Our Ultimate Guide To Making Coloured Scented Candles At Home
Scented coloured candles can transform any room in your home into a cosy and inviting space, and the best part is you can easily make them yourself!
DIY-coloured scented candles save you money and allow you to customise the look and scent of your candles to suit your style.
If you’re new to the world of candle making, don’t worry – creating your coloured, scented candles is easier than you might think.
In our guide below, we’ve broken down the process step-by-step so that you can create your own beautiful and fragrant candles at home.
Four Important Things To Consider Before Making Scented Candles
Before getting into the step-by-step process of making your homemade candles, it’s essential to consider a few crucial factors to ensure that you have everything you need before starting your candle projects.
The Type Of Wax
One of the first and most important factors to consider when making any candle is the type of candle wax you use. This can impact the finished candle scent and look since some waxes hold odours better than others and have varying transparency.
We’ve listed the primary type of candle wax choices to consider below –
- Beeswax – Beeswax is an excellent choice to make a candle from scratch since it’s natural. It also holds scent well and burns longer than some soy wax candles. It should be noted that in terms of colour, your DIY candle might have a more yellow hue, but you could also use plain white beeswax.
- Coconut wax – Coconut wax is an excellent white wax for making colourful candles. It is, however, a soft type of wax, making it not so suitable for pillar candles but okay for container candles.
- Soy wax – Soy wax is one of the ideal and cheap options for making your DIY candles. It’s pure white and easy to use, holding the scent well.
- Paraffin wax – Paraffin wax is most commonly used commercially for making scented, coloured candles. This is because it’s affordable and holds scent well. It is full of chemicals, however, and not the cleanest to burn inside your home.
Types Of Colouring
Once you’ve decided on the kind of wax you want to make your homemade candle with, we can move on to the types of colouring.
You can use many different kinds of colouring to make your candle, but if you’re gifting your candle, it’s essential to use high-quality options.
High-Quality Candle Dyes
- Liquid candle wax dye – Liquid candle dye is an excellent colorant for candle making since it mixes easily with melted candle wax. Since it’s designed for candles, there is no risk of it clogging up the wick.
- Solid candle wax dye – These are also known as coloured dye chips and mix into wax easily. They also last longer than the liquid version, making less of a mess.
Other Types Of Candle Dyes
- Food colouring oil based – Food colouring can be used to make coloured candles as long as it is oil-based. It is highly pigmented, so we suggest using it gradually to achieve the desired colour strength.
- Crayons – Using a couple of crayons to colour your candle with is an easy way to make your DIY candle, but once again, a little goes a long way with these crayons, so use them sparingly. Candles with crayons may not burn as well.
- Pigments – Powered pigments are harder to use when colouring candles since the powder can quickly sink to the bottom of the candle. They can also clog the wick and cause flame snuffing quickly.
Testing Colour Patterns
Before you go ahead and choose your final candle colour, make sure to test the colour you’ve chosen first. Then, as the wax melts when making your candle, grab a small strip of parchment paper and dip it in it. Allow to dry, and you will see your colour.
Do this before you add scent so you can pop it back on the double boiler and add more colour if needed.
As well as testing the amount of colour you need, we suggest deciding if you want to make any patterns two. There are two main types of ways you can make your candle below.
- Layering – To layer your homemade scented candle, pour your first candle colour, allow it to set and have a temp of no more than 140 degrees so the colour doesn’t bleed. Pour your second layer and alternate till your container is full.
- Swirling – A swirling/marble effect on your candle is a much more difficult DIY challenge, but it can look great. Try pouring your alternate candle colours into your candle, waiting a few minutes between each pour, allowing it to sit for around three minutes, and then stirring.
The Scent Types
The type of scent you choose is essential to make high-quality scented candles, as they will have different hot and cold throws.
- Essential oils – Essential oils are a great natural scent to choose for making your candles with and excellent for making aromatherapy candles. They do require more drops for a strong scent than fragrance oils.
