Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Halloween Incense Sticks!

~Halloween Incense Sticks~

Incense has long been used for numerous applications, varying from therapy, meditation, as well as even a simple deodorant. Bitter Creek offers a variety of direct-burning incense sticks. Direct-burning incense (or "combustible incense") is lit directly by a flame and then fanned or blown out, leaving a glowing ember that smoulders and releases fragrance.

You can make your own hand made incense in your favorite scents! Make incense to match your candles, soaps and bath & body products for great gift sets! It really is easy!

Materials you will need:
*Glass or HDPE container (I used a 16oz glass jelly jar)

Bitter Creek offers a wide variety of colored incense sticks to choose from, as well as charcoal incense sticks. You can match colors to products that you already have, a certain season, or just plain charcoal sticks. They all turn out amazing! Here are examples of just a few of the colors that Bitter Creek offers:

     Charcoal                              Purple

         Blue                                      Yellow 

Start by mixing 1 part fragrance, to 2 or 3 parts incense solvent liquid (DPG), and stir well. I used one of the incense sticks that I was already planning on using, to stir the mixture together. 

Before completely mixed

After completely mixed

Any of our fragrance oils can be used for incense, regardless of flash point or soap/lotion safety, etc. 

*Note: Do not use alcohol in place of DPG, as it does not work well. Also, be sure to not use straight fragrance oil, as this will make excessively smoky incense!

Stir until you can no longer see any swirls left behind from fragrance that is not mixed in with the base. Depending on which fragrance you use, the mixture may not always be crystal clear, as fragrance oils range in a variety of shades, from clear, to light yellow, to even pink. (examples shown below). This will not affect your incense sticks at all. Just be sure to mix completely :)

Apple Flower (BBW Type)


Black Raspberry Vanilla

Soak the incense sticks in scent mixture for 24 hours in a glass or HDPE container. Soaking takes patience, but is necessary to allow the incense to fully absorb the oil. A shallow glass baking pan works well to lay sticks in and submerge in the oil. Or you can soak the sticks while still bundled in a tall glass vase or cylinder. Label each container if you are making multiple scents.

After soaking, pour the leftover oil mixture into a glass or HDPE plastic bottle, such as our fragrance bottles, for storage. You can use this again to make more incense, it doesn't go to waste! Don't forget to label your containers so later on, you know which fragrance you used.


Lay sticks out on a screen or drying rack with a few layers of paper towel underneath, or simply a few layers of paper towel to soak up any drips. If your sticks are still bundled, you can hang them to dry on a hook with paper towel underneath. Be sure to put them where they will get air flow to help them dry (you may use a fan to speed the process).

*Note: Do not bake the incense in an oven or microwave to dry it! Incense must be allowed to dry completely for at least 48 hours before burning. If incense is still wet or damp, it will not burn properly! Be patient and allow it to fully dry before using for best results.  It is also important that you make sure the incense is totally dry with no wet or damp spots before packaging in plastic bags or tubes, etc.! Fragrance oils are very strong and can melt or eat through many types of plastic!

Wet incense sticks

                                                                 Dry incense sticks

Once you have allowed your incense sticks to dry at least 24 hours, you can package them in plastic zip lock bags, paper tubes, or arrange them freely in glass jars. They smell amazing even when they are not burning! *Label the containers with a sticker or tie a label on, with the fragrance name on it, so customers know what they are smelling :)

~16oz of scent mixture should make approx. 500 or more sticks. Properly made, fully dried incense should burn for approximately 45 minutes to over 1 hour.

~Incense is very popular and a great seller at flea markets, craft booths, etc. Especially with the younger crowd! Most people package their incense in bags of 20 sticks, usually selling for about a dollar or more. That's about 3 to 4 times your cost, a great profit! Let the customers mix & match, they love variety! You may also want to offer a bulk package of 100 for a savings to your customers, and more volume sales for you! For a professional looking package, try printing your own "labels" on Avery business cards, and fold the card over top of your bag and staple it. Use a hole punch to make a hole in the top of the card to hang on a rack :)

If there is ever a fun Candle or Bath & Body product that you would like seen made, we would love to hear from you!
Please send your requests to info@candlesupply.com.

Happy Candle & Soap Making!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Pumpkin Cheesecake Soap!

*Pumpkin Cheesecake Soap*

Before we know it, the colors of fall with will upon us and Autumn will be here. I really don't think Autumn would be quite the same if it weren't for pumpkins. 
Pumpkin scents are some of the leading fragrances come fall time, 
and we have no shortage of those here at Bitter Creek.
Our Pumpkin Cheesecake fragrance is a sweet, creamy pumpkin scent with a warm touch of nutmeg, blended with rich delicious cheesecake!

