How to make Perfume, soap, and candles instructions

PERFUME MAKING

An Overview

In this chapter of the book, we’ll look at a few easy ways in which you can make your own perfume with less effort Research has shown you can actually make 100 bottles of perfume for less than $300, and then sell them for up to $50 each, if you like.

Certainly, some of the most popular perfumes available now are those that didn’t cost much to make.

Previously it was very difficult to locate the ingredients along with the packaging (bottles, spray nozzles, etc) while people were trying to make their own perfume. But now much of this has changed because of the internet and being able to order items online. Today you can find that at a fair price you can get the supplies you need and have the order delivered directly to your home address.

However, before you start making your own perfume, there are some items you will need to recall, and some of these are shown below.

  1. You need to think of a name for your perfume first (something catchy so people can remember). Now you’ve got the name, you need to design a label (it would be best for simple artwork).
  2. Next, you need to look at the types of ingredients you’ll need, and make a list.
  3. Look for the best types of bottles, lids, and pumps to put your perfume in (spend a little more on this item); you want your perfume to look great.
  4. Next, you have to spend several days picking your fragrances. It’s crucial you do as much research as you can on any other ingredients you might use.
  5. It is essential, when preparing the ingredients, that you are in a sterile environment before pouring the perfume into the bottles you have selected and purchased.
  6. Finally, look for a way you can show the finished product to consumers … it might be in a package, or you might find a much more innovative way to do so.

Simple method and if you’ve always considered doing it then why not give it a go…….


The History of Perfume

The word perfume owes its meaning to the Latin word „per fumum‟. This means through the smoke. The art of making perfumes had its origin in ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt. Tapputi is the world‟s first recorded chemist and perfume maker from Mesopotamia. Later, perfumes spread to Rome and Arabian countries. Most of the perfumes from these places were based on incense.

Egyptians used perfumes in religious rituals like cleansing ceremonies. Perfumed oils had many medicinal properties and were in use in balms and ointments. Slowly, Egyptian women started using perfumed creams and oils as toiletries. This also led to the spread of perfumes to other countries like Greece, Arabian countries, and Rome. However, with the fall of the Roman Empire, perfumes started losing their importance in this part of the world. However, Islamic countries kept their traditions alive and developed their perfume-making.

From the twelfth century onwards, perfumes started regaining their importance across different pockets of the world. France was the foremost in the use and development of perfumes. The court of Louis XV was popular as „the perfumed court‟ due to the application of perfumes to furniture, clothing, and everything else.

Eau de Cologne was an invention of the eighteenth century. It offered a refreshing blend of various scents like neroli, rosemary, bergamot, and lemon. Liquid perfumes now became popular and were available in glass bottles. Perfumes underwent major changes in the nineteenth century. This was due to improved perfume making techniques, use of different chemicals, and changes in tastes of perfume users.

Grasse in Provence was then the largest production center of perfumes. Slowly, Paris became the commercial center for the production of perfumes. This also led to the development of different perfume houses across Europe. William Sparks Thomson set up The Crown Perfumery in 1872 with a collection of floral fragrances.

Leather fragrances became popular in the 1930s. Noteworthy perfumers include Jacques Fath, Christian Dior, Pierre Balmain, Jean Patou, and Nina Ricci. Presently, there are more than 30,000 designer perfumes in the market catering to all ranges of cost and luxury in addition to their fragrance.


What is Needed to Make Homemade Perfumes?

Perfumes are a perennial favorite and many people love to wear perfume. It makes you smell nice and the scent lingers for a long time. Perfumes are an ideal combination of fragrant oils, fixatives, aroma blends, and solvents.

The main composition of the perfume consists of base perfume oils, which could be animal or synthetic. Mixing of solvents helps dilute their concentration and makes it easy to use and apply. An undiluted and pure form of base oils causes allergies and skin damage.

You can make perfumes at home. Your choice of perfumes decides the ingredients you need to make perfumes at home. Some of them are strong and last long while some have a soft smell and do not linger long.

There are three main categories of ingredients necessary for making perfumes.

They are:

  • Pure grain oil
  • Essential oils, available from different plant and animal sources, form the essence of your perfume, and
  • Water

ESSENTIAL OIL USED IN PERFUMES

All of us use perfumes. You get a host of them in the market. But finding the right one that appeals to our senses can be a task if you have a discerning nose. You might like a certain element of one perfume, while another element from another perfume. So how do you choose the one that you would like the most? An easy way to pass this hurdle is to make your own! We got Dr. Blossom Kochhar, an aromatherapy expert to give an insight into different essential oils and how they help, and also how to make perfume – and a host of other things for you. To make a perfume, you need essential oils, carrier oil, and apparatus like a glass bowl, glass bottle, and a dropper. We will look at each of these in detail.

Essential oil is natural oil typically obtained by distillation and having the characteristic odor of the plant or other source from which it is extracted. It is a highly concentrated version of natural oils. They have a host of physical and psychological health and well-being applications. Aromatherapy is one of the most common ways of using essential oils and involves healing through the aromas of the oils. There are many essential oils that you can use. We have a list of the ones that you can use for your DIY perfumes. All of them have a host of benefits for skincare, hair care, and others; here, we look at just a few benefits of these essential oils.

Basil: This essential oil stimulates the nervous system. It helps eliminate odor. It restores mental alertness and fights fatigue. It also reduces symptoms like brain fog, sluggishness, sore muscles, and poor mood.

Cedarwood: Use this one for alleviating stress and anxiety. It also improves focus and wisdom. It is said to get people together and improve personal outlook and self-esteem.

Chamomile: This one is a powerful calming agent, and an antidepressant, and overall mood lifter.

Cinnamon: It helps to relieve depression. It is a natural aphrodisiac. It is also a natural home deodorizer and freshener and helps detoxify the air. It also helps in treating and preventing headaches.

Eucalyptus: This essential oil helps to fight migraines and fevers. It has a cooling capability that aids in relieving muscle aches and pains. It works as an expectorant and helps cleanse your body of toxins. It removes odor and cleanses the air. You can use this to keep cough and cold away, too, says.

Geranium: This one helps to improve physical, mental, and emotional health. It uplifts mood, lessens fatigue, and promotes emotional wellness. It also alleviates anxiety and balances the hormones. Research proves that it helps relieve you of any sluggishness.

Jasmine: This oil improves mood, helps overcome stress, and helps balance hormones. It is a natural remedy for anxiety, emotional stress, low libido, and insomnia. It helps rejuvenate you and your mind and increases alertness.

Lavender: It is a sedative and has calming and anti-depressant properties. It relieves headaches and other pains. It also helps in reducing anxiety and emotional stress. It also helps to improve sleep.

Lemon: This essential oil improves mood and rejuvenates energy. It also helps to get rid of nausea. It also helps in detoxification of the air.

Lemongrass: This one reduces muscle pain and other aches. It also works as an insect-repellent. It is relaxing, stimulating, soothing, and balancing oil.

Neroli: It soothes agitated nerves and helps to relieve feelings of grief and despair. It is relaxing and helps to better the sleep.

Orange: It helps ease anxiety and decrease hypertension. It enhances immunity, helps reduce pain and boosts the mood.

Patchouli: This essential oil helps fight depression, boost the immune system, and also works as a natural deodorant. It also stimulates hormones and enhances mood.

Peppermint: It helps improve mental focus. It boosts the energy and relieves headaches.

Rose: This one balances the hormones, relieves anxiety, and improves depression. This one especially helps women.

Rosemary: This oil helps to improve memory. It also relieves muscle aches and pains. It is especially beneficial for haircare, Dr Kochhar tells.

Sandalwood: This essential oil has a very calming effect on the mind. It helps reduce tension, confusion, stress, fear, nervousness, and anxiety. It not only helps reduce stress but also is an aphrodisiac.

Tea tree: Its antibacterial properties make it a natural freshener. It is a natural immunity booster and also fights infection.

Ylang ylang: This one helps reduce stress and is an aphrodisiac. It also enhances the mood. It energizes and helps avoid fatigue, and body aches.

Carrier oils help dilute the essential oils before application on the skin. They‟re the base for the essential oil that is being mixed into it. A greater amount of the carrier oil is used with the essential oils to properly dilute them. The carrier oils themselves have many benefits that you add to with the essential oils. Here are some carrier oils – and their main benefits – that you can use to dilute the essential oil while making perfumes.

Almond oil: This oil has vitamins A, B and E. It helps balance the moisture in the skin, improves skin complexion, and gives the skin a natural glow. It absorbs easily into the skin. The smell isn‟t overwhelming, so this works well for perfumes.

Grapeseed oil: It is high in minerals, vitamin E, proteins and linoleic acid. It doesn‟t make the skin greasy.

Jojoba oil: This oil gets easily absorbed into the skin and has no particular scent of its own. It is one of the closest to the natural oils in the skin.

To make a balanced perfume, you need to find the right balance in the notes that you add. There are three fragrance notes: base, top, and middle. You need to have at least one of each in the perfume you make to ensure it smells right. As a rule, the top, middle, and base notes should be harmonious. Select essential oils from all three categories, but make sure to use less of the top and middle notes than that of the base note. It is said that you should have 45-55% of the blend in base notes, 30-40% in middle notes ad 15-25% in top notes. While this percentage is not set in stone, you should start with this basic, and then edit the ratio here and there to get that perfect fragrance for you.

Top notes: These oils tend to evaporate fast, and are light, fresh and uplifting in nature. From the list given above, basil, cinnamon, eucalyptus, lemon, lemongrass, neroli, orange, peppermint and tea tree are included in top notes.

Base notes: These essential oils are heavy inconsistency, and have a strong fragrance. They don‟t evaporate fast, and are intense and heady in smell. The base note oils include cedarwood, jasmine, patchouli, rose, sandalwood, and ylang-ylang. Cinnamon is also considered a base note.

Middle notes: These notes help balance the fragrance. They might not be too evident in smell but when you concentrate, you can smell those as an undertone. From the given list of essential oils above, geranium, lavender, and rosemary are middle notes. From the top notes list, basil, lemongrass, neroli, and tea tree could also be considered in the middle notes, as also ylang ylang from the base notes.


