Soy wax has become extremely popular among candle makers for its ability to easily infuse fragrances and mix well with other waxes. Like beeswax, soy wax is completely renewable and can be produced almost anywhere. Soy wax is fun to work with, burns cleanly and is perfect for candles of all shapes and sizes.
While beeswax is renewable and a great wax for candle making, in the past it was considered expensive compared to mass-produced waxes made from other materials including paraffin - a byproduct of petroleum production. This led to experiments using plant-based sources including palm, coconut, and soybean to produce wax. Using these all-natural materials provided the affordable source of wax candle makers, and others had been waiting for. Soy wax is now used in all types of products including lip balm, soaps, cosmetics, and, of course, soy candles!
The process of making soy wax begins with harvesting soybeans, cleaning and de-shelling them. Then, they must be pressed and rolled into flakes, which can be used to extract the soybean oils. The soybean oil must then be put through a process called hydrogenation. This process transforms the soybean oils into a solid wax that can be used for candles. Adding hydrogen bonds to the soy wax greatly increases the melting point allowing it to maintain a solid structure at room temperature and burn slowly when introduced to a flame. Now, you have your soy wax!
If you would like to make your own scented soy wax candles, you will need to heat your soy wax flakes to 155 degrees. Before heating the wax, include your color sticks (or food coloring). Once the wax has been heated, place your favorite scents into the wax and stir until the temperature drops to 115 degrees (Stir gently to avoid creating bubbles in the wax). Ensure your wicks are centered in your candle jars as you pour your soy wax and let them rest at least three days before burning. This allows the scents to infuse fully into the candle and “seasons” them for maximum aroma and the longest possible burn times.
Making your soy wax candles at home can be extremely rewarding. Whether you are interested in candles or lip balm, you can be confident that you’re using the cleanest, most natural products possible. Check out our soy wax candle starter kits for making your candles at home.
Share your stories and recipes with us in the comments below and check out our soy wax candle kit to start making your candles. We’d love to hear from you!