Candle gel has nothing to do with wax - it is actually a form of mineral oil. It is easier to use than traditional wax and reflects more light than a regular candle. The transparent gel allows you to create many interesting effects such as floating pearls or underwater scenes. This manual activity is perfect for making gifts or candles yourself.
Part 1 of 3: melt the gel
Step 1. Turn on a heat source
You can bring the gel to the necessary temperature in two ways: in a saucepan with a spout on the stove or in a Pyrex measuring glass in the oven. Both methods require patience.
- If you are using a saucepan, cut the gel into pieces that you put in the saucepan and heat it over low to medium heat. Let the gel melt until you get a thick, viscous consistency. Use a thermometer and make sure the gel does not exceed 110 ° C.
- If you are using the oven, preheat it to 105 ° C. While it is heating, cut or tear off the desired amount of gel. Once the oven is hot, put the gel in the pyrex container and carefully put it in the oven. Let the gel melt in the oven for about an hour. Check its temperature regularly with a thermometer to make sure it is at the right temperature.
Constantly check the gel. Do not let it exceed 110 ° C, otherwise, it may not only burn and yellow, but also be dangerous
Step 2. Put the bit in place
Do this while the gel is melting. It is not essential to have a drill bit with a support, but it will still ensure good results.
- Put a dot of hot glue at the bottom of the candle container. Take a wick with a support and place it on the glue. Press the holder for 15-20 seconds. This way the bit will stay exactly where you want it to be.
- If you are not using a stand, wrap the end of the wick around a pencil and place the pencil on top of the container so that the wick hangs in it while holding it in place.
Step 3. You can add color or fragrance by melting the gel
You have several possibilities to add the color. They will all give different effects. Add the scent when you heat the gel. Add color after the gel is melted to achieve a uniform appearance.
- Use a non-polar scent, compatible with hydrocarbons. If you make your own candle gel, try one volume of perfume and three volumes of mineral oil. If the two substances mix well, all is well. If you bought gel, take a small piece of it and test the scent before messing up all your gel.
- If you add the color as soon as the gel is melted, you will get a uniform appearance. The color will be distributed evenly throughout the gel.
- If you add the color when you just poured the gel into the container, you will get a swirl effect.
- If you add the color when the gel has almost finished cooling, you will get a circle at the top of the candle.
- You can also add the color layer by layer, either in the pan (pour the gel, add a little coloring, pour, add coloring and so on) or directly into the container. The color will become more and more pronounced with each coat.
Part 2 of 3: pour in the gel and create the candle
Step 1. Prepare the decorative inclusions
If you want to make multiple layers, just take care of the bottom layer for now. To make “floating” inclusions, you will pour the gel in several times.
- Arrange the inclusions at the bottom of the container. They should barely budge when covered in frost.
- Have tweezers handy so you can move inclusions as needed without burning yourself.
- Create a beach scene with salt or sand. Add seashells or small pebbles to make the scene more interesting. Glue salt on sticks to make white algae. Colored sand also works well.
- Flowers or petals are good options to complement a room's colors and pair well with scents. On the other hand, if you are using natural inclusions, you may need to coat them with gel before putting them in the hot gel in the container. You can coat them with the same gel you are making the candle from.
- Fruit or gel ice cubes are reminiscent of summer drinks and the sun.
- If you buy ready-made gel, make sure it has a high density if you want to use heavy inclusions.
Step 2. Pour in the gel
Keep in mind that the faster you pour it, the more bubbles there will be. If you want to make several layers of inclusions or colors, pour only enough gel for the first layer.
- If the inclusions move when you run the gel over them, push them back into place using tweezers.
- If bubbles start to form on the surface of the candle when you don't want them, heat the gel with a hair dryer to remedy the problem.
Step 3. Let cool then make the next layer
Once the first layer is practically dry (this shouldn't take more than a few minutes), lay out the inclusions from the second layer on the gel surface and pour again.
- If the wick does not have a support, try to hold it carefully as you pour.
- Remember that you can gradually add more coloring to create a gradient.
- Repeat this process on as many layers as you want.
Step 4. Let the candle cool completely
It should be ready in about four hours. Cut the wick so that it protrudes about 5 mm before burning it.
Part 3 of 3: make your own candle gel
Step 1. Obtain the ingredients
You need powdered polymer resin and white mineral oil with a flash point of 190 ° C. You have the choice between several densities.
- For low density gel, use 450g mineral oil and 25g resin. You can scent it lightly and it may only contain small, light inclusions.
- For medium density gel, use 450g mineral oil and 30g resin. You can add a fair amount of perfume to it as well as all types of inclusions other than heavy items.
- For high density gel use 450g mineral oil and 35g resin. You can add a lot of scent to it and even heavy inclusions.
- For very high density gel, use 450g mineral oil and 40g resin. It does not require a container, but you still have to put the candle on a support. It is the gel to which you can add the most fragrance and it can easily support the heaviest inclusions.
Step 2. Bake your candle gel
Mix mineral oil and resin. Let the mixture sit for an hour. Then slowly bring it to 105 ° C. It should take about two hours for the gel to form and liquefy. Wait for it to cool, pour it into a container, let it harden and put it away while you wait to use it.
- To reduce the amount of bubbles, pour the gel slowly and gently or put the candle in the oven at 95 ° C for a few hours (do not do this if the candle contains floating inclusions, as they will fall to the bottom). It can also be useful if you need to re-center or reinsert the bit.
- To make more bubbles, stir the candle with a chopstick, refrigerate it, or shake it gently while it cools. Bubbles form easily in candle gel so make the most of it. The more bubbles there are, the brighter the candle will be.
- Make streaky layers. Pour a layer of clear gel and let it cool completely. Pour colored gel over it and push a knife into the bottom layer. The hot colored gel will seep into the clear gel and form colored streaks. You can also use a pipette or syringe to “inject” hot gel into the cold gel.
- Make a glitter candle. Add very fine glitter to the gel before pouring it. You don't need to use a lot of it.
- Make sure that the bit is at least 1.5 cm from the inclusions.
- Use a little melted gel to prepare the strands and coat the inclusions you want to use. Leave the inclusions in the gel until the bubbles stop forming. Then remove the inclusions using tweezers and discard this gel.
- Make a candle representing a jelly or a drink. Use a jar or a glass and add paraffin fruit or paraffin cubes representing ice cubes. Color the gel and pour it over the paraffin inclusions at low temperature.
- Pour the gel into the container. Clear glass containers are the best. If you want less bubbles, heat the container in the oven at 40 ° C for ten minutes. If you want more bubbles, use a cold or room temperature container.
- Since the gel gets very hot, it is important to use a glass container that will not crack or catch fire. The gel for candles gets even hotter than paraffin.
- Cut the wick so that it protrudes only 5mm before burning it. It's very short, but the wick must be short in order to avoid igniting.
- Never leave a candle burning unattended.
- Do not use flammable inclusion. Coat the natural inclusions with gel to avoid reducing the transparency of the candle or causing bubbles to appear.