Candle lovers are applauding this quick and easy hack for fixing tunneled candles

Candle lovers, listen up: If you’ve ever encountered a candle that only melts around the wick — called “tunneling” — there’s an easy solution that can give you a perfectly even candle line once again.

Candle company Otherland (@otherland), which sells coconut and soy wax blend candles, shared a TikTok with over 2.1 million views that showed a quick hack for fixing a tunneled candle.

“Dude if only I knew this so many candles would be saved,” @user2127773579740 commented.

What is a tunneled candle?

A tunneled candle happens when only the wax closest to and surrounding the wick melts, creating an indented level. All Seasons Wax Co. explains that there are three main ways that a tunneled candle can occur:

  • Not letting the candle burn long enough. If you only burn a candle for a short time, there’s a chance that the wax pool won’t reach the edges of the candle, leading to the tunneling.

  • Incorrect wick size. If your wick is too small for the candle (or the level of wax in it), you may end up with tunneling.

  • Poor quality wax blend. Candles made with wax blends could have a mix of substances with different melting points, leading to irregular melting rates.

“Some candles don’t have cantered wicks and they can burn and burn and burn and never melt the sides,” pointed out @gegeplush on Otherland’s TikTok.

How to fix a tunneled candle

According to Otherland, if you do encounter a tunneled candle, there are three simple steps to evening out your candle that you can try:

1. Trim your wick.

“Let’s start off with a clean candle,” the company suggested in the video. The TikTok showed a candle-specific wick trimmer, but regular scissors will do if you don’t have an actual wick trimmer.

2. Light your candle.

Next up? Light your candle in any way you normally do and make sure the wick stays lit.

3. Wrap aluminum foil around the entire candle.

Lastly, wrap a generous amount of tin foil around the entire candle and create a loose cone over the top, leaving an opening so it’s not fully covered. The last step is crucial because it creates a “heat funnel” that lets all of the wax — not just the amount near the wick — melt, creating an even wax line again.

As soon as the melted wax pool reaches the full circumference of the candle, you can remove the foil and blow out the candle.

“So satisfying,” Otherland’s narrator announced in the video of the finished, fixed candle product.

You can also use prevention to avoid a tunneled candle whenever possible (assuming your candle is a wax blend that won’t tunnel and has a proper-sized wick).

“If I’m not mistaken, a way to prevent it in the first place is let it burn right to the edges the first time you light it,” noted @sir_stitchess.

“Yes! Most candles (especially ones made with soy) take a full 3-4 hours to fully melt out!” agreed @maradp13.

“In addition to getting a full melt pool on your first burn, also make sure to trim your wick BEFORE your first burn to help ensure no tunneling!” added @maradp13 as another tip.

“Gonna go resurrect all the candles I was saving to destroy & use in the wax melter! Thank you!” said @dontwantmynamehere_.

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