Hello, I know this thread was started nearly a year ago but I am new to DG and I make soy candles.
I didn't have to do all the research because I bought my aunts business and inventory.
However I do try new things. I am big on using many different kinds of containers.
Soy wax is expensive. I believe it is a healthier candle though. Where I live the wax has to be shipped a long ways and this adds to the over all cost of the candles which is disheartening. I still make them, I don't make a huge amount of money but just making them is soothing for me. Just smelling the wax melting is enjoyable. Also it is fun checking out new fragrances.
I would like to chat with anybody making soy candles as I always have new questions.
I've made soy candles for my own use and prefer it to wax. It cleans up easier and you can use the melted wax as hand balm. It seems to make clearer and stronger scents. The color comes out a bit milky though. I think I like best that it is a renewable resource.
I make soy candles and have a website. My candle making room smells like a candle shop. There are several different places to get the wax. I pay $29. 75 for 20lbs. How much do you pay if you don't mind my asking.
Hello everyone! I am brand new to this site as of today, but have enjoyed greatly all the different topics available! Wow!
I have been making & selling soy candles for the last 3+ years and then branched from that into developing therapeutic & healing body products, that save money, the environment, support USA farmers & have multi-functionality. I developed the first & only massage oil candle/body butter on the market, that has healing & pain relieving properties. But I am wanting to start to phase out the soy wax, candle scents, etc. I have hundreds & hundreds! For anyone not wanting to invest a huge amount and just dabble this might be an option for me to reduce inventory & you to save some money as well. Just an idea! I found testing wicks was a HUGE issue, finding the right wick for the right container is crucial! ALOT of testing is necessary, if you want a quality finished product & not have wax built up on the walls of the candle & allow it to burn to the bottom.
I could go through all the benefits of soy, there are several!
*One it's a renewable resource, its cleaner burning & virtually has no soot production, so it won't leave the black nasty on your ceilings/walls & LUNGS! I am a nurse by profession and working on masters, so research is key for me, I wanted to know all I could about it before jumping in..:) Paraffin is a by-product of oil production, with that being said, it also has been linked to carry carcinogens, which are cancer causing agents. So I stay clear from ANY paraffin was, petroleum oil (vaseline), etc. products, for this very reason. The studies are not all conclusive & ongoing, but I believe in time it will show candles from paraffin could be linked to various respiratory problems. Asthma triggers, emphysema, COPD, etc.
Soy also lasts 1.5 x LONGER than paraffin.
Melting point of paraffin is HOT! Don't quote me..but I was thinking like 160-220F
Serious significant burns! Soy does not, it's melting point is around 120F NO significant burns..important for everyone, but more so around pets, children, etc. JUST in case there were an oopsy!
Once you find a container & wick that works stick with it! I used all different containers, when I started and it was a learning curve. I can save you alot of time and money! lol Learning from my mistakes! lol When you change depth & diameter it affects what type of wick you should be using to get the best burn.
Someone mentioned on double & triple scents..? You add to much scent/oil the candle WILL NOT SET UP right. So in order to be able to have it handle that much scent there are additives you must put with your wax.
Stearic acid can also be added to make the wax harder & not so soft, which will also give you a bit longer burn hours. I started messing with the chemistry and developed my own formula. I can get in an 8oz candle about 110-130 burn hours typically, where as some may only get 80-100hrs. I dont' have the info with me now, but my tea lights were 4-6 hrs! If I remember right, they were well over double the typical paraffin. So I was pretty proud of that:)
I would be happy to help anyone who wants it. I have been tempted to put together a candle kit of the necessary things needed, without having to dump hundreds of dollars into getting started. The shipping is what really will come back to bite you on wax! I have hundreds of pounds still left.
Another thing someone mentioned about keeping wick centered. Here's what I did for an economical version of the expensive versions. Take popsicle sticks, drill small hole in center of stick. Then feed wick through center and rest stick across the top of jar! Easy & economical!
flightnurse, your post is fascinating. I am brand new to soaps & candles, and doing as much reading and researching as I can before I jump in. But it will be my "extra cash" endeavor when I retire early next year. I agree with you that wicking will be the most serious challenge. Everything I've read about it so far has confused me. Why are there so many different wicks? Most candlemaking sites will just advise you to "experiment, experiment, experiment". Doesn't this get expensive? How much wax and fragrance, how many wicks and jars will I have to go through to get it right? Sheesh.
