Stop Making Crayon Candles

Pro tip: There is more than one way to make a crayon candle. Here, I'll break down which method for making crayon candles works and which one doesn't.
Pro tip: There is more than one way to make a crayon candle. Here, I’ll break down which method for making crayon candles works and which one doesn’t.

Pro tip: There is more than one way to make a crayon candle. Here, I'll break down which method for making crayon candles works and which one doesn't.

If you’ve never heard of the phenomenon known as “crayon candles,” then stop here, open a new tab, and Google it.

Go ahead! Don’t be afraid! Just say, “OK, Google! What are crayon candles?”

You’ll find that the tutorials that come up in the search results fall under two categories:

1) tutorials that teach you how to make candles just using crayons and wicks, and

2) tutorials that teach you how to use crayons as pigment in wax to make candles.

So here’s the thing–only one of these tutorials actually works.

It’s that second type. That first type of tutorial just does. Not. Work. You cannot actually make a functional candle using ONLY crayons and a wick. I mean, maybe there’s, like, *a* brand of crayon out there that could conceivably work, but regular brands don’t work. Crayola crayons don’t work.

I don’t know if it’s the amount of pigment in a crayon or other additives, but a wax crayon simply cannot substitute for candle wax. You can try, and your candle might even burn for a few minutes, but you’ll notice that the flame is very, very low, and soon it’ll just peter out.

My theory is that someone in Internet land saw some picture that made them think that someone else had made a candle out of crayons. That person thought, “Ooh! I’ll steal that project!” and made crayon candles and posted the tute without checking to see if the candles even burned. Some other people pinned it, some other people copied it, and there you go, all of Internet land now believes that you can make candles from crayons.

You don't need expensive wax dyes to turn your natural wax of choice a vibrant color. Here's how to dye wax with crayons that you probably already have.Now that second method, using a piece of crayon as a pigment in candle wax, DOES work. The trick is to remember that, as with any wax pigment, the piece that you’re using should be very small. It’s not an efficient way to upcycle lots of broken crayons, if that’s what you’re wanting.

You also, of course, want to be mindful of what type of crayon you’re using as your wax pigment. Depending on what I want the candle for, I’m occasionally comfortable with using a conventional paraffin crayon, but a soy crayon or other crayon that contains only natural ingredients would be better for your health, and soy crayons are pricey, so at that point you’d need to ask yourself if you wouldn’t be spending less money simply by buying wax dye in the first place.

So there you go, friends–I know you already know not to believe everything that you see on the internet, but craft tutorials can be especially hard to verify the veracity of, without trying them yourself.

If you know of any other tutes that don’t work and yet are nevertheless floating around Internet land, share them with me in the Comments below!

Need some ways to upcycle lots of broken crayons that do work? Try crayon painting, crayon wands, or the classic new crayons made from lots of old crayons.

Photo credit: broken crayon image via Shutterstock

Avatar photo

Written by Julie Finn

I'm a writer, crafter, Zombie Preparedness Planner, and homeschooling momma of two kids who will hopefully someday transition into using their genius for good, not the evil machinations and mess-making in which they currently indulge. I'm interested in recycling and nature crafts, food security, STEM education, and the DIY lifestyle, however it's manifested--making myself some underwear out of T-shirts? Done it. Teaching myself guitar? Doing it right now.

Visit my blog Craft Knife for a peek at our very weird handmade homeschool life, and my etsy shop Pumpkin+Bear for a truly odd number of rainbow-themed beeswax pretties.

Comments (Keep It Civil...)

Don't toss the caps from your bottle of laundry detergent and spray paint! Turn them into mini DIY flower pots instead!

Make Miniature DIY Flower Pots from Old Bottle Caps!

Turn an old coffee container into a DIY play blender for your kid's play kitchen. Then kick back, and watch the pretend play unfold!

Make a Play Blender for Your Kid’s DIY Play Kitchen