Soy wax is very flexible and allows you to cast and mold it into a wide variety of shapes and forms. Soy retains a lot of fine detail, so you can make some stunning candles with it.
For the same sized candle, soy burns about twice as long as a paraffin wax candle. Soy burns cleaner with less soot and smoke. If you make your candle wrong it will smoke, produce a lot of soot and possibly spit melted wax while burning. It does not matter what type of wax you used.
Alright, let's make a batch of soy votive candles!
- 1 pound soy wax (flake or chip form)
- Candle wicks with metal tabs
- Votive holders
- Candle dye (suitable for soy wax)
- Fragrance oil
- UV-inhibitor (optional)
- Double boiler
- votive molds
- Cookie sheet
- 4 cup measuring cup – glass, it has to be able to handle the heat
- Wire whisk – Get one specifically for candle making
Set up the double boiler load it with the wax chips. Melt all of the chips into a liquid. Clip the thermometer on the side and heat until it reaches 175 degrees F. Maintain the wax temperature at 175 degrees F. Depending on the brand of wax you are using it will have a flash point between 230 and 380 degrees F.
Flash point is the temperature at which the wax will become unstable enough to flame and not catch fire.
Warm up the votive molds. Room temperature votive molds tend to leave drag lines on the beloved candle. Place the molds on a cookie sheet. Set the oven to low. Pop them in. Leave the molds in the oven until it is time to pour the candles.
Perform this step while maintaining the temperature of the melted wax at 175 degrees F.
Add the dye to the melted wax. Add the dye slowly, you can always add more dye for a stronger and bolder color, but you can not remove excess dye from the melted wax.
A good rule of thumb is to start out with 8 drops of dye per pound of wax. Stir the color into the wax thoroughly. I like to use a metal whisk that I use only for candle making. Candle making chemicals do not go well with prepared food. If the color is not as strong as desired add one to two drops and stir it in. Continue until the wax has reached the desired color.
If desired, add the UV-inhibitor additive and stir it in.
Give the wax a scent by adding the fragrance oil. Use 1 1/2 ounce of fragrance oil per pound of wax, which is about a 9 percent fragrance load. Soy can hold more fragrance than paraffin wax can. Stir the fragrance oil in thoroughly into the wax.
Lower the temperature of the melted wax to 150 degrees. Place a wick into each of the molds. Try to center it as best as you can. Pour the wax into the measuring cup. Using the measuring cup, gently fill the molds the top. If the wick moved during the pour, re-center it.
Move the cookie sheet, candles (still in the mold) into the refrigerator or freezer if you have space. Be very gentle in moving them as you do not want the wicks to shift. Allow three hours of cooling time in the refrigerator and two hours in the freezer.
Optionally allow the candles to cool in on the counter. It will take at least five hours to cool down completely.
Remove the candles from the mold by gently pulling on the wick. Place each candle into a candle holder. Make sure they are tightly separated.