Making soy candles isn't too difficult but it does involve a bit of chemistry and, like any craft, benefits from experience. Here's how it's done at Aria Candles:
Most of our candles are made in 8oz tins because they travel well, don't break, heat evenly, store easily, and aren't too heavy. The first step is to add the wick to the tin using hot glue. Then we get down to the real work with the wax.
We use 100% soy wax flakes because paraffin releases potentially dangerous chemicals into the air when it burns.
These flakes come from soy grown in the midwest and we heat them either in a pour pot (shown here) or in a larger electric pot.
Once the wax is melted to the correct temperature, we remove it from heat and add the coloring.
The next step is my favorite part-- we get to add the fragrance oil. We use prepared fragrance oils designed to bond with soy wax. There are hundreds available but we only choose ones that we test and love. Sometimes we mix them to make our own scents. Adding fragrance oil to hot wax makes everything smell good!
Now its time to wait. And wait. We wait until the wax reaches the perfect temperature and then it's time to pour very carefully into the prepared tins. As the candles cool, the wax goes from transparent to opaque and the final color really shows through. In the picture, you can see recently poured purple wax and mostly cooled yellow and light blue wax.
About 12 hours later, the candles are cool enough to trim the wick and add a temporary label identifying the fragrance. And that's about it. Some candles are destined for test burning and others will get final labeling after the one week curing period that intensifies the fragrance. We are always looking for test burners so if you are interested, join the mailing list!