Make your own fire starters

I'm a little bit of a fire-bug. We have a huge fire pit outside with a big burn cage and a fireplace in the house. I'm forever burning something. There is only 1 thing I don't like to burn and that is fire-starters. Well, not really all fire's the boxed ones we buy in the store that I hate to use. I just don't get it.

fire starters made from old candles and cotton face pads

Why do I want to buy something just to burn it? I just see it as burning money! My husband loves the things and always tells me "just put a fire starter in there" as I struggle to light the fire, ripping up newspaper and cardboard to try and get things going. *sigh* It's a problem, really.

Truthfully, all that paper and cardboard isn't that good for the chimney. Apparently it burns at too low of a temperature and can contribute to buildup in the chimney. Those guys are expensive when they come out to clean the chimney! So it's best I burn as little paper as possible.

Make your own fire starters

I think I have it figured out though. I made my own fire starters! I used dollar store cotton pads and the wax I was going to throw away from the wax burner. You know how you use wax melts and after awhile they stop smelling? That's the old wax I used for this project! 

I also added the scrapings from some container candles that were too low to burn anymore. I put that concoction in a glass baking cup, melted it, dipped the pads and voila! They don't smell fancy, but they get the job done.

make your own fire starters

I used 2 pads for each, 1 waxed 1 not. I dipped the first in the melted wax, then laid it on top of the dry pad. When it cooled they stuck together. When I dipped both pads the finished product was so waxy it took awhile to light. With 1 dry and 1 wax pad it catches much faster!

This also kept them from sticking to the parchment paper lined baking sheet I put them on to cool! They aren't a pretty color, but that's what I get from recycling used wax from various sources

If you use really dark colored wax, you can melt one color at a time to get a prettier result. Mix them all together and you tend to just get brown colored wax pads. 

Making different sized fire starters

These are a great size for lighting the fireplace, burning leaves or twigs outside or getting the boxes and papers going when I burn the garbage. I also wrote about making larger campfire starters with dryer lint and toilet paper rolls. The larger ones are for outdoors only because they have tons of wax in them!

While using a little bit of wax in a fireplace is ok, you don't want to use a lot. It makes a mess and leaves a stain on the bottom. Which generally doesn't matter...but my husband cleans the fireplace out for summer and gets mad. lol So stick with these small ones for indoor use!

Either size can be used for outdoor bonfire use. It's a super easy project and you can even roll up the paper you were working over and use it to light the fireplace! It's probably dotted with wax too and will light quite easily.  


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  1. Great Idea! I'm following you via GFC. I host Fluster Creative Muster Party on Wednesdays and I would love it if you would come by and party with us. Hope to see you there!

    Hugs, Smiles, and Blessings,

    Fluster Buster

  2. I've been using free pine cones from my yard covered in candle wax :) I found your post on Farmgirl Friday and I'd love to have you share it on The Creative HomeAcre Hop!

  3. What a great use for old wax! I don't want to burn something I paid for either! I make fire starters by stuffing dryer lint into empty toilet paper tubes! I may try wax the whole thing together next time! Thanks for sharing on the Farmhouse Style Blog Hop! I hope you'll join us again tomorrow.