Whether you’re looking for a new business or to make some additional income selling candles, there are many opportunities available.
Candle making is an art and has been around for centuries. Some of the oldest-known candles were found in Egypt and dated back to 3500 BC. They used twisted fibers from palm trees, which they soaked with animal fat and beeswax to create candles shaped like straight sticks.
Even during the Civil War, soldiers used lanterns that contained flat wicks made out of braided cloth as opposed to candle waxes or oils because it was easier to store and light them.
Today’s modern-day candles come in a wide array of colors, shapes, and sizes. They also come in various materials such as soy-based candles, beeswax, palm waxes, vegetable waxes, paraffin waxes, and essential oils.
That’s not all. The demand for candles is high. According to Grandview Research, the global market for scented candles alone could achieve a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 8 percent between 2019 and 2025. By the end of the forecast period, the potential market value could be over $545 million from no more than $370 million in 2019.
With numbers like these, it’s no wonder many want to start their own candle businesses—including you!
Starting a Candle Business
The basic process of manufacturing candles has remained throughout the years. Even better, you can scale it, which means you can downgrade or upgrade your equipment, supplies, and processes as your business changes.
It still consists of melting the wax mixture (also called the candle “recipe”) to a certain temperature, adding fragrance and color, and then pouring them into the molds.
There are several ways to get started depending on how many resources like money and people you have available:
- Purchase candle-making equipment and supplies such as wicks, fragrances, dyes, and candles (If you want to save money and time, buy candle fragrance oils wholesale, so you can make candles by batches)
- Rent time from someone else who already has their equipment and supplies
- Lease your space instead of purchasing all your items. If you choose this option, you may want to look for business opportunities that include start-up kits. They usually contain all the equipment with the ingredients needed to make different types of candles. This way, you can sell them in your store and keep all the profits!
The Different Business Ideas for Candles
Here are some types of candles you can make based on your available equipment and supplies:
1. Votive Candles
Votive candles are small, simple, and inexpensive candles usually intended for Christian devotional rituals. They are usually made of beeswax or paraffin wax.
A typical votive has a metal cup attached to it that holds the consecrated liquid used for purification. Sometimes these cups include names of patrons who have donated money toward its production or bought them as a sign of devotion to God or saints venerated by the church.
2. Tea Lights
A tea light is a small wax candle typically used in some kind of holder, which can be placed on a saucer or bowl. They are usually inexpensive as well as easy to find, making them great for everyday use.
Tea lights are most often seen floating in pools at parties and gatherings for their calming ambiance. In addition, they’re usually scented with aromas such as apple pie and lavender, creating more soothing atmospheres indoors and outdoors alike.
3. Beeswax Candles
Beeswax candles are made of 100% natural wax, obtained by melting and purifying the honeycomb. The manufacturing process is done exclusively by hand, taking advantage of traditional know-how.
The global demand for beeswax candles could reach a CAGR of 3.6 percent, according to Mordor Intelligence. One of the reasons is their supposed environmental benefits.
They don’t emit pollutant gases or leave black residues on the wick once they’ve burnt down. Their scent is stronger than that of scented paraffin candles.
They burn more evenly and slowly than paraffin candles. Beeswax takes longer to form a “mold” around itself (cobwebs), so it provides a much longer-lasting fragrance experience inside your home. It can also be a renewable material.
4. Soy Candles
Soy candles are candles that are made from soy wax. Soy wax is a type of vegetable wax, and as the name implies, it is typically made from soybeans. (Other types of vegetable waxes include palm, beeswax, and carnauba.)
As far as candle-making supplies go, soy is one of the most popular because it’s environmentally friendly, non-toxic, and biodegradable. It also burns cleaner than traditional paraffin wax candles (which contain petroleum) and has little to no scent on its own. It requires fragrances or essential oils to give off a nice aroma.
If you’re looking for a low-cost business with high demand, then consider being part of the candle-making industry. All it takes to get started is some basic equipment and inventory.