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10 Minutes with Kirsty – The Candle Business Coach

10 Minutes with Kirsty, The Candle Business Coach.

Kirsty from The Candle Business Coach

This one goes out to all the budding Candle Makers. We sat down with the wonderful Kirsty from Candle Business Coach to obtain her insight into the amazing world of Candles and running a Small Business.

Kirsty started her own Candle Business in 2020 as many people did during the pandemic, she has always loved candles “They’ve always been something that I’ve found comfort from and I just love the glow, love the scent, just love everything about them – I’m pretty obsessed with them.”

During the researching and testing phase, Kirsty found the same common questions were being asked and thought to herself why isn’t there someone guiding the Candle Community, her next thought was why can’t it be me? (inspired by the great, Rachel Hollis)

Fast forward to September 2022 and a whirlwind of growth, Kirsty welcomed the Candle Business Coach – Podcast. Within 6 months, the podcast has grown to over 400 subscribers and 10,000 downloads.

The next step was Candle Craft – an online course where Kirsty helps guide candle makers on their own unique candle-making/small business journey. Kirsty is now actively working on a Membership platform, which will provide monthly online workshops, fortnightly Q&A/Coaching sessions and a supportive, wholesome community designed to help you, every step of the way.

We asked Kirsty some hard-hitting questions, which we are sure will help you no matter which part of your journey you are on;

What is one of your biggest challenges, since starting your candle business and pivoting into more of the mentoring aspect?

“From the candle-making perspective, using natural waxes, you have that expectation that you’ll get a perfect top every time and then when you burn the candle, you’ll get a perfect reset and it’s just not the case. It’s also the mental challenges as well. You just need to keep trying and keep tweaking until you find the right combination for you. That’s probably one of the biggest challenges is wanting it to be perfect straight away. It does take time.”

“From a mentoring point of view, it’s imposter syndrome because there are so many beautiful candle makers out there that have more experience than me. So when I give advice or want to coach someone through their journey, there’s always in the back of my head, but they could find this information from someone else, like, Why? Why me? You know, I obviously continued that bravery in the initial phase to get this business off the ground, but now it’s more staying true to my values and knowing that I am worthy of the path that I’m on. Until now, no one has stepped into those shoes. So just continuing my path, keep learning and growing and providing as much service and value as I can to my audience.”

From our experience, a lot of starts up decide to start a Candle business with unrealistic expectations, for example, Candle Making is easy, do you have any words of advice for start-ups?

“First and foremost, having expectations can be a good thing, but if you have really high expectations and then you don’t meet them, that can be disheartening. So people figure out quite quickly that not only is candle making itself not easy, but then marketing your products out to the public is a whole other ballgame. So doing it in stages is what I recommend. So, focus just on the craft of making candles, perfecting them as best you can, to make the most “perfect” candle that you can produce. And then, once you’ve learnt that, then look at bringing in the marketing side and advertising and going to markets and wholesaling as well and being of the mindset that it’s a long-term game. It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme because it’s something that you need to focus on for the long term and building those relationships with your customers, whether that’s through email marketing (which is a whole thing by itself), or whether it’s through social media (which is getting harder to do organically with the changes in the algorithm). Be mindful that if you’re doing this for a career and you want to turn this into a full-time gig, it’s going to take time. Some people can do it quicker, but we all come into our candle business with different skills and abilities, and you can’t compare your stage two to someone’s stage eight. They’re not the same.”

What is a common mistake, you see with Candle Businesses?


“I have a lot of candle makers that I speak to who have a scarcity mindset and have the belief that if they price their candles really low, they’ll generate more sales, and then when I go over the pricing and their cost of goods, they’re not even covering the cost it takes to make their candles, which is really hard when you say to them, you know, wholesale is traditionally cost of goods x2 and retail is x4 as an average, they freak out because they think, how can I possibly bring my cost of goods down or how can I possibly price my candles that way, especially when customers can go to one of the big stores and get candles so much cheaper. It’s about educating not only the candle maker but customers as well, that when you’re hand-making products, especially using natural and organic ingredients, it’s going to cost more to make and it’s going to cost more for the customer to purchase those products.

There is a program called Inventora. It’s an inventory management software (there’s a free offering as well as a paid plan). In the beginning, I recommend all candle makers go to that program and spend the time to enter all their materials/ingredients and it will calculate for you what the total cost of goods is. Plus you should include overheads like website cost, insurance and your wages to make sure that you’re doing it as holistically as possible so that you’re not working for free or losing money when you sell a candle. This gives you the confidence to know that when you then advertise your products, you’re going to make a profit, which is usually what we get into business for (to make more money) so that we can have both freedom and choices in life, not because we want to run ourselves into the ground.”


“And also not testing. People think they can bypass that because they’ve got the recommendations from the supplier websites. That can be really dangerous, not only for themselves but for their customers as well.”


“And again, it’s a mindset thing. It’s that arrogance of I don’t need to do that because I’ve been in the Facebook groups for a while. You have to go through it. You have to do the work and the testing for every single type of combination of wax, wick, vessel and fragrance oil. It’s just being mindful of your mindset and your ego as well.

So start small. Start with the candle-making kit if you’re at the very beginning of your journey, and just enjoy the process, learn it at your own pace rather than trying to rush ahead because yes, you want to make a profit, but you need to do all the steps to get to that stage. And that will take time and money because it’s not the cheapest business to run. But if you’re passionate about it and you’ve got a little bit of money to invest in the testing phase, then you should go for it.”


“Another barrier is having a website and investing in an online shop. Many candle makers say “DM me to order my candles” or “send me an email” and it just doesn’t work long term. You need to have a website where people can go on that experience and enjoy the journey of purchasing from you. They want to see pretty pictures of candles, both lifestyle and product shots. They want to read the description. Customers want to be taken on that journey: to enjoy the process of adding an item to the shopping cart, putting it in their credit card details and then purchasing it and the anticipation of waiting for the delivery. It’s a whole journey that you want to take your customers on. It’s not just a transaction.”

What is one of your biggest challenges, since starting your candle business and pivoting into more of the mentoring aspect?

“The journey is worth it. It’s challenging at times. It’s a roller-coaster. But if this is something you’re passionate about, stick with it and work through the mindset hurdles that come up along the way, because they’re there to help you grow and learn. You wouldn’t have had that initial spark of an idea to go down this candle-making path and candle business path unless it was meant for you, and you’re meant to grow and learn along the journey. Work through the mindset hurdles and reach out and get support if you need it.” 

No matter what part of your Candle Maker journey you’re on, make sure you reach out to and follow along on her journey. The podcast covers so many amazing and valuable topics and the key to life is to never stop learning.