Making Your Own Perfume – The First Steps

You can make your own perfume at home. Perfume making is not a huge task; it only involves collecting essential ingredients, mixing them appropriately, and later bottling them perfectly to preserve the scent.

Perfume making involves the mixing of three main constituents. These are essential oils, water, and pure grain alcohol, although not necessarily in that order. Normally, you mix all ingredients in equal quantities. Yet, you can try different recipes to make a different combination and develop a new perfume and a different scent. Essential oils could be plant or animal extracts like lavender oil, bergamot oil.

The Internet is one source for your ingredients. But, there are advantages to using local suppliers, even if the prices are slightly higher. They know local crafts-people so they can put you in touch with those who share your interest. They also are more ready to help you with answers to questions and you can usually get smaller quantities of many of the less used supplies.

The Things that You Need

  • Lavender essential oil
  • Bergamot essential oil
  • Ethyl alcohol
  • Distilled water
  • Bottles
  • Large Bowl
  • Measuring Spoons

Steps for Making your Perfume

  • Mix in two cups of distilled water, four tablespoons of ethyl alcohol, ten drops of bergamot essential oil and ten drops of lavender essential oil into the bowl.
  • Mix them well and allow them to stay overnight or for twelve hours in the bowl. The bowl should be away from heat, sunlight, and preferably in a cool, dark place.
  • Transfer contents into a dark colored bottle and close lid tightly.
  • Allow it to settle for 24 to 48 hours.
  • Choose a suitable name for your perfume and design a label.
  • You can then use your perfume.
  • Take care that while preparing and pouring perfume into glass containers that you are in a sterile environment.

Base notes form the core of your perfume. These smells last the longest and are therefore mixed in the first. Middle notes consist of geranium, lemongrass, neroli, and ylang-ylang.

Mix these oils after base oils.

This scent stays longer, although not as much as base oils. Top notes are added last, as their scent lasts the least time.


The Materials Needed and Where to Get Them

If you intend making perfumes at home, you should choose a specific perfume formula. Which formula depends on the type of perfume you want to make and use.

Every perfume has its own set of necessary essential oils and fragrance oils. Choose oils of good quality to ensure your perfume is of high quality. It will be on your skin or those of some of your close friends and family.

Essential and fragrance oils determine the scent, character, mood, and quality of your perfume. However, essential oils are costlier than fragrance oils. Hence, in the initial days, it is best to make perfumes with fragrance oils alone. You can start using essential oils in your perfume making after you become an expert perfume-maker.

You should use the correct combinations of fragrance and essential oils in your perfume. Otherwise, it could cause serious health problems. Therefore, use glass measuring devices so that you can see the exact amount of oils you use perfectly.

Alcohol is the main solvent in use while making perfumes. It helps reduce the strength of all oils used in perfume making. You also require specific fixatives. These lower evaporation rates of fragrance and essential oils in your perfume and makes fragrance stay longer.

You may be lucky enough to live where you can purchase all necessary supplies for your perfume at a local store or one in the nearest city. They may charge more than Internet-based suppliers but you can probably order only the amount you need and get it immediately.

The Internet offers you further choices for placing online orders and purchase essential perfume kits, possibly at lower cost.

I’ve put a Chapter covering suppliers for Candlemaking, Soap Making and Perfumery supplies at the end of the book.

Many of the suppliers offer products for more than one category, so I’ve put colored letters beside each entry.

Unit Conversions – Measuring and Mixing

Perfume making involves mixing oils, solvents, and fixatives in correct quantities to get the desired fragrance.

Before starting with perfume making, you should have all ingredients and their measuring devices ready.

Use glass measuring devices. Transparent glasses can help you measure the correct levels of ingredients. Use a graduated beaker of 500ml, a burette of 50ml, and small syringes of 2ml for making perfumes at home.

Funnels should have long and narrow necks as perfume bottles have narrow openings. These funnels are good for easier filling of bottles.

Clean all glassware thoroughly with a neutral soap to remove any dirt or stains. Dry all items well before use.

You may use alcohol or vodka to clean all delicate glassware like syringes and pipettes as these are delicate devices and require mild cleansers.

Unclean glassware could change the fragrance of the scent where soluble deposits are already present.

Measuring Of Ingredients

Always follow the same directions and instructions while mixing oils in burettes and beakers. When you pour a liquid into a cylindrical container, the flat liquid surface (meniscus) curves across the container.

Normally, you should fill the container until the straight part of the liquid meniscus meets the upper part of the graduation and expresses the desired volume. Glass containers allow easy viewing of flat and small curved surfaces of liquids.

Mixing Of Ingredients

Mixing of ingredients in perfume making is possible in two ways. You may choose to mix all essential oils and form a base. Store this and add required proportions to fixatives and alcohol when necessary.

Another way of mixing ingredients for perfume making is to add all of them in a sequential manner. This is a simple process.

Start by first adding solvent to the beaker.

Proceed by adding all the other ingredients in the prescribed order. Gently mix in all ingredients with a glass rod.

Alcohol helps with fast dissolving of the oils. This is a comparatively fast process.

But, you should store your perfume in suitable tightly closed glass containers immediately to prevent loss of fragrance.


Bottling and Labeling

Bottling of perfumes is an important process of perfume making. The correct choice of bottles helps to avoid wastage and loss of fragrance. While choosing bottles for your perfumes, avoid using open bottles or those with roller caps. Instead try using bottles with spray dispensers.

Spray dispensers isolate fragrances within a bottle and prevent any mixing with dust, detritus, and skin. These undesirable elements alter the quality of your perfume.

The dispensers reduce exposure to oxygen, which also changes fragrance levels. Perfumes retain their fragrance if kept in light-tight aluminum bottles with their original packaging if not used regularly. Refrigerating your perfumes at low temperatures between three and seven degrees Celsius can preserve their fragrance for a long time.

Loss of fragrance of your perfume could be due to exposure to light, heat, or oxygen.

Once you open and use a bottle of perfume, it can retain its fragrance for well up to a year. This is true if the level of perfume remains more or less full. However, as the level of perfume within the bottle goes down due to regular usage, oxygen in the air causes alterations in the fragrance of the perfume. When filling perfume bottles, keep the bottle on a flat surface. Place the funnel‟s neck well within the bottle so that it is just above the maximum level your perfume should reach within the bottle. This is normally just below the bottle‟s neck.

Now, start pouring perfume into the bottle through the funnel‟s mouth from the beaker.

Pour it little by little and do not place lot of liquid in the funnel‟s cone. This makes it difficult to judge if all liquid will be accommodated within the bottle.

It might otherwise pour back out through the bottle’s neck.

Keep a watch on the rising level of the liquid and monitor your actions accordingly. As soon as you reach the desired level, remove the funnel and tightly close the cap of the bottle.

Label your perfume according to your choice of name. Use your imagination to think of an exotic name. Make a label that fits well within the size of the bottle.


Choosing a Formulation

The blend of different aromas available through the use of diverse essential oils constitutes a perfume. You can follow specific formulations of perfumes as available on the Internet. Or, you can choose to make your own formulations.

Formulations require the use of specific volumes and proportions of ingredients. While making perfumes at home, it could pose a problem. Kitchen balances are not so precise. Formulations of perfumes require the use of specific hardware. It is better not to use plastic spoons and disposable glass jelly jars. These react with solvents and essentials oils. Further, they may not offer precise measurements.

Glass is the best for use in measuring and mixing ingredients for making perfumes. Because it is transparent, it allows easy viewing of all processes of perfume making. Glass burettes, beakers, and syringes offer precise measurements of volume.

Glass does not interact with any ingredients in the use of perfume making.

It is easy to wash and clean glass of all stains. It can withstand high temperatures and thermal shocks. It is still better to use graduated glass.

Although such glass could prove costly, benefits accrued through the use of such glass in perfume-making far outweighs the cost incurred.

Formulation Techniques for Perfume Making

There is no specific formulation that proves to be the best in perfume making. Although there are many ingredients that go into making a bottle of perfume, you can group under four broad heads.

These include:

  • Primary scents: One or a few main ingredients go into making the foremost scent or fragrance of your perfume. Choose a primary scent like a rose or mix a few ingredients to create an abstract scent that does not seem to be natural. Cola flavorant is an abstract scent while rose is a natural scent.
  • Modifiers: These ingredients help change the primary scent to allow alternatives. Adding fruit esters to floral scents can make the scent emanate as a fruity floral. Citrus scents can make the effect similar to that of a freshener.
  • Blenders: Blending ingredients like linalool and hydroxycitronellal allow for easy mixing of all ingredients and removing different bases or layers.
  • Fixatives: Resins, amber bases, and wood scents support and fix the primary scent.

Aromas

The aroma of a perfume is very important as it sets the tone and personality of your perfume. Aroma is the effect of all ingredients put together in the making of perfume. The choice of essential oils assumes paramount importance in getting the desired aroma. There are different methods of extraction of aromas from their sources like ethanol extraction, solvent extraction, distillation, expression, and effleurage.

Sources of Aromas

Aroma sources could be plant or animal. Plants constitute the largest source of fragrant compounds normally used in perfume making. Every part of a plant like flowers, seeds, fruits, bark, blossoms, twigs, leaves, roots, and resins have distinct flavors that form diverse aromas. Flowers like jasmine, rose, tuberose, and blossoms of citrus trees have a separate aroma. Leaves and twigs of violets, lavender, sage, rosemary, patchouli, bring in a special freshness.

Barks of cascarilla and cinnamon offer a separate fragrance. These however require the synthesis of other compounds before use in perfumes. Fruits like strawberries and apples do not deliver the same fragrance on extraction. You can use synthetic versions of these fragrances in your perfume. Yet, juniper berry, vanilla, and Litsea cubeba are exceptions and they offer original flavor. Rinds of fruits like grapefruits, lemons, oranges, and limes have their own special aroma.

Pine and fir resins are an important aroma source. Other resins included in perfume making are copal and amber. Seeds like anise, coriander, nutmeg, cardamom, and mace deliver special aromas. Wood oils offer base notes to a perfume. Popular woods include rosewood, sandalwood, birch, juniper, cedar, and pine.

