Candle Disasters From a 1% Difference

Starting with a premium candle burn

The most important thing about a “Luxury” candle is for it to have “luxury” burn qualities.  Luxury candle makers prefer a soft, opaque wax that melts all the way to the edges of a candle.  This can be a difficult thing to achieve unless the candle is made from a “pre-blended wax” and multiple ingredients, most of which the candle maker isn’t aware.  To achieve luxury candle burn qualities, the majority of manufacturers purchase pre-blended wax, which means they don’t have to do any mixing (other than color, if used, and fragrance/scent).  

Is it Really a Big Deal?
Wax suppliers don't generally know anything about making a candle

Why mix your own wax when you can buy it as a pre-blend, right?  Well, here’s why.  As a rule, wax companies don’t know the first thing about candle making.  So, when one ingredient runs short, it is completely realistic - and from our experience - absolutely likely that the manufacturer would re-arrange the levels of the individual ingredients, thinking the difference is so miniscule that it’s not a “big deal”.  Well, actually, it is a HUGE DEAL!  In our extensive testing, we have found that a difference of as little as 1% in the wax formula can completely change the properties of the end-resulting product, or that fabulous candle you love to buy. 

Big Disasters From Tiny Differences
disasters from tiny differences in the wax formula

Here are few of the problems manufacturers and consumers may fall victim to with just a 1% difference in a wax formula:

  1. Shorter melt pools: A change in melt point can lessen the candle melt range to just short of the edges of the candle, which ends up causing tunneling or a hole, deep in the center of the candle.  This makes full use of the product impossible, lessening the strength of  hot-throw (fragrance strength when the candle is burning).
  2. Air bubbles are another issue caused by a melt point change; undetectable in the first several weeks, until the wax expands and contracts with room temperature fluctuations. Sure, it’s hard to keep 100% of bubbles out of the wax, as is the case with any liquid, but excessive bubbles can cause dye and oil “pooling” (liquid filled bubbles in the sides) and the problem becomes more exaggerated by the week.
  3. A melt point change can also result in a candle that burns with a white or yellow ash on the tip of the wick, oftentimes “putting itself out”.  After a certain period of time, if this problem is bad enough, it’s very possible that the candle will get to a point where you can't even keep the flame lit.
  4. Fragrance pooling: Additives that PREVENT a mottling effect also  help the fragrance to blend into the wax.  So, in that beautifully creamy candle, when this particular additive is in shortage, it will, logically, keep the fragrance from blending.  This can cause fragrance seeping or a pool of oil to form on top of the candle. If left as-is while burning, it can turn a candle into a bonfire (fragrance oil is just as flammable as any oil).  Fragrance pooling is another outcome that can take weeks to show up in a candle and you may not even notice until you have it burning in your home or even after you’ve been using it for some period of time.  If you happen to find yourself with a pool of oil on top of your candle be sure to remove it with gloves and a handful of napkins.  
  5. Wax Pox: Related to smoothing-additive deficiency, is the problem of “pox” (or white dots) in the sides of the candle, which may also take weeks to show up.  Granted this doesn’t have a bearing on the burn but it doesn’t look good.  If the manufacturer is making candles “to order” you may have a beautiful candle when it arrives, only to see it change into a spotty mess within a month or two.

It Can Happen to the "Best" Brands

Why won't my candle stay lit or burn right

Think about it.  How many times have you purchased what you know to be a fabulous candle or a very reputable brand, then you get it home and the candle has problems that keep you from going back for more?  

No manufacturer allows problems intentionally and it would be an insane notion to release products if they burn badly. Then how do you end up with a bad candle from a reputable company? Chances are, the manufacturer is buying a pre-blended wax and somewhere along the way, something changed without their knowledge or control over the issue. 

Of course, there’s also the chance that they are contracting the work out and the contractor didn’t know or simply doesn’t mind allowing a few “bad batches” through if the naked eye can’t see the difference.  Either way, THUMBS DOWN on the pre-blend waxes, even if you’re dealing with the best candle companies in the world.  Too much is at stake to trust that every batch coming through your process is identical.

Avoid Such Tiny Differences

So how does a reputable company avoid passing these issues on to the consumer?  The bottom line is, they must blend in-house.  Custom, in-house, luxury wax blending is a rarity in our current candle market but the product does exist on the market.  You simply have to do your homework to make sure that’s the candle you settle on for long-term repeat buying.  

UnEarthed Luxury Scented Candles are premium and mixed and made right here in the USA

UnEarthed® is one of those rare companies that mixes their own wax product in order to assure “luxury” burn qualities.  We see and measure every ingredient going into the formula and we monitor and test products daily, from batch to batch, to assure consistency.  

It is important to us to have a final wax product that is reliable, and we only trust our own mixing skills to that end.  Every batch is consistently formulated for stellar performance and our vegan-friendly ingredient list is short, clean and natural-dominant.

UnEarthed® offers a fine, clean, consistent, smooth, house-filling candle blend that is worthy of the words “premium” and “luxury”.  

Try one of our specialty products today!

Lisa Clark, Fragrance Technologis