How to Make Beeswax Candles

Candle making is one of those activities that makes you feel like you’ve stepped into Little House on the Prairie.  Today I am going to share with you how to make beeswax candles.

how to make beeswax candles

Candle making feels like a hard thing to learn until you actually do it, and then you realize it isn’t that difficult at all.

Not all candles are the same though. Some are toxic, but beeswax candles are the complete opposite. Actually, there are health benefits to beeswax candles.

I used to burn a lot of paraffin candles. I loved to buy the scented ones that made my house smell like cookies. I got hooked on them when I started burning them when we were selling our house. We’d have a showing and so I’d try to make my house smell so delicious they’d want to buy it.

The problem is, as delicious as those candles smell, paraffin wax is toxic. Not only is the paraffin toxic, but so is the coloring and scents they use in those candles.

Man, I loved those candles. I even referred to them in an earlier blog post about how I was never going to give them up.

But in an effort the live a more natural life I couldn’t ignore the fact that candles I was constantly burning was no good for us to be breathing in.

Never say never I guess.

So, I made the switch to beeswax. Because having NO candles was not an option.


Curious of what the beeswax candles benefits are? Beeswax candles actually purify the air by releasing negative ions into the air. I mean, there is a bunch of scientific jargon to explain how it does that, but I’m going to leave that explaining to the experts. What I will tell you is that negative ions are a good thing and that they can reduce the symptoms of asthma and allergies.

Plus, they aren’t releasing toxins into your home.

And they are good for the environment.

A few things you will want to be aware of if you decide to make your own beeswax candles:

Not all beeswax is the same. Many department or craft stores have fillers in their beeswax. Make sure the wax you buy is 100 percent beeswax.

They require a thicker wick than paraffin candles. Usually you can ask the person you buy the wicks from what kinds of wicks you should get for the type of candle you are making. Not only do beeswax require thicker wicks, they also require various sizes depending on if you are making a dipped candled, pillar candle, or jar candle.

I don’t use essential oils in my candles. When essential oils are used in candles they just don’t throw a strong scent. To me it’s a waste to put them in my candles if I will barely smell it. You are much better off diffusing your favorite oils when you light your beeswax candle. Beeswax candles do have a slightly sweet smell to them when burned as well.  I love diffusing my favorite oils while burning a beeswax candle.  It makes for such a comforting, cozy atmosphere.


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So, let’s get started making beeswax candles! We’ll talk about how to make each type of candle – dipped, pillar, and jarred.

What you will need:



Jars (for the jarred candles)

Mold (for the pillar candles)

Something to melt the wax in (like a large, deep tin can)

Pot (to act as a double boiler)

Bucket or pitcher (for cold water)


So, for melting your wax you will need to set up a container in boiling water to make a double boiler. Many people use a big tin olive oil can or maple syrup can. You want it to be deep enough that it allows you to dip your candle in pretty deep. I didn’t have one of those types of containers so I used a metal pitcher. I wanted my dipped candles to be shorter so I didn’t need something super deep.

Put your wax into the container and put your heat on medium high. It will be ready for candle-making when it is completely melted.


While you are waiting for the wax to melt you can get your other things ready.

You will want a pitcher full of cold water. This will be for dipping the candles in between wax dips. Place it somewhere close to your wax for easy reach.

You can also cut your wicks to how long you need them. You will cut them a little more than double the size of the candles you want. My candles were around 17 cm so I cut my wick at 40 cm for extra room.

Next you want to attach some kind of weight to the bottom of the wick. A lot of people make dipped candles without a weight, but I found it makes working with them a lot easier, especially when you dip them in the water so they don’t float. I used nuts and tied them to the end.

weights for candles

Also, you’ll want a piece of wood so that you can hang the candles over it as you dip them.  I just used a piece of super thick bark.

Be sure you have a spot to hang finished candles too as they continue to dry. You don’t want them touching each other or they may stick together!

Once you have all your things together, it’s time to start making the candles. Hang the candle wick over the wood and dip into the wax. Let it sit for roughly 5 seconds, then pull the dipped candle up and let it drip for a few seconds.


Next you will dip it in the water. This will help harden the wax so it will be ready for another coat of wax.


After that you can dip the candles back into the wax for another 5 seconds. Lift, let it drip, and dip again in the cold water.

