How Much Does It Cost to Start a Candle Business?
If you’re reading this, you’re probably in the beginning stages of starting your own candle business. How exciting! When I first started dabbling in the craft of candle-making, there was a lot that I had yet to learn. Something that shocked me when I first began was the price tag that came along with starting my own business. In this post, I will walk you through a general overview of what you can expect to pay for supplies when starting your own candle business.
Keep in mind that the actual cost of starting your candle-making business will vary from person to person. There are a variety of factors that play into this such as geographic location, how many different products you test out before you officially launch, and tons of other factors. With that said, I have gone through and rallied up everything that you will need to launch your handmade candle line and a general estimate of how much you can expect to pay for these items. Here’s a full breakdown of how much it costs to start your own candle business.
For more information on this topic, check out my YouTube video on how much it costs to start your candle-making business by clicking here.
At the very beginning stages of your candle-making journey, you will probably want to try out a few different types of waxes and various scents before you commit to your first product. These different waxes and scents that you try out are called testing materials. Although this is an essential part of getting familiar with different candle-making materials, the cost of testing materials is completely separate from the actual cost of starting a candle business.
There are a few ways for you to cut down on your cost of testing materials. For example, if you know what type of wax you want to work with before you start making your candles, that can help you avoid needing to try out a variety of different wax types, thus saving you money on the cost of testing materials. Instead, you can just try out a few different variations of the particular wax that you want to work with.
If you don’t know what type of wax that you want to work with, that’s okay too! However, you will probably spend more money trying out different types of coconut, soy, paraffin, beeswax, etc. Unfortunately, you can’t sample a candle wax for free. So, you will have to be willing to put money into each of the different wax types that you want to sample.
I did some research on some of the testing materials and supplies that I would recommend if I was starting a candle business today. I factored in additional costs such as shipping prices so these prices are as close as possible to what you can expect. Here’s what I found:
Cost of testing four different waxes (10 lbs. of each wax): $250
12 pack of 9-ounce straight-sided jars: $21
Two 16-ounce bottles of one fragrance oil scent: $60
Different series wicks at different sizes: $100
Digital scale (grams): $15
Aluminum pouring pitcher: $10
Old cooking pot: $0
Basic thermometer: $15
Fragrance oil measuring cups: $10
Wooden skewers: $5
Wick stickers: $10
Heat gun: $20
Various label sizes & materials: $50
Additional fragrance oils: $200
Total Amount for Testing Materials: $716
What You Need to Know About Fragrance Oils
When it comes to testing products, I recommend keeping the fragrance oil scent the same while you test out a variety of different waxes. This can help you determine which wax holds the scent better and burns the longest. Different fragrance oils can have different effects on the way a candle burns. The fragrance oil that I like to use for testing new waxes is mango and coconut milk from Candle Science.
With that said, one of the biggest appeals to getting into candle making is testing out all the different scents and fragrance oils. If you’re anything like me, you might just not be able to help yourself when it comes to testing out different fragrance oils and identifying all of your favorites. That’s why I allotted such a large amount for this in the projected budget.
Another essential item that you will need is a digital scale. I recommend using one that can measure as little as 0.1 grams. This will give you more precise measurements of the amount of fragrance oil that is going into your candles as well as the amount of wax that you are using in each candle.
Candle Business Materials
Suppose that you’ve completed the testing process of starting your candle business. You know which waxes and scents you prefer, what wicks to use, and how to mix up the perfect blend to create that tasteful aroma that everyone loves. Now what? Well, it’s time to start taking steps towards officially launching your candle business. But before you can begin shipping your candles off to paying customers, there are a few other things that you will need.
When you are assembling any sort of business from home, it’s not often that you will be able to simply put together a list and acquire all of the finest materials, technology, and packaging right off the bat. When I first started my candle business, there were a lot of things that I was missing. As Memory Box Candle Co. took off and sales began accumulating, I was able to upgrade my equipment and put more resources into building my business.
For these reasons, I’ve done the research and determined a list of tools and supplies that you will need according to 3 different categories. Here are the prices that I’ve come up with for making 36 candles in 6 different scents:
45 lb. Box of Wax: $150
Three 12-pack boxes (36 jars) of 9-ounce, straight-sided jars: $63
Six 16-ounce bottles of fragrance oil: $150
100-pack of wicks: $15
Wick stickers: $10
Wick Holder/Clothespins: $12
Preferred Label Sizes and Materials: $50
Multiple different-sized boxes: $100
Packing peanuts/Bubble wrap: $100
Packing tape: $30
Inkjet printer: $150
For more information on shipping out your products, check out my Shipping 101 video on YouTube.Miscellaneous Business Materials
Shelving and product storage: $250
Web Hosting and transaction fees: $30/month
Extra cash on hand for shipping labels: $100 Photography props: $50
Paid Apps or software: additional monthly cost Vendor fees and supplies for local events: price varies
If you are looking for more information on how to get started selling your products online, check out my YouTube video on my Etsy Vs. Shopify video.Legal Fees for Starting a Business
Business insurance: $50/month
Business License: $75
Seller’s permit: varies based on location
DBA/LLC/S-Corp: price varies
With all of these categories added together the cost of materials for starting your candle business comes out to 1,425 dollars. However, if you factor in the cost of testing materials along with this number, the total comes out to around 2,141 dollars. With that said, it is a good idea to factor in any unforeseen costs or things that may come up when starting your candle business. That’s why I recommend having about 2,500 to 3,000 dollars set aside to invest in your candle business.
Cost of Goods
As your business progresses, you will be able to reinvest some of the money that you are making back into your business. This can help you cut down on the cost of goods per item. Although exploring bulk suppliers can be a great option for you down the line, this list simply covers the cost of getting started with your candle business.What You Need to Know About Labels
Labeling is something that makes your candles and your brand stand out from everybody else’s. There are so many people who will use the same candle jars, waxes, or even fragrance oils that
you use. What makes your candles unique from all the rest is your branding and your labels. That’s why I see it as one of the most important parts of the process. It’s also a lot of fun and satisfying to seal your new candle with an official label.
Since the very beginning of my candle-making business, I have been purchasing my labels from Online Labels. They have so many different options to choose from on their site when it comes to label shapes and sizes. I prefer to order blank labels from their site and print them out using the printer I have at home. However, if you don’t have a printer available, you can also have them print your labels for you and deliver them straight to your door.
Blow Them Away!
When it comes to starting a candle business from home, there are a lot of different factors to consider. I wished that I has someone to guide me when I was first getting started. That’s why I created my YouTube channel! Here is my full video on how much it costs to start a candle business.