Many types of waxes are available for your candle creations. Not only can they be created from one type of wax; Waxes can also be blended to form exactly the features you are looking for in your candles.
Soy wax and beeswax can be mixed to make your candles. By adjusting the percentage of each wax in your blend, you can create candles that utilize the best attributes of each wax. How you intend to use your candles can alter the mix of ingredients that you select.
Wax produces the fuel for your candles to burn. The properties of waxes are formulated so the wax melts and keeps the flame lit. While all waxes have their unique characteristics, you can invent your own special blends. Continue reading for information on candle waxes.
Characteristics of Various Waxes for Candles
Candle makers have a great assortment of waxes to use in making candles. Some waxes have been used for hundreds of years; other waxes are relatively new in their usage. All waxes have different attributes. When lit, wax transforms from a solid into a liquid form, especially near the flame. How hot a candle burns, the scent the candle throws, how quickly a candle burns, and other features vary between waxes.
Understanding the qualities of the different waxes will help you think of blends for your candles.
- One of the natural waxes; Beeswax, is a byproduct of the honey making process. Some attributes of beeswax are listed here.
- Candles from beeswax are the healthiest because of the negative ions they emit.
- Naturally scented, beeswax candles emit a gentle honey fragrance.
- Colors of the wax can vary depending on the food sources of the bees.
- As one of the harder waxes, pillar and taper candles can be readily made from beeswax.
- Container candles can also be made from beeswax.
- Since this wax is one of the hardest waxes, well-made beeswax candles will burn efficiently.
Another natural wax; soybeans can be grown as a renewable resource. Depending on the sourcing of the soy, the beans can also be responsibly harvested.
- Soy wax, since it is natural, burns cleanly.
- One hundred percent soy candles emit a subtle scent; however, fragrances can be added.
- When fragrances are added, the lower melting point of soy creates candles that emit a strong scent.
- Candles made from soy wax are slower burning than other waxes; therefore, they will last longer.
- Softer than other waxes; one hundred percent soy candles are best made as container candles.
Another plant-based wax. Coconut wax, is naturally produced. Made from coconut oil, like other natural waxes. This wax can be harvested in an environmentally responsible manner.
- Candles made from coconut wax do not release toxins.
- Adding fragrance or essential oils to coconut wax creates candles that have an excellent scent throw.
- Along with a great fragrance, coconut wax without coloring is a deep white. It does absorb color well, which opens a palette of options.
- Coconut wax has a higher melting point, which makes it a great choice to use in making container candles.
- These candles burn evenly and slowly.
- From a plant in the mustard/cabbage family, rapeseed wax is new for use in candle making. This flowering plant is renewable and an eco-friendlier option than other waxes.
- Also known as canola wax, candles from rapeseed are one hundred percent natural and plant based.
- Rapeseed candles do not emit particles or soot into the air.
- This wax is less expensive than other natural waxes; however, it is more readily available in Europe.
- Candles made from this wax; handles fragrance additions well.
- These candles burn efficiently and slowly.
The most widely used wax for candles is paraffin. It is also referred to as mineral wax. A byproduct of the petroleum industry makes it readily accessible.
- An inexpensive option for candle-making, paraffin allows you to produce many candles at a lower cost.
- With its attributes, paraffin can be used for most shapes of candles.
- Paraffin candles can soak up fragrance, which makes it a great option for those seeking a variety of scents.
- With its shiny finish, paraffin is also a good option for those seeking a multitude of colors for their candles.
- Paraffin is a stable wax that mixes well with other waxes.
Creating Wax Blends
Before you start creating your own wax blends, grab a notebook, small candles vessels, and labels. In your notebook, you need to write down your recipes. Each of your experimental candles needs to be labeled. When you blend the waxes, take notes. Notes are needed when you burn those candles.
Your notes should include some of these ideas.
