Candle making is a wonderful experience - from designing your brand to developing new products, it can be a rewarding and even therapeutic experience. With such a wide variety of products available, we understand it can be daunting and confusing when starting your candle-making journey.
To help get you off on the right foot, we’ve put together a core list of products to help you begin crafting and creating your ideal candles.
Step 1 - Choose the style of candles you’d like to make
Given the huge variety of candle styles available, it's a good idea to do some research before you begin. Think about:
- Who do you want to make candles for?
- Where and when would they be used?
- Are you doing this for fun or to make money?
These questions can help you understand the specific equipment and supplies you’ll need.
Step 2 - Choose your core candle-making equipment
When starting out in candle-making, buying all of the latest gadgets and tools can be tempting. The reality is that most of these are ‘nice to have’ items, so keeping it simple with your kit is a good way to begin. We recommend the following equipment as a starting point.
- Pouring Pot - For safety and quality control, a pouring pot should be a core part of your equipment. Whilst 1 litre, 3 litre and 5 litre options are available, we recommend 1 litre aluminium pots to get started.
- Scales - To ensure your wax and fragrance ratios are correct, a good set of digital scales is highly recommended.
- Stove or Hot plate - Whilst candle wax melters are available, we recommend using the double boiler method with either your cooking stove or a hot plate.
- Thermometer - Knowing your wax temperature is very important - too cold, and you may see cracking, and having wax too hot may mean evaporating fragrances. We recommend an easy to use digital thermometer to get it just right.
- Candle Maker's Toolkit - Ok, so it’s not as fancy as it sounds, but paper towels, newspaper to cover your preparation area, rubbing alcohol (to clean your pouring pot) and a dedicated stirring utensil are highly recommended.
- Packaging and labels - If you're going to be selling your candles, packaging is a great way to add value and brand identity. You’ll also need to ensure you have the correct warning labels for your products.
Step 3 - Choose your core candle-making supplies
With your candle brand in mind and your equipment at the ready, it's now time to select your candle-making ingredients. We recommend focusing on these five:
There are many waxes available on the market today, and trust us, we’ve tried them all!
In our opinion, soy wax offers a flexible and reliable solution for any candle maker. Our soy wax comes in handy pellet form, which makes melting easy and works well at various temperatures, meaning regardless of the candle type you’re creating, you’ll get great results.
Fragrances offer a real opportunity to bring candles to life. We provide a range of near 150 candle fragrances to choose from.
Overwhelmed by the choice? Start with some of our best-sellers which have proven popular with makers worldwide.
When using fragrances, most waxes will have a maximum scent load of 10% however quite often 6-8% is plenty, but we always recommend doing your own testing and experimenting to find the percentage that works best for you. A popular resource of ours is our Scent load Calculator which helps make calculating your wax to fragrance ratios super simple.
Based on who your candles are for, the candle container or vessel provides a great way to customise your candle. Particularly when starting your candle-making journey, we’d recommend using coloured candle glassware as opposed to using clear glass which can highlight wet spots.
Colour and Dyes
Adding colour to your candles is a simple and easy way to create your unique style. We stock Bekro Dye Chips, which are easy to use and give your products an amazing depth of colour.
Choosing your candle wick should always be based on your candle’s size, shape, colour, wax and fragrance. To help you determine the best wick for your candles, we’ve created this easy guide on choosing your wick.
We hope you’ve found this guide to be a useful introduction to getting started with candle-making.
Candle-making is a journey and there’s no need to do it alone. To get more information, guidance or support we’re always happy to help via our online chat, email or phone.
If you have trouble with your candle not turning out as you’d like, you can check out our Tips and Tricks section for details on common issues such as mushrooming and frosting. If you haven’t already, we also recommend joining our Candle Makers UK Facebook community to share your experience, ask questions and hear from other makers.
Additional resources you might find helpful:
This blog was originally published February, 2018 and updated July 2022.