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How to Remove Candle Wax


Almost every holiday or family celebration includes the use of candles in an effort to add a bit more festivity. Colorful and aromatic candles make their appearance as decorative centerpieces, clever accent pieces, and interesting discussion pieces.

Unfortunately, along with the flowery, perfumed scents that so delight our sense of smell, unsightly wax drippings enter the picture and bring us back to the reality that the world is a place of cleaning tasks.

Not to worry though - wax drippings can be removed almost as easily as they accumulate. Depending on the surface type and the location of the wax dripping, different methods can prove successful for the removal of candle wax. Several easy to follow sets of instructions are offered here. Simply select the appropriate one for your needs.

Tablecloths, Cloth Napkins, and Placemats

Once wax has dried onto a tablecloth, cloth napkin, or placemat, several steps are required to remove it properly and completely. The first thing to do is to apply an ice cube or ice pack to the wax. This will make the wax brittle, allowing you to scrape off what you can. Use a credit card or a thin butter knife to gently scrape away as much of the wax as you can. Never use a regular dull knife that has serrated edges since this may damage the cloth.

Once you have carefully removed as much of the wax as you can, it will be necessary to get your iron and a few clean paper bags. Place one paper bag underneath the cloth while you set the iron to heat on a medium to medium high level, depending on the fabric. Place a second paper bag on top of the wax.

Gently iron the area until the wax has been transferred to the paper bag. Throw the paper bag with the wax residue into the trash once it has cooled. Repeat the process with another paper bag until all of the wax has been removed.

Unfortunately, if the wax came from colored candles, a stain may appear on your tablecloth, napkin, or placemat. If this is the case, pre-treat the stain and follow the laundering instructions for the tablecloth, napkin, or placemat. For the best results, launder the soiled fabric as soon as possible.

Wooden Furniture

Occasionally, the wax from our brightly colored candles drips onto our furniture, especially our wooden buffets, bookcases, and tables. In order to remove the wax drippings, simply apply an ice cube or ice pack to the wax to harden it. Gently scrape off as much wax as you can with a plastic credit card or other nonabrasive item such as a thin, dull butter knife or a smooth, plastic ruler.

Some of the wax residue may remain on the wooden furniture, especially if you have been extremely careful not to scratch the surface of your furniture. Simply use a soft, clean cloth and apply a bit of cream furniture wax to the area. Rub gently and remove the remainder of the wax residue.

Carpets and Upholstery

Candle wax often finds its way onto our carpets, area rugs, or upholstery. How this happens is no real mystery, as many people move the candles while they are still lit. Additionally, people sometimes forget to allow the wax drippings to cool before moving a candle once its flame has been extinguished.

If this happens to you, simply freeze the wax with an ice cube or ice pack. You can also use a commercial product that is designed to freeze wax on carpeting or upholstery. Once the wax is frozen, use a clean, blunt object to shatter the wax. Immediately pick up or vacuum the pieces of wax from the area. If you wait too long and the pieces soften, then you will need to refreeze them.

Glass Votive Holders

The best thing to do with glass votive holders is to prevent the wax buildup in the first place. If you place a tiny bit of water in the bottom of the glass votive prior to placing the candle inside, it should prevent the wax from sticking to the votive.

However, once you have wax stuck to the votive, you should clear a small area in the freezer and gently secure the votive inside to freeze the wax. Allow the votive to sit inside the freezer for several hours to ensure that the wax freezes. After several hours have passed, attempt to pry the wax loose carefully with a dull knife, preferably a butter knife.

The wax should easily become dislodged. Any remaining wax residue can be removed by washing the glass votive in a solution of hot, soapy water.



 

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