Intro: DIY Massage Candles
Make your own candles that melt into warm, relaxing massage oil; a great gift for Valentine's
Step 1: Gather Materials
For the candles you will need:
Coconut oil- available at most grocery stores.
Essential oils- some varieties are available at groceries stores but most (and the better qualities)are found in health stores. I recommend lavender, ylang-ylang, peppermint, and patchouli though you can choose your own.
A wick- there are a number of things that can be used as a wick, I choose hemp because that's what I had on hand.
Something to shape the candles- I used a soda can though I have seen others use soup cans in a similar way; as long as you have a hollow cylinder you can shape into a heart (or whatever shape you want) then you are good to go.
Optional: A container for gifting the candles. I used an old frosting can but if you have something better than by all means use it :)
Step 2: Mix Your Oil
First decide what kind of oil you actually want. Here is a short list of options
Lavender: soothes and relaxes, is a mild afrodisiac
Ylang-ylang, Lavender, and patchouli: awakens, is a strong afrodisiac
Peppermint: boosts the immune system and energy levels(this one is a good non-romantic gift because it is typically applied to feet and therefore they can use it by them self)
I have selected these combinations because they are common oils that are usually affordable, because I like them and think you will too, and because they are all edible.
*There are a ton more options and you can find way more information on these oils online which I recommend checking out as some people may have alergic reactions and so on*
Once you know what combination you want it is simple to put together. You can adjust the recipe to your liking but what I like is 1 drop of essential oil to 1/4 cup coconut oil (if you are doing a combination of oils you can increase it to 3 drops per 1/4 cup for most oils but if it is a particularly aromatic oil it can get a little overwhelming). The coconut oil should be melted to the consistency of cooking oil to ensure it is well blended when you add the essential oils. Once it is combined, let it sit and cool while you move onto the next step.
Step 3: Make the Mold
I used a pop can with the top and bottom cut off to make my mold. First I made a teardrop shape and then pushed in the top to make a heart. It also helps to have something to set it on because this can get messy, I just used a cottage cheese lid.
Step 4: Decorate Your Container
This step isn't needed if you already have a nice looking container, so if you don't need one and aren't interested just find something else to do while you wait for your oil to cool and skip to the next step.
I started out with a frosting can that I tie the label off of, I wanted to make it nice but didn't really want to spend time or money on it so I quickly gathered what craft supplies I had and this is the creature that came from it. I glued some brown constriction paper onto it (I don't much like doing a ton of pink and red) and painted the lid black in hopes of covering the Pillsbury logo. I wanted some kind of label on the can but felt like more construction paper would look too grade school so I cut a scrap of fabric from another project into a small rectangle. After a few rectangles ruined with my bad handwriting I settled on a picture which I did with colored pencils. I also made a cloth heart to cover the logo on the lid since the paint didn't quite do it. Lastly, I needed to attach the cloth label; I had some colorful wire that I wanted to incorporate somehow and decided this was the way to go. I know it's not much to look at but I was able to use all leftover materials and it took like 5 minutes, that was my goal so I'm happy.
Step 5: Fill the Mold
Once the oil mixture has cooled to about the consistency of softened butter you can put it in the mold to finish cooling. Cut the wick longer than the mold so that you have enough sticking out the bottom to tape it down (see pictures 2 and 3) and enough to hold onto on the top to hold it in place. Scoop the oil into the mold and pack it down as best as you can to make sure there are no air pockets. Don't worry if the heart gets misshapen; you can squish it back to the right shape when you are done filing it. If you are having trouble doing this whole holding the wick in place you can tape it to the side and then move it to the center later (there will be a hole from moving it but you can pack it down and smooth it out). Let the oil finish cooling till it is hard, I put it in the fridge to speed this along.
Step 6: Release From the Mold and Cut the Candles
Release the oil from the mold by gently squeezing the sides and pulling the top away from it. It will slide out quite easily since it is made of oil, however, it will likely have some air pockets and other imperfections. These are not difficult to fix, just smooth out the little imperfections by gently rubbing your finger over them and for the big ones there is usually enough residue inside the mold to patch them up with.
To cut it into individual candles I found that even the best knives all tend to break it, it's best to cut it with string. This method is harder to get a straight cut with but it's better than breaking it in half. When cutting it you won't be able to go all the way through because of the wick, so you will have to work around it. Gently separate the pieces as you cut them, being careful not to pull the wick out. Once you have them cut and slightly separated you can cut the wick to finish separating them. You will notice that they are pretty small candles, like the size of a tea light. If you make them much bigger you will have way too much oil for a massage and probably end up just making a mess and wasting a lot of it.
Step 7: Notes/tips
When you use these candles be sure to put them on a dish of some sort as they will turn into a puddle that is much more runny than regular candles.
Also, if you don't like the idea of a wick you can leave it out; coconut oil has such a low melting temperature that you can either melt them in your hands or by rubbing them directly onto the neck, back, or shoulders while giving the massage. Candles tend to be more romantic but sometimes they aren't practical.
Don't forget to store them somewhere that isn't going to melt them. Room temperature is fine as long as it isn't near a heater or something, and keep them out of direct sunlight since UV rays oxidize essential oils and make them less potent. It won't make them dangerous or anything, just less effective and not as aromatic.
I hope this had been helpful and easy to understand, I love these and I hope you do too!