Free Beginners Guide to Making Soy Wax Candles:
With autumn just around the corner why not give making your own soy wax candles a try. Have you been toying with the idea recently, looking for a gift idea or like us starting a new business opportunity adventure? We’ve learnt a lot about soy wax candle making and we want to share our experience and tips with everyone reading this blog.
These candles are perfect for a cosy night in by the fire, relaxing in the bath or just to fill a room with a spectacular fragrance.
Now first of all why we chose soy wax over other waxes available on the market, soy wax has an amazing scent throw (distance the scent travels in a room), easy to work with, cost effective, eco friendly and doesn’t release that horrible black smoke whilst burning. We use the soy wax container blend whereas you can get pillar blends for candles that aren’t in a container like ours.
Other waxes available on the market include paraffin wax, bees wax and a number of different blends, each wax have pros and cons and its well worth researching all waxes and finding the correct wax for you. In this blog we’ll be focusing on container soy wax we use.
How simple it is to start off candle making you don’t need any fancy equipment and probably have it in the kitchen already. Firstly for melting the wax we use a large stainless steel pan or you can use a microwavable jug so it gives you two options… hob or microwave. We also use a silicone spatula, small measuring spoons and a thermometer. That’s pretty much it for the equipment side of things.
Melting the wax:
I’m sure there are going to be a few different methods out there for melting wax but here’s the way we do it. We start off by measuring out the correct quantity of wax and placing it in a large stainless steel pan and heating gently. We found for us heating the wax to around 80oc is enough to get it all meltinto gently, you don’t want to boil the wax so do this part low and slow and just be patient. Like I mentioned before you can melt the wax in a microwave and I would do this gradually for 20 second intervals until all the wax has melted into a liquid.
Picking what fragrance to use in a candle is a tough decision and so many to choose from, you can get fragrances for all seasons ready mixed or have a go at mixing your own when you’ve mastered the basics. It’s easy to get carried away here so I would suggest buying from somewhere that does a small sample selection package and that way you can try a few at once.
Adding the fragrance to the wax is mega simple just measure it out and pour it in. If you want to try it how we do it we add it just after taking the wax off the heat. Some people argue that adding fragrance to a hotter temperature wax dilutes the scent more but I’m yet to find this after trialling it at different temperatures. Once added just stir in and let the wax cool. For our soy wax we use 10% of the wax weight for fragrance. So if we are making a 400g candle we would use 40 millimetre of fragrance. Different wax types will use different amount of wax so check from your supplier how much the limit is.
Make sure the wick you pick is correct wick for the wax you are using. It’s amazing how little differences in the wicks can make for getting a good burn. You want a wick that is going to burn right to the edges of your containers or a wick that is going to burn a full candle, not just a small hole down the centre. The best thing to do is look online where you are buying from for guidance most sites will have a guide for what wick burns best for wax type and size of candle.
Preparation before pouring:
At this point you want to start prepping your candle tins, jars or glasses. You don’t want to be messing round trying to do ten things at once when the wax is cooling and setting in the pan. We have our candles set out ready with the wicks stuck down with a glue dot and the wick held in place with a holder. You can find these online pretty much anywhere that sells candle supplies.
Pouring is a skill and an art form for us we like to fill the exact same point on every candle which means precision. The temperature we pour at is 50-60oc however every candle maker will be different and again different wax types may have different melting and pouring temperatures so it’s well worth researching your wax before beginning. When filling a container make sure you leave enough room for you lid to go on without touching the wax, a mistake we learnt the hard way unfortunately.
Every candle should be left to cure and harden properly otherwise the candle won’t last as long as it should do. Our candles normally cure for anywhere from 3 days to 3 weeks or until we sell them. This is again dependant on what wax type you are using but we have worked out that a 200g wax will burn for approximately 36 hours and 300g of wax will burn for approximately 52 hours. This is after at least 3 days of curing in a cool room out of direct sunlight. Room temperature can effect cure time so make sure the candles are in a cool room and not near any radiators or warm pipes.
For advice or any question you may have please feel free to ask Thelakesbathtub's team.
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