Leftover candle wax. Save or toss?

yellowhairJanuary 12, 2004

I just threw away some candle wax where the candle burns down so far and then the wick is gone, etc. etc. I have used leftover wax for use on sticking drawers, some for inside the drawers (the one that smells like an ocean---ummm)as scents, and, I guess that's about it.

Do any of you buy the wicks and try to reuse the wax? It seems like it would be a lot of effort!

PS I'm a little irritated that I had to get rid of a round $ 9.00 candle that I bought from one of the school kids. It just wouldn't burn.

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I DO own a special pair of pots just for melting wax...one for the beeswax that I use to make a 'boy balm and leather food' that I give to all the tough men in my life (it smells like cloves, and works equally well on my dry hands, and my karate teacher's bald scalp)

the other one for melting all those candle stubs down...but I've found that making candles is actually a little tricky- wax for tapers is much harder than wax from a jar candle, though I have learned that I can add olive oil to adjust the melting point. so that the whole candle melts, instead of burning a tunnel 1/2" from the wick all the way down...

but what I have done is used that wax to make fireplace toys...mixed with sawdust for 'fire starters' or I'll dip pinecones in it, then roll them in 'salt substitute' or this 'fire rainbow' granules that I bought a pound of about a hundred years ago...then dip them again, toss them on the fire, and make pretty colors.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2004 at 3:01PM
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Melt them and pour them into the paper egg cartons for fire starters.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2004 at 10:19PM
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I had a whole bucket of scented candle leftovers, as well as some boring white unscented pillar candles. All I bought were the wicks (under $5.00; depending on the candle sizes you can make 50 candles or so.) I used an empty coffee can placed in a pan of simmering water to mealt the wax. Containers were anything I could think of - little yoghurt tubs, jars, cans, little flower pots, cracked coffee cups & glasses....I also made dipped tapers, which are really easy though more time consuming.

Most of the wax was already scented, I added old weird spices to some of the unscented wax & came up with some interesting fragrances. I figure it's cost me about .10 each for candles that are $3.00+ at the store.

The site below has just a ton of good tips. I've yet to try any of the more complicated ones though. I just couldn't see throwing all that old wax out, and I love scented candles!

Here is a link that might be useful: candle making

    Bookmark   January 20, 2004 at 9:53AM
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For those of you who have seen the TV show Father Ted. Take note of the use of earwax from Fr. Jack's lugholes and make your own candles in a subtle shade of brown.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2004 at 6:57PM
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Be careful - some wicks cause little particles to float in the air as they burn; they can irritate your lungs. Sorry, I've forgotten which kind.

My MIL used to make candles where she poured the wax over ice so it had a lacy effect.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2010 at 10:11PM
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Best to use small containers, so that the wax melts pretty well all of the way out as the wick burns down.

ole joyful

    Bookmark   June 10, 2010 at 6:57PM
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When I was a teen I made candles from old wax candles my Mom had. First get a two-quart milk or juice carton, clean abd dry it, tear the top completely off. This is your "mold". Fill with crushed ice, then go to work carefully melting your old candles. Add wicks (one or several-three is nice) , color and frangrance from craft store. Melt your candles over a double burner, or a big empty aluminum can over a very low burner. Add color and fragrance (optional), then carefully pour over your ice filled milk carton. When hardened, rip the milk carton apart. You'll have a pretty and useful decorative candle.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 10:23AM
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I know this post is getting old, but I just have to put my two cents worth in. I'm a candle junkie in the wintertime. I don't have a fireplace so I burn candles. I use old candle stubs to make new ones. But, worse than that---I cruise the thrift store for cheap candles to melt down. I make votives mostly. (I broke down and bought the molds.) However, I do save candle jars and even mason jars to make candles in. I buy the wicks from the craft store. Get the heaviest ones you can find for the bigger candles. It's a little luxury I can afford.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 5:27PM
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I put the left overs in a heavy glass container, then place it on my radiator. Wax melts and smells up the room :-)

    Bookmark   April 23, 2011 at 9:15PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

You get what you pay for as far as candles are concerned. The quality of wax, jar, and wick varies. Longevity of use is related to quality (price) and proper usage. Very inexpensive candles are scented by putting a perfume on top after the candle is made. High quality candles are scented throughout the wax with wicks that are tested to be the proper size for the container. They are not made in China. The amount of scent a candle can produce is a product of the surface area of the melted wax, and the amount of scent within the wax.

In regard to keeping old wax, I say absolutely! In addition to using it to make your own candles, sachets, and melts, you can add small chunks to other candles. I prefer to do this after it starts to cool off and shrink. Just push new chunks of wax in the soft candle to offset the shrinkage and it will all melt together next time you light it.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 6:30PM
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I find tons of cheap candles at garage sales. Can find people selling boxes of dozens of tapers anywhere from $1 to $3. Once I hit it really lucky and got a big brown grocery bag full of barely used pillar types all different sizes for $2.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 9:39PM
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I toss the wax.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 9:53PM
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I would toss it. It is not worth taking a chance of spilling it on yourself or in the house.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 3:32PM
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I toss it on the fire in the fire pit. Just randomly - I don't make fire starters or anything like that. It does help the wood to start. I use dryer lint as fire starter. I have a box on my dryer. When I clean the lint trap I put the lint in the box. When I have a fire in the fire pit I grab a handful of lint from the box. It is a great fire starter.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 7:50PM
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I occasionally make candles and if I'm lucky I can find my various caches of used candles. I sometimes make large ice candles that need a central core that doesn't necessarily require an exact color match. I usually mold them from a cast iron pipe, but wrapping tubes would work as well and probably easier.

You can often rescue a poor burning regular large pillar by placing a new larger wick down its center by drilling a hole with a long thin drill bit. Some large wicks have a central wire that would help installing the wick, and regular wicking can be stiffened by rubbing a little warm wax on it and straighten it out when cold.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 8:26AM
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