Archive for the ‘candle wax’ Category

Candle Smoking?

Sunday, December 15th, 2013

candle smokingWhy is My Candle Smoking?

Whenever something is being burned, there will be some amount of smoke.  Naturally, when you limit the amount of oxygen, you will see more smoke than when ample oxygen is supplied.  However, you can prevent your homemade candles from excessively smoking by making your candles the right way in the first place.  There are a few reasons as to why a candle may smoke once lit.  The first check point to examine is whether or not the correct amount of fragrance oil was used in the process.  Using more than the recommended amount of fragrance oil per pound of wax may sound like it is a good idea to have extreme scent, but in the end it is only wasteful (and costly), and can cause your candles to smoke.  Wax has a fragrance load limit.  Since it is a porous object, once each and every pore has been filled, there is no more area for the fragrance to go.

The second reason your candle may be smoking is the wick.  Using the proper wick for the diameter size of the candle is the best way to ensure a clean and even burn in the candle.  Go here to read a very interesting blog post on the science of candle wicks.  A smoking wick will occur if the wick of the candle is too large for the container.  To view a wick suggestion chart for your sized candle container click here  for Natures Garden’s wick recommendations.  Avoid allowing the debris from wick clippings from entering into your melted wax, and keep your wicks trimmed to 1/4″.

Finally, your colorant may cause your candle to smoke.  It is important to know that pigments can clog your wick and can cause increased smoking when burning your candle.  That is why only candle dyes should be used to color the interior wax of candles.  Never use crayons to color your candles as they contain pigments instead of dyes.  When using candle dyes, understand that using alot of candle dye may also cause your candles to smoke more.

How to Solve It!

When it comes to fragrance oil percentage, never use more than the suggested amount of fragrance oil per pound of wax.  Remember, using more may result in a candle with a fragrance oil slick that is a fire hazard.

Do your research first.  In order to know which wick to use in candle making, you must first know your candle’s diameter.  You can figure this out by measuring the bottom of your candle container with a ruler.  You will want to measure horizontally across the center.  Once you have this information, simply look at the wick suggestion chart and select which kind of wick you need.  Keep wick trimmings out of your melted wax, and keep wicks trimmed to 1/4″.  Also, avoid burning your candles where there are fans or drafts.  This can cause your wick to move around and burn too quickly; potentially smoking more.

In candle making temperature is very important.  Many waxes offer a range in temperature for their key steps (melting temperature, scenting temperature, pouring temperature).   It is a very good idea to monitor these temperatures with the help of a testing notebook and thermometer.  Within a few times of making candles, you can have your temperatures down to a specific degree.  With well taken notes, it is possible to have your candle making process replicated exactly time and time again.

Lastly, you always want to avoid using pigments in the interior of your candle.  Only candle dyes should be used to color the interior of your candle wax.

Candle Wax Tips

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

soy wax candlesThe type of wax that you select for candle making is very important to your end product.  Wax has a direct affect on the overall quality of the finished candle.  This is the secret to making the perfect candle; you have to have a good, high quality wax.  The novice belief in candle making is that as long as they add more fragrance, it can compensate for a lower quality wax, and still produce a strong candle.  This is absolutely not true.

To help you understand the importance of wax in candles, let’s think of wax as a sponge and fragrance as water.   Sponges are very porous.  And, when you pour water over a sponge, the sponge fills each pore with water.  The sponge will swell as it fills.  However, as you will notice eventually when the sponge is filled, it can no longer hold any more water.  What then results is an overflow of water and the water will start leaking out from the sponge.  The same concept is true for wax.  Once the pores of the wax have been filled with their maximum capacity of fragrance oil, any additional fragrance oil that is added will settle out of the wax.

What you are left with in this scenario is wasted fragrance oil in the bottom of your pouring pot and a candle that is possibly a fire hazard.  You should never use more than 1.5 ounces of fragrance oil per pound of wax.  Adding additional scent to your candle wax will not increase your scent, instead it is nothing but money down the drain.  That is why the quality of wax that you select for your candle making endeavor is so important.

