How To Remove Candle Wax

We all enjoy colorful and decorative candles; they add that extra touch to a centerpiece.  Candles can set a romantic mood; the perfumed scents tickle our senses, then the wax drips on the expensive table, carpet or tablecloth.

How do you remove the wax without damaging the material it has solidly adhered to? 

  1. Remove candle wax from cloth napkins, placemats, or tablecloths, by first allowing it to dry. Second, apply ice to freeze the fabric, and make the wax brittle. Scrape the wax off with a credit card or thin butter knife. Don't use a regular knife, as this could damage the cloth.

    Place the area between two pieces of blotting paper and press with a warm iron; you may need to replace the paper as it absorbs the stain. If the wax has left a stain, pre-treat the spot and wash as soon as possible.

  2. Wooden furniture - apply ice to the wax to harden it. Scrape off as much wax as possible without damaging the wood. To remove the residue, apply a cream furniture wax, and gently rub until the residue is gone.
  3. Carpets and upholstery also fall victim to candle wax. Again freeze the wax, and then use a clean blunt object to shatter the wax. Vacuum or pick up the pieces.
  4. Removing candle wax from glass votive holders is a bit more precarious. Place the votive in the freezer for several hours allowing the wax to freeze. Carefully attempt to pry the wax loose using a butter knife. The wax should dislodge easily. Residue can be removed by washing in a solution of hot soapy water.
  5. Non-washable materials should be frozen. Remove the wax by carefully scraping. Then place an absorbent pad under the stain and flush the area, allow it to dry and repeat as needed.
  6. Leather and suede are not necessarily ruined by candle wax. Freeze the wax drippings and gently scrape the hardened wax. A thick paste of fullers earth mixed with water will remove the stain. Brush the dried paste off using a toothbrush or other soft-bristled brush. The leather should be treated with a leather conditioner.
  7. Candle wax on silver can be removed by hardening the wax and scraping with a plastic spatula. Wash in hot soapy water, rinse in hot water, and dry immediately to prevent tarnish.

The best way to remove candle wax is to prevent the dripping in the first place. Ensure the safety of your furniture, table cloths, carpets, and other furnishings by placing the candle in a holder that will catch the drippings, or on a protective covering. Do not move candles until the wax has dried. A little extra care prior to lighting that candle will allow you to enjoy it without the worry of the wax dripping.


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