Ahh… the holidays and the added expenses that go along with it. This year, I’ve opted to create some homecrafted items to give. I enjoy candle and soap crafting. Both are easy, and non-stressful BUT… are they really as cheap to craft versus buying? In all fairness, the answer is NO, and that should not be so, but it is. How is it that home craftings are more costly? The answers lie along the path of demand and production.
Let’s address demand. Just about everyone on this planet loves candles and soaps. That is a certainty. But, production of such is at an incredible high thanks in large part to corporate manufacturing of these two basic household products. Granted, not everyone has the skill nor the time to craft their own candles and soaps, so yes… there is a need for corporate manufacturing of these items. On the other hand however, because of the high cost of necessary supplies involved in the creation of these things, it has rapidly become a lost art. This in my opinion, is wrong.
When you purchase soap and candles at your local Walmart for example, sure… you get them for a reasonable price. That’s because these items are mass produced, and often by machines– not actual humans crafting them. With automation at an ingenious level of capacity today, hardly ANYTHING is crafted or built by human hands any longer. This is not only sad, but it has also created a whole lot of laziness and because of the ease in obtaining such, a vastness of complacency (taking for granted) in acquiring them. That isn’t a good thing either.
Now, let’s address the issue of the pricetag. On the average, your usual scented votive candle found at your local Walmart or department store hovers around $2.00 per votive. Okay. Sounds good, right? Well, here is the catch…
The votive you have just put in your shopping cart may seem like a deal, but it is not. Your candle when burned, will emit a black smoke when it is snuffed and your household becomes polluted with unsafe chemicals. Why is that? It is because in order for your candle to smell so good it is crafted with stearic acid (a wax hardener, color fastener, and fragrance sealer). That is just for starts. The secondary issue is chances are your little candle was crafted using paraffin (it’s one of the cheapest and most conducive to moldings– your votive was crafted in a mold, by the way).
Let’s have a look-see as to what paraffin is, shall we? Here we go–
“Paraffin wax is a white or colorless soft solid derivable from petroleum, coal or oil shale, that consists of a mixture of hydrocarbon molecules containing between twenty and forty carbon atoms. It is solid at room temperature and begins to melt above approximately 99 °F; its boiling point is around 698 °F. Common applications for paraffin wax include lubrication, electrical insulation, and candles.”
Source: Wikipedia http://bit.ly/12qcXIm
What else is unsafe about that harmless-looking candle? Are you ready? The odds have it that it is the SCENT (essential oils) that went into the candle. How? Well, with today’s hurried and rapid pace, many do not wish to take the time to actually farm their own herbals, and craft their own natural essential oils. So, the solution to such? An UN-natural synthetic blend of artificial this and thats in a failed attempt at “re-creation” of a natural smell.
Now, if those factors were not enough for you, here’s yet another… Do you have sinus problems? Asthma? Breathing issues in general? Then, do NOT buy that little money-saving candle!!! In the end sum of all things, you WILL end up paying MORE. More doctor bills, more medication bills… The choice is yours.
In any case, corporate candlemakers have become “smart” over the years too. Without it, they wouldn’t be such a popular solution to the demands of the general consumer. They now market Soy wax based candles in jars, BUT… again, in spite of their claims to being “nature-conscious” they are speaking only a “half truth” to you. Most if not all corporate candlemakers use synthetic essential oil(s) to fragrance their candles, and THAT is the bottom line.
Now, some of you out there, may have shopped Etsy, or went to a local Farmer’s Market, and so on. There may have been someone selling home-crafted candles, and after asking about the scenting (is it natural or synthetic– do not be surprised if some of the crafters themselves did not even realize their fragrance additive may NOT be natural), you note the pricetag. $8.00 for an average sized jelly Ball jar candle. Do NOT balk at the price. Buy it! Your sinuses and lungs will thank you for it in the long run.