Pre-blended waxes

Yes, it is true that there are a variety of wax additives that you can include in your candle recipe to manipulate certain qualities in your candles.  But, in our experience, we have found that purchasing a pre-blended candle wax that already includes these additives is the best route to go.  Not only are you saving time, money, and the hassle of testing, but your end product will be exactly what you are looking for in a candle.  Analyzing it, by the time you purchase all of the extra ingredients you need to make a low quality wax into a high quality wax, you will spend more money than if you just purchase the high quality pre-blended wax (like JOY wax) to begin your candle making venture.  Not to mention all the time you just saved yourself too.

Temperature

Another key factor to remember in candle making is that temperature is extremely important.  Anytime that you are working with wax, it is crucial to know the directions for use.  The temperature of waxes varies according to the wax you are using.  And, in candle making temperatures are vital to the process.  Never heat any of your waxes above 250 degrees Fahrenheit.  On a molecular level, heating wax to this extreme temperature will start to break down the wax on a molecular level.  You will also notice if you get wax too hot (above the instructed degrees) the wax may burn, resulting in discoloration of the wax, as well as a burnt smell.  If this does occur, the wax is done.  It cannot be used for candle making any longer.  DO NOT attempt to scent the wax, or over scent the wax to compensate for the burnt smell.

Candle Making- Soy Candles

Wednesday, November 6th, 2013

Soy wax Candles When it comes to candle making, the wax you use is really up to personal choice.

There are quite a few reasons why candle makers select soy wax for their candles.  Some like it due to the fact that soy wax is 100% natural (it is a pure vegetable wax) and it is biodegradable.  Many prefer soy wax because of the long, even, and clean burn the wax provides with less soot.  And, even still, many candle crafters like soy wax because it is an environmentally friendly, renewable resource that American farmers can plant and harvest; also helping the economy too. Some other reasons for why some people prefer using soy wax for their candles are ease of use.  Since this wax is in flake form, it is a breeze to weigh out, work with, and clean up.  And, soy wax is a single pour wax, requiring no repours.

Soy wax is for container candles.  Due to the nature of this natural wax, the finished candle will have a mottled (or frosted) appearance on top.  However, if you do not like this appearance, you can always apply heat to the finished candle with a hot hair dryer or heat gun.

Supplies and Equipment Needed: 
NG 100% Soy Wax
Fragrance Oil
Spectrum Candle Dye or Color Block
Pouring Pot
Thermometer
Glassware
Wicks
Scale
Stainless steel mixing utensil
Cookie Sheet
Hot Glue Gun
Glue Sticks
Stove
Pot

A little behind the scenes knowledge: 

For this candle making process we are going to suggest the double boiler system for melting the wax.  Fill a large pot half way full with tap water.  Place the filled pot onto the stove top burner.  Turn the appropriate burner on medium heat.  Once you have the pouring pot filled with the correct amount of soy wax, place the pouring pot into the water filled pot.  Once the water starts to boil, you will notice that the soy wax is beginning to melt.  As this occurs, you want to occasionally stir the wax to ensure an even temperature.

Carefully place your glassware on a cookie sheet.  Preheat your oven to the lowest temperature possible.  Once the oven is heated, place the cookie sheet with the glassware into the oven.  Allow your glassware to warm in the oven for 10-15 minutes.  Once the allotted time has passed, carefully remove the cookie sheet using oven mitts.  Set these aside. 

The standard fragrance percent for soy candles is 1-1 ½ ounces of fragrance oil per pound of wax.

For measuring purposes, 20 ounces (weight) of soy wax is equivalent to 16 ounces of fluid volume.

