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Homemade DIY Scented Candle Gift

Learn how easy and cheap it is to make your own DIY scented candle! Homemade candles make great gifts for the holidays and are much healthier than store bought candles. #homemade #thrifty #diycandle #candlemaking

Learn to Make Easy & Healthy Homemade Candles.

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Homemade candles make lovely and affordable gifts for friends, teachers, parents, and the list goes on and on.  I have yet to meet someone who didn't like a nice smelling candle gift. I have spent a huge amount of time experimenting with making candles.  Read this post if you want your candles will turn out as good as the professional one!

Homemade DIY Scented Candle Gift

I got into candle making after I read that most store bought candles are full of cancer causing parabens and fragrances that are released into the air when you burn the wax.  No wonder I used to get headaches when I burned them!  Not only did making my own candles greatly improve the air quality in my home, and my headaches, it also helped save me lots of money as pre-made store candles are rarely cheap.  The supplies for making your own candles are inexpensive and you can make quite a lot of candles with just a little bit of supplies.

All you need for this DIY project is some sort of wax, essential oils to scent, some candle wicks, and a few containers.  If you want to color your candles you will want candle dyeNOT crayons as their pigments will clog wick and kill your scent.  Let's talk about the different components to making your own candle. 

Containers - When it comes to choosing your containers, you have a lot of options.  Old candle jars and mason jars from food make great choices.  Tea cups on saucers can also make a gorgeous candle gifts!

Wick.  You will want to use at least a medium, #2 width wick.  I buy cotton wicks in the #4 size from Amazon, you can view the ones I buy here:  Square Braid Cotton Candle Wick   

The pack of wicks I buy from amazon are not pre-waxed, meaning that they have not been dunked in wax to make them stay straight. All you need to do is dip them into your melted candle wax before you add the coloring and scent.  Dip them in, pull them out quickly, and let them dry. Now they will stay straight. 

The wicks I buy also have no metal core at the bottom, they are simple cotton wicks.  I would stay away from buying wicks with the metal holders attached to the bottoms because they can have lead or zinc.  Burning candles with lead cores is a known source of lead poisoning.  There are also studies coming out that zinc cores can be unhealthy as well.  This is why I completely skip having any type of metal core on my wicks.

To suspend your wick into your empty container, do the following:  Puncture a small slit in a straw using a knife and then place the wick inside the hole so that the wick can be held up and suspended inside the middle of the container without falling into the wax completely.  Below I show a picture of how this looks.  

Homemade DIY Scented Candle Gift

IMPORTANT NOTE: You do not need to suspend your wick until you have poured your wax into your container.  If you suspend the wick into the empty container before pouring, you will likely spill wax trying to pour it in the open space and around your wick.  Just pour your wax into the container and then insert the wick.  Also, please make sure to place your empty container on a plate when you pour the hot wax to keep from messing up your counter tops with spilled wax. 

You will notice that I use two wicks in some of my candles, this is for extra scent throw, since the wick is what transmits the scent.

Wax - Once you have placed your wick, you will need to melt your wax.  The general rule is to use double the amount of wax as the size of your container.  Never pour wax directly from the container into the boiler. The wax comes out super fast and will spill all over your stove - been there, done that. 

The best way to melt wax in the kitchen is to put the wax in a double boiler and boil water underneath it.  Watch carefully because wax melts pretty quickly.  You do not want bubbly wax and should take it off the heat as soon as the wax is melted.  I use soy wax because it's cheap to buy in bulk and it transmits smell wonderfully.  I get mine from Amazon and here is the one I buy: Natural Soy Wax.  You can also use beeswax and an added benefit to burning beeswax is that it emits negative ions into the air that bind to toxins.  Pure beeswax is just going to be a little more expensive and also has an off white color that can be less attractive and hamper other colors you are adding.  You can buy beeswax that is not the typical yellow color if you desire but it will cost you even more than regular beeswax unfortunately.  For all these reasons, I always choose soy wax over beeswax. 

Note on Adding Coconut Oil - Adding coconut oil is optional and you do not need to add it, your candle will burn just fine if its pure wax.  Coconut oil has a strong scent itself and I don't want every candle I own smelling like coconut oil.  Also, coconut oil is expensive, so why use it if you don't need to? I also feel that adding the oil reduces the fragrance my candle gives off, known as scent throw, so I just don't mess with adding this stuff.

Fragrance Oil (FO) - You add your fragrance after your wax has melted, not while it is in the process of melting.  The reason for this is because extracts and oils can evaporate and loose their scent if you add them while wax is too hot.  You also don 't want to add them when wax is too cold either, as this can also hamper scent throw. 
The general temperature to add scent is at 185 F.

I have tried using spices to scent candles but found that they don't give a very strong scent and also clog my wick- therefore I stick to essential oils (eos) and pure extracts.  I generally stay away from pre-made FOs because I don't know what chemicals they may contain.  If you really want a particular scent, or a really strong scent, make sure to buy a fragrance oil that is phthalate free.  Note that adding too much fragrance oil can also clog your wick.

For Christmas scented candles, my hands down favorite peppermint oil to use is this one: Peppermint Essential Oil.  This is the only product I use to create peppermint smell in bath and body products because it has great throw and is pure.

You can buy the pumpkin patch oil  I used to create my pumpkin patch candles here: Pumpkin Patch Fragrance Oil.
The general rule is for every 16 oz (which is 1 pound) of wax, use 1 oz of FO

6 tsps = 1 oz, if you are making an 8 oz candle, you should use 3 tsps of FO.

I use a glass pipette to get the oil out of my jar and generally put in about 6 -7 pipettes per 8 oz candle. 

Here's some scent suggestions using only essential oils:

Douglas Fir Essential Oil (this is the Christmas tree smell)
Peppermint Essential Oil

Summer - lime eo, wild orange eo, vanilla oil
Any day - Lavender eo

Chocolate - Chocolate Oil, pure

Coffee - Coffee Oil, pure

Labels- Simply buy Avery Sticker Project Paper - only available on Amazon and currently over 50% OFF! - and stick it into your printer to print out labels for your candles.  See my post on How To Create Professional Product Labels Using Microsoft Word for a tutorial on how to set up label boxes in Word.

Color - NEVER,NEVER, NEVER use crayons!! Crayons will kill the scent of your candle!  Candles have pigments that clog your wick.  You can buy candle dye at most craft stores, I get mine from Michael's.  Be warned that adding too much candle dye can also slightly hamper scent throw, so don't over do things.  A little goes a long way when it comes to coloring candles. 

I hope you enjoyed this easy and fun DIY candle making project!  You can view all of my DIY posts on my DIY page here: DIY.  If you want to learn how to create labels for your candles like I did in the picture at the top and in the picture below, please check out my post:  How to Create Professional Product Labels Using Microsoft Word.

Homemade DIY Scented Candle Gift
As always, please make sure that you remember to keep candles away from kids and pets and blow out your candle and never leave a burning candle on overnight.

You can view all my other gift idea posts under my pages: Gift Guides and Product Reviews, both of which are located at the top of my site.  To get coupon codes for the brands I work with, see my page, Coupon Codes.

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