Since their invention in 1903 by cousins Edwin Binney and C. Harold Smith, crayons have become an essential component in every school. No other commercial product can match the versatility of crayons. They are not sharp or messy like other painting tools. The best part is that they are nontoxic and available in more than 120 colors. In fact, you will find them available in any drawing color.
Process for Making Crayons
Crayons play a major role in developing a child’s creativity. Regarding their market standard, there are many brands that release specific types of crayons. For example, scented crayons, crayons that glow in the dark, sparkling crayons, and water-soluble crayons. The base component for making all these types is the same, paraffin wax; the additional color and scent are incorporated by supplementing specific ingredients during the crayon making process.
The basic ingredients in crayons are paraffin wax and pigments that impart their specific colors to them. In the commercial crayon making process, the paraffin wax is heated first until it melts. Following this, specific amounts of the coloring agent and hardening powder are added to the hot liquid wax. After testing the density and viscosity of the liquid mixture, it is poured into a mold that consists of numerous crayon-shaped holes.
Once the liquid mixture cools down, it solidifies and the crayons are formed. Hardened crayons are removed from the mold by applying hydraulic pressure or other removal methods on it. Prior to packaging, the crayon sticks are manually checked for any defects. Well-solidified and uniform crayons are labeled and packed for release in the market. The wax leftovers or any rejected sticks are re-melted and recycled for further production. This is how crayons are made commercially on a large scale.
For making them at home, you will need the following ingredients – ½ cup soap flakes, food coloring (color as per your choice), and 1 tablespoon hot water. First of all, combine the soap flakes and hot water in a small mixing bowl. Stir the mixture well to form a fine paste. Add the food coloring slowly, pinch by pinch, and stir each time so that the coloring dissolves completely. Stop adding the color when you achieve the desired crayon shade.
Add the paste into the candy molds carefully by using a small spoon. Make sure that there are no air bubbles within the molds. Leave the molds aside and allow the crayons to cool down completely. Then remove the crayons from the molds and leave them undisturbed for a day. Follow the same procedure for making different colors. If you wrap these homemade crayons in an attractive packing, then it makes a perfect personalized gift. You can also melt broken and unused sticks for making crayon chunks. One interesting fact is that a child generally uses more than 700 crayon sticks before their 10th birthday.