Directions for making a soy candle: 

1.  Weigh out the correct amount of soy wax with your scale.
2.  Place your soy wax into your pouring pot and using the double boiler system, heat the wax to 185 degrees Fahrenheit.  Monitor this by using your thermometer.  Please Note:  Heating soy wax hotter than 200 degrees Fahrenheit will discolor the wax, so proper monitoring of the temperature is advised.
3.  While you are waiting on the wax, plug in your hot glue gun.
4.  Once the wax is in a liquid state, add your candle colorant.
5.  Next, add your Natures Garden’s fragrance oil of choice and stir well to incorporate throughout the wax.  The information we provide below about flash point and burnoff is information we have learned over the years that will help make the best soy wax candles.  When making candles, it is important to understand that ingredients affect the end result.  Testing needs to be done by the candle maker for every fragrance that you decide to use.  We provide the information as a guide, but you will still need to do the testing yourself.
      a.  For this step you will need to know the flashpoint of the fragrance oil you selected.  The right temperature is extremely important to ensure that the fragrance oil binds properly with the soy wax.  You also do not want to risk “burnoff”.  Burnoff is the adding of a fragrance oil at too hot of a wax temperature.  Because a flashpoint on a fragrance oil is the highest temperature the fragrance can handle before breaking down, burnoff can affect the scent in the finished candle.  That is why you want to know the proper temperature to add the fragrance oil.  You can find this information right on the label of the Natures Garden fragrance oil.  This information is also in the Important Fragrance Specifics area on the website under each fragrance oil listing.
b. Fragrance Flashpoints give you the answer as to when you add your fragrance oil to the hot wax.  Any flashpoint that is higher than 185 degrees Fahrenheit is added at 185 degrees.  For any flashpoints that are below 185 degrees, they should be added at or below the flashpoint degree.  The key to remember is try not to add the fragrance oil at a temperature that is hotter than its flashpoint.
c.  Some fragrance oils have a very low flashpoint.  In these cases, testing comes into play.  You are balancing flashpoint temperatures with the fact that the wax needs heat in order to bind the scent with the wax.
6.  Once the soy wax has been scented and colored, you will want to stir your wax thoroughly.  Doing this step will help the mixing and binding of the color and scent throughout the wax.
7.  The next step is allow your soy wax to cool at room temperature.  Place your thermometer into the pouring pot and wait until the wax reaches 110 degrees Fahrenheit.  Pouring at this temperature will allow for a smoother surface in your finished candle.  While you are waiting, prep your containers for the pour.
8.  Using your hot glue gun, place a little amount of glue to the bottom of the wick tab.  Then, carefully center the wick to the bottom of the glassware.  Gently, straighten your wick in each glass.
9.  Once your wax is the appropriate temperature (110 degrees F), you will notice the physical appearance of the wax will be slushy like.  At this point, you are now ready to pour your wax.  Slowly, fill each glass to the point where the jar changes shape.  Filling a jar surpassed the point where the jar changes shape will increase your chance of a sink hole in the finished candle.
10.  Once all containers have been poured, allow them to set up and undisturbed at room temperature.
11.   When all candles have completely set up, lid each container to allow for the fragrance to be absorbed by the wax.  This is known as the “cure time.”  For best results, allow your candles to cure for 24-48 hours.
12.  Once the cure time has elapsed, it is now time to trim your wick, and light your homemade soy candle.  Enjoy!

On a Final Note: 

Anytime you burn a candle for the first time, you want to establish a “memory burn.”  A memory burn is a complete wet pool of hot, melted wax over the entire top portion of the candle.  If the first burn is a memory burn, this ensures that every time you burn your candle, you will not have tunneling around the wick or an excess of unmelted wax adhered to the candle jar.  A memory burn also guarantees that the scent throw of your candle will be the best possible since every gram of scented wax is being used.

If you are interested in making your very own soy wax candles, Natures Garden offers a Soy Wax Kit with all the ingredients you need to make soy candles. 

 

 

Smores Candle Recipe

Saturday, August 24th, 2013

lynn1

Smores Candle Recipe brought to you by Lynn of Natures Garden

As many of you know, we are currently having a Natures Garden’s staff challenge.  Our staff members are challenged to choose some of their favorite fragrances and create a product with them. smores-candle-big This challenge allows staff members to have hands-on experience with our products, and it has the potential to provide inspirational ideas for our customers.  WIN-WIN!