Materials you will need:
*1 spoon (I used a regular metal spoon)
*Medium size Glass Mixing Bowl
*Funnel (optional)
*Rubber Band
*Plastic Wrap

Start by melting the soap base. (I used the Microwave method) 

Microwave Method: Cut the Melt and Pour Base on the score lines and place it in a microwave safe dish. (Pyrex measuring cups work nicely) Place the dish in your microwave. Using full power, heat the base for one minute at a time until it begins to melt. Once it has started to melt, decrease this to 30 second intervals until it is fully melted stirring often. Or...

Stove Top Method: Cut the Melt and Pour Base on the score lines and place it in a sauce pan. Turn the heat on Medium and stirring constantly, allow the soap to melt fully. Be sure to stir constantly to avoid scorching!  

While the soap is melting, prepare your soap mold. Wash it thoroughly to make sure the mold is clean. Using the plastic wrap, Extract a longer piece (roughly 18") of plastic wrap, and fold it over once, so there is a double layer of wrap. Center the mold on top of the double layered wrap, and pull tight, while folding down the edges around the mold. Once folded tightly around the mold, place your rubber band around the mold, holding the plastic wrap securely. 

Once your soap is melted, just add the dye a drop at a time, stirring after each until you reach your desired shade. The amount used will vary. For these specific bars, I wanted to do a multi-colored swirl look, so I colored the base color Orange, and added droplets of Copper dye to the stream of soap, as it was being poured into the molds.

After the desired color has been reached, go ahead and add your fragrance. For Melt and Pour, it is safe to use up to, but no more than a ½ Weight Ounce of fragrance per pound of soap base. Each block of Melt and Pour Base is Two pounds. For one full block of soap, you would use up to 1 ounce of fragrance. Stir well after adding the fragrance oil to the melted & colored soap base.

After everything is mixed well, it's time to pour the base into the molds. Once completely poured, if there are any unwanted bubbles gathered at the surface, use a fine mist spray bottle filled with Rubbing Alcohol to lightly mist the top to remove any bubbles. Allow the soap to cool at room temperature until completely cooled, about 4-5 hours, then remove from the molds. You may need to squeeze the mold numerous times on all sides for the soap to release. 

Once the soap is free from the mold, you will now have a log of fresh soap. We offer a selection of soap cutters, whether it be a straight edge, or a serrated edge, for even more of a characterized look.  

You're all done! Wrap them up in packaging for display, or simply give them as gifts. These bars smell and look amazing!

If there is ever a fun Candle or Bath & Body product that you would like seen made, we would love to hear from you!
Please send your requests to info@candlesupply.com.

Happy Candle & Soap Making!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Red, White & Blueberry Bubble Bath!

*Red, White & Blueberry Bubble Bath*

     There's nothing quite like a relaxing bubble bath after a long day on your feet. Not only does our Milk Bubble Bath Base foam nicely with lasting bubbles, bit it softens your skin too! Bubble Bath bottles are always a huge hit at Craft Shows and Farmer's Markets year-round.

With a PH balance of 5.64, this Bubble Bath is 100% safe for Kids!
This Bubble Bath is Kid tested and Mom approved! :) 

* Batch Yield: (16) 8oz Bullet Bottles

 Materials you will need:
* 2 medium size Bowls
* 1 Spoon (I used regular metal spoons)
* Funnel

Start by adding your choice of Fragrance Oil directly to the gallon of base. The recommended usage level is anywhere from 1/2 - 1oz of Soap safe Fragrance Oil per 1 gallon of Milk Bubble Bath base. Shake entire gallon very well so all of the Fragrance Oil has thoroughly mixed into the base. 
*Note: Heating or adding too much fragrance oil can cause gel to become thinner! Always make a small test batch to determine which fragrances work well in each formula.

 Once all of the Fragrance Oil is completely mixed within the gallon jug, using the two mixing bowls, section out the base into 3 parts, leaving the 3rd part in the original gallon jug. I wanted to make more white base, so I just left more uncolored base in the gallon jug. Set the gallon jug containing one part aside at this point, since this part will not be colored. 
*Note: If you are wanting to make equal parts, using a scale can help achieve exact equal parts.

When choosing colors for your Bubble Bath, the best color choices are the FD&C Liquid Dyes or the Cosmetic Grade Gel Tone Colorants. Micas and exfoliants will either sink to the bottom or rise to the top in this formulation. These colors will not dye skin or your bath tub! :)


Starting with the Red FD&C Cosmetic Liquid Dye, add drops of dye to the base until the desired color is achieved. I was looking to get a real deep true Red, so I added roughly 20 drops of dye to the first part of the base. Use a spoon to mix very well! 

You'll notice right away as soon as you start mixing, that this base is extremely creamy and visibly silky. It will leave the base with a slight metallic shimmer, regardless of which color you choose to use. It looks very luxurious and is very appealing to the eye!

