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How to Dye Candle Wax - A Guide to Colouring Candles

coloured soy candles

Colouring wax in candles can enhance their look, complementing the scent of the candle and its container. This guide will cover all the types of ways you can effectively colour soy candles and the best steps in order to achieve the desired colour. So if you are wondering how to colour wax for candles - read on!

Part 1 - Colouring Soy Candles with Liquid Dye
Part 2 - Colouring Soy Candles with Dye Blocks and Chips
Part 3 - Colouring Soy Candles with Dye Flakes
Part 4 - Achieving the Desired Colour


Firstly, you should understand the different types of dyes that can be used to colour candles. There are 3 common types of dye that you can use to colour your soy candle, these include:

1. Liquid Dye
2. Dye Blocks and Chips
3. Dye Flakes

Part 1 - Colouring Soy Candles with Liquid Dye

liquid dyes of in purple, red, green, blue and yellow

Calculate How Much Liquid Dye You Will Need

The amount of dye you will need to use will depend on how much wax you are trying to dye, as well as the shade of colour you are trying to achieve.

In other words:
a) The more wax you are trying to dye, the more dye you will need.
b) The darker the shade of the colour you are trying to create, the more dye you will need.

Firstly, decide on the colour you wish to use to dye your wax (i.e. red, blue, pink etc).

Secondly, decide how light or dark you wish your chosen colour to be.i.e. if you chose blue, do you want light blue or dark blue?

With your chosen shade of colour, use the chart below to determine what percentage of liquid dye you will need.

Note, the chart below uses a maroon colour as an example, it should be used as an indication of the different shades that can be achieved at different percentages of dye concentration.

For off white shades - 0.001%
For lighter Shades - 0.005%
For medium shades - 0.05%
For dark shades - 0.1%
For very dark shades - 0.15%


Measure Out the Liquid Dye

To calculate the amount of liquid dye needed to colour your candles, follow the formula below:

[grams of wax used in a single candle] x [percentage of liquid dye] = [millilitres of liquid dye you will need per candle]

If you do not know how many grams of wax you are using per candle, you can calculate it using our soy wax calculation guide. Once you know how much wax you will be using you can come back and calculate how much liquid dye you will need.

chart for calculating liquid dye needed

For example, if we had 6kg of soy wax then we would require the following amounts of liquid dye:

For off white shades - 0.06 ml (approx. 2 drops)
For lighter shades - 0.3 ml (approx. 10 drops)
For medium shades - 3 ml
For dark shades - 6 ml
For very dark shades - 9 ml

When working with liquid dye, it is best to measure out your desired quantity in mL before mixing. If you are using a dropper then 1 drop of liquid dye equals 0.3 ml.

Mix the Liquid Dye

Add the liquid dye to the wax once it has fully melted and stir thoroughly to ensure it properly combines.

When dying candles you might want to try taking a more measured approach, start by adding a small amount of dye, continuously checking the colour as you add in more and more.

It is important to note that adding too much dye can clog the wick. We do not recommend adding more than 20ml of liquid dye per kilo of wax.

Part 2 - Colouring Soy Candles with Dye Blocks and Chips

row of different coloured dye chips

Another way to colour your candle is by using dye chips or dye blocks. These are a simple way to colour your candle, especially for beginners.

Dye chips or blocks are made from vegetable based wax with a pre-measured amount of dye, this allows them to be added directly into melted wax.

It is important to note that dye chips and blocks produce a duller colour when compared to liquid dye or dye flakes - which tend to produce more vibrant colours.

Calculate How Many Dye Blocks or Chips to Use in Your Soy Candle

As dye blocks and chips are pre-measured a lot of the work is already done for you.

When Using Dye Chips:
dye chips in a row

When colouring your soy candles with dye chips follow the rule of thumb below.

Add one dye chip for every 500g of wax used. If you desire a darker colour then simply add another chip.

Please note that similar to liquid dyes adding too many chips can clog the wick and affect the burn of the candle. As a guide, avoid adding more than 8 chips per 500g of soy wax.

When Using Dye Blocks:
dye block for colouring candles

Dye blocks are more concentrated than chips, one dye block will colour 3 kg of wax to a medium shade.

Blocks measure 5cm by 3cm and are more suitable for larger quantities of wax.

To avoid clogging the wick and affecting the burn of the candle add no more than 8 dye blocks for every 3kg of soy wax.

Mix the Dye Blocks or Chips

As dye blocks and chips are made of a vegetable based wax you can add these at the beginning of the melting process and allow the blocks or chips to melt with the soy wax.

When adding multiple chips or blocks it is best to mix them with the wax in stages. Add the first block or chip as the wax is melting and then add another once this has dissolved.

It is important to stir the wax thoroughly and ensure no flecks are left drifting in the wax or sitting at the bottom before you pour.

Similar to liquid dye, using too many dye blocks or chips can clog the wick and affect the burn of the candle.

Part 3 - Colouring Soy Candles With Dye Flakes

mounds of dye flakes in colours purple, orange, pink, yellow, blue and green

Typically used for larger batches of candles, dye flakes are a great way to achieve a strong depth of colour in your candles while maintaining fade resistance.

As dye flakes are highly concentrated you only need a small amount to achieve the desired colour. Dye flakes are measured by weight as a percentage of the amount wax you are using in your batch of candles.

As a starting point, to achieve the desired colours in your soy candles follow the below measurements :

For lighter shades - 0.1%
For medium shades - 0.15%
For darker shades - 0.25

chart for calculating dye flakes needed to colour soy candles

Calculate The Amount of Dye Flakes Required

To calculate the amount of dye flakes needed to colour your candles follow the formula below:

[grams of wax used in a single candle] x [percentage of dye flakes] = [grams of dye flakes you will need per candle]

If you do not know how many grams of wax you are using per candle, you can calculate it using our soy wax calculation guide. Once you know how much wax you will be using you can come back and calculate the amount of dye flakes you will need.


For example, if you had 6kg of soy wax then you would require:

For lighter shades - 6g
For medium shades - 9g
For darker shades - 15g

Mix the Dye Flakes

Dye flakes dissolve best when added to the wax at 80 degrees celsius. Once you have heated your wax to the required temperature, add in your dye flakes and stir them into the molten wax. Ensure you stir the wax thoroughly to properly disperse the colour and to avoid any undissolved flakes in your candles.

Part 4 - Achieving the Desired Colour

While we have provided guidelines to achieve varying levels of colour in your candles, there are inherent differences and intensities between different colour types. This may result in your candles being a different colour than what you had desired.

It is therefore important to add your dyes in stages, checking the colour of the wax at each stage before adding more dye.

In other words, add a smaller amount of dye at first and then increase the dosage until you have achieved your desired colour.

To check the colour of the wax while melted, take a spoon and scoop out a small amount of melted. Run this under a tap or place it in cold water, the wax will cool on the spoon revealing the final colour.

Below is a cheat sheet summary for quick reference when making your candles. Feel free to share to your personal Facebook, Pinterest or even email to yourself for future reference.

If you prefer dye flakes then this cheat sheet has all the information you need at a glance. Again, feel free to share to your personal Facebook, Pinterest or even email to yourself for future reference.

Disclaimer: We have taken every effort to ensure that this guide is as accurate as possible. However Crafty Candle Supplies cannot guarantee or take responsibility for any errors or omissions in this information. Crafty Candle Supplies intends for this information to be used as a guide only and accepts no responsibility for actions or outcomes that are a consequence of using the information above. Please take every safe precaution in the making of candles, or experimentation of the candle making process.

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