Vol.2, No.1

Candle making with essential oils

Essential oils will enhance your candle making.

Essential oils in candlemaking
Photo Credit: Brenda McEwan
Candlemaking is a gratifying art. The process of preparing the mold, priming the wick, melting the wax, and filling the mold can become a soothing routine. If done correctly, the end product is both beautiful and useful. Once the basics are mastered, candlemaking becomes a great adventure of form, color, and scent. One way to enhance your homemade candles is through the use of essential oils.

Essential oils are used as scent in candles, but they are so much more than just a pleasant aroma. Essential oils are oils extracted from a variety of vegetation. These oils are said to contain all the essential ingredients of the plants from which they are derived. The powerful aromas from essential oils are attributed with more than just smelling nice; they actually bring about physical changes in people who expose themselves to their aromas. There are essential oils that relieve pain, ease stress, energize, improve digestion, and bring about any number of other positive effects. Adding essential oils to your candlemaking is natural and rewarding. It's also easy to do.

The simplest way to add essential oils to your candlemaking is to apply drops of oil to an already finished candle. Make sure your candle is unscented so you will not obstruct the oil's aroma. Place the candle on a secure, level surface. Use a dropper to place two or three drops of oil on the top surface of the candle near the wick but not actually on the wick. This is where the melted wax will pool as the candle burns, heating up the essential oil to release its fragrance. Light your candle and let it burn to fill your room with the scent. For safety, do not add oil to and already burning candle, and do not leave the candle unattended.

You can also apply essential oil to an unscented candle by piercing the candle. You will need a thick candle and a metal ice pick. Heat up the ice pick and use it to pierce through the top of the candle in two places, making holes parallel to and near the wick. The ice pick should poke about halfway down the candle. Remove the ice pick, turn the candle upside down, and dislodge any loose wax from the holes you just made. With the candle upright again, add essential oil, drop by drop, into the holes. The surface of your candle may look a little marred, but it will smooth out as you burn it.

Applying essential oil to an unscented candle is a great way to test and experiment with various scents. But if you know the scents you want, you can also use essential oils to produce your own scented candles. Melt the amount of wax you need to the proper temperature

for your mold or recipe. Add and stir in color, if desired. Then, add two to three drops of essential oil to the melted wax. Complete your candle as usual or according to your recipe. Your finished candle will have the potential to brighten up your room and your spirits as well.