After the Red part is completely mixed, move onto the blue. For the blue, I was looking for a real deep blue as well (trying to match American Flag colors), so I chose to use the Bright Blue Gel Tone Colorant. This color gave me the exact shade I was looking for. Rinse off the spoon you used for the Red, and again, be sure to mix very well!

Now for the fun part! Grab your funnel and start with whichever color you'd like. You'll be able to make just over five 8oz Bullet Bottles with each color, if you poured all equal parts. Slowly pour the mixture into the funnel, to be sure that you don't over-flow the Bullet Bottle, causing a huge mess. 
*Note: If you do make a mess, simply use a wet wash cloth to wipe away the spill. 

Once you have all bottles filled, cap them all off with an 8oz Squeeze Cap. I chose to use the Clear Squeeze Caps, but Bitter Creek also offers White Squeeze Caps, as well as Black Squeeze Caps. So you can mix and match to your preference. 

 Scent them in Fruity Loops and Gummy Bears for the kids, or Luxurious Lavender and Eucalyptus for the Adults. Since this base is so thick and creamy, using a little goes a long way! Attach a business tag to the cap with a piece of string or material so your customers know how to contact you when they run out. :)

If there is ever a fun Candle or Bath & Body product that you would like seen made, we would love to hear from you!
Please send your requests to info@candlesupply.com.

Happy Candle & Soap Making!


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

American Aroma Jars

Independence Day
*American Aroma Jars*

     With Independence Day coming up, these jars make beautiful patriotic centerpieces as well as memorable gifts for the holiday. They are also an easy and fun project that you can let the kids help with!

*Batch yield: (6) 16oz jars

Materials you will need:
*(6) 16oz Straight Side Jelly Jars
*(3lbs) Aroma Beads
*(6) Smelly Jelly Lids
*Blue/Sky Liquid Candle Dye
*Red/Dark Pink Liquid Candle Dye
*(3) Gallon Ziplock Bags
*White Mica Powder
*(1.5oz) Fragrance Oil
*Patriotic Material (from your local craft store)

Start by emptying (1) lb of Aroma Beads into each of the gallon zip lock bags.

Add your choice of Fragrance Oil to each bag of Aroma Beads.

You can make each pound of Aroma Beads a different fragrance, or you can make them all the same. I found that adding .5oz of Fragrance Oil to 1lb of Aroma Beads worked perfectly for strength, and absorbed into the beads in just a couple hours. Once you have added the Fragrance, hold the top of the closed bag and SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE the bag until all of the Beads are evenly covered with the Fragrance Oil.

Once all three bags are completely shaken with the Fragrance Oil, start adding your dye. I wanted a really deep red color, a really deep blue color, and a off-white color. 10 drops each of the Red/Dark Pink and the Sky/Blue Liquid Dyes worked perfectly.

For the white, I chose to use about 2tsp. of Mica Powder, to give it that old fashioned shimmery silvery white tone.

Candle Dye will color the beads very quickly and easily. Be careful not to squeeze the bag too tightly to avoid having the bag break and leave a huge mess. And again, while holding the top of the closed bag, SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE the bag until all of the beads are evenly colored.

Keep all bags CLOSED and allow them to fully absorb the Fragrance Oil and Dye. Drying time will depend on exactly how much fragrance you used, as well as what fragrances. Some fragrance take a bit longer to absorb into the beads than others. Regardless of what fragrance, at a usage of .5oz Fragrance Oil to 1lb of Aroma Beads, the beads should be completely dry within a couple hours. You will be able to noticeably tell when the beads are dry vs. when they are still wet.

Wet^        vs.        Dry^

As your Aroma Beads are drying, start cutting the material that will be used under the Smelly Jelly Lids of the finished product. I found that cutting a circle with a diameter of 5" worked perfectly, but you can cut them larger/smaller depending on your preference.

For this project, I chose to use 16oz Straight Side Jelly Jars instead of 16oz Mason Jars, so the Aroma Beads would be able to be clearly seen through the jar.The Mason Jars do give even more of a rustic/country look though (which is really in style these days).

Once all three bags of Aroma Beads are completely dry, start adding the beads to your jars. You can make them in solid colors, layers, or completely mixed together.


Three lbs. of Aroma Beads will fill (6) 16oz Jars. Once all jars are filled, take the circle shaped material patched that you cut out earlier and place them over the top of each jar. While placing the material on the jar, hold the material as centered as possible with one hand, while securing the lid down with the other, so there is an even amount of material hanging out from under the lid on all sides.

The thin material adds a decorative touch, yet allows the aroma of the fragrance to escape the jar through the Smelly Jelly Lid. The material is also a great idea to help avoiding unwanted spills through the lid in case accidentally spilled.

Once all jars have their lids on, fluff out the material from under the lid, and you're all done! These jars can be colored and scented for any occasion!

If there is ever a fun candle or Bath & Body product that you would like seen made, we would love to hear from you!
Please send your requests to info@candlesupply.com. :)

Happy Candle & Soap Making!