Scenic Erie Station Village

Removing Candle Wax

Decorative candle, vase, and small sign that says "stay well." Image credit: Skylar Kang

May 2022


There’s something soothing and magical about candles. It could be having the lights low, the dancing flame, or maybe the scent. Whatever the reason, candles can set a wonderful mood in your apartment or townhome. The downside is that burning candles eventually means dealing with wax. From getting wax off your candleholders to removing spilled wax from surfaces. Luckily, there are a few tricks that can solve any wax problem that comes your way.

Getting Wax Out of Jars or Candle Holders

Fill a soup or cereal bowl with warm water (not boiling). Place the candle holder into the bowl and wait for the remaining wax to soften. Scoop out the wax and wipe the inside of the candle holder with a paper towel.

Getting Wax Off Candlesticks or Other Small Items

Place the candlesticks in the freezer overnight, or at least several hours. Once frozen, lightly tap on the wax to crack it off. Be careful not to hit so hard that you damage the candlestick. The wax will pop off in pieces and you can use a soft cloth to remove any remaining wax.

Getting Wax Off Fabrics

When possible, soak up large spills when the wax is still liquid. For smaller items, use the freezer approach. This will allow you to crack off most of the wax. Get the remainder off by placing a brown paper bag on the wax and running over it with an iron on the lowest setting. The wax residue will soften and stick to the bag. For larger items like carpets or upholstery, use the brown bag and iron method. Take your time. It will take several clean bags before you get all the wax removed.

Getting Wax Off Hard Surfaces

When possible, soak up large spills when the wax is still liquid. For hard surfaces like wood, soften the wax with a blow dryer. Use a soft cloth to wipe it up. Then use a mild dish soap and water to remove any residue.