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Making Beeswax Candles

With a Little Help From The Bees

It isn’t difficult to brag about the benefits of beeswax when it comes to making candles… I love the honey scent, the golden flame, and delight in the long, clean burn of beeswax candles. Using beeswax candles cleans the air like a great, natural, air purifier – and seems to connect to a deep spiritual belief system.


Comments on Beeswax CandlesFor each pound of beeswax provided by a honey bee, that bee has visited 33 million flowers, ate 10 pounds of honey, and secreted the beeswax from its abdomen using the wax to construct a honeycomb. Beekeepers recover the wax by heating it in water. Soon the wax combs float to the surface, and can be removed to be sold in sheets.


Now compare this to paraffin candles that are made from the polluted petroleum sludge, or even vegetable-based candles (an improvement over paraffin) and you begin to understand why many have written about the wisdom of beehives, and how burning beeswax puts a person in a special mood of reverence.


So let’s assemble four items you will need: beeswax sheets, craft knife, candle wicks and scissors. It’s best to “prime your wick” by stirring it briefly in hot wax, then remove and place it on a sheet of wax paper. Now let’s assemble several beeswax candles:


  • Cut the beeswax sheets. For a tapered candle cut the wax in half diagonally from the top to bottom. For a smaller votive candle, cut the wax in half width-wise... and don't cut the sheet at all if you want to create a pillar candle.

  • Cut the wick 1/2" longer than both ends of the candle.

  • Place the primed-wick 1/4" from the edge of the beeswax sheet. Press the wick firmly against the wax and roll slightly to hold it in place.

  • Roll the beeswax up around the wick until the entire sheet of wax is completely around the wick. Keep the bottom edge as straight as possible as you roll. The votive and pillar candle sheets end with an even crease. The tapered candle has a diagonal crease fown the side of the candle.

  • Press the edge of the wax into the side of the candle to hold it. Fold the bottom wick over and press the bottom of the candle firmly until it is flat.

  • Place the candle on a flat surface and light the wick.


You will end up with several sizes (depending on how you cut your sheets), and you may have put two colors together for a different effect. Personally, I prefer the natural honeycomb color without any dyes; I love the honey scent and amber glow as it cleans the air in my bedroom or kitchen. 


Esther Smith, author

Although beeswax is the more expensive choice, its benefits should be obvious – if you can afford the difference, include beeswax candles in your selection of this craft.


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