Good scent throw is an indication of a well-crafted scented candle, whether it is cold or not. Cold scent throws are what the candle smells like when it is unlit and the wax is still solid at room temperature. The release of the fragrance once the candle is lit is the hot scent throw.
Cold and hot scent throws mainly differ in strength, as fragrances become enhanced as the candle burns. There are a number of factors that affect the intensity of a fragrance, like the strength of the fragrance oil and its flashpoint (temperature at which it evaporates). Additionally, the type of wax used can also influence scent throw. Natural waxes, like soy wax, usually have better scent throws.
While getting the perfect combination of scents is one thing. Properly incorporating the fragrance oil blend into the wax is another thing. To learn how to properly mix fragrance oils into soy wax, check out this guide:
Understanding the Flash Point of Fragrance Oils
As mentioned earlier, the flash point refers to the point of temperature at which a liquid evaporates. To find out the flash point of the fragrance oils you are using, make sure to check product descriptions on the manufacturer’s website.
There are also three different types of flash points for fragrance oils:
- Less than 55 degrees celsius
- More than 55 degrees celsius but less than 80 degrees celsius
- 80 degrees celsius and higher
Knowing the flash point of your fragrance oils can help you effectively incorporate it into the wax at the optimal temperature. It is also worth noting that fragrance oils with subtler scents also have low flash points.
Determining How Much Fragrance Oil to Use
Working out the right amount of fragrance oil to use can also be challenging. However, a good rule of thumb consider the intensity of the scent when working out the ratio of fragrance oil to wax.
Fragrance oils with more subtle scents should generally make up 8% to 10% percent of the total mixture. A ratio of 6% to 8% generally works better for fragrance oils with stronger scents. However, it is still better to use a small amount on one batch first and to adjust the amount based on the hot scent throw of the first batch.
After determining how much of your candle mixture has to be fragrance oil, it’s time to calculate the exact measurements. Remember to measure in grams, not milliliters, because fragrance oils vary in density. This is especially important if you are using a blend of fragrance oils.
You can easily compute the measurement of fragrance oils you’ll need by following this equation:
[Weight of Soy Wax (in grams)] x [0.06 – 0.10 (Percentage of Fragrance Oil)] = Amount of Fragrance Oil Needed (in grams)
To illustrate, if you are making a candle using 800 grams of soy wax and you want to combine 9% of fragrance oil into the candle, the amount you need is as follows:
800 x 0.09 = 72 grams
Now, all you have to do is carefully measure out that amount of fragrance oil. Keep in mind that the percentage applies to fragrance oils with more subtle scents are they are less dense. Denser and more intense-smelling fragrance oils may require a lower percentage.
Combining the Fragrance Oil to the Wax
Determining exactly when and how to add the fragrance oil into your hot soy wax requires striking a balance.
If you add the fragrance oil when the molten wax is heated above its flash point, the fragrance oil will evaporate and the candle won’t smell as nice. Alternately, adding the fragrance oil below the flash point will prevent the fragrance oil and wax from binding properly.
Start by bringing the heat of your wax down to the flash point of the fragrance oil you’ll be using. Then, add the fragrance oil and gently stir the mixture. If you are using fragrance oils with a flash point below 80 degrees celsius, make sure to stir for 2 minutes to thoroughly bind the wax to the oils.
Making and Cooling Your Soy Candle
Allow the temperature of the mixture to decrease a bit more before you begin pouring. While waiting, you can heat up your glassware and set up the wick at the center of the jar. This will ensure that the hot wax mixture won’t be going into a cool jar with a crooked wick.
After pouring, it’s best to leave the candle to cool for a few days. This allows the wax to fully firm up and for the fragrance oils to cure properly. Then you can trim the wick, light it, and enjoy your wax scented candle!