The primary candle ingredients for most any candle making endeavors you choose to pursue will consist of wax, wicks, dyes, fragrance oils, and possibly a few other additives. The 2 required candle ingredients of these are the wax and the wick. The additional ingredients are added for decorative purposes and to simply make the candle’s smell and appearance more appealing.
Candle Making Wax
The first and most obvious on the list of candle ingredients is wax. Historically, back when candles were made out of necessity, candle wax was made up of anything from ground up insects & seeds, to whale blubber, beeswax, and even berries.
Today, there are many choices of candle making wax on the market. Some of the most popular choices include paraffin candle wax, beeswax, soy wax, and gel wax. Each type of candle wax has its advantages and disadvantages. Paraffin has traditionally been the most common candle wax used in the past, but soy wax has become increasingly popular as of recent due to its reputation for being more environmentally friendly.
With so many different types of candle making wax available it would be wise to do a little reading on the subject to better understand all of the nuances of each type. The most thorough and up-to-date information on candle making waxes can be found here.
Candle Making Wicks
Of all the candle ingredients, the wick is the most commonly under appreciated. Other than the wax, candle making wicks are the single most critical component of a candle and its burning performance. True, there are other leading factors that can compromise how well your candle burns, such as wax quality, density and excessive additive dilution, but without the proper type & size of wick in your candle, nothing else matters. Candle making wicks are that important.
Candle making wicks come in various types. These include cotton core wicks, flat braid wicks, and wire core wicks. Each of these types has their pros and cons and come in a multitude of various sizes. As one of the most important candle ingredients it is strongly recommend that some time be spent reading-up on how to choose the proper wick for your specific candle making project. A good source that will provide all the information you need to become an absolute pro at choosing the perfect candle making wicks for each of your products can be found here.
Additives Candle Ingredients
The other important candle ingredients include the various candle making additives that can be used for various reasons. The most commonly used additives are candle making fragrance and candle making dyes.
Candle making fragrance
Candle making fragrance is most often referred to as fragrance oil, or FO for short. When choosing a FO for candle making you need to ensure that you get an oil based fragrance and not water based or alcohol based. Oil based candle making fragrance oil works best with candles because candle wax is made up of oils.
Candle Making Dyes, Optional Candle Ingredients
Candle making dyes are optional candle ingredients, but most people choose to use them to add a little (or a lot) of color to their candles. Candle wax is typically white or cream-colored initially (with the exception of gel candles). They can be found in an array of various forms that include chips, flakes, liquids, and powders.
An important point to note when dealing with dyes is that, a little bit goes a long way. Start small and test, test, test. Once you have the exact proportions you’re looking for, write it down so you can refer back to it the next time
Not all types of candle making dyes work well with all types of wax. You will want to read-up on which dyes work best with which types of candle wax. The best source of information for this can be found here.
Molds – Most Critical External Candle Ingredients
Unless you are making container candles or dipping candles, you are probably going to need some candle making molds. Candle making molds are one of the most important external candle ingredients.
A candle making mold is simply a container that the melted wax is poured into while it cools. As the wax cools it will hold the shape of the mold. They are made out of a variety of different materials, aluminum being the most common, and are available in a staggering array of shapes, sizes, and styles.