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Soy Wax TroubleShooting Guide

Soy Wax Trouble Shooting - Soy wax candles on table with common issues.
Candle with soy wax frosting around the top edge of the glass container.

White, chalky coating

The white-ish chalky coating that can show up on the tops and sides of your finished candles is commonly known as frosting.

Glass candle jar with a the wax on the inside of the container pulled away from the side of the jar.

Pull away or "wet spots"

The wet spots that you see are not really "wet spots." The spots are caused by shrinkage and air bubbles that occur as the wax cools.

Soy wax candle with rough surface on the top of the candle

Rough, uneven surface

Common for even experienced candle makers, a rough top is caused by air escaping out of the top surface of the wax.

Hole by the wick in a soy candle.

Hole by the wick

Cracks or little holes can form on the top of your newly poured candles, caused by air bubbles trapped in the wax.

Soy Wax Troubleshooting Guide - Candle with rough top after burning

Rough tops after burning

A common trait of all soy waxes, caused by the melt pool cooling unevenly when the flame is blown out.

Top of a white soy wax candle with fragrance leaching out of the wax.

Wet or oily surface

Fragrance leaching, "seeping," or "bleeding" is usually a sign that the fragrance has not bonded with the wax, or too much fragrance was used.

Burning candle with smoke and soot coming from the flame.

Smoke and soot while burning

Visible dark smoke coming from the flame can be a sign that the wick is too large for the candle, or there is an excessive amount of fragrance and/or dye in the candle.

Soy wax troubleshooting tunneling

Tunneling

What is known as "tunneling" is a sign that the wick size is not large enough for your candle.

Soy wax candle with small melt pool

Small melt pool

A small melt pool shows that the candle is under wicked, meaning the wick size is too small for the candle.

Soy wax candle with candle with that is mushrooming or sooting.

'Mushrooming' wick

The "mushroom" shape formed at the end of a candle wick after burning is the result of carbon buildup.

Soy wax candle with oil separating at the bottom of the jar.

Yellow layer at the bottom

Fragrance can settle at the bottom of a candle if it does not completely bond with the soy wax, causing a yellowish discoloration.

Clumpy, wet flacked soy wax clusters.

Clumpy, oily wax

When soy wax is exposed to excessive heat, moisture, or has a high oil content it can become soft and clump together.

Air bubbles in melted soy candle wax

Air bubbles in melted wax

On occasion, additional air can get incorporated in the wax during the manufacturing process.

Cloudy melted soy wax.

Cloudy wax

Cloudy wax is typically a sign of additional moisture and air that on rare occasion gets incorporated into the soy wax during processing.

Soy candle with the wax that turned yellow over time.

Candle turns yellow over time

Natural ingredients in fragrances, like vanillin and cinnamon, can cause your candles to discolor over time.

Soy wax candle with a crack circling around the wick.

Cracks on the surface

Cracks can form on the top of your newly poured candles, caused by air bubbles trapped in the wax.

Soy candle with an off centered wick.

Off-center wick

The wick can move off-center in the container if it is not tightly set when the poured wax cools.

Helpful Tips and Solutions

Frosting

Frosting on a pink candle

Mix melted wax less vigorously...

Preheat your glassware...

Pour at a lower temperature...

Let your poured candles cool more slowly...

Wet Spots

Wet spots on a candle

Clean and preheat your glass containers...

Pour the wax slowly into the containers...

Space candles out to help them cool slowly and evenly...

Rough Tops

Rough Top on a candle

Avoid over-stirring...

Adjust your pour temperature...

Cover the imperfection with a layer of wax...

Re-melt the surface with a heat gun...

Cracking

Cracking on the top of a candle

Gently tap the container...

Elevate your container...

Adjust your pour temperature...

Pour additional hot wax...

Fragrance Leaching

Fragrance leaching out of a candle

Mix fragrance oil in at 185°F...

Stir gently for 2 minutes...

Adjust your fragrance load...

Sooting and Large Flames

Burning soy wax candle with large flame and smoke.

Check your wick size and series...

Decrease fragrance load...

Try another wick series...

Tunneling

Soy Wax Candle with tunneling hole forming around the wick when burning.

Increase your wick size...

Decrease your wick size...

Mushrooming

Soy wax candle with carbon build up on wick that looks like black mushrooms.

Use less fragrance and/or dye...

Trim wick between burning...

Size down your wick...

Clumpy, Wet Wax

Clumpy and oils soy wax flacks on a scoop.

Heat wax to 185°F...

Don't worry...

Air Bubbles in Wax

Small air bubbles in melted soy wax.

Allow air bubbles to release...

Be gentle while stirring or mixing ingredients...

Slowly heat wax to 190-200°F...

Cloudy Wax

melted soy wax with a cloudy appearance.

Allow wax to stay between 185-200°F...

Give the wax time to air out...

Store wax in a cool, dry location...

Wax Discoloring

Soy wax in a candle that has turned yellow over time.

Use a UV inhibitor...

Add a small amount of ivory dye...

Minimize your use of vanillin containing fragrances...

Small Melt Pools

Soy wax candle with a small melt pool at the top-center of the candle.

Increase your wick size...

Don't trim the wick too short...

Allow enough time for melt pool to form...

Sink Holes

Soy Wax Candle with Sink Hole

Pour additional melted wax...

Melt the surface...

Monitor the wax and remove existing air bubbles...

Wick Is Off-Center

Soy wax candle with wick sitting off of the center of the candle.

Use a wick setter tool...

Create your own wick placement guide...

Keep wick held taut while the wax cools...