Animal sources of aromas include odorous sacs of the North American beaver, odorous sacs of civets like the family of mongoose, oxidized fatty compounds secreted and expelled by Sperm Whale, a honeycomb of the honeybee, and musk sacs from the Asian musk deer. Seaweed and oakmoss are other sources of aromas.

Synthetic sources of aromas include many odorants obtained from petroleum distillates, coal-tar, pine resins, and cheap organic feedstock. Synthetic sources are available through the artificial creation of naturally available fragrant compounds.


Solvent and Fixative

Solvent

Anhydrous pure Grain Ethanol is the most common solvent in use in making perfumes. This solvent is a highly pure Ethyl Alcohol. It is obtained from fermentation and distillation of cereal grains. However, it is not easy to obtain such a pure form of alcohol. Therefore, the best solvent for use in perfume making is good quality distilled beverage obtained from grains. One such solvent is vodka.

Fixative

Fixatives are efficient in reducing the evaporation rate of oils used in making your perfume. The absence of a good fixative is the main cause for your perfume losing its scent over time.

Some essential and fragrance oils are extremely volatile. These specifically require fixatives if you are using them to make perfumes. Often in a perfume, 20% to 30% constitutes fragrance and essential oils while the rest is alcohol and fixatives. Some perfumes include water, which is a meager 0-5%.

Fixatives were traditionally obtained from natural sources like animals and plants. However, presently, there are many synthetic fixatives for use in perfume making. These include Phthalates and Glycerin.

You should adopt certain precautions while using such fixatives. Glycerin could cause skin allergies. Phthalates have carcinogenic properties and could instigate allergic reactions. Since essential oils do not have a very high evaporation rate at atmospheric pressure, you can choose to make your perfumes without fixatives too.


Creating Aromatherapy Perfumes at Home

Essential oils provide the main aroma in any perfume. Different essential oils have varied properties like relaxing, calming, soothing, and energizing effects. Some incite exotic feelings while some make you feel extremely confident. Choose the type of aroma you would prefer and make your extraordinary perfumes at home. Creating aromatherapy perfumes at home is simple and interesting. You need a proper base to start, which could be carrier oil or alcohol. Some prefer a mixture of both. You could blend vodka, odorless alcohol, and Jojoba oil. This oil has a lingering scent. However, if you are a newbie to perfume making, you could experiment with less costly carrier oils like apricot kernel oil or almond oil. Equipment Necessary for Making Aromatherapy Perfumes.

  • Small funnels
  • Measuring spoons
  • Dropper
  • Small colored bottles

Ingredients Necessary for Making Aromatherapy Perfumes

  • Essential oils
  • Carrier oils
  • Alcohol or Vodka

You can use any essential oil according to your choice like jasmine, cedarwood, grapefruit, clary sage, spearmint, bergamot, rose, patchouli, marjoram, chamomile, lavender, or mandarin. Carrier oils could be almond, jojoba, or apricot kernel oil.

Procedure for Making Aromatherapy Perfumes

Place the small funnel in a bottle and pour one teaspoon each of any carrier oil and vodka. Next, add few drops of essential oils according to your choice of recipe with the help of a dropper for accurate measurements.

It is essential to close the lid of the bottle tightly and shake it after adding each drop of essential oil.

Store the bottle in a cool and dark place. Every day, shake the bottle at least three times.

Your aromatherapy perfume will be ready for use after the completion of the necessary period according to your choice of recipe.

Different Aromatherapy Recipes

1. Calming Aromatherapy Perfume

a. 4 drops Jasmine

2 drops Lemon

1 drop Patchouli

b. 4 drops of Cedar wood

2 drops of Clary Sage

1 drop of Grapefruit

2 drops of Mandarin

c. 3 drops of lavender

3 drops of Neroli

2 drops of Spearmint

2. Energizing Aromatherapy Perfume

2 drops of Grapefruit
2 drops of Patchouli
1 drop of Rose
3 drops of Vetivert
2 drops of Ylang-Ylang

3. Tranquilizing Aromatherapy Perfume

a. 4 drops of Cedarwood

2 drops of Clary Sage

1 drop of Grapefruit

2 drops of Mandarin

b. 2 drops of Bergamot

3 drops of Chamomile

2 drops of Marjoram

4 drops of Lavender

4. Relaxing Aromatherapy Perfumes

a. 3 drops of Jasmine

3 drops of Neroli

4 drops of Orange

b. 1 drop of Clary Sage

3 drops of Patchouli

2 drops of Rose

4 drops of Rosewood

5. Blended Aromatherapy Perfume

10 drops Frankincense essential oil

5 drops Black Pepper essential oil

4 drops Rose absolute or Rose Otto

1 drop Jasmine or grandiflorum absolute

5 drops Myrrh essential oil

10 drops Cedarwood

3 drops Rosewood essential oil

It can take from one to three months for your perfume to settle and blend well. Shake the bottle daily. You can use any type of rose oil, although be careful to check for alterations. Adding a drop of Jasmine sambac absolute to grandiflorum can offer a different aroma. You could use a drop of diluted cinnamon, clove, ginger, or cumin in place of Black Pepper to get a different aroma. A drop of Neroli absolute can be a substitute for Jasmine.

Increasing the given proportions could make your perfume very concentrated. It could cause allergic skin reactions. If need be, pour a little bit of your aromatherapy perfume into a bottle and mix it with a blender. This will dilute contents and would have a lesser intensity. This idea works perfect for saving on the high costs of essential oils like Rose and Jasmine absolutes.

If you prefer a higher incense aroma in your perfume, add a few drops of Cedar Moss, Ambrette Seed, Tonka Bean, Copal, Jamarosa Root, Gurjum, Guaiacwood, Benzoin resin, or Gum Arabic. These act as fixatives and therefore offer a stronger perfume with a long lingering period. However, use them sparingly, as they have strong effects.


Simple Recipes to Make Perfume at Home

Perfume making is a simple process and you can make your own perfumes at home easily. Although the basic recipe is the same, you can experiment using different ingredients and thereby experience different scents.

Basic Perfume Recipe

This is the simplest of all perfume recipes. You only need two cups of water and two cups of freshly chopped flower blossoms. You can use any blossom of your choice like lilac, jasmine, rose, lavender, honeysuckle, or orange.

Steps :

1. Take a bowl and place cheesecloth on the bowl with the edges of the cheesecloth hanging over the sides of the bowl. Fill it with two cups of flower blossoms of your choice and pour water over them, covering them completely.

2. Cover the bowl and allow it to stand overnight. The next day, lift the edges of the cheesecloth gently and squeeze out all the water into a small pot.

3. Allow water collected in this pot to simmer and reduce to just one teaspoon.

4. Cool this solution and put it into a small bottle.

This homemade perfume can retain its scent for around a month.

Perfume using Essential Oils

Ingredients Necessary

4 drops of Sandalwood

4 drops of Musk

3 drops of Frankincense

2 teaspoons of Jojoba oil

Steps :

  • Pour all ingredients into a single bottle (preferably a dark-colored bottle) and mix well by shaking vigorously.
  • Allow your perfume mixture to stand for a minimum of twelve hours.
  • Your perfume is now ready to use. Always keep it in a cool and dry place.

Perfume using essential oils, water, and alcohol

Ingredients Necessary

2 cups distilled water

3 tablespoons of Vodka

5 drops of Lavender

10 drops of Chamomile

10 drops of Valerian

The steps for making this next perfume at home are the same as that of the earlier one.

Use Different Ingredients for Different Results

Follow those same directions for making these perfumes.

The mix of ingredients is different in the following recipes, so you’ll get a variety of perfumes from the same basic procedure.

Mixture -1

2 cups distilled water

3 tablespoons vodka

5 drops sandalwood essential or fragrance oil

10 drops bergamot essential or fragrance oil

10 drops cassis essential or fragrance oil

Mixture -2

2 cups distilled water

3 tablespoons vodka

5 drops everlasting essential or fragrance oil

10 drops peony essential or fragrance oil

10 drops sandalwood essential or fragrance oil

Another Mixture and Method.

3 drops passion flower essential or fragrance oil

2 drops ylang-ylang essential or fragrance oil

3 drops neroli essential or fragrance oil

300ml 70 percent alcohol or vodka

Steps :

1. Pour alcohol into a dark bottle.

2. Mix in all other ingredients.

3. Shake well.

4. Allow the mixture to settle for a week before using.


SOAP MAKING

An Introduction

Soap making is an enjoyable interest and useful skill.

It is possible to make your own soap at home using simple ingredients, tools, and equipment.

When you make your own soap, you know all the ingredients that you put in and can add your own unique touches.

Soap making may involve the use of essential oils, colors, fragrances, and other ingredients in appropriate proportions.

You can make soap by different processes:

  • Cold process
  • Melt and pour, and
  • the Rebatch method.
The Cold Process Soap Making

Cold process soap-making involves the use of chemical lye which is essential in this method of soap making.

But, excessive lye can make your soap harsh and requires care wherever it is used. It could dry your skin. A very small amount of lye in soap changes the pH balance of your soap.

Melt and Pour Soap Making

The melt and pour soap-making process are very simple. You can make soaps using this method by investing just a little time.

Soap made in this process is claimed to be very moisturizing and even energizing. This process involves the use of a glycerin base.

Rebatch Soap Making Method

The Rebatch method involves the use of a pre-made base that you purchase from a soap maker or a third-party supplier.

This soap-making process does not take much time and involves little labor. Soaps made with the rebatch method do not require any curing time and can be used immediately.


Essential Precautions when Making Soap

Irrespective of the method you use for soap making, it is essential to adopt some simple safety measures.

Check all precautions required for using the different ingredients and procedures for your soap making.

Some ingredients may not be suitable for use by some people. For instance, I‟’ve seen recipes that involve ingredients such as valerian and St John‟s Wort. Pregnant women and maybe some other groups may be seriously affected if they contact these ingredients which many assume because they are “natural” then they must be safe.

Always check with your doctor or pharmacist about any ingredients that you don‟t know are 100% safe.

