Candle Spell Reading: What does the Flame, Wax and Soot mean?

Candle Spell Reading: What does the flame, wax and soot mean when a candle burns? #witchcraft #magick #spells


Candle spells using vigil candles can be simple and effective, just set your intentions, prepare and burn the candle.


But, what does it mean when your candle burns a certain way?


The way a candle burns can be indicative of the success or failure of your spell and how the progress or after affects of your spell will be.


To read the signs of a vigil glass candle spell, we will look at:

  • the sides of the candle
  • the flame
  • the wax
  • any remains
  • black or white soot


In this post, we’ll talk about the different signs and leftovers from a 7-day (or longer) vigil candle spell.



Parts of the Vigil Candle


As we all know, vigil class candles are commonly in a cylindrical shape and each side of the candle has a certain meaning when it comes to interpreting the progress and results of a working.

Vigil candles have front, back, left and right parts – when beginning your candle working, be sure to determine what the “front” of your candle is and make sure to always know where the front side is on the candle.

Some candles will have a special design or wording on the front of the candle so it’s easy to tell.

Other candles have the same design on the front and back.


Select the “front” side of the candle (whether you choose it or it’s already shown) and make sure this side is always facing you on the table or altar.

If both the front and the back of the candle are the same, make a marking with a Sharpie marker on the front of the candle.

You can mark the date that you begin the spell (month/day/year format) or write a name (your target) or intention for the spell (e.g. money, abundance, protection, etc.)


This will be sure that you can always tell what the front of the candle is – this is important when it comes to reading the progress of your candle and after the spell is completed.


Here are the sides of the vigil candle and what they represent:




The front of the candle represents everything and anything physical and/or tangible.

This can mean such as money, physical health, your home, people, animals, places, etc.

Anything that you can physically see, touch, taste, smell and that has physical substance.





The back of the candle represents everything and anything that is non-physical and/or non-tangible.

This can mean such as spirits, spirituality, mental health, emotions, feelings, situations, etc.

Anything that you can’t physically see, touch, taste, smell and that is a concept, idea, belief, and is described as non-physical.





The left side of the candle represents things from the past – distant and/or recent past.

The left of the candle is determined to be your left side.

So when facing the candle, what you see to your left is the left side of the candle.

Similar to when doing a tarot reading and the card on the left in a Past, Present, Future reading is often the past card.





The right side of the candle represents things from the future – what will likely happen or is to have an influence on the future.

The right side of the candle is the opposite side to the left side on the candle.



Candle Flame Reading


Now that we’ve determined what the spatial diameters of the vigil glass candle are, we have an area to determine flame reading and later wax, residue and soot reading.


Candle reading can be done while the candle is burning and mental or physical notes should be made while the candle is burning with dates added to the notes.

As the candle burns, you may notice affects from the working starting to take place which will affect the candle and how it burns.

Making notes and paying attention to how the candle burns and connecting it to events going on around you or in your life.

This will help you to see the connection between your working/spell and the outcome.


Here are what the different types of flames mean:


High flame


There’s a lot of energy behind the spell working – it may mean intention is high and intense, that there may be a lot of help and influence to push the working to a peak performance.

Spells may start of very strong in the beginning, but may meet resistance later on.

Keep an eye to see if the high flame continues for the duration of the candle burning.

A high flame may weaken, but may pick up again later.



Low flame


There’s a lot of resistance to the working.

The spell may not be the right type of spell or there may need to be a different spell done first before doing this spell.

Always make sure that the wick isn’t too short when starting a candle spell.

A wick that’s too short will yield a lower flame and may go out if the wax pools around it too quickly.

A flame may become weak as it burns if resistance is met during the working.

Sometimes a cleansing candle or uncrossing candle may need to be done before attempting the spell again if there is too much resistance – depending on the type of spell.



A flame that crackles and/or hisses


When a flame crackles and/or hisses, it means spirit(s) is talking to you and has a message for you.

Keep an eye on the height of the flame and how it burns to see if the message is a positive or negative message commenting on the type of work that you’re doing.

If it’s a cursing or crossing spell and the flame crackles and/or hisses, it may be resistance from your target or the target may be aware that you’re up to something.

If you’re asking for a favour, money, etc., and the candle crackles and/or hisses, pay attention to see if you feel that your petition will be granted or not.



Flame goes out early


If a flame goes out before the vigil candle is finished, it may mean the working/spell is meeting too much resistance, the spell is too weak and meant to fail, or the spell may have finished before the candle was finished.

If the candle goes out with only a small amount of wax at the bottom (about 1”), it may mean that the working will be successful, but not fully manifest as hoped.

If the flame fizzles out with much more than a small amount of wax on the bottom, it can mean an incomplete spell or the spell is manifested as desired.


To determine which meaning is for your candle, ask your spirit guides or your intuition if you feel your spell has manifested or if it will be unsuccessful.

You can attempt to relight the candle – for example if too much wax pooled around the wick, you can dig out the wick and relight it.

If the candle goes out a second time after relighting it, then you have confirmation that the candle is finished.



A blue flame


A flame that has a lot of blue in the colour of the flame means a high presence of spirit energy assisting your spell.



A flame that dances


If your flame dances a lot and there’s no draft around the candle, it can mean that there is a lot of variables into the situation and that it’s not yet fixed yet or stable.

This can still be successful, but there is a lot of current happening in the situation and spell.



A moving flame


A flame may move around the wax and this can be indicative of what the spell is working on.

A flame may move closer to the front of the candle to work on a physical problem, to the back to work on a non-physical or spiritual problem, to the left to work on a past problem or the right to work on the future problem.

The flame and wick may change its position from the front then to the back, then to the left and then to the right.

