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How to Make DIY Soy Candles in Cute Recycled Pots

Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts.

If people knew how easy it is to make soy wax candles I doubt that there would be as many people buying them. You literally need the wax, a wick, scent (optional), and a heat-proof container to pour the candle into. After it’s poured, you leave the candle to cure for a week then you can burn them, gift them, or even sell them as part of a business. I sell a range of soy candles but also share how you can make them yourself here. Once you have the right materials, you can make LOADS of soy candles at a time and have a great time doing it too.

Last month a good friend of mine asked me if I could show her how to make soy candles. She’d collected an assortment of recycled containers, including glass ramekins that ready-made desserts come in at the supermarket. We measured how much wax and other ingredients went into them and in the end, we made eleven candles. One was quite large too, being in a tall glass drinks bottle. Including everything, it cost £19.33 to make all of them. I go through how to measure how much of all the ingredients you need a little further below, and the full instructions for how to make DIY soy candles after that.

Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin

Easy to Make DIY Soy Candles

Making soy candles does not take very long, and you do not need a lot of ingredients and materials. It’s very easy, but you do need to have the right materials and follow temperature guides very closely. That’s why it’s essential to have an infrared thermometer to make candles.

Despite having to be precise, the process of making DIY soy candles is basically melting wax, stirring in scent (if you want it), and pouring the melted wax into containers that have a wick fixed in the center. You allow the candle to harden and leave it for seven to ten days before burning it. That’s basically it! However, there are various details in those easy steps including choosing the right wax, wick, container, fragrance, and specifics in the candle-making process.

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Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin
Soy candles burn cleanly and give a soft glow

Use Recycled Gü Pots to make Candles

One of the best free materials that you can use to make soy candles is the heat-proof glass or ceramic ramekins that Gü desserts come in. If you’re not familiar, that’s a brand of dessert that is common in Britain but I’m sure that there are similar brands in other countries that serve up desserts in ramekins. Most everyone I know saves these glass ramekins and uses them for various reasons. One thing that I use mine for is for making handmade dish soap.

You could also use Mason/Kilner jars to make soy candles, as well as cut wine bottles, jam jars, and the like. I emphasize soy candles though. Soy wax has a relatively low melting point, and the type I recommend using for containers is called Golden Wax 464 with a melting point of 113-118°F (45-48°C). It will not get as hot as beeswax, which melts at 144-149°F (62-65°C), which is a good thing. Hotter melting points mean hotter wax that heats up the glass. Thinner glass containers, like most bottles used for supermarket food products, can become very hot to the touch.

Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin
Recycled glass ramekins are great for making DIY soy candles

Which Soy Wax to Use for DIY Soy Candles

Soy wax is a vegetable-based wax that burns cleanly and is suitable for Vegans. It’s made from soybeans and there are LOADS of different soy waxes that you can buy. It can be a little overwhelming choosing one, especially since not all of them are going to be great for making soy candles poured into ramekins. Some soy wax is made to be used for wax tarts, and other types are formulated to be used in pillar candles. Some soy wax is just not great at all and gives disappointing results.

That’s why I recommend using Golden Wax 464 for this project. The temperatures are instructions below are specifically for this type of soy wax. If you use a different type of soy wax then your results may differ. You can get small amounts through online marketplaces and even larger boxes of it through wholesalers. I buy mine in 50 lb (22.5 kg) boxes. Buying bulk reduces the end price of candles, but may not be economical if you only want to make a dozen candles.

You might be wondering about other natural waxes that you could use to make ramekin candles. I would not recommend beeswax but you could use rapeseed wax and/or coconut wax. If you use either, refer to the manufacturer’s instructions on melting and pouring temperatures and source appropriate wicks.

Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin
Golden Wax 464 comes in flakes

Choose the Correct Wicks for Soy Candles

DIY soy candles are essentially a pot of soy wax that serves as fuel to a wick. The wick is primed with a little wax and when lit, the flame feeds on this first. It then begins using up the wax in the container. Some wicks are meant for soy wax, and some are not. Wicks are also created to be suitable for a specific diameter of a container. If you choose one that’s meant for a larger container, then it will burn more wax and your candle will be short-lived. Choose a wick that’s meant for a smaller diameter container and you’ll get tunneling — that’s when a tunnel burns through your candle and the wax at the sides doesn’t melt.

The diameter of most ramekins is about 2.75″ (7 cm) and for them, I recommend pre-waxed Wedo ECO wicks in size ECO 8 with metal sustainers attached. I’ve used this brand of wick for many years and love that they’re all-natural and do not have anything suspect in them — they also self-trim as they burn. Some wicks have a core made of metal filaments (lead or zinc) that help hold the wick upright. It burns and is released into the air as the candle burns too!

You could buy wicks that don’t have metal sustainers attached and then buy the sustainers separately. I don’t recommend this for beginners though, since you’ll need to attach the sustainer and prime the wick before you begin.

Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin
I recommend Wedo ECO wicks for DIY soy candles

Other Materials You Need for Soy Candles

Aside from the container, wax, and wick, you’ll need a few more materials. They include an adhesive to stick the metal sustainer at the bottom of the wick to the ramekin. I use white mounting putty for that purpose. You’ll also need something to hold the wicks in place while the wax hardens, otherwise, the wick can tip over and into the wax! I use wooden chopsticks that are not broken apart for this. They pinch the wick in place and sit flush with the top of the container.

