Candle Wax Removal Methods

Methods for candle wax removal differ depending on the type of material to which the candle wax is adhering. Most commonly, it will be necessary to either chill the wax and scrape it off, or heat and melt the wax off completely. Learn more below about the various methods to remove candle wax. Some tips on how to prevent liquid candle wax from splashing onto furniture and fabrics are also provided.

Remove Candle Wax from Glass

The easiest surface to remove candle wax from is a flat glass tabletop. Allow the wax to harden firmly, then slip a razor blade under it and peel the wax off the glass. Candle wax comes off metal stove tops and refrigerator doors quickly and easily with this method, too. Removing candle wax from inside a glass container is also fairly easy. You can warm the wax till it is all liquid, and pour it out of the container. Alternatively, you can warm the wax slightly so it pulls free of the sides and bottom of the container. Put a piece of plastic wrap tightly over the top, then put the whole container in the freezer upside down. When frozen solid, the candle wax will slide out. For glass windows, spray the window surface with WD-40 lubricant, which helps liquefy the paraffin in the candles. Wipe the lubricant and wax off the window immediately with paper towels.

Remove Candle Wax from Fabrics

The hot wax method works best to remove candle wax from clothing, upholstery, drapery and carpet. Use paper towels made from recycled paper, like those you find at a gas station, and a clothes iron, or 1600-watt hair dryer. Place 2 layers of paper towels on top of the wax spot, and apply the hot iron or dryer to the paper towels at the hottest dry setting. The paper towels will absorb the hot wax thoroughly. With carpeting and drapes, you may need to repeat this process more than once. With natural, washable fabrics, use the iron's steam setting on top of the paper towels to soften the candle wax. Use the iron's dry setting or the hair dryer for synthetic clothes, especially spandex blends, to avoid melting the synthetic fibers.

Remove Candle Wax from Wood Surfaces

Candle wax tends to sink into wood surfaces, so as soon as possible, place ice on the wax that has splashed onto a wood tabletop or chair arm. Leave the ice in place until the wax solidifies. Use a plastic scraper to gently lift off the wax. Rub an ice cube in circles over any remaining wax fragments and scrape them off carefully to avoid scratching the wood surface.

Prevent Candle Wax Splashes

Snuff out large and tall tapered candles with a snuffer, instead of blowing them out. Place a glazed tile under all candles on wood tabletops. Lift candles slowly away from your mantelpiece mirror, then put it out. Burn your candles in a draft-free area so the hot wax does not splash as the flame moves. Allow the wax to solidify on a candle you have just extinguished before moving it.