There are many ways to add glam and aesthetics to your candle. For example, herbs, glitter, crystals, etc. With the endless list of candle improvements seemingly on the rise, it can be difficult to trust information, especially the ones that appear wrong or conflicting – like, is mica powder safe for candles?
Mica powders are used for decorative purposes. Adding mica powder to your candle wax will give it a bright and shimmery look that makes your candle truly unique. Not only can you use it to dye candle wax, but you can also use it to paint a finished candle with freehand or mold.
Is mica powder safe to use in candles?
It is only safe to use mica powder as a shimmer on the surface of your candle. This is because mica powder can cause serious issues in the burning of your candle. Also it is worth remembering that even though mica powder is safe for your health some are not eco friendly or from sustainable sources.
What is mica powder?
Mica is a stony mineral with shiny and glittery flakes. To create mica for candles, the stone is ground into a fine and smooth powder. Since the stone contains potassium aluminum silicate and has shiny flakes, the powder will have a fine glitter. Mica powder can be yellow, gray, white, or slightly brown.
There are various ways to use mica – the most popular is the use in cosmetic items. Mica powder is in most of the famous makeup products in the market. Since mica is a naturally-occurring mineral, it offers a green and eco-friendly solution for cosmetics.
Apart from cosmetics, mica’s aesthetically pleasing appearance makes it a top choice for arts and crafts. You can add the powder to the decoupage to give your project a metallic and shimmery finish. Regardless of the material, the mica will give any surface it comes in contact with a glittery appearance. This is why some use it for home fragrances.
Mica is a great coloring agent. If you intend to use it for wax melts, you don’t need to worry about the health implications since no flame is involved. However, it won’t make the wax shimmery. The shimmery effect will only happen when the wax melt is warm. In its natural state, mica powder will add a dazzling sparkle to the candle.
If you are interested in seeing some of my recommended mica powders check these ones out on Amazon. They come in big selection packs with a variety of different colors and will last for a very long time.
How is mica unsafe for use in candles?
Some people shy from using mica powder to dye the entire candle because of fear that it will either cause a fire hazard or clog the wick. Yes, they are not wrong. This is because mica powder does not completely dissolve into the wax.
When you burn your candle, the wax travels up to the wick to keep the flame alive. Although the wick channels the fire, the wax is still a vital part of the candle. When the wax burns, it transforms from solid to liquid. The wax travels through the wick, and once it gets to the top where the flame is, it changes into a gas. That is why wax candles slowly evaporate as they burn.
With mica as a coloring agent, it goes with your wax through the wick. However, since it did not fully dissolve, you risk clogging your wick. When the wick is clogged, and the wax can’t travel to the top to evaporate, the flame will stop burning healthily.
This is the reason why most folks shy away from using mica as a coloring agent for candles. But if you have a jar candle or pillar candle, you can still rub mica along the top or sides to give the candle a shimmery look without compromising your health.
How to apply mica powder to candles and wax melts
- Measure the desired quantity of melt wax out inside a bowl. Then, fill the pan halfway with boiling water.
- Melt the wax on medium to low heat and stir gently until it melts. After melting the wax, take it off the heat. If you want, you can melt the wax in a microwave by placing it in it for about 5 minutes.
- Transfer the molten wax into a container, let it cool for a while, and add fragrance.
- Then, add your mica powder. Start the procedure with a tiny pinch of power to get a feel of strength and spread of the power. Remember to wait for the powder to cool to the pouring temperature before stirring in the pinch of your powder.
- Let it set overnight and cure for many days before use.
- Cut your wicks and place them into the mold. With the metal base lying flat on the bottom, tape the wick into place.
- Lay a wood skewer or pencil across the mold opening and also tape it into place to keep it firm.
- Mix your mica and combine it with a drop of rubbing alcohol for every three teaspoons of mica powder you use. Stir thoroughly for a perfect blend.
- If the mixture is too dry, add more rubbing alcohol. Conversely, add a pinch more of powder if the mixture is running until you achieve the texture and color you desire.
- Melt your candle wax as per the instruction or your recipe and stir the powder into the wax while it is still hot. Add fragrance or any other element you desire.
- Pour the mixture into the mold and let it cure.
How to apply mica powder to cool and set candles and melts
You can add mica powder to your melts after it is set. Use a cosmetic brush or small paintbrush to dust the powder onto the wax surface. Alternatively, create a wet paste with rubbing alcohol and paint the patterns you want.
Mica powder is an attractive addition to DIY projects but is not the best for coloring the whole candle. If you use wax melts, you can use mica powder for that. However, you should only use a small quantity as a finishing touch for whole candles if you must use any at all. Instead of coloring your candle with mica powder, you can use dyes.
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