Lye is an essential ingredient in soap making. But, it could prove very dangerous if you are not cautious.

While making soap, always work in an open and well-ventilated room. Keep windows open and use air purifiers and fans.

Have all your ingredients ready and arrange them systematically.

Use only equipment that is specified as being suitable for soap making.

Wear full safety equipment, including goggles, gloves, and a respirator if required.

Carefully measure all ingredients that you use inappropriate measurements.

Follow all instructions carefully and do not try to experiment with anything by yourself until you have successfully produced and used several batches with the same ingredients.

Different proportions can significantly change the results you get for good or for ill. Keep all soap-making ingredients, molds, and equipment out of the reach of children and pets.

Observe all precautions so that you can enjoy your soap making and especially using the unique soaps that you produce.


How is Soap Made?

Soap making involves the mixing of lye and water with fats or oil. Lye is a chemical; sodium hydroxide.

Fats and oils are acids and lye is a base.

When the acids and lye react, the lye converts the acids into a new product, which is soap.

This entire reaction is called saponification.

The chemical reaction of lye and fats takes place in stages.

It starts with a thickening of the solution. This is called „trace‟.

Once trace starts, you need to pour your soap solution into molds.

The chemical reaction of saponification continues to take place for about the next three weeks in the molds.

The soap hardens within the molds and then it is probably ready for use.

At home, you can make soap by using a cold process, melt and pour process or the re-batched process.

The cold process does not mean there is no heat involved in soap making by that method. The process involves many chemical reactions that generate heat.

The melt and pour method is very easy and simple. You only need to melt ready-made soap blocks and add necessary fragrance, color and additives. Within hours, your soap sets and is ready for use.

The re-batched process only requires you to grate ready-made soap and, then, allow it to melt in water.

After that, you can add your own selection of additives and pour it into molds to set.

You can use this soap immediately, as it does not require any curing time.

Methods of Making Soap

You can make soap at home by carefully mixing your ingredients in appropriate measures with some chemicals and then allowing the mixture to settle and harden in molds.

There are four methods of soap making.

  1. Cold Process
  2. Hot Process
  3. Melt and Pour
  4. Rebatching

Soap Making Methods

Cold Process: This is the most common soap-making process. This process involves making soap from scratch without the use of any pre-made soap. You choose and gather all the necessary ingredients like lye, vegetable oils, essential oils, and colorant. Prepare the lye mixture by carefully adding lye to water. Heat will be created, so be very cautious! Allow it to cool substantially. Heat your oil to around 100 degrees. Then, add the lye mixture to your oils and blend the soap until it thickens and starts forming your trace. Next, add fragrance, additives, and color. Pour your soap into molds and allow it to harden and cure for around three to four weeks.

Hot Process: This is the oldest process of soap making. Soap used to be boiled in vats on open fires. Now, you adapt this process of cooking pre-made soaps to form new soaps. When the trace starts to form, you use a double-boiler for extra heat to hasten the saponification process. This causes your soap to settle and harden faster.

Melt and Pour: This process involves melting uncolored and unscented pre-made soap blocks. After the soap blocks melt completely, you put in the additives, fragrances, and colors that you have chosen. After everything dissolves completely in the soap mixture, pour it into your molds and allow the soap to settle. Your soap might be as good as the pre-made soap you purchase. This process does not involve the use of lye mixture, so it is basically a safer process. It may also be easier and fairly inexpensive.

Rebatching: This process involves grinding or grating your ready-made soap bars and then mixing them with milk, water, fragrance, and any other additives you desire. Then, you change, or reblend, them into a new, unique soap that you have created. This process is also popularly called „hand-milling‟. This process can be useful if you have soap leftovers and want to make use of them.


Getting Started – Making Soap from Scratch

Before starting to make soap, you need to prepare molds.

Some people use candy molds, capped PVC pipes or a greased pan but molds that are specifically made for soap-preparation are better and probably a much safer choice.

Grease them and place them on a flat surface.

Measure your lye and water separately and be sure of your accuracy.

Dissolve the lye into the water in a heat-resistant glass container, enamel coated steel container or a stainless steel container.

Do not use aluminum containers as this solution generates extensive heat and aluminum would react under the high temperatures.

Use a good lye-calculator to adjust the lye content in your soap. This will ensure the presence of sufficient fat in your soap, depending on your requirements.

Pour lye, a small amount at a time, into the water and stir gently to dissolve it completely.

Cool it to around 110 degrees.

Measure all oils accurately, then melt and mix them.

Cool the oils to around 110 degrees. Otherwise, heat liquid oils to 110 degrees in a large pot.

Pour the lye solution slowly into your pot that contains your oils and continues stirring gently and evenly.

Be careful to avoid any splashing or splattering of liquids.

Keep stirring until the trace starts forming.

The solution will probably start forming trace within fifteen minutes to three hours.

That formation depends on the type of oils you use in your soap.

Using coconut oil or palm oil can induce quicker formation of trace.

Add fragrances, additives and essential oils after your solution starts to thicken. Stir well to allow thorough mixing of all ingredients.

Pour this mixture slowly into prepared molds.

Cover each mold with a warm towel to prevent it from cooling too fast. This also helps in the curing of your soap.

Allow the soap to harden within each mold for a day.

Then, pop it out and allow it to cure for three to four weeks.

You can use your homemade soap after four weeks.

Use all necessary safety precautions while making soap like wearing goggles and gloves.

Keep a handbook or diary ready to record any special ideas, observations and changes in your soap making recipe. Then, you can incorporate these changes the next time you make soap.


Ingredients Needed to Make Soap

Ingredients necessary for making soap are readily available.

Common ingredients include:

Oils or fats: You can use natural oils or animal fats. Oils used in soap making include canola oil, lard, corn oil, bacon grease, olive oil, tallow, or vegetable shortening.

Sodium Hydroxide: This is lye. This chemical helps to convert oil or fat into soap. You can purchase it at local stores, hardware shops, or some grocery stores.

Water: Use distilled or bottled water for making soap. Tap water in many areas may contain minerals that can hamper the soap-making processes.

Essential Oils and Fragrances: Although these are not essential ingredients for soap making, they can add exclusive scent or fragrance to your soap. Do not use any commercial scents or candle scent oils, as they contain alcohol that could upset your soap making process.

You can purchase fragrances and essential oils at local health food stores.

Soap Colorants: Purchase crayons from soap supply stores and use them by melting and adding small amounts at the trace stage.

Additives: You can use different additives like herbs, spices and even oatmeal. Adding them at the trace stages is best.

Other Requirements for Your Soap Making

A large stainless-steel mixing bowl

Old newspapers to cover your workspace

A digital scale to measure your ingredients

Protective equipments: gloves, safety goggles and possibly a respirator

Electric fan(s)

Work aprons or coveralls

A heat-resistant container for mixing lye and water.


Tools and Equipment to Make Cold Process Soap

Tools and equipment needed for making soap through the cold process include:

  • Safety goggles and rubber gloves.
  • An accurate scale to measure very small quantities (like one-tenth of an ounce) of oils, fragrances, water, additives, and lye.
  • A stainless steel pot with a capacity of eight to twelve quarts for melting oils and blending your soap mixture
  • Heat-resistant stainless steel or plastic pitcher with a lid that can hold two to three quarts of lye mixture.
  • Long plastic or stainless-steel spoon for stirring lye solution.
  • Accurate thermometer for reading and monitoring the temperatures of melted oils and lye solution.
  • Large pitchers, with a capacity of two to three quarts, for measuring and holding liquid oils.
  • Stainless steel spoons to measure fragrances, additives, colorants, and essential oils.
  • Small spoons to mix oils and fragrances before adding to the pot.
  • A stick blender for mixing oils and lye.
  • Soap mold(s) to pour the soap mixture into.
  • Rubber spatulas to scrape out soap scraps from mold.
  • Dishcloths, paper towels, and old newspapers to wipe spills.
  • Beakers and measuring cups to hold fragrances and essential oils before pouring into a soap mixture.

You can locate most of these items in your kitchen or you can purchase them at local stores before starting your soap making.


Soap Making Safety Procedures

Whether you are an experienced soap maker or a new hobbyist, you should understand and observe all necessary soap making safety procedures thoroughly.

Precautions include:

  • Wear safety goggles and rubber gloves before starting.
  • Organize your workplace and spread old newspapers on your worktable.
  • Keep all necessary ingredients and equipment ready and organized systematically.
  • Understand every part of the process of soap making thoroughly and proceed systematically.
  • Do not try to jump over steps to complete your soap-making faster. Work in a relaxed manner. Rushing can cause spills and accidents.
  • Keep all family members informed of your soap-making. Do not allow any family members, children, or pets to disturb you while you are making soap.
  • Keep a bottle of vinegar ready. This can neutralize any lye spills.
  • Never leave melting oils or lye unattended on the stove.
  • Always add lye to water. Never add water to lye, as it could cause extensive and violent reactions.
  • Keep lye in a safe place, locked away from the reach of children and pets.
  • Keep fresh water close by. If lye or raw soap accidentally gets in your eyes, splash cool water continuously for around ten minutes before rushing to a hospital or local doctor for emergency care.
  • If lye or raw soap spills accidentally on your skin, rinse with cool water immediately and rush to the hospital.

Soap Making Oils and Their Properties

Sweet Almond Oil

It is used for soaps that are claimed to condition your skin and forms a stable lather.

Use: One ounce/pound at trace.

Aloe Vera Gel and Liquid

It is used in lotions and creams. It is claimed to help some effects of some skin problems. Some people claim that we may use aloe vera in soaps, cosmetic formulations and directly on the skin but you should consult our doctor or pharmacist.

Apricot Kernel Oil

It is used for „super-fatting‟ and is claimed to be a good moisturizer.

Use: One or two ounces per pound of soap at the trace stage.

Avocado Oil

It is used for super fatting and is a good moisturizer. It contains vitamin A, D, E that efficiently moisturizes.

Use: 30% as base oil.

Beeswax

It makes for a harder bar of soap. It may be used for lotions, creams, candle making, and lip balms.