Another material that you might want to add but which is optional is candle fragrance. Essential oils, unfortunately, don’t burn very well in most candles. You might smell it in the wax when it’s unlit but you won’t smell it when the candle is burning. If you’d like to choose a dependable scent for your DIY soy candles, I recommend a phthalate-free candle fragrance at a rate of about 9%. It will not be a natural essential oil, but it will smell lovely and not contain harmful phthalate plastics. Here’s a selection that you might want to check out:

Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin
This project is for four DIY soy candles in ramekins

How to Make DIY Soy Candles in Cute Recycled Pots

Lovely Greens
Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. Makes four ramekin candles but the recipe can be scaled up. Requires just a few ingredients and materials including recycled ramekins.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Curing time 7 d
Total Time 7 d 1 hr
Servings 4 candles

Equipment

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • Pre-measure the ingredients using a kitchen scale. Measure the fragrance oil into a glass or ceramic dish and the soy wax into a small stainless steel pan.
  • Prep the ramekins by sticking the bottom of the metal sustainer (also called a tab) of the wick to the center of each ramekin with a small amount of white mounting putty. Secure the wicks in a fully upright position by using the chopsticks. Place the ramekins on a piece of paper that can catch any drops of wax.
  • Place the soy wax in a stainless steel pan and melt it on indirect heat. You do this by floating the pan in another pan filled with simmering water. Melt the wax until fully liquid and then place the pan on a potholder.
  • Take the melted wax's temperature. When it has cooled to 180-185°F (82-85°C)*, stir in the fragrance oil. Stir with the spoon for thirty seconds to fully incorporate it. Leave the scented wax to cool and in the meantime clean off everything that came into contact with the fragrance oil with paper towels and dispose of it*.
  • Allow the wax to cool to 135°F (57°C)* then pour into the ramekins. With small batches (such as four candles) it's relatively easy to pour directly from the pan that you melted the wax in. For larger batches, it helps to use a jug with a long pouring spout such as the one listed in the equipment above as optional.
  • Once filled, leave the candles to harden undisturbed for twelve hours, at least. Afterward, you can gently remove the chopsticks and trim the wicks down to 1/4" (6 mm)*.
  • Leave the candles someplace out of direct sunlight and room temperature for 7-10 days to cure. After this period, you can use the candles and expect good results.

Notes

* If you do not mix the fragrance at this temperature range, the quality of the throw (the scent the candle gives) can be affected.
*Most fragrance oils, and essential oils for that matter, will kill aquatic life and should not be introduced to water systems. That means that we should not put them down the drain. Once dishes that held them are wiped clean with a paper towel, they can be washed normally though.
* If you don’t pour your candles at this temperature range, the final surface of the candle will likely be uneven, pitted, and unattractive. If this happens anyway, you may be able to even out the surface with a heat gun.
*The wicks that I recommend are self-trimming after their first cut, meaning that they’ll burn down as the candle burns. Other wicks will need trimming to 1/4″ again before each burn.
Keyword candle
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin
Trim the wicks to 1/4″ after the wax has solidified and cooled

How much wax and fragrance do you need?

The recipe for this soy wax candle project is 9% fragrance oil and 91% soy wax by WEIGHT. The instructions below give you the amounts to make four soy candles using standard glass Gü ramekins. But what if your ramekins are different? They do come is various shapes and sizes.

If you have different-sized ramekins, I have a way to work out how much of each ingredient you’ll need so that you can precisely make the amount that will fill your ramekins. First, you’ll want to fill all of the ramekins with water and measure how much water they contain in total. You need the volume amount so you can either pour the water into a measuring jug to see or weigh it. In metric, it’s very easy since 1g of water is 1ml of water and 100g is 100ml, and so on. When I started this project I found that four Gü pots contain 480g of water — 480ml.

Instructions for how to make DIY soy candles using recycled glass ramekins, soy wax, a natural wick, and beautiful fragrance. A great way to make natural candles for home use or for cute and inexpensive gifts #diycandles #soycandles #ramekin
The ramekins I’ve used may be different from types that you can find

Formulating the Ingredients for your Ramekins

I hope that the formula below will help you to easily work out your ingredients but it’s based on the following information. Golden Wax 464 will give you 111ml for every 100g of wax flakes. Fragrance oils are not like water and will have differing figures for their amounts in volume and weight, but for small batches like this, and for simplicity’s sake, we’ll work with the assumption that 10g of your chosen fragrance oil (FO) is 10ml in volume. So a candle that weighs 110g (100g wax and 10g FO) will be 121ml (111ml wax and 10ml FO). Here’s how to work out your candle ingredients using grams:

  1. Multiply 0.91 by the figure that you have for the water weight for all of your ramekins. The resulting figure will be the total weight of candle ingredients.

2. Now that you have the total weight of candle ingredients, work out how much of that weight is fragrance by multiplying the total weight of ingredients by 0.09. That will give you how much fragrance oil to use in weight. The rest of the total candle ingredients is soy wax so that’s easy to work out.

For example, my four ramekins held 480ml of water (water amount). Multiplied by 0.91 I got 436 grams as the total weight of ingredients needed for my candles. 436 multiplied by 0.09 gives me 39g of Fragrance oil, and the remainder of the total weight of ingredients is soy wax — 397g.

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