I found a site a while ago that did give some specific recommendations, based on the size of the jar, but I neglected to bookmark it and LOST IT! How dumb. Do you have any advise on WHERE TO START?
purpbutfly i love your candles! you should list your website for anyone who wants to purchase your wonderful work--or is that against dave's garden rules?
flight nurse i would like to read more about what you are doing now and about your massage butter
Ok, I think I hit the mother lode on this discussion. Ya'll all sound like experts, and I need expert advice.
First off, I live in the Self-Contained Veggie Gardens forum. I'm into growing veggies, not making candles. But, I'm working on a new design for my 5-gallon grow buckets and I need ya'lls advice based on your experience, if you all don't mind.
Part of my design incorporates a "cookie" made out of pegboard, which is a pressed board composition. It's sort of like particle-board, and, like particle board, will crumble and break apart if it gets wet. This cookie will be sitting inside the bucket as the base for my potting mix. The potting mix will stay consistently moist (and sometimes wet) during the time it takes to grow my veggies from seeds/seedlings - approximately 7-9 months. Below the "cookie" is the water reservoir. There is a space between the cookie and the water in the reservoir so the cookie will not sit directly in any water. The moisture it encounters will come from the moist/wet potting mix draining down through the pegboard holes into the water reservoir.
My dilemma is that I need to waterproof the cookie. The Home Depot guy recommended a product called KILZ (the stuff used to waterproof wallboard against mold) and I bought a gallon. He said I could dip the "cookie" into the KILZ which will dry leaving a plastic coating on it. It will also go into all the little holes in the "cookie" and seal them, too.
The other option I researched online (re: waterproofing) utilizes paraffin. The recipe was for waterproofing tents. It calls for "melting" 1 lb. of paraffin in 1 gallon of white gasoline, then painting it on and into the fibres of the tent. The gasoline acts as a solvent and allows the paraffin to penetrate into the tent fibres. Then the gasoline evaporates leaving only the paraffin which has saturated into the fabric.
My question is whether, from your experience with candle waxes, this could work as an adequate waterproof process for my pegboard "cookies?" I was thinking of making the concoction, dipping each "cookie," and hanging it up to drip dry, leaving a coating of the paraffin as a waterproof sealer. The paraffin would coat all the pegboard holes, sealing them, too.
Would more than one quick "dipping" work better? (adding a thicker coating?)
Is there a better coating you know of that would do what I need done?
Where in the world do I buy paraffin?
Just another bit of info for you. Once the "cookie" is in place in the bucket, it won't be disturbed in any way, so little chance the coating would be scratched off.
Thank you, in advance, for any guidance you could provide. I need to do this ASAP. I've included a picture of my "cookie".
Interesting concept:) Well I have experimented with paraffin & let me tell you this...it's melting point is MUCH greater than soy, I'm thinking off top of my head somewhere like 160 to 220 F..VERY SERIOUS burns if you splash & believe me it does happen even to the most careful. So have a bowl of ice cold water, even with ice cubes as a back up to dip in for a beginner. I wish I had! lol
Paraffin is a HARD wax. So if you so choose that may work for you, but I'm wondering how long term it will be for you, in the long run? How warm the soil gets & if its setting outside? I don't know much on the growing side, so if it get's really hot, theoretically the was could melt. But given MP being so high, who knows? I think if given those 2 choices I would go for KILZ personally, or some kind of polyurethane. As far as your candle making...don't expect alot of money making:) It is fun & a great hobby, but it can get expensive! There are some very reputable companies, however they say experiment, experiment for a reason! Alot of them don't know & that way they can sell you more product to experiment yet again!:) lol
The recommendations they give do help! Word of caution..I have not always had the best luck with all of them. The diameter of your container is ESSENTIAL! I have found it to be more accurate by the sites that give the oz, along with diameter of container, otherwise you will have unburned wax hugging the wall of your jar. When I first started experimenting I used whatever container I could find. BAD IDEA! It throws WAY to many variables into your mix of conclusions & final product. KEEP IT SIMPLE. Find 1 or 2 different sizes, with appropriate wicks & stick with them, finding the correct wick for them. My personal recommendation to start is to use the 8oz mason jar or even 16oz. Just remember you will need a larger wick to burn a larger well for your 16oz. I will try to look up some of the sites I have used & it could save you alot of experimentation & money in the long run. Why re-invent the wheel when you don't have too?! lol
i have a hot plate type thing made for melting candle wax without using the wick--you've all seen them i am sure--
that is what i use for candles that leave all the wax on the sides or that the wick somehow gets buried or whateve
as for not making money for the hobby-i don't make candles but i do make soap and over the years lots of other items and you really don't make it for the money since mass production will always cost less--but i do like to sell enough to keep in supplies --
My daughter and I would like to try soy wax in container candles. I read somewhere that you need to use larger wicks, or perhaps multiple wicks. We use 3 and 4 inch containers. What are your suggestions?
