How to Start a Candle Business from Home

Updated: Jun 10

It's time to start a candle business,why we say so?

Firstly,it's a trending product.

Homemade candles have become an essential home decor item—an industry expected to reach $5 billion by 2026, according to MarketWatch. In past years, the commercial use of candles has seen a sharp increase, with spa and massage using scented candles for soothing effects, and restaurants creating aromatic environments for customers.

Consumers also buy candles as a focus point for their home decor, as well as for aromatherapy like relaxation and stress reduction, according to the National Candle Association. Taking a quick look on Google Trends shows us that global interest for homemade candles is consistent:

Next, Google Trends demonstrates plenty of interest in specific types of candles—from scented to soy and everything in between. Shoppers’ interest in candles is not only strong, but runs the gamut.

So, when an eager entrepreneur is making decisions about what kind of products to create, this knowledge is a powerful insight to help you build a collection that resonates with potential customers.

In addition to the popularity of this hot product, candles offer business owners a number of other benefits, including:

  • Low cost entry. Granted, some homemade candle varieties require pricier materials than others, but in general, candlemakers can create their wares with very little cash up front.

  • Easy to sell anywhere. Want to sell your home decor items at craft fairs and local markets? Homemade candles travel well, so you can sell them both online and offline.

  • Scalable craft to learn. Whether you’re a DIY master or a crafting newbie, the base recipe for basic candles is easy to follow. As you’ll notice from our handy infographic below, the formula is simple.

  • Easy to customize. With so many types of candles, it’s easy to personalize your products and differentiate yourself from direct competitors.

From the standpoint of a DIY business, learning how to make candles is a skill that can be transformed into a viable income stream. But before we tackle the topic of creating homemade candles of your own, let’s take a look at the popular types that are piquing shoppers’ interest.

Types of homemade candles

One of the big advantages when it comes to making candles for your business is the variety—there’s likely a type of candle out there that will catch the eye of any potential customer.

Not sure where to start? Here are some of the top types of homemade candles you can explore when planning your candle business opportunities.

Soy candles

One of the hottest candle varieties on the market today, soy candles are made from a base of soy wax. This wax is derived from soybeans and, therefore, is made from vegetables (opposed to regular oil- or paraffin-based candles). The soy wax segment is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 8.5% from 2019 to 2025, according to Grand View Research.

Not only are soy candles made from a renewable resource, they also burn cleanly and for longer. That way, customers get more bang for their buck when it comes to getting a longer-lasting candle.

Scented or aromatherapy candles

This is one of the most common varieties of candles. Scented or aromatherapy candles offer a spectrum of scents for customers looking to spruce up their homes with pleasant smells.

Whether they’re meant to mask a normal household stench or simply create a unique scentscape, these candles come in dozens of scents—so there’s a smell that will appeal to almost everyone.

Aromatherapy candles makers market their products as offering specific benefits that correlate to certain scents. Generally, the recipes for these candles use essential oils that are meant to enhance physical or mental well-being. For example, lavender scents are often associated with relaxation.

Vegan candles

There’s a growing segment of shoppers that are concerned with the materials businesses use to make their products—particularly any animal ingredients. Basic candles often contain animal byproducts like beeswax, which isn’t desirable for some consumers.

But here comes vegan candles to the rescue! Vegan candles use modified formulas with ingredients like soy wax, plant-based waxes, fragrance oils, and natural fragrances.

Decorative candles

When entering a homeware store, you’ve likely noticed candles that come in many colors, shapes, and sizes. Some candles are made purely for decorative purposes—they aren’t necessarily scented and aren’t made from special ingredients. They simply add a certain something to a space in your home.

How to start a candle business

Follow this step-by-step guide to create your own candle business today:

Do market research

Build your brand

Create a candle business name

Write a business plan

Source reliable and stable suppliers

Test and Make candles to sell

Build your online store

Create a marketing plan

Do market research

Your target market are the people you want to reach with your marketing efforts. These are the buyers who will be most interested in your products and most likely to convert to customers. In the candle industry, target markets are broken down into three categories:

Prestige. Luxury candles are a new and quickly growing segment of the candle market. Pricing may vary. The average prestige candle can sell for between 30 and 80 dollars, but can run as high as $185, like the Louis Vuitton perfumed scented candle. Prestige candles are known for their premium packaging, fragrances, and emphasis on brand storytelling.

Mid-market. These mid-tier candles have broad appeal. You’ll likely find them in retail outlets like Target. Mid-market candles typically have unique scenes like rose water, grapefruit, or basil, and cost around $10 per candle.

