Are Homemade Candles Cheaper?


If you love candles, you probably end up buying them a lot, which can be expensive. For this reason, people try to save up money by making their own. Consequently, the question arises; is making your own candles cheaper as compared to purchasing them from a store?

Homemade candles are cheaper than commercial candles. You can make them cheaper by buying your ingredients in bulk. You can also make them very cheap by using old leftover candles and remelt them to make a new one.

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A couple of factors come into play when you sit down to figure out the answer to this question. Eventually, it all boils down to the tools you buy to make candles at home, as well as the cost of wicks, dyes, wax, and fragrances you will use. 

To find a definitive answer to whether or not homemade candles are cheaper than store-bought ones, continue reading!

How much does a homemade candle cost?

Whether you are making candles to use at home or selling them for profit, you need to calculate the cost accordingly. There is various equipment that you’ll need to use. You may have some of them at home, but you’ll most likely have to buy most of the items. Consequently, your price will vary in accordance with the item, along with the number you require. 

Here is a little breakdown of a handful of components that you need to make candles. 

  1. Wax

We start with the most obvious, wax, there are many types currently on the market, but we’ll focus only on three types in this article. 

  • Paraffin wax

Paraffin wax is the most common and also the cheapest type of wax when it comes to making candles at home, and the prices may vary between $2 and $10 per lb. One of its primary features is that it is flexible, which allows you to easily add colors and scents to it, depending upon what you like. On the other hand, paraffin waxes are unfortunately also well-known for not being environmentally friendly, and lastly, Paraffin wax releases dangerous toxins that can be a health hazard.

  • Soy wax

A relatively “new” option in the candle market, soy wax is readily becoming a popular wax for all kinds of candle making. It consists of soybean oil and can pair up nicely with other types of waxes as well. Pricewise it’s as cheap as Paraffin wax, between $4 and $10 per lb, which makes it a much better option. 

  • Beeswax

Beeswax is a candle ingredient that dates back to candle-making in ancient Egypt. This type of wax is completely natural and requires no additional fragrances (but you can still add if you wish). Its main selling point lies in its authenticity, which means that you will not be able to make any artificial additions. However, beeswax may not be the best option for you if you are hoping to make a cheap candle. Wax of this kind usually costs over $10 per lb. 

  1. Wicks

Wicks can be a little expensive but don’t have to be. If you are looking for the cheapest option in the market, then a cotton one would work just fine. Meanwhile, commercially available wicks can cost a lot, especially when you buy in small amounts. If you are hoping to make only a couple of candles, then you may buy significantly more than you will have to use. You can also make your own, which would push the price significantly down.

When it comes to wicks, your primary concern should be related to size, particularly the width. The bigger the candle you want to make, the larger the wick needs to be. On the other hand, the length is irrelevant, as it will be in accordance with the height you are aiming for. Just make sure to figure out the amount and size of wicks you will require. For a common candle, the cost of each wick will be around $0.7. 

  1. Fragrance

This is probably the most expensive part. If you are making candles on a limited budget, you can choose to ignore fragrances, especially if you use beeswax since it has a natural fragrance to it already. But they are a pleasant addition to your beautifully made source of light. 

There are numerous types of fragrances that you can choose from. It all comes down to what you prefer. You can even find essential oils that will provide the right kind of aroma. 

As it is evident, the price of the fragrance you purchase can vary based on the type, amount, and quality you decide to go for. It is recommended that you buy at least 1oz for every pound of wax being used. Try to get as creative as possible with your fragrances because you can choose how to make your candle smell. A typical project of candle making will require $25 worth of fragrance.

  1. Colors

Understandably, your primary focus is to create cheap candles but, colors are an essential part of this particular source of light. It will not only bring out your creative side but add beauty to the end product you are working so hard to make. However, high-quality colors will not be cheap, so you are free to explore other options. An estimate of the price of color varies, of course, but if you use about 0.05% dye for each candle. You would use around 1 pound of liquid dye for 2000 pounds of wax.

  1. Additional equipment

Making candles at home is all about having the right equipment. You need a couple of essential pieces, like saucepans and spatulas, for mixing up glazes or spilling hot wax over yourself (don’t be alarmed if this happens), as well as measuring jugs to create different shades.

Homemade vs. commercial candle: which is cheaper?

If you are hoping to reap the benefits of economies of scale, you will want to consider making candles in bulk. Otherwise, it will be cheaper to go out and buy candles from any local store that sells them. However, if you believe that you may require candles every now and then, you can make them at home and save yourself some funds in the long term. 

Like a typical industrial manufacturing procedure, candle-making will require initial startup costs that involve necessary materials and equipment. These could push the price up, but if you are creating a handful of candles, you can easily spread the cost and reduce the price per unit. 

Why are homemade candles so expensive?

Candles can be found in a wide range of sizes and shapes, which automatically means that their costs vary according to each product. So, what makes candles so expensive?

You may not know this, but while wax is the primary ingredient in candles, it can be cost an arm and leg, especially if you set out to look for high-quality wax. Moreover, fragrances do not always come cheap, and if you are looking for a special kind, you will have to spend accordingly. 

Where the wax is concerned, it’s important to remember that a different kind is used to make it expensive and inexpensive. The latter are usually made up of paraffin wax, derived from petroleum, which also consists of harmful toxins. On the other hand, high-quality candles are typically made from beeswax and soy wax. These waxes are derived from plants and, therefore, require you to spend more bucks. 

Next, think about the jar you are going to use to store your candle, which will also be a part of your total cost, from shipping your candles to producing them. Consequently, the sales cost incurred will increase. 

Is it cheaper to make your own soy candles?

Since soy candles, the wax comes at a lower price than beeswax but is still a little more expensive than Paraffin. However, it’s the better option when overall. Making soy candles is cheaper than making beeswax candles but not Paraffin candles. 

What is the cheapest way to make candles?

The cheapest way to make candles would be to use leftover candle wax and to remelt them to make a new one. If you don’t have leftover candles, you can buy the ingredients in bulk. This would make each individual candle very cheap. However, this would also mean that you’d need to buy a large number of ingredients. 

Personally, I would not suggest buying the cheapest wax, which is paraffin wax, as it releases toxins when used, but that is a personal choice. 

How to make candles look expensive?

Below are some simple ways to make your homemade candles appear expensive.

  1. Use higher quality wax
  2. Use excellent typography.
  3. Use a jar that looks nice but doesn’t cost that much
  4. Add a warning label
  5. Use recycle material and mention it on the label
  6. Give your candles a brand name.

If you have made it here, then you know that homemade candles can be cheaper than store-bought ones. It all comes down to the materials you buy and how you manage your budget. Good luck!

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