- The percentage of each wax
- The form of wax that you used – pellets, flakes, or blocks
- How long it took to melt the waxes
- What the wax was like to work with
- The size and type of testing vessel
- The wicks that you used – size and material
- Fragrances added – how much and at what point in the process
- Coloring infused into the waxes – note the dye lot and amount used
- The length of curing time
- The scent throw after the candle was lit
- The length of time it took the candle to burn
Testing your candles is always important, but it is critical when you are creating your own wax blends. Experimentation provides a great opportunity to create, have fun, and use your imagination.
Types of Candles and Different Waxes
The next step in your experimentation is exploring different types of candles. Once you have blends that you feel are successful and include the attributes that you are seeking, it is time to make your candles. Deciding which candle formation that you want to make is a component of determining which wax will be the most effective.
Using containers to create your candles offers the most flexibility. Containers can be of any size. For your trial candles, small containers provide a great option for your experiments. You can use a minimal amount of your materials to determine which blends work the best.
Since container candles do not have to stand on their own. Many blends of wax can be used in these formations. If you are seeking to control costs, using paraffin as one of your base waxes is a good starting point. To paraffin, you can add soy, coconut, or beeswax. If you are selling your candles, you need to consider how you will label them. One hundred percent natural candles should only be blends of naturally occurring waxes.
Since pillar candles will need to stand on their own, you need to explore using waxes that create firmer candles. These candles are formed in a mold; but after the candle making process is completed, the mold is removed.
Pillar candles are poured when the wax is extremely hot, typically near 180 degrees. The wax needs to expand to fill the mold. As the wax cools, the candle decreases in size. Paraffin and beeswax are two good options to explore in the creation of pillar candles. These two waxes can be the base of your blends.
Tealight and Votive Candles
Tealight and votive candles are small candles that range from over one inch to under three inches. Similar to glass container candles, tealight and votive candles are excellent choices for trying out blends of waxes. Softer waxes can be used for these smaller candles. Any wax or wax blend can be used to make these candles.
Tapered candles are another freestanding candle. Typically, tapered candles are thin and long. Harder waxes need to be used for these shaped candles. Consider using beeswax or paraffin when making tapers. If you want a blend, beeswax and/or paraffin should be a high percentage of your base.
What are wax additives?
Candle wax additives are mixed in melted wax to alter the characteristics of different candle waxes. These additives can be used instead of mixing different waxes together; or as part of the blending of waxes.
What is stearic acid?
Stearic acid; is obtained from tallow. Which is animal fat, usually from sheep or cattle. Stearic acid can also be found in vegetables; such as coconuts or palm nuts. Additionally, stearic acid can be found in fish oil.
Why is stearic acid used in candle making?
Stearic acid; also known as stearin, is used to harden the wax of candles. Candles, such as pillar, taper, or other candles that are not in containers, can benefit from the addition of stearic acid.
What is vybar?
Vybar is another additive that is made from polymers. It can be helpful in the candle making process. When added to candle waxes, vybar can help in the hardening of candle waxes. Vybar also aids in a candle’s ability to retain its ability to hold scents.
What are UV stabilizers?
UV stabilizers; are chemicals added to candle waxes to protect candles from losing their coloring. These chemicals absorb the UV rays from the sunlight. This results in reducing the fading effect the sunlight can have on the coloring used in candles.
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Meet Shawn Chun: Entrepreneur and Candle Business Fan.
I’m a happy individual who happens to be an entrepreneur. I have owned several types of businesses in my life from a coffee shop to an import and export business to an online review business plus a few more and now I create online candle business resources for those interested in starting new ventures. It’s demanding work but I love it. I do it for those passionate about their business and their goals. That’s why when I meet a candle business owner at a craft fair, farmers market, retail location or anywhere else I see myself. I know how hard the struggle is to obtain and retain clients, finding good employees all while trying to stay competitive. That’s why I created Candle Business Boss: I want to help candle business owners like you build a thriving business that brings you endless joy and supports your ideal lifestyle.