candle scaps -- wax that can't be burnt because the candle is too short or the wick is gone
variouscontainers, molds and wicks (see notes below)
Make More Candles
You can recycle old candle wax and make new candles from it by melting
them down. Here are a few methods you can try:
Stovetop method - To melt a candle that is already in a glass
container, simply place the glass container into a pot of water on your
stove burner. Water should reach no more than halfway up the glass sides.
Heat the glass container in the water over a medium flame until the wax
is pourable. You may also remove the candle from it's container and place
the wax chips into an old coffee or tin can to be heated.
Microwave method - Remove the metal wick base from the candle
by carefully prying out with a butter or steak knife, be careful! Heat
the wax in a microwave safe container on high power until softened. Times
may vary depending on the amount of wax that you have, so heat in 30 second
intervals until you get a feel for the amount of time needed.
Electric frying pan method - Remove wax from its original holder and place in electric frying pan. Heat on 200-250°F. watching constantly. Remove when wax is pourable.
Tips for Making Candles
- Designate labeled containers or storage bags for your candle scraps.
Store similar scents together and melt when you have enough to make
- Use a birthday cake candle as the wick. Simply pour your melted
wax a glass container, allow it to cool a bit, until tacky, be sure
it's not too warm. Insert the birthday cake candle down into the middle
of the melted wax allow it to cool completely.
- Molds for your new candles can be devised from several household
items, just use your imagination. Some examples are small glass containers,
plastic storage containers, empty glass jars, or even juice glasses
or tea cups.
- Create multicolored candles by melting different colors separately
then pouring into molds or containers in layers.
- Create a more uniform color by combining different colored candle
scraps and melting them all together.
- Create custom scents of your own by combining complimentary aromas.
Vanilla will mix nicely with any fruit or spice scent, combine cinnamon
and apple, or perhaps try lilac and a light herbal scent.
- Candle wicks, in several different forms, can be purchased from your local craft store.
Other Scent-Sible Ideas
An alternative to creating new candles is to chop up your old candles and enjoy their scent as is. You can place your candle scraps in a decorative pot and enjoy their aroma for a long time to come. For a more decorative look, mix the scraps with potpourri and place in a pretty basket or bowl. Another option is to place a taper candle into a glass container, and pack the candle scraps around the base of the taper inside the glass. You can also melt the scraps as mentioned above and carefully pour the melted wax around the base of the taper.
If you have a potpourri pot, this is a perfect way to get the most out of your used up candle with very little fuss. Place your candle scraps inside the pot and turn it on. There are also potpourri burners that use a small tea light candle under the pot. These work wonderfully as well.
Create your own tea lights out of your larger leftover candles. Melt the wax according to the instructions above and pour carefully into empty, used tea light candle holders.
Another frugal alternative to tossing out old candles is to make your own firestarters for your fireplace or wood stove. To make firestarters you will need empty cardboard egg cartons, dryer lint and old candles. Tuck the dryer lint into the egg cups of an old egg carton. Drip candle wax over the tops of the dryer lint, enough to cover the lint. It does not have to be a thick layer, and it is not necessary to cover it completely. To use your firestarters, simply break off an egg cup or two, light, and put it in your fireplace.
So the next time your candle wick burns down and you are considering the garbage can, think again!
Amanda Formaro is the entrepreneurial mother of four children. She and her husband live in southeastern Wisconsin. She is also the owner of FamilyCorner.com Magazine.
Everyone loves the smell of an aromatic candle. They bring comfort during a relaxing soak in the bathtub, fill your living room with the scrumptious smell of baked pie, and are lovely on the porch on a warm summer's evening. But what happens when the candle is too short to burn or the wick has disappeared, and you still have plenty of wax left over? Do you just throw it away? No! Here are a few ideas for making great use of that precious candle wax.