Pillar Candles - made in moulds to stand alone.
Pillar waxes are strong waxes that will contract for easy removal, also have a higher melt temperature so they don't melt and drip too easily. Typically paraffin with its additives, palm wax, beeswax and Soy PB are used for stand alone, moulded candles.
As the wax contracts, it will form dips and cavities, cracks or other unwanted features.
To avoid flaws, follow these simple instructions to make a perfect pillar candle.
The photos in this article are all Palm wax - they make the most rewarding natural candles - they look spectacular and burn really well.
There is high chance that the wax will track through the wick and out past your seal - be sure to cover the wick completely with sealer (blue tack).
Melt your wax over a double boiler - see our previous blog
If you are after a crystal pattern from your palm wax, raise the water to boil, so the wax increases to about 95°C. Metal moulds work best as they heat quickly and allow the wax to form crystals at its own pace.
Being brittle it needs special treatment when making - The outer shell forms quickly and becomes quite rigid appearing to have no contraction - break the open exposed surface regularly as the candle cools so there is a channel into the insides for topping up later. What happens here is that the external shell cools and solidifies very quickly forming an even brittle shell, meanwhile the wax internally is cooling and shrinking slowly. As it is cooling it forms a structure very similar to a sponge. This sponge structure is a weakness in the candle. When the candle wick is set on fire it melts the hard wax on the surface, as time passes the hot wax quickly melts the spongy wax structure of the centre of the candle. This then sometimes allows the wax to run out the side of the candle and not over the edge..
The pour temperature is dependent on the moulds: metal can be poured high, as can silicon, but be mindful of manufacturer's recommendations on PVC etc.
Hot pours will give a shiny finish; 'cold' pours will lose the crystal patterns of the palm and also become textured. This can be a good effect if you are looking for a more rustic look - try paraffin with additives poured below 70C for a great look.
Once the candle is cold, it can be topped up like any other candle, the base tidied and the wick waxed.
SOY PILLAR BLEND WAX
As cooling occurs, be sure to create channels to be filled later.