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playing with wax

Holy Cannoli & Mamma Mia whoever thought candles were so involved?

Candles are a simple luxury I’ve always enjoyed, and spend money on. I thought, I make soap, lots of people who make soap make candles, too. How difficult can it be?
I’ll just make my own. Genius.

When I started researching, I was surprised at what I found. I guess I never paid attention to the fact that there are so many different types of waxes;
I just used my sniffer to decipher what I liked.
Paraffin, Soy, Soy-blends, and Beeswax. Container wax, votive wax, pillar wax.
My head was spinning.

Soy wax sounded nice. Grown in the USA, clean burning candles,
yes, please! I’ll start with Soy.

Four types of candle wax later, and there’s still one more that I’m interested in.
Some of the waxes cracked and caved after pouring, or ‘frosted’,
or developed ‘wet spots’. New terms, that I unfortunately came to understand.
Others had barely a scent.

I’ve never looked at a candle with such discriminating eyes before I made them myself.
This particular wax was easy to work with, and poured beautifully. The tops look creamy, and there was no cracking or caving.
This wax is primarily Soybean, with just a bit of paraffin added.
From what I understand, this gives us the best of both worlds.
A less-finicky pour, and the cold scent throw is strong.
Blackberry Marmalade

Next is the test-burning.
Test-burning is a series of burns, in which you record how well your chosen wick works in your chosen wax, within your chosen container.
Dye and fragrance oil also factor into the outcome, so it’s good to keep accurate notes.
The test-burn will also tell you how many hours your candle will last,
which is helpful if you plan on selling.

You want to make sure your candle is not under or over-wicked. An over-wicked candle will have a large, flickering flame and use up the wax-fuel quickly.
An under-wicked candle will not burn hot enough, which causes tunneling,
or it may even extinguish itself.

I haven’t produced a truly successful candle yet, but I’m determined.
I’m keeping my fingers crossed on these, and lucky me, it’s time to
trim the wicks and test burn!

Always, always trim your wicks, kids.

Burn, Baby, burn. Not too hot, but not too cool, either.
I’d like a Baby Bear Burn, please;  just right 🙂

a rose by any other name


I’ve always made home-made lip balms and tints.
I actually forgot all about this, but my sister in law recently pointed it out to me after I presented her with one of my newer, from-scratch concoctions.
“Remember when you used to make the Chapstick & Leftover Lipstick’s for me”? OMG- yes!

I now know that lip balm is not that difficult to make, just some
lovely hard & soft oils and Beeswax,
melted together at the right proportions.
But back then, I had no idea and was just trying to get a little more bang for my buck.
Irregardless, I had a super-easy system for great lip product
re-furbs, that anyone can do.

When I was young, and didn’t have much money, I resented the fact that there
was so much lipstick left at the bottom of those $9.00 tubes when it was all ‘finished’. Back then, I preferred lipstick over the clear balm I favor now.

I would scrape out the leftover lipstick with a knife and put that into a
plastic medicine cup. Then I would scrape out my half used
Chapstick out of the container and add that to the medicine cup.
Microwave the contents until they were liquified, and stir it up well.
Pour it into the emptied Chapstick container, let it cool, and viola;
a full size moisturizing lip-tint in the perfect shade!
Rose Bud Mouth Beeswax Lip-Balm:
Apricot Kernel Oil, Beeswax, Coconut Oil, Castor Oil, Avocado Oil,
Sunflower Oil, Wheatgerm Oil, Vitamin E, Rose Flavor Oil & Lip Safe Mica Colorant

I adore Rose Lip Balm!
There’s something so luxurious about the scent of roses in a lip product.

I am spoiled by the lip balms that I make today,
and reach for them over anything else.
I don’t say that to boast, but the fact is that when you make them yourself,
you can tweak them to precisely how you like them best!

I love Coconut Oil in my balms. It’s got a delicious slickness that’s perfect for the lips,
and fights signs of weathering and aging.  Even straight out of the container,
Coconut Oil provides a protective barrier and feels great on chapped lips.


For my next batch, I’m going to be playing with some color.
Not full-on lipstick color, just some nice, sheer mica tints.
Reminds me of the good old days.

Did you ever make your own home-made bath & body
concoctions or cosmetics?

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