How To Make Candles At Home

Love scented candles? It’s easy and inexpensive to make candles at home! Learn how to make DIY scented candles in any color and scent you want!

Scented candles can be used in many ways: they are great for aromatherapy, they can be used to decorate a room and bring life to a rather dull home, and they are perfect for gifts. Research also indicates that burning a scented candle can improve your mood and be a source of inspiration. These magical pieces aren’t just good to look at but can also uplift the soul.

The downside, however, is that they can be very expensive. A good quality 60 oz candle can cost as much as $30. $30 for a candle that will last a couple of days doesn’t sound practical. The good thing is that they are easy to make. With the same budget, you can make up to half a dozen of your own scented candles at home. The materials needed to make the candles are available online and in most local craft stores. Find the step to step guide on how to make the best DIY scented candles below.

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How To Make Candles At Home


Wax: There are three main types of wax to choose from; let’s take a quick look at each of them. First, there is the paraffin-based wax which is the most famous wax. It has been used for centuries. This type of wax is the most affordable and absorbs scent and color quite quickly.

Soy wax is a more recent wax type that is made of soybean oil. The price is similar to that of paraffin-based wax, and it also absorbs scents quite easily. Finally, there’s the beeswax. It can be traced back to the construction of the Egyptian pyramids. It comes with a natural sweet honey scent which interferes with the absorption of other odors. This wax is also the most expensive type.

Wicks: What matters most about wicks is the width rather than the length. A wick will either make or break your candle. Don’t you hate those candles that are hard to light up? Choose the wicks with wider diameters to avoid this.

Fragrance: Without the sweet, pleasant scent, you are just burning wax. Plain candles may be appealing to the eye, but they don’t create that beautiful aroma. You can choose from different essential oils or add a specific candle fragrance.

Colors: Wax is usually ivory or off-white, but if you want your candles to be colorful, add wax color flakes in whatever color you want.

Double Boiler: You need one because burning the wax directly over the heat in a pot doesn’t work well. Choose a universal type that fits well in any pot. Or you can put a large glass measuring container inside a pot and melt the wax in that.

Containers: This is the storage point of the candles. You will need a container that can withstand high temperatures. Ceramic mugs, mason jars and glassware are great options.

Additional Accessories: You’ll also need a thermometer and an old spoon. The thermometer is used to measure the temperature of the wax so you know when it’s hot enough to add the fragrance and colors. The spoon is great for mixing and breaking up the big chunks.

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Prepare the Work Desk: The whole process of making candles can be messy, and droplets of melted wax can spread everywhere. To avoid this, spread some newspapers or an old cloth over your work area.

Melt Your Wax: Pour some water onto a pot, put the double boiler in the pot, and put a chunk of wax into the double boiler. For an 8 oz container, half a pound of wax is enough. Heat the pot and monitor the temperature as the wax melts. When the temperature of the wax reaches 170 degrees F, remove it from the heat.

Stick the Wick onto the Container: Some wicks come with some built-in sticky substance at the end. Or you can attach the wick onto the container manually using super glue.

You can also use the age-old trick of using the wax itself. When the wax is melted into a pool of liquid dip the end of the wick into it, then attach to the lower centre of the container. Once the wax dries up, the wick adheres to the container perfectly.

Add the Scents or Color: By this time the wax should have completely melted. At this point, add your fragrances and color and mix well. Let it settle on the double boiler for 30 seconds to ensure it is properly mixed. The right concentration should be 1 oz of fragrance for every pound of wax. As for colors, add color until you’re happy with the shade. Remember it will be transparent when hot, but it will get opaque as the wax hardens.

Add the Mixture Into Your Containers: Let the mixture cool off to around 170 degrees F before you can pour some of it into the container. Maintain a light hold on the wick as you pour it in. Leave some of the wax in the boiler. Once done, let the candle cool off for a couple of minutes.

You may notice a sinkhole in the middle of the candle when the wax solidifies. If this happens, repeat the above processes for the wax remaining in the boiler and use the melted wax to fill in the hole. Ensure you only fill up the gap; otherwise, pouring in too much will create another depression in your candle. If you leave the candle with the sinkhole, your wick will be off-centered and will not burn efficiently.

Trim the Wick: Trim the wick to about ¼ an inch above the candle. This will ensure the flame is not too big and doesn’t flicker.

Clean Up: Now that your candle is ready, your work center is probably be messy. You can ball up the newspaper and toss it. If there are stains on the counter, floor, or even the candle container, wipe them off as soon as you can when it’s still liquid. If it has solidified, use a scraper to scrape off all the dried content. Don’t clean your utensils and tools in the sink as the wax will dry up and clog the drain. Scrape off all the wax and dispose of it in the garbage.

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You can now save money by making candles at home! Whether you need some for gifts, for your home decor, or just to light up a room, this short guide will get you the best DIY scented candles you can make at home. Get creative with colors and experiment with the different fragrances!

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Melissa Lobo

Melissa is a young and energetic writer, a mom to a sweet little boy, and a fur-mom to two perfect pooches. Before becoming the Associate Content Director for Project Female, she was a journalist specializing in topics related to women in politics and policy affecting women.

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Reader Interactions

  1. stephanie says

    4 years ago

    I like the idea of dipping the end piece of the wick of the melted wax. I’ve been using either superglue or already hardened wax, but your way sounds better.The only problem I run into is centering the wick. Any ideas? Also, I use liquid candle dye, and I use an old spoon to measure the amount- a little for lighter color.more for darker color. My problem with fragracences is how much to use. Thanks for starting this web.

    • Jessi Wohlwend says

      4 years ago

      I like to leave the wick long and then I wrap the top of it around a popsicle stick or wooden skewer and lay the stick across the top of the container. That way I can make sure the wick stays mostly straight and centered while the wax hardens around it.

      For fragrances, it can definitely be tricky making sure there is enough that it actually smells when you light the candle. The general rule of thumb is 1oz of fragrance oil per pound of wax, but you can adjust it up or down as needed. And be sure not to put the fragrance in too soon or it could burn off and dissipate in the heat—it’s best to put it in when the wax temperature is around 180 to 185 degrees F.

  2. Rose says

    4 years ago

    A little more than 10 days till Christmas and I discovered your website. Already found two things I want to make the pad for coffee and the candles. I have the material for the hotpad I have to see if Wal-Mart still has the wax. How fast can I work? Thank you so much.

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