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Mottled Pillar Candles

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The primary agent used for mottling is parol oil. Mineral oil and vegetable oil are also used on occasion. Additionally, some fragrance oils have a tendency to cause mottling in candles.

Parol oil is added to the liquid wax at any temperature, and should be thoroughly stirred into the mix to ensure even distribution of parol oil throughout the candle.

Parol oil can be used with other additives, such as kemamide release powder, and small proportions of Stearic Powder. Vybar, which is an anti-mottling agent, should not be used with parol oil, as the candle will not mottle and the parol oil will be wasted.

Add 1 oz of parol oil for each pound of paraffin wax for a standard mottling effect. Use more parol oil for more mottling, less parol oil for less mottling.

Here is an easy formula sure to mottle your molded pillar candles!

What You Will Need - Supplies

· Molding Candle Wax, 1 lb

· Parol Oil, 1 ounce

· 4.5” x 3” Round Metal Mold

· Jiffy Wicker

· 1/0 square waxed wick or 34-37 flat cotton core waxed wick

· Silicone Spray Mold Release (optional)

· Steamer Pot or old Sauce Pan to create a double boiler

· Standard Size or Small Size Melting Pot with pour spout

· Wood Stir Sticks, chopsticks, or something else to stir the wax

· Thermometer

· Scissors

· Color Dye Chips

· Craft Knife

· Candle Fragrance, 1 ounce (optional)

NOTE: These instructions are written using a 4.5” x 3” round metal mold, which takes about 1 lb of wax and 20” of wick per candle.

Also a good idea to have around:

· Paper towels

· Wax Remover

· Aluminum Foil

· Newspaper, butcher paper, or scrap paper to cover work surfaces

· Fire Extinguisher (just in case)

How to Set Up Your Work Area

  1. Put down newspaper or butcher paper on tables and countertops to catch spills and for easy cleanup.
  2. Have paper towels and Windex on hand for cleaning stovetops.
  3. Wrap stove burner bowls in tin foil to catch drips of wax, and for easy cleanup afterwards.

Prep Your Mold

Inspect your mold to ensure that there is no residual wax on the inside surfaces or seams of your mold. If there is, remove it.

Spray the inside of your mold with Silicone Spray Mold Release. To do this, either follow the directions on the can, or hold the nozzle 8 to 10 inches from your mold and release the spray in short bursts. I little goes a long way with Silicone Spray Mold Release.

Wicking your Mold

Wick your mold using wick and your Jiffy Wicker, or mold sealer and a wick holder bar. (For instructions on how to use a Jiffy Wicker visit our tutorial on How to Use a Jiffy Wicker.)

Melting your Pillar Candle Wax

You will need either a steamer pot or deep sauce pan, and you will also need a melting pot with a pouring spout. These two items create a double boiler to melt your wax.

A simple double boiler using an old sauce pan and a meting pot with a spout.

Fill the bottom part of your double boiler (the steamer pot or the deep sauce pan) with about two inches of cool water, and place on the burner set to high temperature.

Place pieces of 139 degree Molding Candle Wax to be melted into the melting pot with a pouring spout, set the melting pot in the water, and attend to it as the wax liquefies. (When the water begins to boil, turn the heat down to medium low or low.)

If you have a large block of wax and need instructions on how to safely break it into smaller pieces, please visit our section on How To Break Up Wax Blocks

When the wax is entirely liquid (i.e., when there are no solid chunks any longer in the pot) you have successfully melted the wax. Our 139 degree Molding Candle Wax melts at about 139 degrees F. The wax will continue to grow hotter as it remains in the double boiler. The temperature of the wax should get to 190 degrees F.

Adding Dye

After the wax is entirely melted, add your candle dye. Each of our diamond shaped dye chips colors 1 lb of wax. Use more or less candle dye for lighter or darker colored candles. Drop a dye chip (or part of a dye chip) into the melted wax, and stir until the dye chip is entirely dissolved into the liquid wax.