Lynn has been with Natures Garden many years, and she has years of experience making candles.  In her spare time, she sells her finished candles at craft bazaars.  Lynn said that she is always trying to come up with new and exciting candles to sell at bazaars.  She came up with the smores candle idea, and I was excited to see the end result.  She nailed it!  Her candles made we want to make real smores to eat!

For those of you who do not know Lynn, she is hard-working, creative, and she said that her motto in life is:  “Live life to its fullest” and “Never give up on your dreams”.  We are quite honored to have her as part of our staff.  Thank you Lynn!

For complete instructions on how to make Lynn’s Smores Candle, please click here.

www.naturesgardencandles.com

Hydrangea Candle Butterfly Tarts

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

crystal1

Hydrangea Candle with Butterfly Wax Tarts

We are having a staff challenge at Natures Garden where we have asked each staff member to choose one of their favorite Natures Garden fragrance oils and create a project pertaining to that fragrance.  Staff members are encouraged to be as creative as possible, using the knowledge they have learned while working at Natures Garden.  This week’s staff challenge was done by Crystal!  Crystal has only worked at Natures Garden for 1 month, and we were blown away by the creativity she used when creating her Hydrangea Candle with butterfly wax tarts.hydragnea candle

Crystal loves floral scents, she loves the colors blue and purple, and she loves butterflies.  Her project depicts a contemporary spin on the various colors found in a hydrangea bush.  She made the candle come alive by adding butterfly tarts.  Very creative, and like nothing we have seen before.  To make the candle, she used Natures Garden’s Pillar of Bliss wax that comes in granulated form.  She melted the very same wax to create her butterfly tarts.  For full instructions on how to make Crystal’s Project, please visit this page.

www.naturesgardencandles.com

What should I charge for my candles?

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

candle price

Customers frequently ask us this question:  What should I charge my customers for my candles? 

This is a question that many candle makers often ask.  Knowing what to charge for your candles is a pivotal point in your business.  You want your price of the candles that you sell to be competitive.  You also want to remember that the candle price should also reflect not only your cost but the time that you put into your candle making procedure as well.

What to charge for my candles?  When I made and sold finished candles, I had an easy equation that I used to figure out the price I would charge my customers for my candles.  First, I added up all of my expenses.  This told me how much it cost me to make the candle I was going to sell.  When I sold my candles at wholesale prices to stores, I charged the customer double what I paid to make the candle.  When I sold directly to retail customers myself (without sales reps involved), I charged the customer triple what I paid to make the candle.

After I was in business a while, I realized that in order to sell more products, I would need to get help from other people.  That is where Independent Sales Reps were introduced in my candle company.  When a candle sale was made by a sales rep, the sales rep received 1/3 of every sale, 1/3 went to cover the cost of making the candle, and 1/3 was my profit.

Fundraisers were conducted the very same way:  1/3 of the sale went to the non-profit organization, 1/3 went to cover the cost of making the products, and 1/3 went to me as profit.

To view how hiring an independent sales rep for your business can help to increase your sales, please click on this link.

I hope this helps you when you price out your candles.

Happy Candle Making!

Deborah of Natures Garden

How much candle wax do I need to fill my jars?

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

candle wax

 

How much candle wax do I need to fill my jars? 

One of the most frequent questions we are asked by new candle makers is:  How much candle wax will I need to fill my jars?  And, the solution is really simple to find out with this equation.

Basically, you will find that 1 pound (by weight) of candle wax will equal 20 ounces (in volume) when pouring into containers or molds.  With this knowledge, you can use simple math to figure out how much candle wax you will need to fill your containers or molds.

Take for example that you are making 6 oz. hexagon container candles for a wedding.  For this order, you have to make a total of 200 wedding candles.  The question you are asking yourself is, “how much candle wax will you need to fill all 200- 6oz. jars”?  Here is the equation to figure it out:  Take 200 x 6 to come up with your total weighted ounces.  For this example, the answer is equal to 1200 ounces.  Now, you must divide your total weighted ounces (1200 ounces) by 20 (volume ounces) to find out the total pounds of wax you will need for your wedding (60 pounds of wax).

