Home Business Idea – Selling Homemade Soy Candles

Soy candles are all the rage these days. They're being sold like crazy online and offline, everywhere from Etsy to major retailers. Many, many people have begun making soy candles out of their homes, starting businesses, and earning money.

Today's post gives a little info on soy candles, why they're so popular, and of course a little more detail on starting up a soy candle business.

I've also tried to include a few resources that may help you if you want to do this, but have no idea how to make the candles or how to begin selling them.

Why Soy?

I asked Margaret Agha of Jardle Soy Candles to explain why soy is overall a better choice than paraffin wax. ”

Soy is made from a renewable source and is not made from petroleum,” Margaret explained. “Soy candles burn more evenly, produce less soot and burn 30% longer than paraffin candles. Soy is better for the environment and does not release toxins into the air.”

Using soy instead of wax may also be a way to support local farmers. Because many consumers are now very focused on eco-friendly, chemical-free products, it's no wonder that soy candles are currently so in-demand.

Learning How to Make the Candles

One of the first things I wondered about when doing research for this article was how difficult is it to make soy candles? Is it something just about anyone could learn to do?

According to Margaret Agha, “Soy candle making is an art, and there are many variables including temperature, strength of the scent, and most importantly setting the wick.” So yes, anyone can learn to do this, but it will take some trial and error to get it just right.

For some step-by-step instructions, you may want to check out the “How to Make a Great Jar Soy Candle” eBook on Amazon, or “The Soy Candle Making Book” by Melissa Hall. And of course, there is always YouTube. I did a quick search and found a lot of videos with detailed instructions.

It goes without saying, but be sure you're following ALL the safety instructions given to you since you'll be dealing with hot wax.

Related: 50 Home Business Ideas

Investing Money In a Soy Candle Business

The great thing about any home-based business is that you can usually start off as small as you need to, and  a soy candle business is no exception there. Margaret Agha told me that she started very slowly and only invested about $100 initially.

At minimum, you'll need the supplies to actually make some candles to sell — soy wax, scented oils, and cotton wicks.

Some people also buy wick stickers when making soy jar candles to get the wicks to stick to the bottom of the jar, but you can also use a glue gun for this purpose. Soy Candle Making Time has a great list here of where to go to buy some of these supplies, plus a big list of supplies needed — many of which you may already have in your kitchen.

Marketing Your Candles

If you cannot afford to spend money on marketing initially, you can wait until you've sold a few candles (to family, friends, co-workers, etc.) and then use some of your profit to invest in marketing.

For you, this could mean creating business cards, branding your business, buying branded labels for your candles, setting up a website, etc.

However, Margaret Agha told us that word of mouth has been her best marketing tool so far, and of course that won't cost you a dime!

Many customers turn into repeat customers because they love the scent and performance of her candles, and they also tell their friends and family. So if you're making a great product, chances are good that some of your first customers may refer their friends to you, and so on and so on. Great products often sell themselves.

Places to Sell Your Candles

Obviously you have a lot of choices here. You can sell either online or offline, or do as many sellers do and choose both.

Margaret says that while her focus is currently selling online at Etsy, she also regularly attends farmer's markets and craft shows and has had a lot of success there. So definitely do some research in your local area, or even statewide, and find out how you can get set up to sell at any such events happening near you.

Craft Lister is a good resource to get started searching for local events where you can sell.

If you primarily want to sell your soy candles online, Etsy is of course the obvious first choice, but you may want to check out this list I have of other places you can sell crafts online. And don't rule out starting your own website/blog for your candle business.

Many thanks to Margaret Agha for answering my questions to help me put this article together. You can check out her shop, Jardle Soy Candles on Amazon or visit her on Facebook.

BONUS – Want to Sell a Digital Item Instead That Requires No Shipping?

If you are interested in online sales but the idea of heading to the post office to ship out products feels like a massive and time-consuming pain, you may want to consider selling digital products instead.

There are lots of digital products you can sell and you may be thinking e-books and e-courses. Those are great, but they take a great deal of time to put together.

Digital printables are another idea for you! They can be made quickly, and you don't have to have any graphic design experience. Plus, people snatch them up like crazy on sites like Etsy.

Also, there's never any shipping. The people who purchase them will just get a downloadable file to their email, and you get paid. These digital printables can sell over and over once they are made!

For more info, you can sign up for this FREE online workshop hosted by my friend Julie of Gold City Ventures. She made $10,000 in her first year of selling printables on the side.

digital printables workshop

6 thoughts on “Home Business Idea – Selling Homemade Soy Candles”

    • I have been making and selling soy candles for years,just as a hobby. I buy my supplies from Lone Star Candle Supply. you should be able to find them online. hope that helps.

  1. I’ve heard in the candle community that some people won’t buy a candle online because they can’t smell it first.

  2. I have been doing this for over a year now and it has been an amazing source of income. My first month I made around $800 and every month since has been near or exceeding that amount. Soy candles are not hard to make but they do take a bit of practice. I sell locally and have decided to stay away from online selling for the time being. I recently picked up two boutiques both in tourist attraction areas and I have two more I am negotiating with. If this is something you want to try your hand at it is very doable with a little time and patience. I first started making soy candles as gifts and everyone loved them and told me I should sell them. Eventually I took the plunge and it has been a great adventure so far.

    • Thanks for sharing your experience! It’s encouraging that you’ve had success, even without selling online. Hope it continues to go well for you!

    • i made soy candles for a while and i enjoy making them. I made only container candles. the problem that i ran into is that I could not buy supplies in large enough quantities to get the price down. I think that if i sell candles on a retail basis, I can be profitable. What is your suggestion for home marketing in the retail arena?

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