Keep an eye on where the wick is position in the candle and how it may move during the duration of the spell.



Reading the Candle Wax


Most vigil candles will have some wax left over, while others will have nothing remaining at all.

For my candle readings, anything less than about 0.3” to 0.5” of wax is considered successful to moderately successful.

Any wax in excess of 0.5” at the bottom of the candle may mean that the spell won’t be successful or may only partially yield results.

Wax that sticks to the side and leaves a residue should be noted on what side of the candle the wax is on.

If it’s on the front, left, back or right, it may mean there’s unfinished business in that area that the spell wasn’t able to completely remove or work on.

This is the same for if herbs, glitter, etc., remain stuck to one side or any side of the candle as it may indicate there’s unfinished business in one or more areas.



Wax rings


Some candles will leave wax rings on the glass – these rings can be read to determine the timing of a spell.


Complete and unbroken rings are more predominant and show a strong indication that the time prediction will be more accurate and precise.

Incomplete and broken rings may show delay or variables in the accuracy and precision of the time prediction.

The number of rings will determine the time frame when your spell will manifest – the number of rings can mean:

  • hours
  • days
  • weeks
  • months or
  • years.


If there are no rings on the candle, it can mean that the spell will be more immediate if it’s determined the spell will be successful.



Remains in the candle


Most vigil candle spells contain herbs, glitter and sometimes roots, there will sometimes be burnt remains at the bottom of the candle.

If you find there are a lot of the remains at the bottom of the candle, it may mean there was too much put into the candle.

Caution should be made about putting too much stuff (e.g. herbs) into a vigil candle.

As the candle burns to the bottom, it can create a fire hazard that becomes too hot for the glass to contain if there’s too much at the bottom.


If only a small amount was put into the candle and still remain at the bottom, take into consideration how burnable the material is (e.g. a root) and if it’s likely to have burned up or if it was being resistant.

If you want, you can read the left over remains like a tea leaf reading to get any symbolism or interpretation.



Black and White Soot in Vigil Candles


Generally black soot is considered negative and challenges, while white soot is considered positive and help from spirits.

Reading black soot and white soot depends on how far the soot is on the candle and where it appears.


If black soot only appears on one side of the candle (front, back, left or right) is means the challenge or negativity is related to that area.

For example, if black soot appears on the front of the candle, it means there is a physical challenge or obstacle.

Black soot on the left means there was a challenge in the past; on the back means it’s a spiritual or non-physical challenge or obstacle; and to the right means there is a challenge to be overcome in the near future.


Black soot is commonly seen starting at the top of the candle; if it appears at the top of the candle but then becomes clear or white soot, it means the challenge or obstacle was overcome.


If black soot appears in the middle to lower half of the candle, it means the obstacle or challenge got in the way of your spell.

If the black soot continues to or is at the bottom of your candle, it means that the obstacle, challenge or negativity has blocked your spell.


White soot that continues down to the bottom of your candle or almost to the bottom (with no presence of black soot at the bottom) means that spell was helped by spirits and that your spell may likely be successful.



How to Prepare a Vigil Candle


To find out more about crafting a vigil candle for a multi-day spell, read more here about how to do a 7-day candle spell.



Want a spell?


Find out more here how to get a customized 7-day candle spell service.



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2 thoughts on “Candle Spell Reading: What does the Flame, Wax and Soot mean?

  1. i cast a candle spell earlier this week that i think was very strong, based on the flame and wax behavior, and based on how i felt during and after the spell was cast. since then, i have gotten little “coincidences” and signs from the universe that feel like, “it’s going to be ok, you did good. we’re on it”.

    i do still wake up with grief and anxiety, although it’s much less than before the candle, as part of mourning. i deal with those feelings with meditation, therapy, journaling, etc, and when i work through those challenging emotions, i always end up back at confidence, grace, and optimism for the situation, but i’ve read that worry or doubt can weaken a spell’s power. waking up like this, i just don’t feel like i can control that other than dealing with it the way i already am. i’ve been trying to accept my negative emotions as natural part of mourning, without shame or frustration – but can my anxiety snuff out my candle’s magick?


    • Anxiety is a part of human nature and at some point everyone has felt anxiety whether it’s about something or “generalized anxiety”. If the anxiety isn’t directly connected to the spell e.g. a spell to acquire material gains and one worries “maybe it won’t happen” then that may stem from doubt and could potentially thwart the efforts. However, it sounds that your anxiety is separate from the spell and is a natural part of the process that you’re going through and it takes a lot to overcome our own fears, worries and anxieties that stem from within rather than external causes (e.g. being afraid of something physical.)

      Although the anxiety will probably not affect the working because the working is sounds to be a work in progress and will likely require some physical or mental effort to help ensure the success such as finding resources or ways to cope with your anxiety.

      While spell work for self improvement can be a wonderful tool to help improve and ease pain, anxiety and other problems, when used in conjunction with other methods can create a well rounded holistic approach and healing.

      I wouldn’t put too much stress on fear that your anxiety will lessen the effect on the spell, but keep in mind this may not be a “all in one shot” spell and may require either a 7 or 14 day spell or spell work done daily, or on certain days of the week (more than once) to help keep a positive frame of mind as it will likely be a work in progress. Some powerful spells are worked regularly or daily to create a longer lasting effect rather than just only once. The results may take longer to see the return on investment, but the payoff will be greater and longer lasting.

      It may be ideal to continue magick daily, whether with charms, amulets etc., and other candle spells to keep it going and for as long as it takes to get the peace and healing you desire. Remember to be gentle with yourself with no added stress or pressure – healing takes time and as long as is needed. Keep going as this will be a work in progress; it sounds like you’re on the right track.💜🐾


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