Make Your Own Soy Candles in Repurposed Containers

Edited by Jan Margery Castillo, mahalia jovita b. bugasto, Robbi, Eng and 5 others



Are you the type of person who doesn't easily throw containers away? Do you collect almost-junk items? You're not exactly sure why but you keep them anyway.

Well, this might be the reason--and it may be the right time to re-use those materials for something worthwhile--like soy candles!

Gather up your old containers because we have lots of perfectly cute soy candle making ideas that will make your home light up with joy and hope this holiday season--or any season.

What are Soy Candles?

Soy candles are made from natural soy wax. Soy wax is the newest trend in making candles and people are embracing this natural product because it's petroleum-free. Soy wax is made from pure 100% soybean oil making it non-carcinogenic. There are, however, candles that are made from a combination of soy wax and paraffin wax, or soy and vegetable oil blends. Container candles are great for soy wax because of its low melting point.

Interesting Facts about Soy Wax

  • It was developed in 1990 by Michael Richards in search for a natural alternative to beeswax candle making.
  • The raw wax (without the color and fragrance) is so natural it could be used as a substitute for cooking.
  • Soy candles burn longer than paraffin by 50% because it burns cooler. Even though soy wax is more expensive than paraffin, they're pretty even because it burns longer.
  • Soy wax is environmentally friendly because it burns cleaner compared to paraffin wax.
  • It can easily be cleaned with hot soap and water.
  • When exposed to direct sunlight, a soy candle may 'sweat' because soy wax has a lower melt point.
  • Soy wax holds more fragrance than paraffin wax.

Make your own Soy Candles

Soy candles are very expensive, but it's actually easy to make your own. The materials are affordable and accessible. You don't necessarily need to have all the candle-making gadgets to create your own soy candles. A little bit of creativity and resourcefulness will help you create your own holiday candles. Soy wax is available in flakes and pellet. More chandlers prefer using the flakes because it's easier to measure.

What you need:

Let's get Started

  1. 1
    Put the soy wax flakes into the glass pitcher and place it on the stock pot with water
    Let the water boil to melt the wax. You may also use a direct melter or microwave for faster melting.
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  2. 2
    While waiting for the wax to melt, prepare the jars and wicks
    Place the anchor at the bottom of the jar and make sure it's in the center. Use a skewer to hold it in place.
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  3. 3
    When the wax becomes liquid and translucent, use a thermometer to gauge if it's already 185 degrees F
    A digital thermometer is ideal in order to set an alarm to sound when it reaches the desired heat.
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  4. 4
    Remove it from the heat and add the candle dye
    One dye chip is enough per 500 grams of candle wax. You may add more dye chips if you want a stronger color. Mix it gently with a skewer.
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  5. 5
    Add the essential oil
    As a rule of thumb, the fragrance oil should be 8% by weight of any candle. Therefore, you need an ounce of essential oil for every 1 lb of wax. Mix and wait for the wax mixture to reach 120-140 degrees F (ideal pouring temperature) before pouring.
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  6. 6
    Pour the wax into the candle containers
    Avoid moving the skewers as it should keep the wick in place.
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  7. 7
    Cool at room temperature for at least 24 hours
    It's not advisable to cool it on a cold temperature because it will cause cracks. Bigger candles need longer time to cool.
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  8. 8
    Trim the wick to about 1/2 inch above the candle
    Cut it diagonally using a nail clipper.
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Getting Artsy with Repurposed Containers

Now that you know how to make your own soy candles, it's time to be a little crafty with containers that you already have. Perhaps you have old jars, mason jars or empty baby food containers, wine bottles, old votive and other old containers that you've been keeping. Any glass, ceramic or tin cans that are heat resistant and won't leak will do.

All those and a teeny bit of detail work will help you to create a cute soy candle for your home this holiday. Here are some ideas to creating environment-friendly and personalized soy candles in repurposed containers.

