What Are Candle Wicks Made Of?
What are candle wicks made of that allows them to burn so evenly? With modern candle manufacturing, there are nearly as many wick options as there are candle choices. Whether you are buying candles or looking into the science behind how candles burn, you may have questions about wick construction and practical applications. Understanding the basics can help you choose the right candles for your needs.
What Are Candle Wicks Made Of in Traditional Candles?
There are many wick solutions for mainstream candles. The right one will depend on personal preferences and accessibility.
Most modern candle wicks contain a core. The outer layer is usually braided cotton and the core may be zinc or paper. Zinc cores are sturdy, producing a wick that stays upright. Paper cores are not as rigid as zinc but contribute more structure than braided cotton alone.
These wick types, regardless of the core material, burn cooler than plain cotton or other wick alternatives. This makes them ideal for most wax types, including paraffin, soy and blends.
Coreless Cotton Wicks
Coreless cotton wicks are a mixture of cotton and paper. The braided mixture contains no core, making for a flat wick that is self-trimming. The blend produces less soot than many wick styles and minimizes the mushroom cap created on many wicks after burning.
What Are Candle Wicks Made Of in Alternative Candles?
Some candle buyers want non-mainstream solutions with natural candles and alternative wick options. There are a couple of choices to consider in this situation.
Hemp candle wicks consist of tightly braided hemp. The material creates a rigid wick that will hold up well in most candle structures. Hemp burns hotter than cotton but produces little smoke, making it a good choice for indoor candle burning. Hemp also works well with a variety of wax types, allowing for its use in almost any candle structure.
Wooden wicks are less common but have unique features. They are typically flat, rigid wicks that work well with any wax blend or style. Wooden wicks come in both hardwood and softwood. Both wood types produce a unique, soothing crackling sound as the wick burns, which is often the biggest selling point. Wooden wicks are rigid enough for most candle structures as well, but you may find that they produce more smoke than other alternatives.
Which Candle Wick is Best for Even Burning?
Candle wicks burn at different rates depending on the material, how tight the braiding is and the structure of the candle the wick is in. A wick that is pre-waxed will burn more evenly than unwaxed wicks. Soy wax is the most common choice for coating wicks, though you can find them with other wax coatings as well.
Extraordinary Candles for Every Application
What are candle wicks made of in the candles you enjoy the most? Understanding the nuances of candle wick construction helps you appreciate and maximize the candles you love. Nomad Noé understands the difference that high-quality candles can make. Check out the stories behind their offerings to find one that resonates with you.