Making glow in the dark candles is fun, easy and neat to do. A great project to do with the kids on a cold rainy day this is fun for all age groups. Kids love to create and there is a lot of room to create here. I will approach this article and break it down into steps.
First Step, Supervision
I do not recommend letting children do this by themselves. You will be working with hot materials and perhaps a stove to melt your gel. So be very available. Besides it is really about spending time with them for you, and about learning for them. Also, candles can be inherently dangerous due to the fire portion of it. Suggest that they make them and send it Uncle Bob and Aunt Martha as a present which show them how fun giving is. You do not want them burning them in their room. If they want to make one for themselves here is an easy solution do not put a wick in it and call them the “wickless candle for kids” You can also put fragrance in them. Many people call the wickless candles, air fresheners. It is the same stuff. You can put a bunch of fragrance in it and it covers up the smelly sneaker smell in their room. There is a caution on using the fragrance which we will cover.
Second Step, Materials
If you do not plan on making a bunch of these I suggest getting a kit from your local crafts store. You are going to be making gel candles and that is what you should ask for when you look for them. The kit should include the following. Candle gel, Glass containers, candle thermometer, wicks and complete instructions. It will probably also come with things called embeds. Almost all of these premade kits are aquatic themed meaning. You will get a fish, a seashell and some sand. You can get great info at www.candletech.com if you want to make more. It is endless what you can do with this type of candle making. I have found them to be very helpful and informative. Also you will need a couple of pots or metal pans to melt your gel.
Third Step, Preparation
Clean off a kitchen table. Like with all crafts you need room for all this creating. Gel candle making is a lot like cooking. It is all about timing, good ingredients and you must be a little patient.
Forth Step, Execution
1)Have the kids break up the gel into little pieces and place it in your melting pot. This lets the kids get their hands into it and it feels gooey. No real mess for mom. Some candle makers recommend using a double boiler system. What that means is you have a large pan with water in it and bring it to a boil then take a pot with the gel in it and place that in the boiling water. The water can not get hotter than 220 deg F because that is boiling point. That way you never have an issue with the gel catching on fire from being to hot. You do not want the gel getting hotter than 200 deg. That is why you always use your candle thermometer. You really do not need to heat your gel any higher than 180 for this application. DO NOT USE A MICROWAVE TO HEAT YOUR GEL!!! The safest easiest way to melt your gel is to get a Presto pot. The Presto Pot is given that name for obvious reasons. This is a great way melt you gel and not have the mess. Plus they are very inexpensive at around $30.00 and you can reuse it make and make more candles or air fresheners. Or melt regular wax for conventional candles.
2) Next you need to place your wick into the glass container. Dip the tab end of your wick in the hot gel let is stand for a couple of seconds and cool then place in the bottom of the glass container so adheres to the glass. Place it in the middle. I suggest you push down on the tab with a pencil to make it stick to the glass good.
3) Into the melted gel pour the GloNation glow in the dark powder. One ounce will make one pound of gel glow like crazy. You at this time can add gel coloring and fragrance. You should only use fragrance that is made for gel candles. This is important! And do not use too much. Read how much to add from any good gel candle making web site. You need to stir this mixture to circulate the glow powder into the gel. Use a heat resistant spatula from the local dollar store. Pour the gel into the glass container with the wick. Remember it is hot so be careful. Do not let the kids do this! You can alter the Presto Pot and add a spout to make the pouring easier. Let it cool and you have a glow in the dark candle.
I hope you enjoy this project with your children as it is fun and you can make it profitable.
About the Author Troy Myers is the owner of http://www.GloNation.com/ and a candle enthusiast.