How to Start a Candle-Making Business in 2024

Pro Business Plans
5 min readJul 21, 2023

Last Updated: 12/17/2023

Starting a Candle-Making Business: The Complete Guide

Have you ever thought about starting your own candle-making biz? With the right prep, it can be a super rewarding and profitable venture. Candle sales are on fire, topping $3 billion in recent years. There’s plenty of room for artisanal candle makers to tap into this growing market.

In this complete guide, we’ll walk through everything you need to launch a successful candle brand, step-by-step.

Why Candles?

Before we dive in, let’s look at why candle making is such an appealing business for many entrepreneurs. Here are some of the top reasons to consider it:

- Low Startup Costs — You don’t need a ton of expensive equipment to get started. The bulk of your initial investment goes toward quality supplies.

- Creativity — Candle making lets you express your creativity. You can experiment with scents, colors, shapes, and designs.

- Profit Potential — Markups on handmade candles can be considerable, especially for premium or specialty ones. The right pricing can mean healthy profits.

- Customizable — Customers looking for personalized gifts love customizable candles. You can tailor options to demand.

- Home-Based — This biz can easily be run from home, keeping overhead low.

  • Scalability — Candle making scales well. You can ramp up production as your business grows.

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Getting Started

If running your own candle brand sounds good, here are some key steps as you get started:

Research the Market

Thoroughly research the industry, your local market, and your target audience. Knowing trends, top styles, pricing, and competition will inform decisions.

Craft a Business Plan

Create a solid business plan. Cover your goals, target customers, timeline, projected costs and revenue, marketing strategy, and growth plans.

Register Your Biz

Take the legal steps to establish your business. Choose and register your name, get licenses needed, and learn candle making regulations.

Secure Funding

Figure startup costs and how much funding you need. Savings, loans from friends/family, small business loans, and crowdfunding are options.

Buy Supplies

Reliably source the candle making supplies and equipment you’ll need. Wax, wicks, fragrance oils, dyes, jars, etc. Find quality suppliers.

Set Up Your Workspace

Create your production workspace. At home this could be your kitchen, basement, garage, or spare room. Ensure ample counter space.

Learn Techniques

Read guides, watch videos, take classes, and start experimenting. Test waxes, wicks, scents, and methods. Develop your unique style.

Create Your Product Line

Decide on your offerings and line. Consider size, shape, scent, color, branding. Mix core with seasonal products.

Build Your Brand

Create your brand identity and marketing assets — logo, product photos, website, social media, etc. Promote locally and online.

Get Your Operations Humming

Establish your production, packaging, inventory, order fulfillment, shipping, record keeping, and other key operations early on.

Start Selling

Offer your candles! Take custom orders from friends, family, local contacts first. Sell at craft fairs and markets. Approach local shops.

Adapt and Grow

Keep improving based on feedback, demand, and business needs. Stay focused on quality and your long-term vision.

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Candle-Making Financial Forecasts

Startup Expenses

Example Startup Expense Breakdown for a Candle-Making

Monthly Operating Expenses

Example Candle-Making Operating Expenses

Revenue Forecast

Example Candle-Making Revenue Forecasts

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of equipment do I need?

You don’t need any major equipment investments to get started. Basic supplies include a double boiler or makeshift double boiler, thermometer, pouring pots, scissors, wax melting pots, molds, jars, and scales.

What are the best kinds of wax to use?

Soy, beeswax, and paraffin wax are most commonly used. Soy wax is a great natural option. Paraffin wax blends are affordable. Experiment to see what gives you the best results.

How much will this cost to start up?

With minimal equipment needs, you can launch a candle business for less than $1,000. Your biggest expenses will be ingredient supplies like wax, wicks, jars, and fragrance oils. Start small and reinvest revenue.

Is this a profitable business?

Yes, candle making can be very profitable if done right. Wholesale ingredient costs are low, and you can charge 2–3x your costs for retail pricing. Candles are a high margin product.

What permits, licenses, or regulations apply?

Check local business licensing and zoning regulations. Some states require additional candle testing and labeling. Adhere to all state and federal regulations.

How do I come up with candle scents?

Take inspiration from your favorite smells in nature, foods, drinks, spices, essential oils, perfumes, and more. Balance and blend scents through testing different fragrance oil combinations.

What if I’ve never made candles before?

No prior experience is needed! With online tutorials, classes, and practice, you can quickly learn candle making techniques. It’s an art that takes finesse and consistency.

Should I sell online or in person?

Many candle businesses use a combination of ecommerce, in-person retail, craft fairs, and wholesale to maximize sales channels. Meet your customers however is most convenient.

How do I price my candles competitively?

Research competitor pricing then aim for 2–3x your ingredient costs as a retail price minimum. Offer sales, deals, and product tiers to reach various budgets.

Will this business scale well?

Yes, candle making is a very scalable business if done right. You can expand your product line, upgrade equipment, hire staff, and grow online or retail distribution.