Mom’s Candle Making Adventure!

Mom’s Candle Making Adventure!

Being mom to two of the Essentially Natural girls has its perks because she gets to be constantly inspired by what we get up to in the DIY department (well, we hope haha)! When mom asked me to make her some soy candles though, I asked why doesn’t she try to make them herself, and it turned out to be a really fun project for her.

In her words:

‘I procrastinated about starting, but don’t wait, just do it!’

There we have it folks...

Here’s how her candle making journey went, as transcribed over a phonecall:

Soy wax candles are very easy to make, and there’s no need for a fancy double boiler. Making your own candles is ideal for load shedding, or for a nice ambience in the home; and you know what’s in them, you’re not burning paraffin like normal candles, and you can choose your own essential oil scents.

Soy wax doesn’t burn hot and fast, but rather burns low and slow - which is more economical, and much preferred!

Here’s her recipe (tried and tested by mom):

For 2 candles, one ylang ylang and one lavender:

300g  soy wax flakes 

100g  coconut oil

wooden wicks - also burns slower, otherwise you can use the soy cotton wicks

essential oils:  ylang ylang and  lavender, about 30 drops each

2 whiskey glass tumblers, deep  aluminium tins, or else repurpose some old glasses lying in the cupboard

Center the wicks in the tumblers by melting a drop of wax on the bottom of the glass/tin and sticking the wick base to that. You may need to trim your wick to fit the height of your container.

Place the soy wax and coconut oil in an aluminium bowl and set it in a saucepan filled with water, to make your own double boiler. Gently melt the wax and coconut oil by heating the water, which in turn heats the aluminium bowl. Don’t let any water get into the wax mixture!

Once melted, pour the wax mixture into the two tumblers/tins, up to about half an inch from the top of the tumblers. Stir in the essential oils while the wax is still warm and liquid. Make sure your wicks are centered. Leave the wax to set up for at least 24 hours. Some people advise leaving the candle to ‘cure’ for 3-4 days for best results, but mom was impatient to try out her candle creations and used them after 24 hours.

Tips From Mom

First burn: it is important to burn the candle for a while until a pool of wax forms from edge to edge of the container. Candles have a ‘memory’ and correctly doing the first burn is important to make sure the wick doesn’t tunnel down the candle when lit (meaning only melting the wax around the wick and wasting the rest). Allow the candle to burn for 1 hour for every inch in diameter, so if the candle is 2 inches wide, allow it to burn for 2 hours. This will stop the candle from tunneling and building up wax on the sides, which is a waste of your beautiful candle.

The wick also needs to draw the wax up in order to burn, so allowing this prolonged first burn will allow subsequent burns to perform better.

Flop proof: the wax mixture can be melted down again and reused! Top it up with more wax or oil, essential oils etc if you need to. It’s flop proof! Which is great for those who are a little scared to waste ingredients or make mistakes.

Don't be scared to make your beautiful soy wax candles!