Candle gel, paraffin and soy wax: Candlemaking made easy for everyone
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How to recycle your leftover paraffine?

As Lavoisier's Law of Conservation of Mass spells: matter cannot be created nor destroyed, although it may change form.
The same thing goes for candlemaking and its main ingredient: wax!
Very often, at the end of a project, you'll have, in the bottom of your melting or pouring jug, a little paraffin (or lots of it), coloured or not, scented or not, with or without additives...
Should you throw away these leftovers? Of course not! Many alternatives are available, depending on the quantity of wax left over.
Let's take a look at these alternatives...

Supplies needed
  • miscellaneous dishes and containers like plastic cups, empty ice cream containers,...
  • an oven plate and an old knife (to make chunks),
  • freezing bags,
  • a permanent marker pen.
  • Small quantities

    The very small quantities of wax, like for examples the corners that remain after you've made chunks (see below), spilled wax recovered from the surface of freezer paper, ... can simply been set aside together in a container (as shown on the introductory picture) and used later on.
    You could, for instance, make a very special candle out of them by putting all these nuts and bolts in a mold and pouring uncolored paraffin over them.
    I strongly advice against melting together pieces of different colors: you would end up with paraffin of a dirty, brown color that would be impossible to use in any serious project...

    Medium quantities

    1 For the small leftovers at the bottom of the melting pot, the best solution is to pour them, while the paraffin is still hot and liquid, in small plastic cups.
    Once they've solidified, you can "unmold" the wax blocks and put them away in freezing bags to be used in a future project. For example, you might need these small amounts of wax to make a layered pillar candle or anything where small quantities of wax come in handy.
    Also, emptying your jugs immediatly when you're done using them will allow you to reuse them straight away for another project. If you don't, you'll probably just leave the remaining wax in the jug and think "I'll take care of that later".. until you don't have any clean jug anymore to work with (don't ask how I know).

    2 A very important point: always write down precisely on the freezer bags you'll use the following data:
  • the type of wax blend (container blend, pillar blend,...),
  • the additives used and the quantity used (1/2 teaspoon Vybar,...),
  • the scented oil you've used, if any.
  • This will be very useful later on, when you'll have long forgotten about where the leftovers come from, to stop you from mixing together a container blend with, for instance, a votive blend into the same candle.
    Shut the freezer bags tight and store them away from light to prevent the colors from fading.

    Large quantities

    3 After some projects, like a Hurricane shell where you need a large volume of wax but also end up with large leftovers after the shell has been emptied, it's better to skip the plastic cups and go for a larger alternative.
    In this case, my favourite container is the kind of plastic tray ice cream usually comes in. Those dishes can usually accomodate 2 liters of wax and, most of the time, two of them are enough to store the remainders of a hurricane shell project.
    In this case as well, store the cooled off wax blocks in one or more large freezer bag and label it clearly, including the wax composition.

    4 A larger quantity of paraffin is also a good opportunity to make wax chunks (chunks will be explained in details in a future article so I won't develop the subject here).
    But to introduce the topic, just let me say that chunks are small, usually square, pieces of colored paraffin wax. The classic way of using them is to fill a wicked mold full of chunks and pour clear paraffin over them. The result is a very original and colorful pillar. The variations are almost infinite and limited only by your imagination.
    To make chunks, pour the leftover paraffin into a non-stick metal plate (like an oven plate that you will from then on use for candlemaking only). Let the wax settle and cool off but not too much and, while it's still soft enough, use an old knife to cut it into small square pieces.
    Now place the plate in the fridge during a short half hour then separate the chunks from each other and store them in freezer bags as well. They're now ready to be used in a future project.

    Remember: you should never throw away paraffin, it can be reused forever!

    Matter cannot be created nor destroyed, although it may change form
    Matter cannot be created nor destroyed, although it may change form

    Pour the leftover wax into small plastic cups
    1Pour the leftover wax into small plastic cups

    Write down the wax composition scrupulously on the freezing bag
    2Write down the wax composition scrupulously on the freezing bag

    Pour large wax leftovers in a plastic tray
    3Pour large wax leftovers in a plastic tray

    A large amount of leftover wax is an ideal opportunity to make chunks
    4A large amount of leftover wax is an ideal opportunity to make chunks

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