PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) molds can easily be bought at candle supply stores at plenty of craft stores and of course online. You can buy one piece molds in several standard shapes – cylinder, rectangular prism, square based pyramid etc. There are also two piece molds these clip together to cut leakage. Once the wax sets, you just undo the clips, gently pull apart the mold pieces and you have a candle.
PVC is a good material for molds when making in your own home since it is strong, durable, resistant against heat and simple to wash. I find PVC a very hardy mold and I prefer it when working with children because even if they drop the mold it is unlikely to break. The smooth PVC offers an unblemished finish on the molded candle. Really, the only disadvantage I’ve noticed with PVC would be that the mold is opaque which means you can’t view your candle before you take it out of the mold.
I especially love the way I can easily create some basic pillar molds from just a quick trip to my home improvement store. When creating candles in your own home saving cash is very important, continue reading for more information about this topic later.
Polycarbonate molds are extremely popular. They also are available in one piece for common shaped candles and two pieces for more intricate detailed candles. You will notice that sometimes the intricate two piece molds have a gasket to cut leaks. You can also find some good polycarbonate trays for producing sets of shaped floating candles. In general I’ve discovered a wider variety of molds in Polycarbonate than PVC but Polycarbonate is often a little more expensive.
Polycarbonate is an excellent mold material for producing candles at home since it is strong and resistant to heat and simple to clean just like PVC. I actually do find I’m more careful with my polycarbonate molds though since they’re not as strong as my basic one piece PVC molds. The smooth Polycarbonate offers a fantastic finish on a molded candle. An excellent bonus when working with Polycarbonate is you can view your candle because the mold is transparent.
Aluminum molds are one piece, seamless and create a fantastic pillar candle. Using a single piece means there aren’t any seams to trim after removing the candle from the mold and aluminum has a perfect mold release. You’ll find aluminum molds at candle supply stores, online and at many craft stores. They’re probably most suitable to the candle maker who plan to run a business, more than the casual hobbyist making the occasional candle in their home. I’ve discovered aluminum molds retail at a higher price than polycarbonate molds. Again, the aluminum is opaque so you can’t actually view your candle before you release it from your mold. Having said that, I don’t consider this to be a problem whatsoever.
Polyurethane molds are tough and easy to use. You can buy standard taper molds in polyurethane as well as quite decorative pillars and shaped candles. The creators of the molds are able to include great detail in these molds. They are extremely durable and will definitely work for countless pours. Generally, polyurethane molds are one piece with a side slit, however some are two piece with minimum seams due to their excellent design. You insert the wick through the hole in the base of the mold.
While there are lots of good things about polyurethane, if you’re only starting out making candles, or are simply just a hobbyist making candles in the home, polyurethane candles are a costly investment. Prior to buying one you should make certain you will make use of that mold many times to get enough value from your outlay.
Silicone is a little like the new kid in the street in the candle making arena. Silicone molds made from high-quality silicone rubber will last through countless pourings, if looked after properly. Silicone molds are fantastic and are available in a wide array of wondrous shapes. You can find molds to create a candle the same shape as a cupcake, a banana split, a cinnamon bun, a flower, a dog – you get the idea! Silicone molds allow you to make candles with incredibly fine detail. However, before getting too excited, they also are quite costly. For the hobbyist making candles at home you should make sure you will make use of the mold many times to receive enough value from your financial outlay. Having said that, I can’t resist them since the range is extensive and the candles created seem so realistic!
Besides cost, the one problem with silicone would be the need to handle it more carefully. Silicone can last for countless candles, however, you need to take great care not to tear it and you also need to make sure you take care of it correctly. Silicone molds must be kept out of sunlight, washed and dried thoroughly after use, and they need care when storing them for extended lengths of time.
If you are making candles in the home as a hobbyist what do you need to buy?
I suppose that will depend on where you’re in your candle making enterprise. If you’re only starting out making candles at home you actually can’t fail using a PVC, Polycarbonate or Aluminum mold in a basic standard shape such as a cylinder, cube, or hexagonal prism. Which one you chose will be determined by availability and your budget. I’d recommend you begin by using a basic one piece mold and as your experience develops move on to two piece and more decorative molds.
Suppose you don’t have the means to buy any molds? You will find loads of Do-it-Yourself options, the fact is I’ve made use of milk cartons, silicone cupcake trays, ice-cube trays, cardboard to make nets of prisms and I have made my own basic pillar PVC mold from a trip to the home improvement store. You can make PVC molds quickly and easily from a piece of PVC pipe and an end cap. Simply glue the end cap on the length of PVC pipe and drill a wick hole in the centre of the end cap. You can make a candle mold out of any material that is able to withstand the heat of the wax and will not leak when you pour hot wax into it.
Overall, have fun making candles and use your creativity to experiment with possible mold materials if purchasing a mold is out of your budget at the moment.