Trails of black smoke, a mushroom shaped wick and soot stains on the jar... sound familiar? If you've got a luxury candle habit it pays to know how best to burn them – you can make your candles last longer and smell stronger, after all.
We asked Julie Bonin at Diptyque the dos and don'ts of candle burning so you can put the insider knowledge into practice.
DO burn it for two hours on first use
'You should always burn your candle for a couple of hours when first lighting it. This is to allow the top layer of wax to fully melt, ensuring even burning when next lighting it. Wax has a memory so it is important not to skip this step to make sure you get the most even burning out of your candle.'
DON'T place your candle in a draughty area
'Another way to make your candle last longer is to avoid placing your candle in a draughty area, as this means your candle will be consumed more rapidly.'
DO trim your wick
'Trimming the wick is very important. The longer the wick the quicker your candle will burn, so trimming it will make it last longer. It also prevents black smoke from occurring and ensures the glass isn't over-heating. Trim it every time you use your candle and make sure it isn't longer than a couple millimeters – the same length as when new.'
DO re-centre your wick after each burn
'As well as trimming your wick, to prevent soot stains forming on the glass make sure you re-centre it after putting your candle out, when the wax is still liquid. This will prevent the wick from shifting and blackening the glass.'
DON'T leave the lid off when not in use
'We recommend using our lids to prevent dust from settling on the candle if you aren't using it regularly. If dust has settled, you can use a humid cotton pad to remove the dust from the top of the wax.'
DO clean the glass
'Should your glass turn black due to the candle having been left to burn for too long, then use a wet cotton pad with warm soapy water and gently rub it on the black stains. Make sure you dry the area properly before lighting your candle again.'
DO reuse your candle jar
'To restore the holder when your candle has completely burnt down, simply pour hot water in the glass (make sure you use oven mitts as the glass can get very hot), swirl it gently, empty the water in a sink and wipe with a paper towel. Repeat this process a couple of times until the glass is completely clean. It makes for great brushes or pencil holders as well as flower pots!'