How to Make Candles: A Simple DIY Guide for Beginners JANUARY 16, 20249 MIN READ
How to Make Candles: A Simple DIY Guide for Beginners

Candles have long been celebrated for their aesthetic appeal and their ability to create a cozy and warm atmosphere, particularly those infused with delightful scents, unique shapes, and eco-friendly materials. And guess what? Making your own candles at home is simpler than it seems, and it opens doors to endless creativity.

Whether you're a beginner looking to start a new hobby or an entrepreneur eager to dive into the candle-making business, this guide on how to make candles is your starting point. From the essential materials needed to step-by-step instructions on how to make candles at home, we'll cover everything you need to know. Ready to start creating your own beautiful, scented candles? Let's dive in!

Materials Needed to Make Candles

Embarking on your candle-making journey begins with gathering the right materials. Here's a comprehensive list of everything you'll need to start making your own candles:

  • Wax: As the foundation of the candle, candle wax is made of various types of materials, like soy, paraffin, beeswax, and palm wax. Each type has its unique properties and burning characteristics. Soy wax is popular for its clean burn and eco-friendliness, while beeswax offers a natural, subtle honey scent.
  • Wicks: Essential for burning, candle wicks are available in various sizes and types. The size of the wick correlates with the size of the candle. Cotton wicks are a common choice, but there are also wood wicks that create a cozy, crackling sound. You can also learn how to make a candle wick by yourself using cotton twine or balsa wood sticks.
  • Containers or Molds: These determine the shape and size of your candle. You can use anything from purpose-made candle molds to everyday household items like mason jars, teacups, or tin cans.
  • Fragrance Oils: To add aroma to your candles, select fragrance oils or essential oils that are safe for candle making. The amount of oil used will depend on the type of wax and the intensity of fragrance you desire.
  • Dye Blocks or Liquid Dye (Optional): If you wish to add color to your candles, you can use either dye blocks or liquid dyes specifically designed for candle making. They mix seamlessly with melted wax and come in a spectrum of colors.
  • Melting Pot: A double boiler or a designated melting pot is essential for safely melting the wax. If you don't have a double boiler, you can create one by placing a larger pot or a heat-safe bowl over a smaller pot of boiling water.
  • Stirring Utensil: A simple spoon or a stir stick is needed for stirring the wax and blending in fragrances or dyes, ensuring an even distribution of heat, color, and aroma.
  • Thermometer: Keeping track of the wax temperature is key for successful candle making. A thermometer ensures you add fragrance at the right temperature and pour the wax at an optimal heat.
  • Pouring Jug: For transferring melted wax into the container, a pouring jug with a spout helps control the flow and minimize spills.
  • Scale: To measure the amount of wax and fragrance accurately, a kitchen scale is a must-have. This ensures consistency and quality in your candle making.
  • Wick Centering Tool or Chopsticks: These tools help in keeping the wick centered and straight while the wax solidifies.
  • Safety Gear: Safety should always be a priority. Use heat-resistant gloves to protect your hands from hot wax and containers and aprons to protect your clothing.
  • Newspaper or Wax Paper: To protect your working surface from spills and drips, covering it with newspaper or wax paper is a good practice.

With these materials at hand, you're well-equipped to start your candle-making adventure. Remember, the quality of your materials greatly influences the outcome of your candles, so choose wisely and have fun experimenting!

7 Key Steps to Making Candles

7 Key Steps to Making Candles

Creating candles is both an art and a science. To ensure a smooth and successful process, follow these seven key steps on how to make candles from scratch:

Step 1. Prepare and Clean Containers and Supplies

Before you begin, make sure all your containers and supplies are clean and dry. Any residue or moisture in your containers can affect how the wax sets and how the candle burns. Wipe your containers with a clean cloth and ensure your supplies are organized and within reach for a smooth candle-making process.

Step 2. Measure Wax

Start by determining how much wax you'll need. A general rule of thumb is to double the volume of your container. To measure this, you can use wax flakes, which are easier to handle and melt more uniformly than solid blocks of wax. Weigh the wax flakes using a kitchen scale for precise measurements. This is particularly important for consistency, especially if you're planning to make multiple candles.

