It's not hard to make beautiful, therapeutic candles that you'll be proud to show or give as a gift. Follow these easy instructions and enjoy the beauty of natural, clean-burning soy candles.
First, you need to get your supplies. The following will make one 18 oz. candle.
- 18 oz. soy wax flakes (I use EcoSoy Advanced)
- 18 oz. glass container (I use a Victorian apothecary jar)
- 2 cotton wicks (I use 2 LX-21 wicks for a 4" diameter jar)
- 1 oz. fragrance oil, essential oil, or a combination
- Dye (I use liquid dye)
- A glass jar that holds at least 22 oz. of liquid (like a Ragu jar - thoroughly cleaned out of course!)
- Stir stick (I use a resin "wooden" spoon)
- Hot glue gun
- Label (optional)
- Place the wax flakes in the glass jar (the ragu jar, not the candle jar) and place in the microwave for approximately 3 minutes on high. You want the temperature to reach about 200 degrees. You can gauge the temperature without a thermometer because once all the flakes have melted, the temp should be about 180 - 200 degrees.
Be careful! The jar and the wax are very hot!!
- Remove the jar from the microwave and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
- Add the fragrance or essential oil once the temperature is about 160 to 180 degrees. I use essential oil, but those can get quite expensive. For some of my candles, I use a combination of essential oil and fragrance oil because I have customers that like the smell of cucumber melon, but neither of those are essential oils. I will use a fragrance oil and add some essential oils to give the candle health benefits.
Please be aware: Studies are being done on the toxicity of fragrance oils. The overuse of synthetic fragrances causes your liver to work overtime. I strongly urge you to use essential oils when fragrancing your candles. Try orange or lavender. Both are affordable and smell lovely.
- Stir the oil into the wax and allow to cool to about 110 to 120 degrees (warm enough to comfortably stick your finger in).
- While you are waiting for the wax to cool, place a small bead of hot glue on the bottom of the wick tab and affix to the inside of the candle jar. I use two LX-21 wicks to get an even melt pool in the jar I use. I found that one wick did not cause the wax to melt all the way to the edges and three caused too much flame. Place the wicks about 1" apart.
Note: Wicks can be tricky, depending on the type of wax, the type and amount of fragrance or essential oil, the amount of dye, and the size and shape of the jar. I have given you the wick I use in my specific jar with my specific wax and the amount of oil I use. You may have to experiment if you don't get a full melt pool or your wick ends up mushrooming. More on that later.
- Add your color dye to the melted wax at this point. Start with one drop of color and stir. Continue to add a drop at a time until you achieve your desired color. Stir until color is evenly distributed.
- Warm the candle jar slightly. I place the jar in a warm oven for about 2 or 3 minutes. You can also run the jar under hot water, making sure no water gets inside the jar. A warm jar will allow the wax to adhere to the edges better, reducing what is called "frosting" or white spots on the finished candle.
- Pour the cooled wax into the jar slowly, holding the wicks up straight. Fill to the top. You can use a wick-centering device or just place something, like a knife or ruler, next to the wicks to keep them centered until the wax hardens, which should take about 1 hour.
- Once the wax has hardened, trim the wicks to about 1/4".
- Label your candle - and you're done! You can burn your candle right away or wait for about 24 - 48 hours when it will be more "cured", which will allow it to last longer.