I know Chanukah is getting close when I begin thinking, "Ok, it's time to clean the hanukkiah..." I never feel like cleaning my candle-holding appliances until I need them again. I guess that's just human.
The "before" picture is in the header above the blog. It's primarily orange wax, but there's also blue and white in there. Almost the entire back is covered in wax, plus there are all the little spaces where fingers won't fit. I didn't even use this chanukiah the second year I owned it because I was so upset it couldn't be cleaned off. I didn't want to make it worse without any potential for getting better.
Cue the hairdryer. It is the easiest way to remove candlewax from anything. I have used it to remove wax from carpets, tables, furniture, and things actually made to hold candles. I've used it on essentially everything but the pets. (I had a ceiling fan that threw melted candlewax for a 10ft radius from my kitchen table.)
Gather your materials: the candle-waxed item, paper towels (or napkins), and the hairdryer. Q-tips if you have wax in tight spots.
Take your item and place it on top of a paper towel. Get your second paper towel sheet ready. Turn on the hair dryer and focus it on some group of wax. It's better to attack section-by-section. You will see the wax begin to turn clear (or milky), maybe even dripping. It depends on how thick the section is. Once it looks like it's soft or melting, turn off the hairdryer. Then just wipe it up with the paper towel! Easy as pie! (Don't burn yourself with the air or by touching hot metal!)
Use the Q-tips in hard-to-clean areas and inside candle cups.
Alternatively, you can soak the item in hot water in the sink or bring them to boil in a pot on the stove.
In summary, no need to buy expensive "wax cleaners"!
Here is the finished product after only 10 minutes of work!