Use: One ounce per pound of oils in the base oil to make soap hard.

Calendula Oil

It is famous for its reputed therapeutic benefits. Some people claim that it may help to alleviate some effects of various kinds of skin damage.

Use: Use one to two-thirds of a tablespoon per five pounds of super fat soap at trace.

Canola Oil

It is less saturated but a good moisturizer. You may substitute it for expensive oils. If mixed with other oils, it may speed saponification.

Use: 50% as base oil.

Castor Oil

It makes good super fat. It is claimed to preserve the skin‟s moisture.

Use: 30% in the initial phase of soap making.

Cocoa Butter

It makes soap hard. When used as super-fatting in soap preparation, it is claimed to preserve the skin‟s moisture.

Use: 15% as base oil and about one ounce per pound at trace.

Coconut Oil

It forms extra lather. It makes a hard bar-type soap.

Use: Do not use more than 20 to 30% as base oil.

Cottonseed Oil

It produces good lather and has emollient properties.

Use: Maximum of 25% as total base oils.

Emu Oil

It is claimed to improve the condition of skin tissues.

Use: One ounce/pound at trace.

Evening Primrose Oil

It is claimed to help the skin‟s defence against inflammation and infection, but is not advised for oily skins.

Use: Two table spoons/pound of soap at trace.

Grapeseed

Oil It is used as super fatting.

Use: One ounce/pound at trace.

Hazelnut

Oil It is claimed to add a moisturizing quality to the skin.

Use: 20% of total oils.

Hempseed

Oil It is less saturated and makes a silky soap bar.

Use: 20 to 30% as base or 5% at trace.

Honey

Honey is claimed to help retain skin moisture.

Use: 2 tablespoon/pound of oil.

Jojoba

Jojoba is claimed to help condition skin and to be excellent for shampoo bars.

Kukui Nut Oil

It is rich in linoleic acid and is claimed to help relieve the effects on sunburned skin, psoriasis, acne and eczema.

Use: 2 tablespoon to 5 pounds of soap at trace.

Lard

Lard comes from pig‟s fat. It forms a white and lathery bar. If mixed with palm or coconut oil, it could produce a firm soap that is claimed to work well with cold water.

Use: Maximum 70% of the total oils.

Macadamia Oil

It has a long shelf life and forms a good addition to any soap. It acts as an emollient skin protection agent.

Use: One ounce/pound at trace.

Mango Butter

This is derived from mango. It is a yellowish odorless oil.

Use: 15% as base oil and as 5% super fatting at trace.

Monoi Oil

It is derived from coconut oil. It makes luxury expensive soaps and has moisturizing properties.

Use: 60% or more as base oil.

Neem Oil

Neem bark is rich with neem oil. It is claimed to help with many skin disorders and dandruff.

Use: 40% as base oil.

Olive Oil

It forms an excellent base oil and is claimed to help reduce the loss of skin moisture.

Use: 100% as base if you are making a mild soap.

Palm Oil/ Vegetable Tallow

They make hard but mild soap bars and are a good substitute for tallow. They can be used for luxurious soaps.

Use: 20 to 30% as base.

Palm Kernel Oil

It makes a hard soap lather. It has some of the same qualities as palm oil.

Use: 20 to 30% as base oil.

Peanut Oil

It lets soap continually form a lather.

Use: 20% as a base oil. Do not use more because it is unsaturated and tends to spoil fairly quickly.

Safflower Oil

It is unsaturated oil. It is rich in moisturizing qualities.

Use: 60% as a base oil.

Sesame Seed Oil

It is claimed to be helpful for some people with eczema, rheumatism, arthritis, and psoriasis. It is a good super fatting oil and makes soft soap bars.

Use: Add 10% to base oils.

Shea Butter

It is an excellent super fatting agent. It forms a great soap that is claimed to be helpful for nourishing the skin.

Use: 20% with the base oil, or add one to two third tablespoons/pound of oil at trace as a super fatting agent.

Sunflower Oil

It is an alternative to the more expensive olive oil. It is rich in vitamin E.

Use: 20% as base oil.

Vegetable Shortening

This produces a stable, mild lather. It is a good filler and makes a white hard bar. Often mixed with other harder oils for good results.

Use: 50% as base of total oils.

Soybean Oil

Similar properties to vegetable shortening (above). It gives a stable, mild lather. It is a good filler and makes a white hard bar. Better results may be gained by mixing with other harder oils.

Use: 50% as base of total oils.

Wheat Germ Oil

It is claimed to have antioxidant qualities and is rich in vitamin E. Some claim it helps with cracked skin and to reduce stretch marks and scarring but there are no medical support for these claims.

Use: One ounce/ pound at trace.


Using Natural Colorants in Soap Making

Natural colorants have been used in soap making for a very long time. Although natural colorants may not be very effervescent, they may add an attractive tinge to your soap.

Natural colorants could be flower petals, leaves, fruits, fruit peel and other plant products. You can locate these colorants in your kitchen or get them at grocery stores and soap stores.

Before using natural colorants in soap making, you should carefully test them and research for any possible negative outcomes.

Three Tests for Natural Colorants

The Lye Test

Dissolve a tablespoon of lye in half a cup of water and allow it to cool substantially. Add just ¼ teaspoon of a specific colorant and note the color change. Record all changes as they take place over an hour, a day and longer.

The Oil Test

This involves heating four ounces of colorless oil like coconut oil or lard and adding a little colorant after the oil cools. Record color changes as they occur.

The Soap Batch Test

Different colorants produce different color effects and changes could be different in lye and oil.

So, test your choice of color in a small batch of soap.

Some colors evolve better in lye while some work better in oil.

Some give a more vibrant shade if added at trace.

Keep experimenting and recording your results so that you can add the shades you want when you want a specific color in your soap.


Rebatching Soap – The Hand Rebatch Method

Hand rebatching involves melting down soap scraps on an oven, then adding fragrances and essential oils before pouring them into molds to form new soaps. Using fresh soap and low heat of an oven can deliver the best results.

Slow and even heating of your oven ensures thorough mixing and spreading of all soap ingredients.

Low heat prevents ‘burning’ of your soap.

Grate soap, or cut it into small pieces.

Put them into a glass pot, enamel coated pot or stainless steel vessel.

Pour in a cup of milk for every pound of soap.

A half-cup of milk may be sufficient for olive oil and animal fat-based soap shavings.

If your soap is very fresh, use half of these measurements.

Cover the pot and allow your soap to soak in the milk and water for around an hour.

Stir at intervals.

Heat your oven to just 170 degrees and place the pot in the oven.

Allow it to heat for an hour, while stirring every quarter-hour.

Once your soap has dissolved and the mixture is smooth, add fragrances, essential oils, cocoa butter, herbs and oatmeal according to your desire. Use a hand blender, or pour entire mixture into a kitchen blender, and mix thoroughly.

After everything is thoroughly blended, pour your soap mixture into your molds and allow it to set for few days.

After that, take your soap from the molds and allow it to age for a week or two before use.


Step-by-Step Instructions – Cold Process Soap Making

Before you start to make cold process soap, assemble all the necessary ingredients and equipment, then carefully arrange them in your workspace.

Always wear your gloves and safety goggles.

Prepare lye solution and allow it to cool in a safe place.

Next, place your soap pot and glass pitcher separately on your scale and zero out the weight of each.

Weigh all oils according to the required specifications. Use your glass pitcher for liquid oils like castor, sunflower and canola. Use your soap pot for the solid oils like palm, coconut and cocoa butter.

Place your soap pot with all the solid oils over a medium heat on your stove. Stir it gently until the oils melt.

Turn off the heat once it reaches 110 degrees. Keep stirring until all solid oils melt thoroughly.

Next, add all liquid oils at room temperature to the melted oils. This brings down the overall temperature to around one hundred degrees. This is the correct temperature for adding lye-mixture.

Next, slowly and very carefully, add lye-mixture to your soap pot, carefully stirring with a stick blender, like a spoon.

The oils will turn cloudy and you need to keep stirring constantly to allow the oils to blend into the lye completely.

Many chemical reactions start taking place as soon as your lye-mixture and oils blend.

Keep all necessary additives, fragrances, and colors ready, preferably near at hand.

This helps you add things appropriately and efficiently.

You can use the stick blender vigorously for three to five seconds and then continue stirring.

Keep rotating both processes until your lye mixture and the oils are thoroughly blended. Once they are blended perfectly, you can reach trace within minutes.

After complete blending, add the fragrance and essential oils slowly. Do not use your stick blender to blend the mixture; instead, use it as a spoon as you did before.

Next, add in any special moisturizing oils, flower petals, or spices. Stir them gently into your mixture with the help of your stick blender.

The next step is to add colorant to your soap. If you want a single unified color, add that color into the pot and stir vigorously.

However, if you want a swirl effect, pour out half to one cup of mixture into a measuring cup. Add colorant into this cup. Hold this cup at a height above the pot and pour it into your soup pot.

Use a rubber spatula to swirl in the color throughout the mixture still in the pot. Do not swirl excessively as it will blend in color thoroughly.

Pour raw soap into mold and allow it to spread evenly. If the top of your soap is uneven, smooth it with a spatula.

Tap your mold gently to remove any possible air bubbles. Put your soap in a warm place. You might place a warm towel around each mold, depending on the room temperature. This helps the saponification reaction to keep going.

Keep wearing your gloves and safety goggles even while cleaning all your utensils and soap pot, as there will be some soap leftover in the pot.

It can cause caustic reactions, leading to burns and irritation.

After another twenty-four hours, slide-out soap from each mold. Slice it according to the specific size of the bars you want and set it aside to cure.

Although all processes are complete, technically, your soap is safe for use only after resting for four weeks. This is the curing period.


Make a Lye-Water Solution for Your Cold Process Soap

Lye solution is essential for your soap-making process, but lye is a dangerous, caustic chemical that could cause serious burns. You should use all necessary precautions like wearing gloves and safety goggles before starting to make your lye solution.

Place your pitcher on the scale and zero out its weight. Weigh distilled water according to your recipe.

Place a mason jar on the scale and zero out the weight.

