Soy Candles: Eco-Friendly and Better for Your Health

If you love candles as much as me, then you probably have candles in every room of your house – even the bathroom! And that probably doesn’t stop you buying some more when another one catches your eye in the Supermarket Home & Décor aisle.

Although the focus has always been very much on scented candles (even in my own blogs), unscented candles, can actually be very handy at times and even without a fragrance, they can set a mood very well whether brightening up a dull room or adding some “fun” to a boring living space. I personally think they’re absolutely great when you’re in the mood of a flickering candle without the added smell.

Another added benefit of scent-free candles is that you can burn them when you have guests over with allergies to certain scents. Allergies and sensitivities are actually really common – any kind of traditional candle can set some people’s allergic reactions off like crazy (perhaps something that party hosts need to bear in mind when they have guests over)!

Luckily for all those candle lovers who suffer from allergies yet still crave that cosy, warm feel of a candle burning – there is a simple and affordable solution. And that is – soy candles.

Soy wax was actually discovered some 60 years later after traditional paraffin wax. Before I go on and sing praises for this amazing discovery please note that as with everything, there are pros and cons. If you’re a regular reader of my blogs you’ll know what I’m about to say next … yes, that’s right I am indeed in the process of writing another blog article all about paraffin wax so keep an eye out for that.

So – back to soy wax – as I was saying, it is most famous for being a greener alternative to paraffin wax, burning much more cleanly so that means candle lovers with allergies can still enjoy them without risking an allergy attack. Aside from the wax being non-toxic, it’s also produced naturally from soybeans and is both renewable and biodegradable. Thus, good for your health as well as the environment!

Right – so with all this talk of soy candles, I think it’s only right to have a quick step by step tutorial on how to make some soy candles of your very own! Today’s guide will be on how to make your own votive soy wax candles – a perfectly cosy addition to your home especially if you or those you live with have any allergies. So, get your supplies ready and join me in this little candle making adventure.

What You Will Need to Make 8 Votive Soy Candles

Step One: Measure and Melt the Wax

The first step is to measure the wax using a scale. Once you have exactly the right amount of wax ready to go, simply melt it on a stovetop in the double boiler. I typically melt the wax on medium to medium-high heat. Once the wax has reached a temperature of approximately 77 degrees Celsius, remove the double boiler from heat. I prefer to use a thermometer with a clip so that I can attach it to the side of the double boiler. This just makes remembering to watch the temperature easier.

Step Two: Add the Dye (Optional)

If you are using dye for this project, this will be the time to add it. I’m going to use blue dye for my votive candles today because I am making blueberry-scented soy candles. Allow the wax to cool for a few minutes before you add the dye or fragrance. Be sure to shake the bottle of dye well before you add it to the wax or alternatively add in the dye chips. Stir the candle dye into the wax with a heat-resistant utensil; I’m going to use a wire whisk because I want to make sure that the dye and fragrance oil are thoroughly blended with the wax.

I usually add about 10-15 drops of candle dye. Since I enjoy being as creative as I can with my DIY projects, I’m going to mix two shades of dye to try and create the exact shade of blue I have in mind. I want a dusky, medium-dark hue with a hint of purple, which should be close to the colour of fresh blueberries. I’m going to use eight drops of medium blue and four drops of purple, and I think that should do the trick.

Mixing Dye Colours

Blending dye colours can be a great deal of fun, so don’t be afraid to experiment with this – whether that’s with liquid dye or solid dye chips! By blending two or more hues, you can concoct some amazing shades, including dark orange, midnight blue, turquoise, pale maple, olive green, and salmon pink.

Step Three: Add the Fragrance Oil (Optional)

If you plan to use fragrance oil in these candles, this is the time to add that. I usually add about 30ml to 50ml of fragrance oil to 500g of soy wax. Stir the fragrance oil as thoroughly as the dye. I’m going to use blueberry because I have been craving blueberry pie recently, and I’d rather satisfy that urge with pretty candles and keep my waistline as it is!

Combining Fragrance Oils

Combining fragrance oils is as much fun as blending hues. A few that seem to be particularly popular at this time of year are: candy cane and chocolate, gingerbread and vanilla cream, and holly berry and pine. (Remember if you’re planning on selling these on, you’ll need a separate SDS sheet specifically for this new scent – so it’s probably best to avoid mixing them up)

Step Four: Pour the Wax Into the Votive Moulds

The next step will be to pour the wax into the votive moulds. Once the wax has cooled down to approximately 67 degrees Celsius, you should be able to safely pour it into the moulds. Fill each mould to the top with wax.

Step Five: Insert the Wicks

Carefully insert one wick in the centre of each votive candle. Be sure to do this gently, and wait until the wax has solidified a bit. If the wax is not at least slightly hardened, the wicks will not remain in place. To keep it in place you can use a wooden peg or pencils lying at the top of the candle.Step Six: Let the Wax Dry

At this point, all you need to do is allow the wax plenty of time to dry. Leave the candles where they are, and avoid moving them for at least four to six hours. Once they have completely hardened, they will be ready to display and burn.

My soy candles are close to the shade I was aiming for, but I might add one or two drops of dark green next time. But overall, I’m pretty chuffed. They are as pretty as I had hoped they would be. That’s the end of the post, but keep an eye out for the next one in 2 weeks time!

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