Step 3. Melt Wax

Melting the wax is a pivotal step. Place the wax in a melting pot or double boiler and gently heat it. Keep the temperature steady and avoid overheating, which can cause the wax to discolor or burn. Use a thermometer to monitor the temperature – the ideal melting point varies depending on the type of wax used.

Step 4. Scent Candles

Once the wax is melted, it's time to scent candles. Carefully monitor the melted wax using the thermometer until it reaches the optimal temperature for adding fragrance oils. This is typically between 185°F (85°C) and 200°F (93°C), but it can vary based on the wax and fragrance type you choose.1 Gently pour your chosen fragrance oil into the wax. A general guideline for the fragrance-to-wax ratio is to use approximately 1 ounce of fragrance oil per pound of wax.2 This ensures a balanced scent that is neither too overpowering nor too faint. Thoroughly stir the mixture to ensure even distribution of the fragrance throughout the wax.

Step 5. Place and Stabilize the Wick

While the wax cools slightly, place the wick in your container. Center and stabilize the wick using a wick holder or a homemade solution, like two chopsticks placed across the container's opening. Secure the wick's base to the bottom of your container using a bit of melted wax.

Step 6. Pour Wax

When the wax has cooled to a temperature around 140°F to 160°F (60°C to 71°C), it's ready to be poured.3 Slowly pour the wax into the container, leaving a small space at the top. Pouring at a lower temperature reduces the likelihood of cracks and air bubbles forming in the set candle.

Step 7. Wait for the Candle to Solidify

Let your candle cool at room temperature for at least 24 hours. Avoid moving the candle during this time, as vibrations can cause imperfections. After the candle has completely solidified, trim the wick to about a quarter inch above the wax. This step is essential for ensuring a clean and even burn.

Following these steps meticulously will not only make the process smoother but also enhance the quality of your homemade candles. Each step is crucial for achieving a beautiful, well-functioning candle.


As we conclude our guide on how to make candles, we hope you feel inspired and equipped to start your candle-making adventure. Each step, from preparing your containers to waiting for the candle to solidify, is an opportunity to infuse your personal touch and flair. As you continue to explore ideas for candle making and experiment with different scents, colors, and shapes, your skills will grow, and so will the uniqueness of your candles. Whether these candles light up your home or brighten someone else's day, the satisfaction of creating something beautiful and functional is unparalleled.

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How to make scented candles?

To make scented candles, follow these simple steps:

  1. Get wax, a wick, container, fragrance oils, a double boiler, and a thermometer.
  2. Melt the wax in a double boiler.
  3. Stir fragrance oil into the melted wax at around 185°F (85°C).
  4. Secure the wick in the container.
  5. Pour the melted wax into the container.
  6. Let the candle cool and solidify for at least 24 hours.
  7. Trim the wick to about 1⁄4 inch.

How to make candles with essential oils?

  1. Get wax, essential oils, a wick, a container, a double boiler, and a thermometer.
  2. Heat wax in the double boiler.
  3. After melting, add about 10 drops of essential oil per 1 pound of wax at around 185°F (85°C).
  4. Secure the wick in the container's center.
  5. Pour the scented wax into the container, keeping the wick centered.
  6. Let the candle cool and harden for at least a day.
  7. Trim the wick to ¼ inch.

How to make soy wax candles?

To make soy wax candles:

  1. Get soy wax, a wick, a container, a double boiler, fragrance oil (optional), and a thermometer.
  2. Heat the soy wax in a double boiler until melted (~122°F/50°C).
  3. Mix fragrance oil into melted wax, if desired.
  4. Attach the wick to the container's bottom.
  5. Pour the wax into the container, keeping the wick centered.
  6. Let the candle solidify, then trim the wick to 1/4 inch.

How to make candles smell stronger?

To make candles smell stronger:

  • Opt for high-quality, concentrated fragrance oils.
  • Ensure the right percentage of fragrance oil to wax, typically 6-10%.
  • Mix fragrance oils thoroughly with wax at about 185°F (85°C).
  • Use the right size wick for your candle. An undersized wick can lead to poor scent throw.
  • Allow your candles to cure for 1-2 weeks, which helps the scent oils fully bind with the wax.