How to Make Wax Candle at Home – Soy Wax Candle Making Tips
Do you want to know how to create candles? Candle making can be fun and very rewarding, whether you want a hobby for just yourself, something that you and the kids can get involved with or maybe start your own business making and selling your candles.
There are a variety of waxes to choose from and you can make them scented or non-scented; the choice is yours. You may even recycle the wax from old candles, check out this video to see how.
If you’re a “candle making newbie”, there are some basics you need to understand before you get started. You’ll need some tools, equipment and supplies, which can work out quite expensive if you go about sourcing these from the wrong places. Before getting started, I strongly suggest that you watch this free video., it will show you the right and wrong way to melt the wax and take you through all the steps of making an ice candle without blowing your life savings.
Table Of Contents
Candle Making Equipment
If you’re just starting out you’re going to need some tools and supplies. If you’re itching to get started, you can get most of what you need from Amazon or if you’d like to save yourself some money, you may have most of what you need already or you may be able to find something suitable by visiting a charity shop.
Here’s a list of what you’ll need to get started:
- An electric hot plate.
- A scale to weigh the wax – an old or cheap kitchen scale is ideal for this.
- Some wax.
- A double boiler to melt the wax in – you could use an old saucepan and an old measuring cup. The measuring cup will double as a pouring pot.
- Mold(s) – if you’re planning on making square candles, you could use an old juice or milk container
- Dye (optional)
- Scent (optional)
- A hammer or knife to break up the wax.
- An old chopping board to break the wax on.
- A cooking thermometer.
- A wooden spoon to stir the wax whilst it’s melting.
Please note: these are just the basics you’ll need to get started. Some candle “recipes” will require that you buy some additional materials.
Wax Types Explained
This is great, follow along as you’re shown the different wax types and how to use them.
Candle Making Safety and Cleanliness – Before we get started – a few tips
I realize that this must sound obvious but candle wax is highly flammable, its flash point is around 300 degrees Fahrenheit. If it weren’t, your candles wouldn’t burn. This is why it’s imperative to use a double boiler and thermometer when melting the wax. Never melt your wax just using a saucepan and never allow it to reach any more than 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
Also, the wax is a nightmare to clean off some things, especially clothing and hair. And molten wax will burn you if you accidentally spill it on your bare skin or get it in your eyes – please wear appropriate safety clothing, gloves (not rubber gloves) and eye protection etc.
Always break up your wax prior to placing it in the melting pot – never once it’s in there.
Keep children and pets out of the way when dealing with molten wax. If you want to get the kids involved, there are some child (with adult supervision) friendly instructions here.
NEVER try to put a wax fire out with water – you’ll create a flash fire. And using something like a carbon dioxide extinguisher will blow molten wax everywhere. Should your wax burst into flames turn off the heat and cover it with a damp cloth, or better yet a fire blanket.
NEVER leave the melting wax unattended; not even for a second. If you have to leave the room, remove it from the heat until you return.
NEVER pour molten wax down the sink, it will block the drain and be a nightmare to get out.
NEVER allow the water in your double boiler to dry up or, indeed, the water to boil. If it splashes into the hot wax it will ignite it.
When it comes to the time to pour the wax, work slowly and methodically; there’s no rush.
Finally, if you’re going to be working in your kitchen, ensure that you protect the counter etc with something that’s non-flammable. Old baking trays are great for this.
OK, that seemed like a lot of don’t do this and don’t do that but it’s all just common sense really. Now we’ve got that out of the way, let’s make a candle.
Let’s Make An Ice Candle From Scratch
In addition to the items mentioned above, for this candle you’ll need the following:
- A 1/2 gallon juice or the milk carton – remove the top and wash it out thoroughly, there’s no need to dry it but do ensure you don’t bend it out of shape; it needs to be nice and square.
- A thin taper candle.
- A few cups of crushed ice.
- 1 lb chopped paraffin wax – new or reclaimed.
- Your choice of wax dye (optional).
- Your choice of fragrance (optional).
Let’s get started
Place the carton on an old baking tray and pour in about a third of the ice.
Next, take the taper, protect its wick from water with some tape and push it down to the bottom of the ice keeping it as near center and as vertical as possible. Add the remainder of the ice until it’s about an inch below the top of the carton, keeping the taper vertical as you’re adding it.
Pour some water into the bottom half of your double boiler.
Place the chopped wax and the wax dye into the top section of the double boiler and place it onto the bottom half.
Place the double boiler onto the hot plate and turn on the heat. Once the wax starts to melt stir it with the wooden spoon and keep checking its temperature.
Once the wax reaches 180 degrees Fahrenheit, add the fragrance (follow the manufacturer’s guidelines on how much to add here) and stir it for a couple of minutes more.
Now, slowly and carefully start to pour the wax over the ice.
Once all the wax is in there, let it stand overnight to fully set.
The following morning, remove the carton by tearing it off and let the candle stand on some paper towel until all the water has drained out (usually a good few hours).
Remove the tape from the taper and if necessary, trim it to length.
And there you have it, your first candle – congratulations.
If you’re unsure about something I’ve mentioned here, or you would like to leave a comment, please feel free to post it here.