melt "each half". For example, if your candle diameter is 15cm, you would use a wick that is suitable for a 7.5cm burn diameter (i.e. the UC 3.000).

Part 6 – How to Tell if You Are Using the Wrong Wick Size

When to Wick up (Your Wick is too Small)

If your wick is tunneling - Your candle can ‘tunnel’ when it fails to melt the wax to the edge of the container. As your candle burns, residual wax is left on the sides of the container. Tunneling can inhibit the scent throw of the candle, as the melt pool is smaller than intended.

If you candle is extinguish itself - When the wick is too small, it may sometimes extinguish itself failing to burn and create a melt pool.

An example of an under wicked candle.

When to Wick Down (Your Wick is too Large)

If your wick is mushrooming and producing excess carbon and soot - A mushrooming wick is characterised by a wick that splits as it burns. The flame burns very bright and excess carbon falls to the side of the wick and into the burn pool. To avoid mushrooming, simply use a smaller wick. The guide above will help to determine what wick to use.

If your burn pool is too deep - A deep burn pool is characterised by a melt pool that is more than 1.5cm deep. This affects the burn time of the candle and can be resolved by using a smaller wick.

If your flame is excessively flickering - When lit, the candle flame is tall and flickers periodically, letting out smoke and soot.

An example of an over wicked candle.

Wicking is an ongoing experiment and you may find yourself coming back, for quick reference Pin us to your Pinterest or post us to Facebook.

Disclaimer: We have taken every effort to ensure that this guide is as accurate as possible. However Crafty Candle Supplies cannot guarantee or take responsibility for any errors or omissions in this information. Crafty Candle Supplies intends for this information to be used as a guide only and accepts no responsibility for actions or outcomes that are a consequence of using the information above. Please take every safe precaution in the making of candles, or experimentation of the candle making process.