Let’s try one more example since the 16oz. jar size is one of the most popular sized jars that candle makers sell.  Now, you want to make 24 candles, all of which will be poured into 16 oz. jars.  This equation would compute to:  24 (the amount you have to make) x 16 (the ounce size of the jar)= 384 (the total number of ounces).  Now take 384 and divide this by 20 (the volume) and the answer you get is 19.2 pounds of wax (thus you should likely get 20 pounds of wax to cover yourself.

Remember the equation:  Number of Candles you want to make  (multiplied by)  Volume of your containers  (divided by)  20 = Total number of pounds of wax you will need to do your project.

We hope that this simple equation will help you figure out how much wax you will need in the future.

Happy Candle Making!

Deborah of Natures Garden

What Are Wet Spots in Candles?

Monday, July 29th, 2013
soy464

Using a wax like Golden Foods Soy Wax 464, and a few preventative measures can help eliminate wet spots from your candles.

 

What are Wet Spots in Candles?

The term “wet spots” in candle making refers to the spots or patches in container candles that appear to have air, or a wet spot showing through the glass or transparent container and the candle wax.  Wet spots are extremely common and are one of the most common complaints among candle makers.   However, wet spots will not inhibit the functionality of your candle, just the aesthetic appeal.

What causes Wet Spots?

1.  Pouring hot candle wax into too cold of a container.
2.  Pouring your melted candle wax at a temperature much cooler than what is suggested.
3.  Using a pillar/votive wax for container candles instead of a container wax that is formulated for that purpose.
4.  Cooling your candles too fast; subjecting your candles to an environment which has drafts or is lower than 70-72 degrees.
5.  Pouring candle wax into dirty containers.

How to Avoid Wet Spots?

1.  Try to eliminate or prevent wet spots by thoroughly washing and drying your containers before using.  This will get any dust or debris out that may have fallen into your jars.

2.  Be sure to use a container wax so that your wax adheres properly to your container.  Votive/pillar waxes are not suggested for container candles.  Wax like Golden Foods Soy Wax 464, is a great start.  This type of soy wax has a wonderful adhesion to glass containers, therefore minimizing the chances of getting wet spots.

3.  Heat your jars/containers at the lowest setting on a cookie sheet in the oven for twenty minutes prior to filling them.  This also allows for the candle wax to cool slowly which allows for better adhesion to the container.

4.  Another thing that tends to reduce the occurrence of wet spots is pouring your candles inside the box the candle jars came in.  This helps to insulate your candles while they cool slowly.  Allow your candles to set up at room temperature, in a room that has no drafts.

5.  If you start to see the wet spots taking place as the candle is cooling, this means you should consider increasing your pour temperature.  Testing with a thermometer is key here.  Follow the manufacturer’s recommended pour temperature.

 

Unique Soy Wax Candles

Monday, July 29th, 2013

teachersWhat’s your name & Your Company Name:  Melissa Brown and my company name is D~Liteful Creations Candle Co.

I have always enjoyed candles and always bought from big well-known companies but I always seemed to feel I was throwing my money away because the candles would always burn so fast and the scent was never strong enough. One day I decided I was going to do some research and find out how to make candles and what types of wax there was. Then I decided on Soy wax because of all the benefits it has. So I started experimenting and teaching myself all the basics of candle making. I started out with just jar candles only and then started making specialty candles that I love creating and have also moved into body products since my business has grown.  I have been creating my own products since 2010 and it started out as a hobby but has grown into a business that I enjoy and love.

This creation is called “Teachers Have Class”  Back to School.

NG Golden Foods Soy Wax 464
NG Pillar of Bliss Wax for whipped look
NG CD 20 wicks
NG Break Bar Mold for math embed
NG Square Market Mold tray (for decorating and painting to make sign)
McIntosh Apple Fragrance oil

Facebook page: www.facebook.com/DLiteful.Creations.Candle.Co

Twitter: www.twitter/DlitefulCreatio

Instagram: www.instagram.com/dlitefulcreations#

How to Make Clamshell Tarts

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013
clamkit

If you are on the fence about possibly making your own clamshell wax tarts, this clamshell wax tart kit will show you just how easy it is!

