General Waxplay Questions
First of all: It’s not about whether a candle is safe to use in wax play. It’s about your tolerance for heat.
Now that I’ve said that, I should clarify. It’s possible for human skin to burn at temperatures as low as 109.4F. (Yes, I sell 110F candles.) A thermal burn is the product of both temperature and time. Hold something really hot to your skin, and you will burn very quickly. Hold something only moderately hot, and you will find it takes longer before you go “ow!” and pull back.
You should find out what temperatures you can safely tolerate as well as how long you can tolerate them. Or, if you are pouring wax on someone who is not yourself–find out what temperature THEY can handle comfortably and safely without burning them. Most people don’t know what sort of heat tolerance they have, so a quick learning point: bring water to the desired temperature using a candy thermometer and then dip your finger(s) in the water. If that feels fine, get a cup and pour a little bit on the inside of your arm. Repeat with slightly higher temperatures until you find a level that begins to feel uncomfortable, and then stop–consider that your maximum SAFE heat tolerance. Please start around 120F and DO NOT SCALD YOURSELF DOING THIS!
If you don’t prepare your play area first, it can be! With just a little bit of preparation, though, wax play is extremely easy to clean up. Here are some tips to make post-play cleanup a snap:
- Use drop cloths and/or disposable table cloths to make a play area. The dollar store sells disposable tablecloths. This way, wax drips and flakes can easily be gathered up post-play just by wrapping them up in the cloths.
- Instead of drop cloths or disposable table cloths, you can also slice open 2 sides of lawn trash bags to create large plastic sheets that will function the same way. They may not be big enough, so you might need a couple of bags, and in this case you’ll want to use a couple of pieces of masking tape (or packing tape) strategically so the separate sheets don’t wander off in multiple directions when you move on them.
- After play, let the wax cool a bit and harden more so it is easier to clean up. (Perhaps you could play with some ice cubes! *grins*) Then all you have to do is flake it off, either with fingers or with a plastic knife, butter knife, or spatula. Slide it under the wax and slowly fillet off the wax–it’ll come off in sheets. (For some people this is even more fun than pouring wax… ^_^)
- After cleanup, don’t hurry into the shower! Leftover oil on your skin after wax play is fantastic for a sensual massage, which is a wonderful and intimate way to end your play. The plant-based oils will also be absorbed into your skin pretty quickly and leave your skin fresh and moisturized. Embrace it instead of washing it off! Within 30-60 minutes, you’ll notice your skin has become softer and smoother.
- If any wax drops or flakes make their way outside of the sheets somehow, you can use a hair dryer or heat gun to quickly melt stray wax and then wipe the drops up with a paper towel. (At least, you can do that with ultra-low-temp wax like mine. This is how I clean up after play!)
- UV wax is particularly easy to clean up after. Stray drops or flakes of wax will glow under UV light, and you can find them quickly.
The sort of wax you are referring to is a brownish concentrated THC which is extracted from the leaves of cannabis plants. That is not what Lightplay Candles sells, and is not what we refer to when we talk about wax play! We sell a soy blend and a paraffin/coconut blend of waxes, and these are mixed with organic oils and certain fatty acids to achieve an ultra-low melting point wax. Wax play refers to the temperature and sensation play that comes from playing with the soothing heat of warm wax. There is nothing in our waxes that is meant to be inhaled and the only sort of high people get from playing with our wax is the joy of playing with warm wax.
It’s tempting to re-use wax, but I don’t recommend it because it’s not really hygenic to re-use wax. Would you like your pedicure technician to reuse the paraffin she peeled off someone else’s feet in your paraffin foot bath? Same idea. There are plenty of great uses for wax around the house that don’t involve pouring it on delicate human skin.
- If you’re the only person the wax has been used on and will be used on, I suppose you could reuse your wax. Just like paint, though, once you’ve mixed colors, they will stay mixed–unmixing colors is pretty much impossible. If looks don’t matter to you and you just like the sensation, then I personally don’t see a problem with re-melting used play wax a couple of times.
- Be careful, though! After a couple of re-melts, please do not re-use wax for wax play, especially if it seems to be getting hotter over time. These waxes are ultra-low-temperature because they have been carefully blended with organic oils to lower the melting point of the wax. As you use it and remelt it, some of the organic oils evaporate or burns off; some is absorbed into your skin. It isn’t possible to accurately estimate how much oil is lost with each melt, and I don’t advise trying to add oils back into the wax mixture without equipment to properly analyze the wax-to-oil ratios.
- If you are interested in candle-making, you could save the scraps and then mix in some fragrance to make candles or wax tarts for personal household use.
- If you have a fireplace or if someone in the family (or a friend) likes to grill, combine wax scraps with old newspapers to make fabulous firestarters.
- Some of my shiny shoes are shiny because I’ve added a layer of wax on top to repel the rain. ^_^
- Wax is a great friction-reducer. Please DO NOT use wax as a personal lubricant (it isn’t that slick and the human body doesn’t produce enough heat to keep wax liquid). However, you could use it to wax skis and snowboards, or the bottom of a sled. (I haven’t tried it on a car yet…)
- Please DO NOT reuse this wax in your paraffin foot bath, if you have one. After a couple of uses, the melting point of the wax will have increased a little beyond what will be comfortable (or more importantly, safe) to dip your feet/hands in.
- This wax is not food-grade, so please DO NOT use it to seal canning jars or coat fruit.
Ordering and Delivery
This is an easy fix, especially with wickless candles. Since the wax melted in transit it’s safe to say that it’s generally quite hot outside. Set the jars upright out in the heat for a little while with the lids on. A great place to get your jars really hot is inside a parked car on a summer’s day. It might be a good idea to keep them in a box or something so that you don’t have to hold hot glass directly. Make sure they stay upright so that as the wax is remelted, it settles properly. Once you take the jars out and back indoors, they will cool back down and solidify, and will eventually look just as good as when I shipped them.
I try to ship wicked candles with an uncut wick taped to the inside of the lid to try and avoid wick displacement. However, if your wax has melted funny, don’t open the jars just yet! Do the same leave-it-in-a-hot-car thing as above, but when you take the jars back indoors, consider opening the lids up while the wax is still soft and pull gently on the wick to make sure they are upright and are relatively centered again. It’s okay to get wax on your fingers if you have to–it peels off and you can just drop the wax back into the jar–they’ll melt when you light the candle for play.
Alternatively, you can just remove the lid, wrap the wick around a chopstick or skewer (maybe with a bit of tape to hold it in place), and microwave the candle for a minute or two. That should soften the wax enough to let you re-position the wick. Keep the skewer/chopstick there and centered as much as possible so that the wick is in the right place when the wax re-solidifies, and then you can trim the wick down.
If you are unsure what to do, please feel free to take a picture and send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org so that I can give you customized advice on how to remelt the wax!
I don’t recommend it! The reason is because butane torches (which is what a crème brulée torch is) can get up to 1430°F. Presumably, you are buying ultra-low temperature wax candles because you want to keep the temperature safely within comfortable ranges. The butane torch will melt wax very quickly, but the wax will be a little too hot to pour safely.
Not only is it going to be too hot to pour safely… it’s also possible you may pass the flashpoint of the wax without realizing it! My soy wax blend has a flashpoint of well over 450°F and an auto-ignition temperature of over 392°F. The coconut/paraffin wax blend has a flashpoint of 302°F. Compare that to the temperatures you can get with a butane torch.