How to Make Hand-Dipped Candles

In medieval times when modern equipment had not been invented, hand dipping candles used to be a common practice. As a matter of fact, hand dipped candles burn as good as modern candles if made in the proper manner. Moreover, you can easily make these candles at home in any colour or size of your liking.

Things Required:

– 1/2 lb paraffin wax (plain)
– Double boiler
– Wooden spoon
– Assorted mixing bowls
– Candy thermometer
– Wick
– Fragrance oil
– Serrated knife
– Colour chips or candle dye
– Scissors
– Hanger


  • 1

    Convert 1/2 lb paraffin wax into small chunks with a serrated knife and add the wax chunks to a double boiler in which water is already boiling at medium heat. Keep in mid that excessive heat will start burning the wax instead of melting it.

  • 2

    Keep a check on the double boiler’s temperature while the wax is melting. This can be accomplished using a candy thermometer. It should always be between 180 to 200 degrees Celsius. Reduce or increase the heat if required. Continuously stir the melting wax with a wooden spoon until all the chunks you added in the previous step have completely melted.

  • 3

    Add colour chips or candle dye to the melted wax. In case you are using colour chips, you will need to melt them at a temperature range of 180 to 200 degrees. However, candle dye just needs to be mixed into the melted wax.

  • 4

    While keeping a check on the temperature reading, add the desired amount of fragrance oil. Scent of the candles can be made stronger by increasing the quantity of fragrance oil. However, using too much fragrance oil will have an adverse effect on the burning of the hand dipped candles.

  • 5

    You will need to make the candles in pairs. Decide the length of the hand dipped candles. The wick length you will need is twice the desired candle length plus 4 inches. For instance, if you want to make 5-inch candles, you will need a wick (2×5) + 4 = 14 inches long.

  • 6

    It is now time to dip the candles. Let the temperature of the double boiler drop to 160 to 170 degrees Celsius. Divide the total wick length into equal halves and double it over your index finger. Immerse and let the wick stay in melted wax for a short while and then lift the wick out. Let the wax cool down for about a minute and then re-dip. Continue to dip and remove the wick in a similar manner and stop when the candles reach the desired thickness and length.

  • 7

    Increase the temperature of the wax 182 degrees Celsius and dip the candles for a final time. Lift the candles secure them to a hanger. Allow time for the candles to dry properly. To finish the task, trim the wick in order to separate the candles.

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