Aw yes, Well nice to meet you "mom" ^_^ I could give you some of the websites that I purchase my supplies from if you are interested. I haven't made any candles in awhile busy doing too many other things. Soy is really good to work with cleans up with hot soapy water and makes your hands soft if you get it on yourself.
Juanita has been purchasing most of our supplies from Peak. We only do this in the winter, for our own use, and have a great time doing it. I like the fact that soy does not produce as much smoke and soot. We tried it before, but they did not burn well, and I guess it was because we did not have the proper wicks. Can't wait until I tell Juanita that we have been communicating.
I'm also new to Soy candle making...about 3 weeks into it & I really love it. I made a bad batch of votives today which has left me frustrated. I used mold release and the votives woudn't come out of the molds and the wax seemed to crack. I ended up taking the wax out with a knife and when I did I noticed the wax seemed sort of mushy even 4 hours after pouring. Can anyone tell me what happened? This was my 5th batch of votives and the first time this has happened.
[quote="purpbutfly"]Did you use straight soy? If so that is why. Who do you get your soy wax from? There is usually a list of waxes for votives and pillars. [/quote]
I got the wax from Candlescience.com. The strange thing is i'm using the same wax I did in prior batches that came out fine. I'm wondering if somehow I didn't put the dye and scent in at the right temp. I guess it's all part of the learning process!! LOL!
Hm well I know you can put the dye in when the wax is hot but the scent towards the end but I don't think that has anything to with them turning out mushy unless you put too much scent in. And Candlescience is good but I've never ordered wax from them. However I did order from Peak once and never again.
Hello again, all. One year later and still experimenting. Trying to get that wick thing down. It's been frustrating to say the least. Even wicks that are expressly made for soy wax do not always work well. If it says "for 3 inch diameter candles", (such as Simple Soy 3 or Eco Soy 12), rest assured it will just about burn a 2 inch votive. I gave up, and started double-wicking almost every jar. TWO Eco 12s in a 3 inch container will almost always give a good melt pool, all the way out to the sides of the glass, and 1 inch deep. Almost always. Sometimes, even this double wicking will just sit there with weak flames and end up drowning in the wax. The fragrance oil and the dye have an effect on the burning, so even more experimenting is necessary. It gets expensive.
I too was having problems with wicks. I have finally found a good one and use it for all size containers. They are made from Hemp, and burn really well. A nice even burn, hardly any soot at all after blowing out.
Thanks for the recommendation! I just bought some CD wicks but the candles are still curing so I don't know the results yet. I'm going to try the hemp wicks next. The reviewers at the website give them high marks for soy wax..
Well I'm Carmel I live back in my hometown in City of Pines. A mother, a wife, a sister and a friend. I have 1 kid that is now teenager and have been married a couple of years ago. I started my online candle making business way back 2004. Now, I have my own business platform that brought me success for years.
Soy wax has been part of the candle making family now for a little more than a decade. But in those 10 years or so it has filled a void. More candle makers are searching for natural materials with which to create candles. The only material up until this point has been beeswax -- and that type of wax can be expensive if it's the only type of wax you use.