Candle Making - Candle Making Equipment and Supplies
When considering all the various candle making supplies available to today's candle maker, the list seems virtually endless. It seems a daunting task to determine what is truly necessary for candle making versus what may be simply helpful. Let's cover the most basic necessities and briefly identify some of the common equipment and supplies that you may find to be helpful.
Two of the most important supplies that you will need for candle making are a double boiler and a thermometer.
The double boiler is necessary for melting your wax in a safe and efficient way. Double boilers may be purchased or even created simply by purchasing a pouring pitcher and placing it into a pot of boiling water. The thermometer is essential for determining when to add additives, fragrance and dyes, and for ensuring that wax is removed from the heat at the appropriate time. Often a candy thermometer that you find at a discount store can work just as well as a thermometer marketed specifically for candle making.
Obviously, the key component in any candle is wax. The type of wax you choose to work with is entirely up to you and is usually a very personal decision. Some people will work only with paraffin wax, while others will work only with natural wax options.
If you are making container candles, you will need a different wax than if you are making votives. To determine what type of wax you will need, it may be helpful to consult a book on candle making. A great alternative is to explore some of the many candle making supply websites you can find online. You'll find a variety of waxes when you shop online. Most of the candle making supply websites provide excellent information about which wax is best used for what purposes.
Another essential supply is wicks. The variety of wicks available can seem a bit overwhelming. Wicks come in both pre-tabbed and un-tabbed varieties, so make yourself familiar with both options. A couple of things that you will want to look into and consider when choosing wicks are the size and diameter of the candles you are making, the type of wax you are using and whether or not you are making a paraffin vs. an all natural candle. All of these things will ultimately factor into your wick decision.
If you are scenting your candles, you will need to choose fragrance to work with. Again, this is an area that requires some research. Some fragrances are more concentrated than others and their reaction in different waxes may vary. Some work well in paraffin, but not in soy. You may need to adjust the amount of fragrance oil you use based on the type of wax you are using.
If you choose to use dye, be aware that dyes come in a variety of forms. There are liquid dyes, powdered dyes, dye chips and more. Make yourself familiar with what is available and how each is used.
You may also want to consider these handy items to make your candle making more efficient: wick stickers or glue dots to secure your wicks in place, wick clips to keep your wicks straight, a digital scale to accurately weigh your wax and fragrance, wax additives to correct a particular wax issue, candle molds if you are making molded candles and a heat gun for preheating containers and smoothing candle top imperfections.
The number of candle making supplies and options is amazing. As you gain more candle making experience, you will begin to learn which supplies and equipment will best meet your personal candle making needs.