Repeat as many times as necessary until the candle is the thickness you want it.  You’ll notice a big bulge at the bottom from the weights that are attached to the bottom.  That is normal.

When the candle is the thickness you want it, cut the weights out of the bottom of the candle. Dip it one or two more times to cover up the end where you cut the weights out.

beeswax candles benefits

Hang the candles to dry!

candles drying

Be sure to dig out your weights from the wax while it is still warm or you’ll never get the weights out.  Unless your 11 year old daughter decides to make it her mission and spends an hour digging the nuts out of the wax for you. 🙂

Dipped candles are pretty easy, but it does require patience and time.  I love the rustic, imperfect look of the dipped candles.


Jarred candles are quicker to make, but I find the wick can be finicky.

The first think you want to do after your wax is melted is to pour a thin layer in the bottom of your jar. Moving quickly you will want to dip the end of your wick in the center of the jar in the wax. You may need to use some kind of tool to guide it into place. I used the end of my pencil. Once in there you need to hold the wick for a couple minutes while the wick hardens enough to hold it in place.

(disclaimer:  I personally don’t use wick tabs, but many people feel they are safer.  I never leave a candle unattended so I am okay with not using a wick tab, but if you want to choose the safest route, I encourage you to use them.)

candle wicks

I used to just stick the wick with some glue from a glue gun but I always had trouble with the wicks moving once I had the wax poured in.  I find this method to work much better for me.  I think with whatever method you use to keep your wick in place it just really requires patience.  I’m not the most patient person in the world when it comes to projects which could be why I had trouble with the wicks before.  I’m learning to take my time and that is probably why I have learned to have success with the candles!

Once the wick has hardened a bit, wait another five or so minutes before moving on to the next step. If you are making candles in warmer weather you may need to wait a little longer.

Once you’ve let the bottom set for a few minutes, wrap the end of the wick around a pencil. Make sure you are very gentle in doing this or you will pull the wick right out of the wax.

pencil wick

Now you want to pour in a thin layer of wax into the jar. Make sure it isn’t too thick or it will melt the wax.


Wait a few minutes until that layer hardens.

Add another layer. Continue to do this until the jar is about half way full. Once the jar is half way full you can completely fill it up with wax.

Put it aside and let it harden.  Cut the wick to about a 1/2 inch length.


Okay, so for some reason unbeknownst to me, I forgot to take pictures of the process of making pillar candles.  However, it’s actually pretty similar to jarred candles, with the exception of taking it out of the mold, so refer back to those pictures if you need visuals. 🙂

To make pillar candles you need some kind of mold. Don’t worry though, you don’t have to use actual candle molds. Look around your house and see what you can use. You don’t want too many ridges or grooves inside the mold as you will need to be able to slide the candle out.

We used a tin can from our pantry. It had small ridges but because they weren’t too deep it worked out just fine.

You will need to grease your mold so the candle slides out. We used olive oil to grease ours.

With the pillar candles you will make them the same way you made the jar candles. Put a layer of wax in the bottom, stick the wick in, add more layers of wax until full.

Let the candle dry completely. I recommend at least 4 hours or overnight. Don’t be impatient on this one. I tried to remove a pillar candle too soon and it came out as a goopy mess.

Once you’ve let it set, flip the candle upside down and tap on the bottom of the mold. Ideally it should slide right out. If you need to help it out a little, use a knife and slide it in between the candle and the mold.

Cut the wick to about a 1/2 inch length.

beeswax candles

There you have it. Three different types of candles you can make with beeswax. I get the kids to help me and we incorporate it into our homeschooling. It’s a great project for kids and adults alike.

Related: 17 Ways to Become More Self-Sufficient

How to make Beeswax Candles
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How to make Beeswax Candles
Learn how to make dipped, pillar, and jarred beeswax candles with this tutorial.

2 thoughts on “How to Make Beeswax Candles”

  1. This is a great tutorial! Realistic, practical and so very helpful. I’m new to the beeswax candle making and it’s been frustrating ( the cracks, tunnels). I preheat my jars, pour when wax is starting to cloud(150-160 degrees). Trying different wick sizes too. I also found “candle university “ withRustic Escentuals “. Very helpful

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