Odor Eliminating Candles

Nadine Hartman Bourne
by Nadine Hartman Bourne
6 Materials
1 Hour
Years ago my step-daughter had a candle making party. It was one of those pyramid scheme things where they want your friends to sign up to host a candle making party, and sign up their friends and so on. They were also hocking some vitamin something or other they wanted you to sign up for. Yeah, no, I'm good.
Sometime later, on my local Freecycle group someone posted some soy wax and candle making supplies. The paperwork included was from the same candle making party I had attended some years before. I guess she didn't make much money off the candles or didn't have time to make them because most of the colors and fragrances were still there. I discovered by accident these candles get rid of stinks fast. I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off one day when the cat decided it was a good time to stink up the house. I didn't have time to clean it so I lit one of these candles. That stink was gone fast. I was able to finish what I was doing and didn't even think about the cat box until two days later. Ok let's make some candles.
I re-use my jars. As you can see from these jars when they say soy wax creates less soot they are big fat liars. The one to the far left is a cut green wine bottle from a Tiki bar in Solvang, California. The candle smelled like an amazing cologne when I bought it. Lit it at home and it smelled like bug spray. But for $20 I was determined to use it all up. icon  
I have one of those electric candle or coffee mug warmers. It was a Christmas present years ago. I never got it to work properly for a candle. It would melt the bottom but never the top, so I never could smell the candle. And I don't drink hot coffee. But, I did put it to good use. I use it to melt the wax bits left when the candle won't light anymore. I then tip the jar and dump the wax in the trash and wipe any residue with paper towels. I then wash them with soap and water. The black soot washes off easily with dish soap. You can use almost anything to hold your wax. Reuse jars from purchased candles like I did here, or use jars left from your spaghetti sauce, mason jars or even soup cans. I bought one ages ago as a gift something about Man candles, they used soup cans and had manly fragrances like fresh cut grass, wood shavings, leather etc.
Measure out your wax and if you are using wax color chips add those too. I used one pound of soy wax for each of the tall jars I cleaned, and three color chips. I had a grape fragrance so here I used my last purple chip and one red and one blue wax chip. I have an aluminum pitcher I got as part of a candle making kit from an on line company called Candle Science.
I melt all of this on an electric hot plate on the lowest temperature setting you don't want your wax to get any hotter than 160 degrees. You can use a candy thermometer to keep an eye on the temperature or you can use an infrared thermometer. I have this one https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00837ZGRY/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1
I use it to make candles and soap (checking the temperature of the lye and oils)
While the wax is melting get your clean jars ready with the wicks. You need the proper size wicks so the wax melts evenly across the top of the candle or you will end up with thick un-melted wax on the sides and that is a waste of wax color and fragrance.
Here is a link to a wick guide https://www.candlescience.com/learning/wick-guide
I used some double adhesive tape from Elizabeth craft designs. The site had a sample pack of different sizes that I bought last Christmas. I tore off a piece and stuck it to the tab on the bottom of the wick. I peeled off the backing and using the eraser end of a pencil I pressed it to the bottom of the jar. It held surprisingly well. I pinched the wick and used it to pick up the jar it didn't come off.
These are a bunch of Popsicle sticks with a small hole drilled in them. poke the wick in the hole and if it is long enough fold it over to hold it in place. The one on the top right is a beer mug from the Dollar Tree I got years ago the wick wasn't long enough to reach the stick so I tied a string to it and poked that through the hole and wrapped the string around and secured it with tape. This is necessary to hold the wick in the center. A wick too off center will burn unevenly.
I use one ounce of fragrance per pound of wax. You can use up to one and a half ounces per pound of wax if you need a really strong scented candle. Maybe you like to cook fish or liver and need that smell gone fast. If so you can use more fragrance. I haven't found it necessary to use that much. Remove the wax from the heat. I put mine on a hot pad or a cool stove burner. Let the wax cool to 120 degrees and then stir in your fragrance. Cool your wax to 90-100 degrees then pour into your prepared jar. When measuring your fragrance you may be tempted to use something disposable Like a plastic or Styrofoam cup. DONT it will eat right through the plastic. You need HDPE plastic or glass containers.
I was attempting to do a swirled candle but the process for melting the wax took too long and my first color became too solid. But it is perfect for a layered candle. Just pour your second color on top of this layer. you can even use a different fragrance if you want.
Here are my candles that I made the 2 on the left are grape scented the top half is green. You can see that in the next picture. The 2 orange ones in the center are Jasmine scented and the one on the right was red currant. I was trying to use up the last of the candle fragrances that I had gotten for free. I have enough of one of them to do one more candle. After that I will make candles in the fragrances that I really love. The website for candle science if you sign up for their news letter they will notify you in an email when they have their fragrance sale I think it is once a year maybe it's twice I forget. The fragrance sale lets you buy their 1 oz sample size for $1 each. I bought something like 25 of them. I love that it is already the perfect size for a one pound candle or a batch of soap. I use them for both.
No I am not affiliated with them I just love their stuff.
Sometimes the top of your candle dries ugly, bumpy, flaky. To fix this get your hair dryer and melt the top a little. When it cools it will have a smooth finish. I have heard if you insulate the candles (cover with a cardboard box) it is supposed to prevent this. I haven't tried that yet.
Have something to use as a mold handy when you pour your wax just in case you have a little too much wax. what I used was old clamshells from wax melts that I had bought and used from Walmart. Now I have homemade wax melts. Sadly they don't last any longer in the light thing than the store bought.
These are my finished candles the center one remember I said I had wanted to swirl the colors. Yeah that didn't work out so well. It got a little muddy looking. Rather ugly if you ask me. so I decided to decorate the jars. See next post for that. icon  

I put the cost at about $5 I bought 50 pounds of wax, including shipping comes to about $2 a pound everything else I already had. But if you have to buy then your cost per one pound candle should be about $5. I put the skill level at medium because of the heating and caution you need for the temperatures of each stage.
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Frequently asked questions
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  2 questions
  • Elaine Davis Elaine Davis on Dec 15, 2017

    I have candles that wicks have burned out. How can I get the wax out of the glass jars to reset the wax?

  • Jeanne Johnson Ortego Jeanne Johnson Ortego on Dec 17, 2017

    Do you know if it's the soy that absorbs odors? Or does the scent just mask it? I have bought odor absorbing unscented candles before, and they did absorb the odor. I have very strong allergies, especially to scents. I can use natural scents, like citrus or cinnamon, without getting sick, but that's about it.

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