How to make your own DIY coconut shell candle using a blend of coconut wax and soy wax. This complete beginners guide to candle making is easy to follow and shares how to make a beautifully scented candle at home using a coconut shell.
There is nothing more relaxing than the soft crackle of a burning wood wick and the subtle scent of your favourite fragrance wafting through the air on a cool, rainy day.
Most coconut shell candles available are often quite expensive and contain paraffin wax, a petroleum-based wax that, when burned, can release toxins and chemicals like soot, toluene, or benzene into the air which have been found to be harmful to our health when inhaled.
What’s more, these candles are often scented with artificial fragrances containing chemicals like phthalates which help to prolong the life of the scent. Researchers have found that the long-term health implications of phthalates alone include asthma, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), breast cancer, obesity and type II diabetes, low IQ, neurodevelopmental issues, behavioural issues, autism spectrum disorders, cancer, and male fertility issues.
By making your own candles at home, you can ensure the wax you’re using is clean, fragrance-free, and non-GMO. Please note that while soy wax is a step up from paraffin wax, it, too, can be a problem if not sourced mindfully. This is because vendors may add a little paraffin wax to the soy wax blend to help with burning, and the vast majority of anything made with soy is made using genetically modified soy beans that have been treated with pesticides, herbicides, and so on. This means that it will take some research on your part to ensure the wax you’re buying is completely clean and made from organic, non-GMO soy beans that were not treated with any chemicals.
When sourcing the wax, it can be helpful to talk to the suppliers directly to ensure the wax you’re buying is coming from a trusted source. Here is a list of criteria to keep in mind when sourcing soy wax for candle making.
Beeswax is much easier wax to source clean from trusted suppliers, and can also help to purify the air inside your home as it burns. So this can be another alternative if you cannot source a clean coconut wax or soy wax to use for your candles.
Why a Blend of Coconut Wax and Soy Wax is Used
Coconut wax is a more natural alternative to controversial wax types like paraffin, and still provides a great scent throw when lit. However, because of its low melting point, it is recommended to blend this wax with one with a higher melting point. This is why coconut wax is often mixed with soy wax.
This colourless and odourless wax is made from cold-pressed coconut meat or coconut oil mixed with either soy wax, paraffin wax, palm wax, or beeswax. In high temperatures, the coconut oil and coconut wax will often melt which creates an issue when being shipped. So, to help prevent this from occurring, the coconut wax is blended with another natural wax to prevent it from melting before it’s ready.
When sourcing your coconut wax, ensure you buy it from a trusted supplier and opt for a blend of either beeswax or soy wax.
I like to add in a blend of coconut wax and either beeswax or soy wax when making my coconut wax candles, as the low melting point of coconut wax means the candle burns at a much faster rate, so by adding a mix of both coconut wax and soy wax, this helps to slow down the burn rate of the candle, allowing it to last a little longer.
Before we get started in learning how to make this homemade coconut shell candle – if you like what you’re seeing, subscribe to my email newsletter at the bottom of the page to keep up to date on the latest recipes, DIYs, gardening and health tips I share!
Homemade Coconut Shell Candle DIY
Here is a full beginner’s guide to making coconut shell candles at home using a mixture of coconut wax and soy wax.
When it comes to incorporating scents into the candle wax, use around 100-200 drops of essential oil for every half a cup of wax to achieve a noticeable scent. I like to keep to this ratio when making wax melts or candles of any size or shape. Feel free to adjust the ratio of essential oils you’ll be using as you see fit, depending on how strong you want the scent of your candles to be.
- 1 cup organic coconut wax, shredded (or more // depending on the size of your coconut shell)
- 2 cups organic soy wax flakes (or more // depending on the size of your coconut shell)
- Metal pitcher or large glass jar
- Cooking thermometer
- Coconut shell
- Wooden wick with a metal stopper
- 100 drops of essential oil of choice
- To begin with, measure out the exact amount of wax needed to fill each coconut shell you’ll be using to make these coconut candles with. Take your coconut shell half and fill it up with wax to around the three quarter (3/4) mark. From there, double that amount of wax and that is how much candle wax you’ll need for each coconut shell you’ll be using.
- Once you have the correct amount of candle wax measured out, pour the coconut wax and soy wax into a metal pitcher or large glass jar, and place the container in a large pot of water – filled just enough to cover the outside of the container without spilling over. Bring the water to a boil.
- Turn the heat down to medium heat and stir the wax occasionally until completely melted. Make sure no water spills into the container.
- Once melted, remove the wax from heat and allow it to cool slightly before adding in the essential oil. Stir to combine.
- Next, dip the metallic end of your candle wick into the melted wax, and, using the hot wax to stick the wick in place, stick the wooden wick to the centre of your coconut shell. After five minutes, the wax will have hardened and the wick should stay relatively steady without you needing to hold it.
- Before you pour your wax, let it cool down slightly. Use a thermometer to test the temperature of the wax, and once it reaches 62°C (145°F), it’s ready to start pouring. It’s important to wait until it cools to this temperature to prevent the heat from cracking your coconut shell. Pour around 75 percent of the candle wax into the coconut shell. Make sure to hold the candle wick in place as you pour the wax to keep it steady and prevent it falling over.
- As the wax begins to harden, the top of your coconut shell candle may have a few cracks or marks on the waxy top. To help rectify this, pour the remaining wax over the top and allow it to set. To avoid any blemishes from appearing in future, pour the wax slowly to avoid creating air bubbles, which can make the surface of the finished candle look uneven. The wax will begin hardening right away, so do not move or adjust your candle until it has completely set.
- Let the candle cool at room temperature for at least 24 hours before burning. Soy candles will harden to room temperature in about four hours and completely cure in three to four days. I find it best to trim the wick five to six hours after making to avoid the wick disturbing the top of the candle. Trim the wick, using sharp scissors, to about one to one and a half centimetres above the level of the wax.
- It is recommended to leave homemade candles to cure for a minimum of three days to develop a stronger scent when burning. You can leave it for longer if you like, with a cure time of up to one to two weeks, which will give your candle an incredibly strong scent.
Please ensure that these coconut shell candles are never left unattended when lit, and care should be taken when burning these candles. Avoid placing the lit candle underneath or near curtains or drapes, or anything that may catch fire. Always keep these candles out of reach of pets and children. Avoid exposure to drafts. Discontinue burning the candle when only one to two centimetres or less of wax remains.
As always, none of these statements have been evaluated by the FDA and is not meant to diagnose, cure, or treat any condition. This is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor before trying or using any new products. I am not a doctor. All opinions expressed are my own personal thoughts and feelings of the products mentioned. Check with your doctor or health practitioner if you are uncertain about trying out any of the products, recipes or tips mentioned in this post.
Have you made homemade coconut shell candles before? How did it go? Share in the comments below.
Lots of love,