- Fragrance oils – Fragrance oils are better designed for making scented candles and have an excellent scent throw due to their strength. They are less natural than essential oils but great for unique scents.
A Step By Step Guide To Making Coloured Candles
Now that we’ve covered the four crucial factors to consider, it’s time to get to the fun part – making your own DIY scented coloured candle!
To help you through the process, we’ve made a step-by-step guide to ensure your candle-making project is a success.
This guide focuses on making candles with food colouring since this is most readily available to people. However, you can easily switch it out for more high-quality candle dyes for a more professional look using the same method.
What You Need
- Wax of choice.
- Oil-based food colouring.
- Double boiler.
- Thermometer for candles.
- Candle container.
Step By Step
- Begin by preparing your candle containers. You should heat them on low heat in the oven beforehand to stop them from shattering, depending on the type you have.
- Take your wax and melt it in the double-boiler; if you are using colour blocks, add them in at this stage and stir while the wax is melting till the specific temperature is required (this will change depending on the wax used).
- Add the fragrance to the melted wax, which tends to be around one ounce per pound, then add the food colouring. The drops depend on how rich you want the colour to be.
- Insert your wick into your container and centre it, then pour in the melted wax, allowing it to harden, leaving a little space at the top. Later, pour in the rest of the wax to fill the sinkholes.
- Trim your wick on the finished candles to a 1/4 of an inch.
Tips For Making Coloured Scented Candles
Although making a DIY scented, coloured candle is simple, some tips and tricks can make your scented candle even better. We’ve listed them below to help you out.
- Use the correct wick size – Using the proper wick size, as well as the scent and colour, is just as essential to make a high-quality candle. If it is too big, the flame will become sooty. If it is too small, then the flame will be weak.
- Add fragrance at the right temperature – Adding drops of oil fragrance at the right temperature into wax is essential for proper fragrance diffusion. This is usually around 85 degrees but can change depending on your wax type.
- Measure right and practice – Getting the right amount of fragrance and colour can take a few attempts when making your DIY candle till it’s how you desire. Each time, record the amount of food coloring you add to the mix and fragrance, then adjust depending on how you want your final product to look/smell.
- Allow it to cure – After making your candle, allow it to sit for 24 hours before your first burn. This lets the candle fragrance diffuse properly and the wax hardens.
- Safety rules – Make sure you follow safety rules when making your candle, use a double boiler to prevent wax from overheating, wear protective gear, work in a ventilated area and never leave your melted wax unattended.
Frequently Asked Questions About Making Scented Coloured Candles
Can you use perfume when making decorative candles?
We do not recommend using perfume when making candles, and this is because it will not burn appropriately as the candle burns and potentially clog up the wick. It is also flammable!
Is turmeric okay to use in making coloured candles?
Turmeric is a great way to add a natural orange colour to your candles and other spices.
Why is it important to use oil-based food colouring when making candles?
Liquid food colouring tends to be water-based, therefore, doesn’t mix well with candle wax, oil-based food colourings are the better choice.
Why don’t my homemade candles smell?
If your homemade candle is not smelling, you didn’t use enough fragrance oil or added the fragrance at the wrong temperature.
How much candle dye liquid do I need per pound of candle wax?
To make the candle dye colors you need, it is recommended to use one ounce of candle dye liquid per 125 pounds of candle wax. Use more or less candle dye colors depending on rich you want your candle to be.
Overall, making coloured scented candles is easy. Just ensure you have some candle dye, the fragrance of choice, wax and a double boiler.
Always consider the amount of fragrance you need to get the desired scent and the amount of colour. Doing a few tests tries first is recommended.
Smell is one of the human senses which can flow through the whole body. I am the Founder of NeoCandle.com where we talk all about scented candles. Known as Candace the Candle Girl, I know pretty much all there is to know about scented candles. I make and sell them on Etsy and Ebay – so be sure to ask if you have any burning questions 🙂 (pun intended 😉 )