Your First Container Candle
Supplies You Will Need
- Wax (container blend recommended)
- Container (glass)
- Wax Pot/Pot (double boiler)
- Fragrance Oils
- Glue Gun
- Popsicle Stick or Wick Holder
- Paper Towels/Aluminum Foil
How We Do It
WARNING: Do not leave melting wax unattended. Wax is flammable and can catch fire if it becomes too hot. See our article on candle making safety before starting this project.
1. The first thing we need to do is prepare our working area. Find an area that is stable, such as a counter or large table. My area is a covered table top. As a recommendation, I place aluminum foil on top of the cover in the event of spills and for easy clean up.
2. One way I use to help reduce the chance of air bubbles in my candles is to preheat the glass in the oven at 190 degrees F. This allows the glass and wax to cool at relatively the same speed so that the wax does not pull away from the glass. Check out the post on air bubbles for more information on this.
3. For this tutorial we will be using one pound of soy wax. You can measure it directly in the melting pot. You can use any type of wax you wish but be sure it is for the intended use. I would not use a container blend wax to make a pillar candle. You can find out more about the different types of waxes here.
4. To melt the wax we are using a double boiler method. We fill a pot about one third with water. Place it on the stove on high. Place the melting pot into the water and wait for the wax to melt. As the wax melts, place the thermometer into the melting pot.
5. As the wax is melting you can measure out your fragrance oil. The accepted rule of thumb is 1 to 1 ½ oz. of fragrance to 1 lb. of wax. Since we are using soy wax, we will be using 1 ½ oz. of fragrance. Always use a glass container for fragrance oils. The oils will eat through plastic cups (personal learning experience).
6. When the temperature reaches approximately 190 degrees F and all the wax is melted you can remove it from the pot and place it to the side. At this point you can add things such as Vybar or UV stabilizer, as they need higher melting points to dissolve.
7. As the wax begins to cool, carefully remove the jars from the oven. CAUTION: The jars will be HOT. That is why I am wearing a glove in the picture. Place them on your work surface so they are not at risk of being bumped into.
8. Use a glue gun to attach the wick to the inside of the jar. I like to use a cut straw around the wick so that I can get the wick centered in the bottom of the container. There are wick stickers you can buy, but a glue gun is inexpensive and easy to use once you get the hang of it.
9. By now the wax has cooled to about 175 degrees F and is ready for fragrance and color if desired. Carefully pour the fragrance in to the wax and stir. Next you can add color as needed. You can use colored wax blocks or liquid dyes. I find dyes easier to work with when creating your own color blends. For this project I used Tahitian Village fragrance with orange and yellow coloring.
10. When the wax has reached 160 degrees it is ready to pour. Carefully pour the wax into your containers. I use a paper towel on the jar for two reasons. First, it helps to protect your hand against the heat as you guide the pour. Second, while you pour, some wax may drip down the pot and the towel will catch it.
11. Clean the pot as soon as it is empty. Just wipe it thoroughly with paper towels. DO NOT pour wax down your drains. It will harden and clog the drain. If there is excess wax, pour it into a plastic contain to save for later, or pour it in a disposable container to discard after drying.
12. To hold the wick in place as the candle hardens you can bend the wick over popsicle sticks or use wick holders. This is to ensure the wick stays straight as the candle cools and does not get pulled to the side. Especially if you are using a harder wax that requires an additional pour.
13. Once the candles have cooled overnight, simply cut the wicks to ¼ inch and it is ready to go. For soy wax it is recommended that it sit for a few days to properly set up. Your candles are now ready to use. You can keep them or give them away as gifts to friends and family. If you do decide to give them away, you need to have some sort of warning label on the candle stating they are flammable and the wicks should be kept trimmed.
And now you have made candles! See, it wasn’t that difficult at all. This is a great hobby and there are several things you can do to get more creative. We will touch on more types of candles in upcoming tutorials. Until then, leave a comment below and like us on Facebook.
Also, below are some great options to get you started. I use products from both companies and really enjoy the quality of everything. One thing that I really like about these kits is the fact that you can get everything you need in one shot. Either of these kits will be a great place to start your candle making journey!