Parol Oil

Use parol oil to promote mottling in your pillar candle. Parol oil also acts somewhat as a lubricant when the time comes to remove your candle from the mold. Standard usage with our wax is 1 oz of parol oil per pound of wax. After your wax has melted, and you have added your candle dye, pour one ounce of parol oil into the melting pot and stir it until it is thoroughly mixed with the wax. (As you gain experience with parol oil and mottled candles, you may decide to use more or less parol oil in subsequent mottled candle formulas.)

Adding Fragrance

Adding fragrance is the last thing you do before you pour the candle. This is because the potency of the fragrance can be reduced if subjected to high heat for too long.

The standard ratio for our candle fragrance oils is one ounce of fragrance oil per 1 lb of wax. Use more or less fragrance for lighter or heavier scented candles. After you have added your parol oil, pour one ounce of candle fragrance into your melting pot. Stir thoroughly to get even distribution of the candle fragrance.

Pouring the Candles

After you add the fragrance to the melting pot, make the first pour of wax into the pillar candle mold. You need a spouted container to pour pillar candles. You can also use a wood stirring stick or a chopstick for added pouring control to reduce dribbles.

The wax should still be at about 190 degrees F. If it has cooled, bring the temperature of the wax back to between 190 and 200 degrees, and give it a good stir.

Pour the wax into the pillar mold, and fill the mold up to half an inch from the top of the mold, or lower if you desire a shorter pillar candle. Be sure to save some wax for the 2nd pour.

Let Candle Cool

Allow the candle to cool naturally at room temperature. Do not use a water bath or other cooling mechanism to cool the candle more quickly. Your candles will mottle best if let to cool at room temperature.

Relief Holes

Poke relief holes in the wax as it cools, just as in making a basic pillar candle. If you are unfamiliar with relief holes, please see our instructions on relief holes in Making Basic Pillar Candles.

When the candle has hardened and cooled to room temperature, it is time to make the 2nd pour of wax, to fill the relief holes and the indentations, caused by shrinkage of the wax, in the center of the candle.

2nd Pour

The “second pour” is made after the wax in the pillar candle mold has cooled completely.

To make the 2nd pour for the pillar candle, re-heat the wax you saved from the first pour in the double boiler. Reheat this wax to about 5 to 10 degrees F hotter than the temperature of your first pour wax. (If the wax of your first pour was 190 degrees F, then heat the 2nd pour wax to 195 or 200 degrees F before pouring.)

When it is the proper temperature, pour the wax into your relief holes, and continue pouring until the wax reaches a level just below that of your first pour.

Pouring higher than the first pour can cause surface flaws on your finished candle.

Setting the Pillar

Now let your pillar candle sit undisturbed until it cools completely, again at room temperature. This may take a few hours. You will know that your candle is completely cool when the surface of the mold is cool to the touch, not warm. You will also, most likely, notice the candle separating from the edge of the mold.

Remove The Candle From the Mold

When your candle has cooled completely, you may remove it from the mold. If your candle has cooled completely, it will come out of the mold easily, as the parol oil will act as a lubricant inside the mold.

For instructions on how to disassemble a Jiffy Wicker and remove a pillar candle from its mold, see our instructions on Basic Pillar Candles.

Trim the Wick

When your candle is out of the mold, cut the wick at the bottom of the candle, so that it is flush with the bottom surface of the candle.

Trim the wick at the top of the candle to ?”.

Finished Mottled Pillars

As shown in this photo, parol oil can also be used to create mottled container candles. The usage is the same, 1 oz of parol oil per pound of container candle wax. For instructions on how to make a container candle, visit our instructions on Basic Container Candles.

Finish Notes:

· For instructions on removing the mold seams from your pillar candles, see our reference section on Removing Seams from Candles

· For instructions on leveling your candles (in the event that they came out tilted for some reason) please see our reference section on Candle Leveling


· Never pour liquid wax down a drain. It will solidify in the pipes and cause a serious clog.

· Pillar candles should be burned in approved pillar candle holders

· Never leave a burning candle unattended.


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