Making candles can be great fun as a hobby. It is very exciting to decide what type of candle to make and gathering all your supplies. However, sometimes you might get quickly disappointed and frustrated with the process and give up, if you run into some of these issues. There are some common problems you might have when learning how to make candles as a beginner. Most of them have quick and easy solutions though so that is the good news. It is recommended that all beginners start with the basic candle making process and then experiment from there. This gives you the opportunity to learn the basics of candle making, then you can move on to making the types of candles you really want to.
One secret to making great candles is to use quality products and ingredients to start. In general, candle making supplies are inexpensive which makes it a great hobby for many. If the wax you purchase is of poor quality, then it is never going to make quality candles so choose to work with high quality candle making supplies. Heating the wax to the proper temperature is very important and each manufacturer will note their suggested candle wax heating guidelines. The temperature will change depending on the type of candle you are making with it. If the wax isn’t hot enough it won’t form correctly so always follow the instructions you have. Likewise, wax that is too hot will lose luster and won’t be as sturdy once it cools which will make an imperfect candle.
Have you every made a beautiful candle, but when you lit it the room filled with smoke rather than the fragrance of the candle? This is a common problem has to do with your wick being too long. Simply cut them shorter for future candles because you only need around 1/4 inch wick sticking out the top of the candle. You can snip the tips of the candle wicks you have already created and this should remedy the situation, before you light it every use.
Some candles burn and smell great, but they look ugly after a few uses with a crater in the middle of the candle while the edges of the candle jar haven’t even been touched. You might have even seen this with store bought candles. This is the result of a wick that isn’t wide enough for the type of candle. There isn’t much you can do for candles you have already made except melt the wax in them and start over. You can purchase a wider wick or braid three together to get a good thickness. The wider the candle jar, the wider you need your wick to be for the candle to burn evenly. Always use the proper wick to start and you will not have to deal with this.
Cooling candles is an area of trouble for many beginners who don’t have patience with the process. Don’t rush the cooling process or you will damage the hardness of the candle which will not burn properly. Forcing the candle to cool, such as in a refrigerator, will also result in bubbles forming in the top and middle of the candle. While it won’t be a physical defect, the melting wax will go into these bubbles when you have the candle lit resulting in the wick going out which is obviously something you don’t want in your homemade candles. Your candles should be allowed to cool in an area where they won’t be moved around at all until completely cool. The area needs to be flat and out of direct sunlight and away from dust. You will also want to make sure there aren’t any heating or cooling vents in the cooling area that will create a breeze directly on the candles you are making.
If you notice that your cooled candle isn’t as appealing as you’d like because the wax pulled away from the glass jar in some areas, try heating your jars in the microwave for a minute or two right before you fill them. Or you can even use some heat from a hair dryer to heat up the glass for a bit first before you add the candle wax. This will help the wax adhere to it correctly with a very smooth look all the way around the jar. Again this is just a cosmetic thing and will not affect how your homemade candle burns.
It is important to remember that candle making involves some basic concepts you want to learn first. It will take a few tries to complete the steps to make a candle properly, but give it some time. You will have to experiment to find the candle making methods that work best in your work environment to make the types of homemade candles you want. It is suggested that you only make a few candles at a time to keep from wasting money on candle making supplies while you are learning. Make sure the finished product doesn’t have any burning issues with the wick or bubbles so it is the best candle possibly. If it does, simply melt the wax again and try it once more. Once you have mastered the basics of candle making, you can experiment with different types as you learn how to make candles.