 

 

How to Make Clamshell Tarts

Everybody knows someone who just loves to burn tarts in their oil burner.  I have a sister that pays top dollar for those tarts, and swears that they are the only tarts she will use.  I took on this challenge at least that is what I thought it was, and have now successfully changed her over to making her own custom tarts.

My sister has a  scent for every season type.  She had her go to fragrances.  A light floral for spring, a zesty citrus kick scent for summer, a mossy green outdoor scent for fall, and the tried and true Apple Cinnamon for winter.  This was one concept I could not grasp.  I felt compelled to show her the ways of the scenting world, and since I work for Natures Garden, I knew a few in and outs.

For anyone looking to start making their own tarts, Natures Garden offers a Clamshell Wax Tart Kit.  This was my starting place for her as well.  What is really admirable about this kit is just how easy it is.  The kit comes with everything that you would need to make your first time clamshell tarts.  Wax, Fragrance Oils, Candle Dyes, Clamshells, Pipettes, Instructions, in fact this kit is so easy, it practically makes itself.

For those of you who already have the supplies to make tarts at home, here is the list of ingredients you will need for this clamshell tart recipe:

1 Pound Pillar of Bliss Wax
1 oz. Apple Cinnamon Fragrance Oil
1 oz. Vanilla Bean Fragrance Oil
Red Liquid Candle Dye
Yellow Liquid Candle Dye
Pipettes
4 Clamshell Tart containers
Stainless Steel Spoon
Stove
Paper Bowls (2)
Toothpick
Melting Container

Step 1: Place 1 pound wax into your melting container.  Using the double boiler method, melt wax on low on the stove until the wax is completed melted. Get your four empty clamshells ready.

Step 2: Preparing the Apple Cinnamon Original Tarts: Pour 1/2 of the melted wax into a paper bowl.  Start by adding 1 drop of red liquid candle dye; add more if desired.

Step 3: Add 1 ounce of Apple Cinnamon Original fragrance oil to the melted wax. Stir. Keep remaining melted wax on stove at a low temp setting.

Step 4:  Bend the side of the paper bowl to make a pour spout, and quickly pour the melted wax into two clamshells. Do not move the clamshells until the wax has completely hardened and set up.

Step 5: Preparing the Vanilla Bean Tarts: Pour the other half of the melted wax into a paper bowl. Using a pipette, add 1 drop of yellow liquid candle dye.  Add more if desired.

Step 6: Add 1 ounce of Vanilla Bean fragrance oil to the melted wax.  Stir.

Step 7: Bend the side of the paper bowl to make a pour spout.  Quickly pour the melted wax into two clamshells. Do not move the clamshells until the wax has completely hardened and set up.

 Step 8: Break off chunks of the clamshell tart and place them into a potpourri burner and fill your room with the wonderful aromas of Apple Cinnamon and Vanilla Bean!

It is just as simple as that.  It did not take long to make these wonderful little clamshell tarts, and they smell amazing in your oil burners too.  Feel free to use any of Natures Gardens Fragrance Oils to make your own clamshell tarts.  My sister is super excited to get started on her own personal clamshell tart line, and I have a feeling I will be getting some homemade tarts for a gift very soon.

Fragrance & Fun for Everyone

Inspire, Create, and Dominate!

Sparkles!!! Nicole

(Corporate Manager of Natures Garden Candle Supplies)

www.naturesgardencandles.com

Natures Garden is not responsible for the performance of any of the recipes provided on our website. Testing is your responsibility. If you plan to resell any recipes we provide, it is your responsibility to adhere to all FDA regulations if applicable. If there are ingredients listed in a recipe that Natures Garden does not sell, we cannot offer any advice on where to purchase those ingredients. We also do not offer any advice on formulating or altering recipes.