Believe it or not, someone made a candle that smells (apparently) exactly like a new Mac. Fresh out of the box, even. It’s a mix of mint, peach, basil, sage, lavender, and mandarin – and probably a bit more. It can all be yours for $24.
Or you can make your own candle without any deleterious effects to your health.
The Problem with Most Candles
You should absolutely avoid paraffin candles at all costs. Petroleum-based candles like paraffin release toxic chemicals in to the air – most notably, toluene and benzene. Both are carcinogens and horrible for your health. But you probably know them better by their classification – volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
In fact, a study was done in Poland to see if the chemicals released from candles at cemeteries during All Saint’s Day were comparable to those created by road transport. Surprise, surprise. The researchers found the chemicals (toluene and benzene) were on the same level. Keep in mind that when you burn a candle, you’re burning it in an enclosed space. The cemetery has the benefit of being outside, so the chemicals are dispersed. You don’t have the same luxury with a candle in the house.
If you’re only burning the occasional candle, it’s probably not going to be much of a problem. But it’s incredibly easy to make your own candles that won’t destroy your health and smell like honey.
What You’ll Need
- 1 pound beeswax (Get it on Amazon)
- Glass jars (mason jars work well) (Get it on Amazon)
- Medium wicks with tabs (Get it on Amazon)
- Wick stickers
- A pencil for each jar
- ½ cup coconut oil (optional) (Get it on Amazon)
- Essential oils (optional) (Get it on Amazon)
If you want to have scented candles, you’ll need to include coconut oil. The beeswax will mostly kill any scent you try to put in it. The coconut oil works to dilute it a bit so you can add your favorite scent/s.
- First, you need to get your jars set up. So grab a jar, your wick with tab, and a wick sticker. Stick the sticker to the tab, then stick the whole thing to the bottom of your jar.
- Melt the beeswax in a double boiler (you can add your coconut oil in here, too). If you don’t have a double boiler, use a sauce pan with a few inches of water and place a metal bowl that’s smaller than your sauce pan in it.
- If you’re going to add essential oils, add them after the beeswax and coconut oil is melted. Be sure to stir them in thoroughly.
- Pour the wax into jars.
- Secure your wick by tying it to a pencil that’s set across the top of the jar.
- Keep your candles in a warm place to cool.
- After 2 days, trim the wick so that it’s only about a ½” long.
If you’re having trouble cleaning the beeswax out of the bowl after it’s hardened, just melt it again and use paper towels to get most of it out. Then wash it normally.