Mass market. These candles are the most affordable on the market. Brands like Yankee Candle and Bed Bath and Beyond take up most of this segment. You’ll find standard scents like vanilla or ocean breeze, and will cost around $5 to $8 per candle.

Decide on which market you’ll go after. Do you want to get into retail stores like Nordstrom or Macy’s? Then mid-market may be the best route. Want to only sell through your own website and other online boutiques? Prestige candles may be your calling.

Choosing your market will help with everything from sourcing materials to building your brand and packaging. Once you have a segment in mind, you’ll want to decide on the types of candles you’ll create.

While doing your research, note what kind of candles customers are buying. Are eco-friendly, vegan candles best suited for your market? Or are potential customers OK with paraffin wax candles, despite their impact on the environment.

The candles you choose to sell will determine the type of brand you create.

Build your brand

The second step in starting a candle making business is building a brand. A brand helps you build an audience, influences your marketing efforts, and makes it easier to create better products for your customers.

A good brand is crucial for candle businesses in particular. The industry has grown so significantly over the past decade that it can feel impossible to break in.

Let’s look at three ways you can stand out in the saturated candle market.

Unique and interesting fragrance blends

Fragrance is the most important buying factor for consumers today. Research by the National Candle Association shows that three-fourths of candle buyers say it is “extremely important” or “very important” in their selection of a candle.

One way to stand out from the competition is with interesting fragrances. Developing a new blend immediately carves a place in the market for you. Rather than offer standard floral and woodsy scents, opt for more complex and sophisticated smells buyers can’t find elsewhere: scents that make people think or remember something or feel a sense of mystery and intrigue.

Brand story

A brand story is the fastest way to connect with buyers. It’s a narrative that shapes and communicates your brand to people. It’s the foundation on which your mission, message, and voice is built.

Brand stories, especially in the candle business, are captivating, human, and honest. It should make people feel something, which then drives them to take action—whether it’s a signup, purchase, donation, etc.

Take Keap Candles story for example. The founders, Harry Doull and Stephen Tracy, were unhappy with their jobs in tech. They want to do something more meaningful and inspiring with their work and turned to candle making.

Visual identity

Your visual identity (which includes your logo, photography, website, social media, and packaging) is the most direct way to influence how people feel about your candle business.

When it comes to your candle brand, you want to pay close attention to the aesthetic of your products. Customers will use your candles for their scents and a home decor complement, so you want to design products in-line with your audience.

For example, Boy Smells brand is all about elevating your intimate world. They are bright, sensual, and accessible to all genders.

The brand’s visual identity embraces both masculine and femininity in a simple, straightforward way, empowering people from all walks of life, wherever they find strength. It adds this identity into all its marketing assets, from website to social media, as well as to over 300 retail locations worldwide.

Once you interact with Boy Smells, chances are you won’t forget it. That’s the power of strong visual identity.

Create a candle business name

At this point your candle business is shaping up nicely. You’ve probably come up with a few business names along the way, and now’s the time to decide on one.

Be sure to keep your candle business name ideas short and simple. That’ll make it memorable and easy for buyers to pronounce. If your name is too difficult to remember, you’ll miss out on free word-of-mouth marketing.

If you’re still stuck on a business name, use Shopify’s business name generator to stir up fresh ideas. All you have to do is enter a keyword, click Generate Names, then browse thousands of auto-generated name ideas for your company.

Write a business plan

A business plan guides your entire operation when creating a candle business. It helps define your strategy, pinpoint challenges, understand what resources you need, and analyze your business idea before launch.

Ask yourself: What is the end goal for my brand? Who are my direct competitors? Do I want to be sold in retail outlets like Target or Nordstrom? Or do I want to start an ecommerce store and sell directly to my customers?

Identify your business goals and keep them in mind as you build out your candle making brand.

Source reliable and stable suppliers

It's a critical to source reliable and stable suppliers,no matter which materials,wax,wick,FO or jars.Speaking to the jars,you must source the jars for candles,that means,the jars are of hot resistance,and it's a good idea to whole candle jars from a supplier to lower your cost.

Test and Make candles to sell

It's necessary for you to do a weeks of testing before your mass production and sale.As we’ve demonstrated, there are plenty of candle types you can create in your own kitchen. Here, we’ll show you how to make a basic soy candle. You can take the same basic ingredients, tweak them slightly, and create your own customized recipe.

Gather your materials

For this homemade soy candle recipe, you’ll need:

Soy wax