Candle wax in the glass or wax stains on tablecloths are more than annoying but fortunately no cause for concern. With the right method and a few tricks, cleaning is quite easy. Removing candle wax what’s the right way to do it? You can find out here which method is best for getting it off glass, clothing, floors and the like.

Whether indoors in the cold or outdoors in the warm season – candlelight provides light and exudes coziness. But it can quickly happen that a candle drips and leaves you wax stains, for example, on the table, tablecloth, floor or your clothes. With which method you can remove them, we explain here.

Removing candle wax: The best methods

  • With cold

When removing wax, you need patience. In the vast majority of cases, it is advisable to let the stain harden first. If you want to speed up the process, you can put smaller items such as clothing, cloth napkins or tablecloths in the freezer. Otherwise, cold packs can be placed on the stain or cold sprays can be used. However, the latter should only be sprayed on insensitive materials so as not to leave any unwanted residue.

  • With heat

This method is suitable if you want to remove candle wax from glass. Wax melts at a temperature of about 150 degrees Fahrenheit and above. So, boil water and pour it into the glass. When the candle wax has dissolved, place kitchen roll in a sieve and pour off the water. The paper and strainer will catch the wax. If water with wax is poured into the sink without filtering, it will harden there and can cause clogging. The same applies to the dishwasher, in which a glass with wax residue should therefore never be cleaned.

For all other materials, use the heat method only for the oily residue that can leave candle wax stains. If wax is heated and rubbed, the stains will only get bigger and the color it contains will spread even more at worst. So, remove wax first using the cold method. Then place blotting paper or kitchen roll on the stain residue and heat it using a hair dryer or iron (without steam). The heating dissolves the streaks and the remaining wax can be absorbed by the blotting paper or kitchen roll. By the way, blotting paper is partly made of cotton fibers, which makes it even more absorbent than kitchen roll.

Can candle wax be washed out?

Wax stains cannot simply be washed out. This is because heating in the washing machine could – as already mentioned – only cause the wax to spread even more and contain color in the wax to form further stains. Only when residues are visible on clothing or textiles despite cold and heat treatment should these be washed in the washing machine. Special stain removers against grease and oil or petroleum ether are suitable as solvents for candle wax. Test beforehand in a hidden place whether the material and color remain unchanged. If so, put the solvent on a soft cloth and carefully dab on the affected area. Then wash in the washing machine.

What home remedies are suitable for wax?

Icebox, cold pack, cold spray, blotting paper, kitchen roll, iron, hair dryer, stain remover, benzine – everything you could use against wax stains is often already at home. If you hope to remove wax stains with classic home remedies such as baking soda, baking powder, lemon juice or milk, you should first treat the stain with the cold and heat method. The home remedies can then be applied to textiles for washing. Baking soda and baking powder are particularly suitable for oil stains. On wood, greasy residues dissolve with olive oil.

Glass, clothing, floors how to remove candle wax correctly

We have listed for you which method is best suited for which material or substrate.

  • Glass

Removing wax from glass is particularly easy: Larger residues can best be scraped off with a type of wooden scraper (cooking spoon, spatula or raclette slider) – this way you won’t cause any scratches. Then either pour in hot water and drain through a strainer or use glass cleaner or dishwashing liquid to remove the candle wax residue. Has paint from the candle wax stained the glass? You can wipe it off the glass with nail polish remover.

  • From wood

When removing candle wax stains from wood, for example, a wooden floor or table, the candle wax must first harden. Then carefully scrape it off with a knife or scraper. If wax stains are still visible afterwards, heat the residue with an iron or hair dryer. To do this, place blotting paper or kitchen roll on the affected area and carefully run the iron over the area several times (set to medium heat and no steam) or hold the hair dryer switched on it. If traces are still visible, you can wipe some olive oil over the corresponding spot-on wooden surfaces. This will also have a caring effect on the wood, which needs to be oiled regularly anyway.

  • From stone

For stone floors, you should dab wax stains with blotting paper or kitchen roll while they are still liquid, not wipe them. This prevents the wax from settling in the pores of the stone. Then allow to harden and proceed as for wooden floors.

  • From the tablecloth

If you have candle wax stains on a tablecloth, first let it cool. Then you can remove the hard wax by hand. The heat method and subsequent washing helps against residues.

  • From the carpet

Be sure to let candle wax that has dripped onto a carpet harden and do not rub it into the fiber. Then remove the wax stains with your fingers and vacuum up any last remnants. If an oil stain remains, it is best to apply a carpet cleaner.

  • From the sofa

To remove wax stains from a sofa, the procedure described above has proven effective as for carpets – regardless of whether it is covered with fabric or leather. If the stain isn’t completely gone afterward, apply special upholstery cleaners instead of carpet cleaners – unless you own a velvet couch. Anne White, head of personal interior styling at lifestyle label Anthropologie, knows materials well. She explains that velvet should not be cleaned with harsh detergents. Instead, stains on this material should only be spot treated with soap and water.

  • From clothing

It is best to put clothing in the freezer or freezer for a few hours to freeze the candle wax and make it easier to remove. If the garment is too large, you can place cold packs on the affected area. If wax stains are still visible afterwards, you can remove them from the clothing with an iron. To do this, place blotting paper or kitchen roll over and under the affected area and carefully run the iron over it (set medium heat and no steam). This way, the remaining wax will become liquid again and be absorbed by the paper. Be sure to check beforehand whether the material may be ironed. For example, ironing is taboo for clothing with pleated fabric. Some delicate synthetic fabrics are also not suitable for ironing. In such cases, contact a dry cleaner.

  • From wallpaper

Wax stains from candles on a wallpaper should be carefully scraped off the wall after the wax has hardened, without damaging the wallpaper. Then heat the remaining wax film with a hair dryer and dab with blotting paper.