Gently shake out the necessary amount of lye from the container and then immediately tightly close the lid of your lye container.

After weighing lye and water correctly, slowly and gently add lye to the pitcher of water without splashing it around.

You should wear your goggles and gloves and try to keep yourself at a distance.

You should always add lye to water and not water to lye. Adding water to lye could cause volcanic reactions within the pitcher. This can be dangerous.

Stir the lye and water mixture gently until all the lye dissolves completely. This mixture could soon become very hot and emit steam. It also makes boiling and bubbling sounds. Stir in the lye completely and keep it in a safe place, away from the reach of children and pets.

Also, do not keep any heat-sensitive things in the vicinity. Allow it to cool to around 100 degrees.


Step-by-Step Instructions – Melt and Pour Soap Making

Equipment and Materials Necessary

  • Melt and Pour Soap Base in a Pyrex container
  • Cutting Board
  • Scale Measuring
  • Spoons
  • Soap-Safe Dye, Red and Blue
  • Fragrance Oil
  • Large Knife
  • Rubber Spatulas
  • Cloths and Paper Towels
  • Rubbing Alcohol in Spray Bottle
  • Metal Whisks
  • Ramekin for Fragrance Oil
  • Soap Mold

Procedure

  1. Place a Pyrex container on your scale and zero out its weight.
  2. Cut your soap base into pieces which your mold can accommodate. Use a clean knife, cutting board, and container to prevent any dirt accumulation in your soap.
  3. Removing any such dirt accumulation from your soap would be very difficult.
  4. Cover the container and heat soap in the microwave for a minute. Covering prevents soap bases from drying out while heating.
  5. Remove and stir the soap.
  6. Repeat the heating process until soap melts completely. Alternatively, you can melt the soap in a double boiler. Be careful, as melted soap can have a temperature of around 150 degrees.
  7. Place a fragrance ramekin on the scale and zero-out its weight.
  8. Measure essential fragrance for your soap. Normally, it should be around a quarter ounce of fragrance per pound of soap. You can choose to add more or less fragrance according to the amount of scent you prefer in your soap. After removing the melted soap from the heat, add fragrance to the melted soap base by stirring it in gently.
  9. Next, add soap-safe dyes or natural colorants.
  10. Keep stirring melted soap to blend in fragrance and color thoroughly. Do not stir very hard as this would form bubbles in your soap.
  11. Now, pour soap slowly into the mold. Do not splash soap around, as it would cause more bubbles. If there are many bubbles, try spraying the top of the bars with a little alcohol.
  12. Place mold in a safe place and preferably keep it covered. Your soap should become suitably hard within few hours. You can, if need be, place your mold in the refrigerator (not in the freezer), although the scent might affect food. It can take an hour for your soap to cool and harden thoroughly, even if you place it in the refrigerator.
  13. Once the soap hardens thoroughly, it will pop out easily from the mold. Although most molds allow easy release of soaps, some molds could pose a little difficulty. You can try tapping the mold with a spoon or with the palm of your hand.
  14. If the mold is too sticky, try running hot water on the back of the mold.
  15. Trim off any imperfections in your soap with a knife or a small cloth.
  16. Melt and pour soap does not require any curing time, as it is already cured. Your soap is ready for use immediately.

Making Liquid Soap

Making liquid soap is different and more complicated than the cold soap-making process.

The main difference is in the alkali used for saponification. You use sodium hydroxide for bar soaps and potassium hydroxide for liquid soaps. Another major difference is you apply heat while making liquid soap instead of depending on the heat generated through the soap-making process alone, as in cold soap making.

Ingredients and Equipment for Making Liquid Soap

  • 7 oz. Coconut oil
  • 16.5 oz. Sunflower oil
  • 16.5 oz. Distilled water for Lye mixture
  • 5.5 oz. Potassium Hydroxide (KOH)
  • 40 oz. Distilled water to dilute soap paste
  • 2 oz. of boric acid
  • 3 oz. Fragrance or Essential oil
  • Soap dye or colorant
  • Thermometer, scale, measuring cups

Basic tools for mixing lye and similar procedures

  • Large crockpot
  • Stick blender

Procedure

  1. Measure all oils and pour them into the crockpot.
  2. Set it at a 160-degree temperature.
  3. Prepare lye-water in the normal way.
  4. After the lye-water is mixed and dissolved thoroughly, add it slowly to the oils in the crockpot.
  5. Stir the lye and oils well.
  6. Keep blending with a stick blender.
  7. It could take around thirty minutes for the trace to appear.
  8. Allow trace to appear clearly while stirring and blending the mixture.
  9. After you locate a clear trace, take out the stick blender and close the pot with the lid.
  10. Allow the paste to cook well.
  11. After around fifteen to twenty minutes, stir the mixture thoroughly and then close the lid again.
  12. Keep checking every twenty minutes. Allow the paste to cook for around three to four hours.
  13. After about four hours, your soap mixture should become sufficiently soft and translucent.
  14. It is now necessary to check if the soap is sufficiently cooked.
  15. Take two ounces of boiling water and add an ounce of your soap paste mixture to it.
  16. Stir it and allow the mixture to dissolve.
  17. If it dissolves thoroughly and appears lightly cloudy, it is fine.
  18. If the dissolved mixture is very cloudy and milky, it is not sufficiently cooked.
  19. After testing the soap paste mixture, boil the remaining 40 oz of distilled water and add it to the paste.
  20. Stir in well.
  21. Turn off the heat to the crockpot and close the lid.
  22. After an hour, stir the soap mixture well again. Close the lid and wait for a few hours more or leave it overnight.
  23. Add the fragrance to your soap now.
  24. Again, turn on the heat on the crockpot to around 180 degrees.
  25. Make a neutralizing solution by mixing 2 oz of boric acid in 8 oz of boiling water.
  26. Stir it well into the soap mixture while it is very hot.
  27. You could require 3/4 oz. of neutralizer for every pound of soap paste.
  28. Next, add the color.
  29. Stir in well.
  30. Allow your soap to cool sufficiently and pour into large bottles.

Finding or Making Soap Making Molds

Anything that can hold water might be able to function as a soap mold. You can purchase purpose-made soap molds at soap supply companies. There are numerous soap suppliers available offline and online. You can contact any of them for your soap mold requirements.

Alternatively, you can visit any hobby store and look for fancy molds that can function as soap molds. You can use candy molds or candle molds. These are available in different shapes, designs, and sizes.

Brownie pans prove excellent containers or molds for making rectangular or square soaps.

Design and Make Your own Soap Molds

  1. Purchase short lengths of PVC pipes of 2” and 3” and caps for pipe ends.
  2. Cut the pipe into two-foot lengths and put a cap at the end of the pipe after cleaning it.
  3. Seal the cap to the pipe with clear tape so that no liquid can get out.
  4. Fill the pipe with the soap mixture. Allow soap to harden.
  5. Place the pipe in the freezer for an hour or two.
  6. Remove from freezer and take off seal.
  7. Place pipe under hot water tap for around thirty seconds.
  8. Push soap gently out from the mold.
  9. Allow it to cool and harden for a day.
  10. After that, cut off round pieces of soap.
  11. Similarly, you can make your own soap molds from white or yellow pine, or other scrap wood pieces.

Lavender-Mint Layered Soap Recipe

Lavender-mint layered soap offers you two scents separately.

The soap making process is the same as cold process soap making.

You add lavender on one side and mint on the other to get both scents in to your soap.

Use all precautions that are necessary for making the lye solution. Wear safety goggles and gloves before starting with your soap-making.

Ingredients

  • 30% Olive oil
  • 30% Lard
  • 25% Coconut oil
  • 10% Sunflower oil
  • 5% Castor oil
  • Lye and water as necessary
  • Lavender essential oil
  • Lavender buds
  • Manganese Violet Ultramarine
  • Ground Spearmint
  • Bergamot Mint essential oil
  • Chromium Green Oxide

Procedure

  1. Prepare lye solution and put it aside.
  2. Keep ready all necessary ingredients in two sets; one for each layer of soap. Make one batch with lavender essential oil, purple oxide, and lavender buds. Make the other batch with mint, green oxide, and ground spearmint.
  3. You need lye water and oils to be at 100 degrees to start with your mixing process. Once the lye and oils mix in well, you need to pour out one half into a large bowl or pitcher.
  4. You can now add colorants, additives, and essential oils that are in the first batch.
  5. Blend them well.
  6. Slowly pour out this first blend into your soap mold.
  7. Add the next lot of colors, additives, and essential oils in the second batch to the other half mixture in the pot. Allow trace to appear and then pour out this second layer on top of the first layer in the mold.
  8. The pouring should be slow and not from a great height. Otherwise, your mixture will swirl extensively and both colors will mix into one.
  9. After pouring in your entire soap mixture, allow soap to settle well within your mold.
  10. Allow twenty-four hours for your soap to settle.
  11. Then, you can remove your soap from mold, cut, and allow it to cure for many weeks before you use it.

Troubleshooting Your Soap Making Problems

Common Problems in Soap Making

1. Curdling of soap mixture while stirring

Cause: This is due to either slow stirring or pouring oil and lye mixture into your mixing bowl at a very high temperature.

Solution: Use a stick blender to make the mixture smooth before pouring it into molds. Check for any irregularities in your soap bars due to insufficient stirring. Discard soap bars with irregularities.

2. Grainy Mixture

Cause: This is because lye solution or oils were either too hot or too cold. Stirring was insufficient.

Solution: Use a stick blender to overcome such problems. Continue stirring until trace appears, and then pour into molds.

3. Tracing of soap does not occur or is very slow

Cause: Excess water, insufficient lye, wrong temperatures, too high a percentage of unsaturated fats in base oils, or improper stirring could be the cause for poor tracing of soap.

Solution: Check lye and water measurements thoroughly. Keep stirring for around three hours at appropriate temperatures. You do not have to stir continuously, but at intervals. Stick blenders induce faster tracing. If your mixture does not harden, even after all proper procedures, discard it.

4. Mixture settles very quickly in pan

Cause: This occurs because the lye and/or water temperatures were either too high or too low. Too high a percentage of saturated fats could be another reason.

