The Complete Guide to Candle Wick Sizes

by maru | Last Updated: July 11, 2019

The wick is sometimes the last choice to be made when making candles. This can prove to be a mistake as the wick you use can make or break your candle.

Spending time choosing wax type, color, and scent, to then watch your beautiful candle burn too fast—or not at all—can be frustrating. We’re here to help with our complete guide to candle wick sizes.

Why It’s Important to Choose the Right Wick

Choosing the right wick size is crucial if you want to make a high-quality candle. The color, scent, and container don’t matter if the wick isn’t correctly sized because your candle simply won’t burn properly.

When deciding on your perfect wick, there are a few important targets to aim for:

Where Should You Start?

If you’re a candle-making beginner, you might be feeling slightly overwhelmed. The best place to start is figuring out which type of wick is right for your candle.

This depends on a number of things. The type of wax you’re planning to use, the amount of fragrance, the diameter of the candle, and color. To help you along, we’ve created a list of the most commonly used wicks and what wax they work best with:

RRD

Recommended Wax: Paraffin and soy

RRD wicks are round directional and have a cotton core and tension threads. These are designed for the best burn in solid-colored candles as well as votives. Because this wick can work in all sorts of wax, it’s the first choice for many candle-creators.

HTP

Photo Source: Candle Science

Photo Source: Candle Science

Recommended Wax: Soy

HTP wicks are made of cotton. They feature braided paper fibers that improve the stiffness of the material. This wick has a very soft burn, and they tend to curl a bit when they burn. HTPs are specifically made for use in containers and votives.

LX

Photo Source: Candle Science

Recommended Wax: Vegetable, paraffin, and soy wax

LX wicks are easy to distinguish, as they have a flat braided style with a stabilizing thread. The thread creates a slight curl as it burns; it gives the candle a consistent and stable flame.

The slight curl also reduces carbon buildup, also known as mushrooming. It reduces afterglow, soot, and smoke. These are versatile and can be used in several waxes.

ECO

Photo Source: Candle Series

Recommended Wax: Soy

An ECO wick is a coreless flat braid made of cotton. It has a paper filament throughout that provides excellent rigidity and strength.

These are self-trimming and clean-burning with minimized mushrooming, smoke, and soot. ECO wicks are excellent for waxes with a lower melting point.

Square Braid

Photo Source: Wick Store

Recommended Wax: Beeswax

This type of wick is made of natural fibers. They give a nice curl when burning to minimize carbon buildup.

Square braid is the best wick for beeswax and was designed for this purpose. They can also be used in other waxes like paraffin and soy.

Wooden

Photo Source: Lone Star Candle Supply

Recommended Wax: Soy, palm, paraffin, and soy-paraffin blends

Wooden wicks can add a lovely campfire atmosphere to a room. Some wooden wicks burn like a natural flame, crackling and all. For the best burn, choose a wick that has been treated with a clean-burning agent.

Wick Sizes

Wick sizes are dependent on more than just length. Several factors go into choosing a candle wick size for the container you’re using.

These include:

Candle Wick Size Chart

Keep in mind that these are only estimates for LX and ECO wicks. Finding the right wick size requires some experimenting.

Wood Wick Size Chart

With wooden wicks, we highly recommend buying one size up and down from the size you need. When you have different sizes, you can test to see which wooden wick works best in the candle you’re making.

When to Consider Two Wicks

Photo Source: Village Candle

Double wicking can give a luxurious feel to your candle and the room it burns in. Here are a few reasons to double wick:

How to Find the Right Size for Double-Wicking

Finding the right wicks is more than simply placing two in the same container. A simple way to figure out the correct size is by dividing the candle in two. You’ll then need two wicks that can melt each part of the candle.

As an example, if you’re candle is 3.9 inches in diameter, you divide it in two. You’ll then need two wicks that can melt 1.95 inches each.

Looking at the chart, you can go with two LX 12 or ECO 4 wicks. Or, you can choose two of the smallest wooden wicks.

Tell-Tale Signs You’re Using the Wrong Wick

Using the wrong wick can end up with your candle burning too fast, or it won’t burn at all. Here are a few signs to look for to determine if your wick is too small:

Signs that a wick is too large:

Conclusion

Getting the wick size correct can make or break your candle. It takes some experimenting—but that’s all a part of the fun, right? If you’re new at candle-making, start by choosing wax, color, and fragrance, then find a suitable wick.

Use our candle wick size chart and wood wick size chart to guide you further.