How to remove a candle wax stain from fabric

Candlelight adds warmth and ambience to any room, especially when the candles are decorating a beautifully set table. If the candle wax is accidentally spilt or splattered onto fabric, such as a tablecloth, cloth napkins or clothes, it can create a messy, greasy stain. Careful and thorough removal of candle wax from fabric will ensure the stain is removed while maintaining the condition of your fabric.

Allow the candle wax to harden, if it's still soft. Use ice to harden if need be. Scrape gently.

Place the wax-stained fabric on an ironing board, then lay an old kitchen towel you don't want over the wax stain. Warm up your iron to the "Medium" heat setting. Iron the towel to melt the wax underneath. The heat transfers the wax from the fabric to the old towel.

Change to another old towel, as needed, and continue to iron the stain until you've lifted all the candle wax from the fabric.

Pour dry cleaning solvent onto a clean sponge. Blot the solvent on greasy candle wax residue on the fabric. Dry-clean only fabric can be brought to the dry cleaners at this point to have any greasy residue or pigment from the candle wax removed.

Launder the fabric, according to the care label instructions using washing powder and colour-safe bleach to remove any last traces of candle wax stain or residue. Allow the fabric to hang dry as drying in the dryer will set any stains that still remain.


Decorative paper place mats can be placed beneath candles to catch any drips and prevent fabric from getting stained. Adjust the heat on your iron to the "Low" setting when removing candle wax from delicate washable fabrics such as silk.


Avoid the use of sharp knives or scrapers to remove hardened candle wax from fabrics as you can tear the fabric.

Things You'll Need

  • Old kitchen towels
  • Ironing board
  • Clothing iron
  • Butter knife
  • Ice
  • Dry cleaning solvent
  • Sponge
  • Washing powder
  • Colour-safe bleach
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About the Author

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.