Repurpose Mason Jars

There are countless ways that you can create fabulous soy candle containers out of mason jars so don't throw them away. In fact, it's great to collect mason jars because you can make several crafts out of them, not just candles. Here are some ideas to repurpose mason jars.

  • Hanging Jar Lanterns. You basically need two materials in order to make these cute hanging jar lanterns-mason jars and jute twines. It's fine to use different jar sizes or colors to create a variety.Put the candles inside the mason jars and set aside. Tie a twine around the rim of the jars. Then, cut three 24 inches of twines and tie them at the middle to create a spider-like formation. Place the jars at the center of the knot and thread each strand up to the rim of the jar. Tie up all the strands and pull them up to create a huge knot so you can hang it on a tree. You may tie up two to three lanterns before hanging. These are perfect for outdoor porch too.
    Hangingjarlanterns 1.jpg
  • Illuminating Holiday Jars. Imagine how beautiful this mason jar has become with those fresh cranberries and ferns. It's like a fruity Christmas candle! Toss some ferns inside a clear empty jar, add some cranberries and pour in water to make the fruits float. Place a floating tea light soy candle on top and viola! What a delightful sight!This makes a perfect side table decoration. You may also use little flowers instead of cranberries.
  • Epsom Salt Luminaries. Check how expensive-looking these cute shimmering luminaries are. They make awesome wedding candles and are just perfect for any occasion. Prepare some mason jars with shapes and sizes, epsom salt, pastel color food colorings, Mod Podge, and clear gloss sealer. First thing that you need to do is to mix a drop of food coloring to the Epsom salt. Put it in a paper because you'll have to roll the Mod Podge coated jars on it. Once the whole jar is covered with Epsom salt, seal it with sprays of clear gloss sealer to prevent the salt from falling off. Place the soy candle tea lights on each jar and that's it!
    Epsomsaltilluminaries 1.jpg
  • Gift Candle Jars. Bubble gum colored candles in a jar are irresistible to look at. They are cool to see and could be a thoughtful souvenir or gift. Clean your mason jar and use it as a container for your colored candles. Cut a circle from a brown fabric or Japanese paper, make sure the diameter is bigger than the rim of the jar. Print a "Thank You" stamp on that piece of cloth or paper and just tie it around the rim of the candle. You may use twine or colorful ribbons to make it crafty.
  • Lace Covered Jar Candles. Check your old sweaters from your cabinet and get one that you think you will no longer need. Knitted or lacey materials are perfect for this candle jar idea. Wrap your mason jars with lace fabric and you now have a gorgeous soy candle container. Use Mod Podge to seal the fabric in place. Add some ribbons on the rim for a more feminine touch.
    Sweater-Candles 1.jpg
  • Baby Food Jar Container. Soy tea lights are ideal for small baby food containers like this. This could be a lovely gift specially because the finish product looks like an expensive well-crafted containers. You need small letter stickers, ribbons, spray paint and tape. First, put the letter stickers on the jar the way you want it. Then, cover the top and bottom portion of the jar leaving one inch wide of strip in the middle where the letters are. Spray some paint and let it dry. Remove the tapes and simply embellish the rim of the jars with ribbons. You may also use little flower details for a dainty touch.

Repurpose Glasses

If you don't have many mason jars at home, you may use old glasses from different sizes and shapes too. Your vintage glasses which you think are too stained already can also be re-used as a soy candle container. Here are some ideas.