Solution: Take less time when pouring your mixture into molds and smoothing it with a spatula.

5. Oil layer appears on the top when soap cools in the mold

Cause: This is because of insufficient lye or an excess of oils in your soap recipe. Incorrect measurements can be the basic cause.

Solution: Stir and blend with the help of a stick blender. Pour soap mixture into molds as soon as trace appears or even before that.

If the soap does not lather well even after three to four weeks, discard it, as it is probably too caustic and might harm your skin.

6. Soft and spongy Soap

Cause: This occurs due to insufficient lye, excessive water or an excess of unsaturated fats in your soap recipe.

Solution: Curing soap bars for few more weeks might make them hard. If it remains soft still, discard soap.


CANDLE MAKING

Candle Making Basics

The history of candle-making is as old as the Egyptian civilization. Candle-making has evolved along with civilization. Initially, candles were made from tallow but, today, paraffin wax, vegetable products, soy, gel, and beeswax have replaced animal fat. A candle has a wick that is placed at the center of the solid wax. The wick is saturated with candle fuel. When the wick is lit, the flame burns some fuel. As it evaporates, the fuel combines with atmospheric oxygen to produce a flame.

If you watch the flame carefully, you will see many distinctive regions. There is a blue region, where water vapor is forming in the burning process. Then, there is a yellow region, and this indicates that the process is leaving behind carbon dioxide.

Types of Candles

Gel Candle: These are gelled mineral oils. These transparent and soft candles are placed in a container before use.

Container Candle: We form these candles by pouring wax into a heat-resistant container, usually tin or glass. The candles burn in the container.

Pillar Candle: Pillar candles are poured into and then extracted from a mold. These candles are 2 or 3 inches thick, free-standing with one or multiple wicks.

Taper Candle: These are the most common candles; thin and 6 to 18 inches long. They are also known as dinner candles. They have a wide base and a narrow top.

Wickless Candles: As the name suggests, they do not have a wick. They are placed over a warmer to emit fragrance.

Votive Candle: These are cylindrical and are placed in a votive candleholder before lighting, because they liquefy when lit. They are 1 or 2 inches thick and 2 to 3 inches tall.

Tea-light Candle: They are thick and short, cylindrical candles and put in plastic or metal cups.

Floating Candles: Wax is buoyant and this quality allows it to burn while floating on water. These candles have beautiful shapes and float while they burn.

Get Started Making Candles

Now that you are clear with the history and the types of candles, it is time that you started making your own candles.

You will require:
  1. Complete awareness of all the safety measures of Candle Making
  2. A source of heat, which could be your electric stove or a hot plate
  3. A double-boiler. You may make one by placing a small can (for melting the wax) within a low, wide bowl which holds the boiling water.
  4. Some wax
  5. A suitable wick
  6. A container or mold to pour the melted wax into
  7. Color and fragrance (optional)
  8. A match to light the candle so that you can see the wonder you create.

What is stopping you now? Let’s get started.


Tools and Materials to Begin Candle Making

Essential Equipment

Before you start with candle making, there are few basic things that you need to gather. These items are easily available locally or you can purchase them from the Internet.

Melting System: Wax can be melted in various ways, but be careful not to apply direct heat or microwave them. If you are a beginner, it is advisable that you melt the wax on a double boiler. There are thermostatically controlled kitchen kettles, which can also be used to melt the wax.

Thermometer: There is a special thermometer available that measures the temperature of the melting wax. The scale of this thermometer reads from 100 to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Scales: You may use a kitchen scale to measure the wax, provided it is accurate enough.

Ladle: This is required to mix and while pouring the wax out of the heated pot.

Measuring or Pouring Jug: If you pour the melted wax in a measuring or pouring jug, it will be easier for you to accurately pour them in to the molds.

Paraffin Wax: This is the most essential element for candle making.

Wick: There are various types of wicks. The most common one is a chemically treated braided cotton wick.

Coloring or Dye: There are different types of colors or dyes used for making candles.

They are:

Blocks: You need to shave a little amount into the wax for color.

Color Chips: They are used in a similar manner as the block.

Liquid Dyes: You use a dropper to add color.

Avoid wax crayons as they choke the wick. The quantity of your dye decides the strength of the color.

Wax Additives: They help to create different effects to each candle. Two of them are stearin and vybar.

Stearin increases the strength of the color and enhances burning whereas vybar provides opacity and increases the burning rate.

Mold Seal: A mold seal is required for making a pillar candle. It holds the wick and prevents the spilling of the wax through the holes.

Candle Molds: Most candles require them for their shape. The molds come in metal, rubber, plastic, glass, and latex.

Heat Gun or Blowtorch: With their careful use, you can remove any bubbles in a gel candle or make the candle look shiny.


Candle Additives and How They Make Your Wax Work

Various wax additives provide different effects to the candle. For example, one can use these additives to derive effects such as vibrant colors, a higher sheen, more durability and harden the wax. These items cam provide your candle with these qualities.

Stearic Acid: These are also called stearine. They are mixed with paraffin to strengthen the color and to help the candle to burn more brightly. It hardens the waxes that have low melting points and it lessens the melting point of high temperature waxes.

Vybar: They provide hardness to the wax, stabilize the scent and reduce shrinkage. It provides opaqueness to the candle and helps it to burn longer too. There are two kinds of vybar; vybar 103 and vybar 260. However, be careful not to exceed the recommended quantity as it binds the fragrance.

Luster Crystals: They provide sheen, opaqueness and brightness to the color of the candle. It also provides durability to the candle. These luster crystals are fabricated wax polymer and especially recommended for white candles.

Clear Crystals: They make the wax hard and give a transparent look. Clear crystals have almost similar functions as the luster crystals. They also provide the candle with a glowing effect.

Plastic Additives: They also add transparency to the candle and harden the wax. They are also famous as “hurricane” candles. However, you need to remember that plastic additives need a direct heating source before you add them to the wax at the specified temperature.

Microcrystalline Wax: This is mostly very helpful if you want to make pillar or taper candles. They reduce mottling and harden the wax. There are many types of microcrystalline wax. Their soft nature is great for making hand-molded candles.

UV Inhibitors: It is mostly professional candle makers that use these. UV Inhibitors help to reduce fading of color when the candle is placed under strong artificial lighting or direct sunlight.

If you are using purple or red coloring, think seriously about using UV inhibitors. These colors may fade very quickly when exposed to light.

Parol Oil: Parol oil provides the candle with a mottled look.


Wax Melting Instructions

Candle making is very simple, but there are many hazards attached to it. If you follow these few precautions carefully, your candle making art could be as simple as it sounds.

Safety Precautions

  1. Keep your recently checked fire extinguisher within safe reach. Learn how to operate it. Never use water to extinguish a wax fire as this increases the flame.
  2. Wax requires a long time to melt, but make sure that you do not leave the wax unattended.
  3. Get an appropriate thermometer to monitor the temperature regularly. Do not let the temperature rise above 250 degree Fahrenheit because the wax becomes flammable after that point.

The required thermometer is a special type that has markings to a higher number of degrees than clinical thermometers have. If you do not have one, make sure it is the first item you purchase.

Always use a double boiler. A double boiler has a pot of boiling water placed on the source of heat. Into this heating water is placed a container that has wax in it. The wax melts through the heat transmitted from the water. You possibly could make your own double boiler at home from a large and small vessel.

Using an electric heat source is advisable to reduce the possibility of fire. If the wax combusts on reaching flash point, the chances of the vapors burning are lessened if you use electric heat. When you use a gas stove, the vapor will immediately ignite due to the gas fire.


Candle Making Mold Techniques

There are various jars and containers that can be used for candle molds in the market today, but here are few techniques that you may try for making your candle.

Aluminum Molds

Aluminum molds are durable, heat resistant and they produce a smooth finish. To get different effects, you can try varying pour temperatures. In case there is difficulty in de-molding, raise the pour temperature of the wax.

Wicking the Candle with a Pillar Pin or Rubber Plug

Pillar Pins have a flat, round metal base with a central hollow pillar. The wax solution is poured around this so the candle has a central tube that the wick can be inserted into after the candle has solidified. They produce a professional finish but, because of their higher cost, are mostly used by serious hobbyists and small commercial producers.

A traditional and cheaper method of putting the wick into your candle is to unroll a length of wick from the spool, and drop it through the small hole at the bottom of the upturned mold. Then, you use a small rubber plug to hold it in place in the wick hole.

Cut the wick off the spool and tie it around a “wick bar”. Then, rest the wick bar on the mold until the wax has hardened.

If the wick is kept fairly taut, it will be straight down the center of the candle after you‟ve poured the wax around it and then let it harden.

If your mold is cold, the finish on the candle may be a little rough, which is attractive to many people. You can get a smoother finish by warming the mold before use.

Encourage an even coloring by keeping the mold level after pouring the wax in to it.

But, some people carefully tip the mold while the wax is hardening to introduce a striped effect. Use great care not to spill any warm wax or do any other damage. Some people use a piece of picture wire to make the hole through the candle for the wick.

Polycarbonate Molds

Use the correct wax for making candles in this mold. The incorrect type of wax or wrong temperatures will make it difficult for you to remove the candle from the mold or clean it before re-use.

If the wax is hotter than 200 degrees then do not pour it into the mold because it will damage it.

If you want unique stripes on your candles, you can hold the polycarbonate molds at various angles. Be very careful not to spill any wax or cause any other problems through inattention.


Making Pillar Candles

Getting all the equipment and ingredients ready to hand is the right way to start.

A Simple Votive Candle.

The ingredients for votive candle are
  • Molds
  • Zinc core wicks – from 2.5 to six inches
  • Wax (Votive blend) – 14.5 oz
  • Fragrance Oil – 1 oz
  • Yellow candle dye – 10 drops

Prepare the Mold

Set the mold in a pan or low tray. Then, take the wick and wrap it around the craft stick at the open top of the mold.

Or, you may slide the wick’s tip into a slit in a plastic drinking straw. Then hang the stick or the straw over the mold to ensure that the wick remains in the center.

