When it comes to candle making one of the hardest things to initially wrap your head around is how much does a candle weigh or how much does a candle container hold and what is the difference between the two? This article is going to help you understand what each thing actually means and what the difference is.
How much does a candle weigh? Candle weight is labeled as to how much a candle weighs, minus the weight of the candle container. In other words, the weight listed on the candle label should only account for the wax and fragrance oil. However, some candle makers list the volume of the container itself on their labels.
When candle makers list their weight as the container size, that is when you get nice round numbers such as 4 oz, 6 oz, and 8 oz. However, If the weight actually reflected what was in the candle, you would see numbers like 3.2 oz, 4.8 oz, or 6.4 oz.
According to the US Fair Packaging and Labeling Guidelines, candles should be labeled according to weight, not volume.
Are candles sold by weight or volume? Candles are sold by weight, not volume. Candles are semi-solid, not liquid. For that reason, candles are required to be listed by net weight and not volume. For that reason, it is incorrect to list the candle by container size and not by the net weight of the container contents.
If you are interested in some of the math that goes into these calculations then please visit our article titled How Much Wax Do I Need.
Candle Weight and Volume Terminology
Here are some of the terms you will see in candle making, and what they actually mean.
Candle Net Weight – This is the weight of a candle, not counting the weight of the container.
Candle Gross Weight – This is the total weight of a candle with the wax weight and container weight combined.
Container Volume – This is how much water a container can hold.
Container Fill Line – This is a line inside the container that designates the container as “full”.
Container Overflow – This is how much water you can put in a container before it begins to spill out.
Gross Weight vs Net Weight
What is gross candle weight? The gross candle weight is the weight of the candle wax and the candle container combined. This weight also includes the remaining material used to make the candle such as wicks, wick tabs, and fragrance oil.
Net weight is calculated differently, let’s take a look.
What is net candle weight? The net candle weight is the weight of the candle wax and fragrance oil. The weight of the candle container and the wick and wick tab are not calculated in the net weight of a candle. This is the weight that should be placed on a candle label.
The net weight is also how you calculate how much candle wax it takes to fill a container. However, these calculations are made easy with candle wax calculators. Take a look at our Candle Wax Calculator for easier candle-making.
Candle Weight: Volume vs Weight
Are candle weight and volume measurements the same? Weight and water measurements are only the same when you are measuring water. Candle wax is less dense than water, so it takes less wax by weight to achieve the same volume when filling a candle container.
The difference in density is why you have two different numbers and what causes confusion for a lot of people.
Candle wax has approximately 86% of the density of water.
Let’s take a look at what it looks like.
In the above picture, you can see that the candle weighs 210 grams. You can also see the same type of container filled to the same point using water. Let’s see how much it weighs.
In the above picture, you can see how the container filled with only water weighs more than the candle.
It is worth mentioning that most types of candle wax are made from hydrogenated oils. Such as soybean, coconut, palm oil, even paraffin wax is a petroleum byproduct. As we all know, oil floats on top of the water because it weighs less, it is less dense than water.
It is no different with candles.
If you want to learn more about candle wax check out our series about candle wax.
101 Candle Wax For Candle Making Series.
Frequently Asked Questions
One pound of wax will make a 20 oz candle. In addition, one pound of wax will make two 10 oz candles or four 5 ounce candles. When making smaller candles the number of candles made can be increased even more depending on if they are scented and what their fragrance oil load is.
Calculate how much a candle weighs in grams by multiplying the number of ounces by 28.3495. For example, a 6-ounce candle will weigh 170 grams and an 8-ounce candle will weigh 227 grams.
The wax in an 8 oz candle weighs 6.4 oz. This means that it only takes 6.4 oz of candle wax to fill a container that can hold 8 oz of water. This is due to the difference in density between candle wax and water.
One solid cup of soy wax weighs 6.4 ounces. However, if you are using wax flakes or pellets the weight can vary depending on how tightly the cup is packed.
In conclusion, at first glance figuring out the difference between volume and weight might seem complicated. However, it is a lot simpler than you originally think it will be.
Candle wax is always measured by weight, it is measured y weight when you are buying supplies, it is measured by weight when you are making calculations to make candles, and it is supposed to be measured by weight on the label. Although we all know if you search for candles on Etsy, that isn’t the case 90% of the time.
Do all of your calculations ahead of time to make sure that you are coming up with the right numbers, write everything down, and even ask around on the candle-making subreddit or craftserver if you are unsure.
It is better to take your time and make sure your measurements and calculations are right than end up with too few or too many containers when making candles.