  • Mercury Glass Candle Holder. This looks so elegant because of its mercury color. Plain glasses or those with styled textures can be used for this project. All you need is a silver spray paint to make it look like a mercury glass. Use soy tea lights for added elegance.
  • Cut Paper Candle Holders. This one is very easy but it looks stunning, especially with a lighted soy tea light candle inside. You basically need glasses of different shape and size and any paper color that you want. Fill the paper with coordinating you shape cuts and just fold them to create a bumpy design. Paste the paper onto the glass surface and it's good to go.
  • Glittery Jars. This is another easy project that makes any room look posh. Prepare some glitters on a piece of paper, paint the glass with mod podge, and roll it over the glitters. Make sure the surface is fully covered. You may also use a clear gloss sealer to make the glitters intact.
  • DIY Painted Candle Holders. You may use old votives or your regular old glass for this craft. The inspiration of this artwork comes from a painter's glass used to clean the brushes. Use different watercolor paints and just scribble them inside the glass. Unleash the abstract artist in you but don't overdo it as it could become brownish.
  • Pine Cone Candle Holder. This is ideal for Christmas holiday decoration. Pick some pine cones of the same size and glue each one around the glass using a stick glue or double-sided tape. Then, tie a taupe twine around it to finish the look. Use a soy tea light candle for this container.
  • Memory Making Candles. Now this project is double purpose because aside from a candle decoration, it is another way to preserve photographs. The candle holder looks like a vintage piece that reminds you of your precious memories. The materials you'll need are transparent contact paper and a photocopy of laser print copy of your selected photo. A black and white photo is recommended for a more dramatic look. Peel the backing of the contact paper and place the photo to the sticky side. Rub it evenly then soak it into warm water for 7 minutes. Then, remove the paper carefully under running water. Once the paper is completely off, let the contact paper dry and wait for it to become sticky again before adhering it to the glass container. Place a candle inside and you now have a perfect Memory Candles!

Other Unique Candle Containers

There are irregular shapes of containers that could be used for soy candles. The following are fab ideas you can try.

  • Vintage Teacup Candles. This is a rather easy candle container. All you need is to look for vintage teacups. Just pour the melted soy wax into the cup, put a wick, let it cool, and that's it!
  • Seashell Candles. This is a rather creative and unique candle container because of its summer feel. It's not difficult to make too. Shells of different sizes can be used. It's very simple yet it looks so beautiful.
  • Egg Shell Candles. Cooking eggs for breakfast? Why not keep the egg shells and create cute soy candle containers out of it? This project is so unique you might get your kids help you. It's such an eye candy! Empty the egg by cracking the top part of it using a pin. Then, dye the candles with food coloring and vinegar. Melt the soy wax and put into the egg shells, add the wick and let the egg candles stand on its original carton.

There are endless ways on how you can recycle old jars, tins and other containers. Creativity is the key but remember that whatever container you use for soy candle making, it should be fire-resistant, leak resistant and crack resistant. It's important too that you don't leave candles unattended for so long. Share the light this season by making some candles as give away gifts to your friends and relatives!

Questions and Answers

Do you know how to make soy candles in silver containers?

I would like to learn how to make candles in cans, like the ones you see with lids in the stores.. I have tried: Nothing, I was just wondering how to make soy candles in silver cans and if there was any trick to It.. I think it was caused by: I was looking for an unusual way of making soy candles that was pretty but also was portable to take on the road - like a soy candle in a can.

You can use the methods in this Candle making VisiHow article to put in tins. Make sure the tins do not have an interior rust and that they are clean before you fill the wax. You may also have to reheat the tins to get the wax to settle properly because you will not be able to see any air bubbles from the sides like you would with a glass container.

Why does my soy wax candle in a glass jar not set smoothly on the glass?

Hello,. I hope you can please help as this is driving me mad! I am making soy wax essential oil candles to sell at my local Christmas market and I don't feel they look good enough as the wax doesn't set smoothly on the inside of the glass. It looks like it sticks to some part of the glass but not all so it looks really messy on the inside. Some. Look better than others but I can never get a clean surface all the way around. It's so frustrating, I have tried pouring the wax at different temps and have the container different temps too. I do hope you can please help! X. I have tried: I have tried pouring the wax at different temps, and the container at different temps. Gave the wax a little 'swirl' around the glass when I poured it in.. I think it was caused by: Could it be that part wax is setting at different times so had more time to adhere to the glass? Or am I still pouring the wax to hot? Or the glass to cold?

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Categories : Repurposing Crafts

Recent edits by: Maria Quinney, Donna, KeatoPhoenix

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