Why Do You Need a Scale for Candle Making?
After becoming one of lockdowns biggest trends, candle making in the UK is now more popular than ever. If you’re thinking about taking it up, either as a hobby or a business, you will have to understand one of the most important pieces of candle making equipment; the candle making scale.
This will normally be a bench scale of some kind, and will ensure that your ingredients are correctly measured out, giving you the best quality candle possible and saving time and money by getting the process right first time. In this blog, we're going to answer some of the biggest candle making questions, so that you can be an expert chandler in no time.
Do you need a scale to make candles?
If you’re a beginner and you’re asking yourself whether you need a scale for candle making, then the answer is yes – definitely! An accurate weighing scale is in fact one of the most important pieces of candle making equipment as they will help you to measure out the ingredients, such as wax, fragrance oils and candle dyes.
When making batches of candles, it’s essential that your products remain consistent and have the correct ratios of wax to fragrance oil. Without the correct ratio of ingredients, your candles risk either smelling too strong or weak, or being unstable due to too much fragrance oil. Accurate measuring will also ensure that you don't waste any of your ingredients, saving both time and money.
Can you use a kitchen scale for candle making?
Although any scale could theoretically be used for making candles, a higher quality candle making scale would do a much better job. Using everyday kitchen scales for candle making can lead to inaccurate results as they can be poorly made and are often not built to last. A more premium weighing scale will generally give more accurate results, contain a wider range of features such as percentage weighing and will be built to last longer, saving you time and money in the long run.
What kind of scale is needed for candle making?
Typically, the ideal candle making scale is a bench scale. These instruments are small, compact weighing scales that can be used on a worktop or counter, and generally feature the correct maximum capacity and readability required for candle making. It’s important to consider the size of your operation when buying your candle making scale, as this will determine whether you require a larger capacity scale for larger batches, or a smaller capacity instrument for hobbyists.
How is fragrance measured in candles?
Despite being a liquid, it is recommended that you measure your candle fragrance by weight and not by volume – here are some reasons why: Measuring all of your ingredients by weight, including your candle fragrance, will make the production process much easier, as everything will be using the same units and you won’t have to convert from grams and milliliters. This also allows you to make your mixture using a percentage weighing technique, which is recommended as the ratio of fragrance to wax can alter both the overall scent and the stability of your candles. Generally speaking, the percentage of fragrance is between 2% and 10% depending on the strength of the scent.
A second reason is that all fragrances have different densities, and so measuring by volume can easily lead to measuring errors.
How do you measure wax for candle making?
Measuring your wax is perhaps the most important part of the candle making process, as it makes up the majority of your product. As with measuring your fragrance, there are some factors to take into consideration.
The first point is to again measure your wax by weight and not volume, which will ultimately make the process of adding your ingredients together easier. One thing to bear in mind is that water does not have the same density as candle wax, meaning that a container that holds a given volume of water, will not hold the same amount of wax as the wax takes up more space.
The easiest way to measure your wax is to fill your desired container up with water and weigh it in grams, making sure to tare the container first. We know that wax has a density of around 90% of water (depending on the type of wax this could be lower or higher), so using the weight of the water, we can simply multiply the weight of the water by 0.9 and we should have our required weight of wax for that container.
For example, if we had a container that could hold 100ml/grams of water, we would multiply this by 0.9 to give 90ml/grams, which would be the amount of wax you would use to fill this container. Remember, this does not include your fragrance, which could make up 2% to 10% of your mixture. To find the amount of fragrance needed simply multiply the amount of wax (90g) by 0.02 to 0.1 (depending on the density of fragrance) and this is your fragrance weight. Subtract this figure from your wax weight to find out how much wax to use including fragrance. In this case the equation would be 90 x 0.1 = 9 and then 90 – 9 = 81grams of wax.
Do you need Trade Approved scales for candle making?
Under the ‘The Weights and Measures (Packaged Goods) Regulations 2006' - part of the ‘Weights and Measures Act 1985' - when buying or selling items based on weight, a trade approved scale must be used. A good example of this would be if you were to go into a butchers and purchase a 6oz beef steak, it would require a trade approved scale as the weight of the steak is directly linked to the price. This ultimately means that you do not need a trade approved scale for selling candles, as they are not priced based on weight.
There are however rules and regulations for selling candles that must be adhered to in the UK, such as Public Liability Indemnity Insurance, correct classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP), as well as General Product Safety Regulations (GPSR). Information on this topic can be found on the British Candle Makers Federation.
Inscale’s best scales for candle making
Now that all of the questions are out of the way, let’s take a look at what we consider to be the best digital scale for candle making. Here at Inscale, we stock a range of scales for making candles – whether that be for hobbyist or for chandler businesses:
The Highland Portable Precision Balance from Adam Equipment is a hugely popular and trusted bench scale that makes the candle making scale. It combines a host of useful features with a sturdy and robust design that is perfect for stacking. The percentage weighing feature can make adding ingredients faster and more efficient, whilst the checkweighing capability can be used to ensure all of your candles are the same weight. The Highland is perfect for candle making businesses, with a patented ShockProtect feature to ensure that maximum protection from overloading and day-to-day knocks. Trade Approved models also available.
The CBX compact Bench Scale from Adam Equipment is a portable and easy to use weighing scale that is an ideal candle making scale. It’s small footprint and rechargeable battery make it easily transportable and offers the freedom to be used in smaller environments that may not have a charging facility. The CBX is also one of Adam Equipment’s most competitively priced bench scales, making it suitable for home use, hobbyists and anyone new to candle making.
The IWS is our very own waterproof bench scale that features a completely stainless-steel design and is able to remain accurate and reliable in even the harshest of conditions. This scale is IP68 protected from solid and liquid ingress, meaning any spills from your wax or fragrance oils will not cause any damage to your instrument and cleaning down after use is quick and easy. The checkweighing feature is ideal for ensuring all candles are similar weight, and features a buzzer that will sound when items are within the set parameters. All of this makes the IWS Waterproof Bench Scale one of our best scales for candle making.
For any further help with selecting the best candle making scale from you, please Get In Touch.