Cotton Wicks Vs. Wood Wicks

Many people are asking these days: what is the difference between using  cotton wicks vs wood wicks? There are a number of excellent reasons why you would want to use a wood wick, but we’ll first start with a bit of the history on how this whole candle wick thing got started!

The evolution of candles is truly fascinating. What was once an ancient day necessity has now become a modern day luxury and the variety of options to choose from is nearly unlimited.

Candles have been around since 3,000 B.C. when the early Romans developed a wick made of rolled papyrus. The papyrus was repeatedly dipped into tallow or beeswax and ta-da, the first candle was born.

Braided wicks made of cotton were introduced in the early nineteenth century. Prior to this the wicks had been made of twisted strands of cotton or hemp fiber which, as you can imagine, were not very consistent or easy to maintain.

Fast forward to 2001 when wood wicks were invented and introduced into the marketplace… Inspired by the familiar warmth of a wood burning fireplace, wood wicks were developed to create a multi-sensory experience, both auditory and olfactory!

For the full history of candles, check out this incredible article posted by the National Candle Association: The History of Candles.

Now that you know a bit about the history of these wicks, let’s get to the meat of the main differences.

Cotton Wicks vs Wood Wicks

Wood Wicks Crackle

Wood wicks have a distinct crackling sound when burning. In a consumer-facing study, the crackling aspect was noted as the top reason for wanting to purchase a candle utilizing a wood wick.

Ever wonder WHY wood wicks crackle? Check out our recent blog post for the science behind the magic: Why Do Wood Wicks Crackle?

Wood Wicks Release Fragrance Better and Faster

In a five minute thermocouple burn test between a wood wick vs cotton wick candle, results showed that the wide based wood wicks diffuse heat more rapidly into the fuel (the wax).

Based on the burn test, we can conclude that wide base wicks, such as wood wicks, can throw five to 35% more heat into the fuel as compared to cotton wicks consuming fuel at the same rate.

So what does this mean?? Your hot throw is going to be on fire! Not literally. But it will be awesome.

Wood Wicks Create a Relaxing Ambiance

In another consumer facing study, a whopping ninety-six percent of consumers said that wood wick candles are more calming vs their cotton wick counterparts, and ninety-two percent of consumers stated that wood wick candles create more ambiance.

The numbers don’t lie, folks!

Wood Wicks Are Eco-Friendly

As the exclusive worldwide manufacturer of wood wicks, being eco-friendly is at the core of who we are as a company. Everything right down to our packaging is carefully selected to make as little impact on our beloved earth as possible.

All wood used for our wicks is sourced from Forest Stewardship Council Certified Mills and for every $100 spent on our website, we plant a tree with

To learn more about our partnership with, check out It’s A Fact, You Planted A Tree.

Wood Wicks Burn More Evenly

Since wood wicks are wide based wicks, they are able to create large, even melt pools with a single wick. Wood wicks create shorter and wider flame heights, which keeps them safe for use while still remaining functional in larger vessel diameters.

Also, wood wicks don’t ‘mushroom’ the way cotton wicks do! That means minimal carbon buildup and minimal debris and sooting.

Wood Wicks Are Visually Appealing

They produce a distinctive flat horizontal flame, which give a modern and uncommon quality to your candle that you won’t find in a cotton wick.

Wood wicks are also available in a variety of widths and custom variations, with additional design options being released in 2019!

Wood Wicks Are Easy to Use

So, aside from a beautiful and unique appearance, a soothing crackling sound, and an excellent burn, you might think “done deal, I’m sold!”… but wait, there’s more!

As a candle maker, wooden wicks are also easier to use. Since wooden wicks are rigid, they require no setting with a wick bar, no straightening or fidgeting with. Set-up is super simple, requiring only setting them in the wick clip and placing them in the vessel with a wick sticker.

If you’re looking to make the wicking process even faster, we now offer our wood wicks pre-clipped, meaning the wick clip is already attached to the wood wick.

Wood Wicks Create Value

At this point you may be asking yourself what all this great new information means for you and your candles.

To put it simply, wood wicks add value to your candle through their crackling ambiance, enhanced burn performance, and modern appeal.

Market research shows that the majority of candle brands utilizing both wood and cotton wick options use wood wicks to elevate their brand and therefore, charge more per candle for wood wick candles vs cotton wick candles.

Wood Wicks Are Trending

In a recent blog post, the National Candle Association listed wood wicks as one of the top candle trends to look out for in 2019. The NCA went so far as to call out wood wicks as the next big thing in the wick world. Check out their full article here.

Wood wicks were also featured in HAPPI, a premier publication in the gift industry. Read their article Hot Stuff (pun intended) for the full scoop!

Ready to get started? Order a Sample Kit and read up on How to Make a Candle with a Wooden Wick.

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