  • Melt the Wax

Now, you melt the wax in the double boiler. However, do not forget to use the thermometer to regularly check the temperature.

These checks are essential. But, do not let your thermometer touch the bottom of the pot.

  • Add the Dye or Color

When the wax reaches its proper temperature, it is time to pour color.

Remove the pot from the double boiler or turn the heat off when you pour the color.Keep gently stirring the wax when you are pouring the color.

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for pouring the color.

  • Add the Fragrance

When you finish pouring the color, add the fragrance oil in to the melted wax. Keep stirring this to prevent temporary solidification.

  • Pour the Candle

Now, apply appropriate heat for the pouring process. Carefully follow the temperature recommended by the manufacturer of the wax.

When the wax reaches the required temperature, remove it from the heating source and gently pour into the molds (Be very careful here). Do not pour wax to fill the mold right to the top. Leave a little space for the cooling process.

  • Pierce the top to let Air Bubbles Escape

After a few minutes, when the wax starts to solidify, pierce the candle skin to release all the air trapped inside the candle.

Remember to be careful. Do not push hard or the hot wax may squirt at you.

  • Re-pour the candle

Most waxes shrink as they solidify. Therefore, just after you release the air bubbles from the wax, gently pour in some more hot wax over-the-top.

Now your votive candle is almost ready.

  • Remove the Candle from the Mold

The candle will take 3 to 4 hours to cool. When it is cool, remove the straw or plastic pipe. Trim the wick and wait at least 24 hours before using it or giving it away.


Making a Simple Pillar Candle

Pillar candles are one of the most common forms of candles. However, you may make them of various sizes and shapes for a change.

You will need:

  • Paraffin wax and all the additives such as fragrance oil and dyes
  • A Metal pillar mold
  • Mold Sealer Putty
  • Wick
  • Wick Skewer or Wick Rod
  • Wick Screw

Melt the wax

Before you melt the wax, read the instructions by the manufacturer carefully and strictly adhere to them. Maintain all required precautions while setting up and using the double boiler and other equipment.

Pass the wick through the wick hole

Choose a wick according to the size of the candle mold. Thread the wick and pass it through the base of the candle mold.

Some people dip the wick in molten wax before use to help it more easily pass through the hole.

Tie the Wick to the Wick-Rod

To keep the wick in the wick hole, tie the other end of the wick to the wick rod.

Lock or tie the wick to the wick hole

Lock the wick in the small hole in the mold with a wick screw (or you might use the rubber plug mentioned previously). Avoid over-tightening to prevent damage.

Locking helps the wick remain in place and prevents the wick sliding which would make the candle look a less professional product.

Seal the Wick Hole

Some crafters use a mold sealer to seal the hole. Sealing prevents the leakage of melted wax.

Add the Color

When the wax reaches the required temperature, add color and fragrance.

Pour the melted wax

Once they are thoroughly mixed, pour the wax into the mold. Be careful while pouring and avoid haste.

Do not fill the wax to the brim. Leave some space on the top, so that you can top up the wax when finishing the candle later.

Poke and Release air

After the wax is fairly cool, poke a few holes around the wick. Poking the holes around the wick will help air escape from within the candle. This reduces the forming of air cavities and candle deformation.

Proceed further only after the candle is completely cool. This cooling may take several hours. For very large candles, it may take a full day.

Re-pour the wax

Once the candle cools, melt a little more wax. Bring it to the original pouring temperature. Some people keep the temperature on the reheating around 5 to 10 degrees more than the initial heating to help the layers of wax to better adhere to each other.

Now, you may fill the sinkholes.

Let the candle completely cool before you proceed to the next step.

Remove the candle from your mold

Remove the candle from the candle mold.

Remove the wick screw and the mold sealer or whatever you used.

The candle should easily slide from the mold when it is completely cool. You might want to place the candle in the refrigerator for some time but this might interfere with some types of food.

Patience is a better option.

Trim the wick at the bottom.

Place the candle on a cookie sheet over a pot of boiling water.

The extra wax will melt away and this will produce a level base.

Time to enjoy the results of your work

Now your pillar candles are ready. Burn the candle and enjoy the magic.


Making Container-Based Candles

Equipment and ingredients

To make a jar and other container-based candles, you will require:

  1. Some empty containers or jars
  2. A double boiler and a pot
  3. Paraffin wax or candle wax
  4. Wired wicks and pre-waxed wicks
  5. Dye or color
  6. Candle fragrance (optional)
  7. Oven mitts
  8. Wax paper

Prepare your container and jar

Once you have selected your jar or container, it is time to get started.

Clean and dry your container.

Place the container on your wax paper.

Place the wick in the center of the container. You may tie the other end of the wick to the straw and balance the straw across the wide top of the container.

Melt the paraffin wax in the double boiler

Heating the wax in the double boiler is less risky than some other methods but you still must be careful.

Cut the wax into small pieces and place it in the pot. Heat the wax at medium heat.

When the heat reaches the appropriate temperature, start slowly adding color.

Keep stirring the wax with a ladle.

Then, add few drops of fragrance as prescribed by the manufacturer. Turn off the heat for a while.

Pour the wax into your container Be very careful when you pour the wax. Use the oven mitts.

Pour the hot wax until it reaches the desired height in your container.

Cool the wax for at least a couple of hours.

Pierce the top and release any air that is trapped in the candle.

Then, re-pour the wax on the top to prevent the deformation of the candle.

Once the candle has hardened, it is time for the wick. Trim the wick according to your desired size.

Let your candle rest for at least a day before using it.

Clean-up Tips

Candle making is fun, but cleaning the mess is not a pleasant experience. However, if you follow a few simple guidelines, things will be much easier for you. Do not pour the wax into the drain.

Let the leftover wax cool so that you may use it in future.

Throw the water of the double boiler outside so that the wax does not go down the drain.

Clean the wax from the heating source. Check with your local authorities on the way they recommend that you dispose of the wax and any other possible contaminants.

Be careful where you dispose of the wax drips and the cloths or paper you use to clean them away. Leftover wax may ignite if it reaches a high temperature.


Make a Halloween Appliqué Candle

Materials Required

  1. Pillar candle of 3” width and 6” height
  2. Wax for making appliqués
  3. Tacky wax to hold things together
  4. Wide and shallow pan
  5. Halloween cookie cutter shapes Your other candle-making tools and equipment

Use all necessary precautions as required for candle making.

Procedure

Heat wax and add your choice of colors.

Pour hot wax into the shallow pan to a depth of around ¼”.

Keep pan on flat so that the wax spreads evenly.

Allow the wax to cool a little but not completely. It should still be soft enough to allow you to work with your cookie cutters and make firm shapes.

Get ready with your cookie cutters and imagination.

Cut out shapes according to your needs and imagination.

You can make spooky or other designs.

Spooky variations might include:

  • a yellow eye for a black cat,
  • a green stem for an orange pumpkin,
  • small cutouts for the cat’s eyes, mouth, and nose,
  • various other spooky forms like witches, goblins, and stars.

Remove your cookie cutters

Give your creations sufficient time for the wax to harden properly.

After the wax cools and hardens, you can pop out your shapes from the pan.Use a spatula or a knife.

Heat the appliqué a little, so that it is easy to use and work with.

It just needs to be a little warm so that you can bend it.

Excessive warmth can melt it.

Gently press your appliqué around the pillar.

Be careful or you could crack your appliqué.

Use a little Tacky wax at the back of your appliqué and press it into place on the candle. Tacky wax is easy to work with, but you can also use melted wax. Use firm pressure to fix your appliqué.

Take care to see there is no wax left behind.

This could prove sticky and you would find it difficult to remove it later without ruining the surface of your pillar candle.

After a few hours rest for everything to dry, your candle will be ready with its special Halloween shapes and effects.


Candle Making Safety Tips

Candle making involves working with melted wax and heat sources. There is always an element of danger involved in candle-making. Safety precautions should be foremost during all of your candle-making projects.

Candle Making Safety Tips

  • Prepare your workplace for candle making by covering your work table with old newspapers, an old tablecloth, or similar scrap material.
  • Have all necessary things ready in your hand and arranged in the most efficient and orderly manner.
  • You should place everything in the order you would require them while working on your candles.
  • Check that you have ready all accessories, tools, additives, ingredients, and molds before starting.
  • Keep a few old newspapers, paper towels, or a bunch of old, clean discarded clothes handy to clean spills.  Keep your fire extinguisher ready at hand and check that it is properly primed for use.
  • Your workplace should be secured from the attention and distraction of inquisitive and intrusive pets.
  • Do not allow children anywhere in the vicinity of your candle-making room at any time.
  • Lock all your supplies and equipment away from them when you are not actually using them.
  • Wax, when cold, could be a solid block. However, once you heat it, it can cause irreparable and serious damage.
  • Always use a double boiler to heat the wax. This is an essential precaution.
  • Always work systematically and proceed carefully, one step at a time, even if you are an expert and have been making candles for ages. Accidents can happen within the blink of your eye.
  • Newbies should be extremely careful and methodical. If you are trying a new design or variation, proceed slowly. It could take more time, but it will be much safer. Rushing or hurrying can cause accidents.
  • Essential and fragrance oils can cause skin irritations and eat away plastics and similar materials. Be careful while measuring fragrance and essential oils.
  • Wash your hands immediately if even the smallest amount of oil falls on your hand. Wipe off any drips as soon as they occur.
  • Be very careful about the temperature of melting wax. Do not allow it to melt too much as it could turn into fumes and smoke.
  • Never leave melting wax alone while you go to attend any other work like answering the phone in another room, searching for wicks in another room, or anything else.
  • If you have to leave your workplace while the wax is melting, it is best to turn off the burner and go.
  • You can return and turn on the burner when you are ready to continue with your candle-making.
  • Never empty the water from your double boiler into the drain. There is sure to be some melted wax in it. This could clog your drain.
  • Allow any wax spills on hard surfaces like floors and countertops to cool. Scrape them off later but make sure that no pets or children come near them before they are cleaned away.

So now that you have a few recipes to consider, why not go out and purchase some ingredients and equipment today to start making your own candles!

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