It is hard to believe that we are entering
our fifth year of Publication of the En-Light-ener. Over
the years we have covered a number of topics and issues and
we truly appreciate those that have been with us since the
beginning. Our En-Light-ener might only be going into the
fifth year but since History is worth telling, I would encourage
you to read Candlewic’s History at
the bottom of this issue.
Demystifying Candle Waxes, Part III:
Straight Paraffin Waxes.
For those keeping score, this is the third and final chapter in our recent
series in "de-mystifying" Candle waxes. In the first
issue we covered the blends available on the market, the second
issue identified the emerging natural wax market. This final article
features the use of straight paraffin wax.
I was fortunate enough to recently attend a Vendor Conference
for one of the leading candle manufacturers in the US and
the discussion focused on how their manufacturing processes
continually becomes more complex instead of easier. You must
be thinking, how can that be with all of the new technology
and automation available.
It really made me think and even reflect on our business.
After thinking about it on the flight home I realized all
I had to do was look at our business and it starts to become
very clear how this is true in many of our operations.
When we were located in our first warehouse in New Britain
(check out our history) we offered
at the time about 6-7 straight paraffin waxes with 1-2 specialty
waxes like beeswax and bayberry wax. With these 6-7 straight
paraffin waxes, we were able to service most of the candle
market and candle makers got what they needed in most instances.
We still offer these same straight paraffin waxes and many
are still very popular. But in today’s marketplace
these are not enough waxes to satisfy all candle makers.
Thus the emergence of specialty blends and waxes developed
for specific applications, such as carving.
I think for any candle operation a review should be made
to determine if a straight paraffin wax is right for that
application. It might be an appropriate time to identify
what we mean by straight paraffin waxes. For this discussion
a straight paraffin is a wax that contains no additives.
One of the advantages of these waxes is that you can make
changes to your line to reflect the seasons, such as bright
colors for the spring and dark rich colors for the fall.
Using straight waxes does require testing and development
to create that special look. In the end what you will have
is a candle that has a unique look and one that was created
by you. Like all the great chefs with their secret recipes,
you will have your own special recipe that separates you
from the competition.
To this day our most popular wax remains the Container
Fill (CF). This straight paraffin is great for making
container candles. The reason this wax is most popular
is that it can be used in any type of container such as
glassware, tin or crocks. If you add a little vybar or
micro you can create a very smooth look. Hint: For even
more vibrant colors try adding a little more vybar. If
you wish to make a mottled candle in these same containers, 2530H is
the most suitable wax for this application.
Another popular wax for general candle making is the 3134.
This wax is excellent for making votives and for making smaller
container candles. The best additive to use with this wax
again is vybar but stearic acid is also very popular.
A good base wax for pillar candles or votives would be the 4144 wax.
For making pillars you will want to use vybar in some percentage
and then a micro or even stearic acid.
While the development of your candle line may take longer
using a straight paraffin wax the rewards can be very gratifying
and unique because you will have your own formulation. Some
of the most unique lines of candles have been developed by
trial and error. In fact, during the early phases of mottled
candles, some candle makers said that it was a mistake and
that someone forgot to put in the necessary additives.
While the choices for wax can be overwhelming, we at Candlewic
are committed to assisting you in selecting the right wax
for your application.
On behalf of the Candlewic Company I hope
that this series highlighting waxes was of assistance. The
number one question I hear from customers is what wax should
I use to make my candles?
It is important that I point out that all of the waxes we
offer are excellent for its specific application and my suggestion
should not imply that you are using the wrong wax for the
type of candle you wish to make. I would like to identify
some of my favorites and ones, which are always a good starting
||Low Shrinkage Blend