How Many Votives Are In A Pound Of Wax?

What are votives?

Votives, also known as votive candles or prayer candles, are small candles that are lit for prayer intentions or devotion. The word “votive” comes from the Latin “votum” meaning vow or promise. Votives are commonly used in various Christian denominations, such as Catholicism, Anglicanism, and the Eastern Orthodox Church (The History of Votive Candles).

The most common use of votive candles is for prayer. Votives are lit with a specific prayer intention in mind and allowed to burn for a period of time. This symbolizes offering one’s prayers to God or a saint. Votives are also used simply as a symbolic way to honor God or the saints. They are a popular tradition in many churches and cathedrals.

There are a few main types of votives. Glass votives are the most traditional and are placed in votive holders. These are commonly found in churches. Pillar candles can also be used as votives. Battery-operated flameless votives have become popular for home use. Votive candles come in different sizes, shapes, and colors for different saints or occasions (The history and significance of votive candles in Catholicism).

Common sizes of votives

Votives come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Here are some of the most common dimensions for votive candles:


  • 1″ diameter
  • 1.5″ diameter
  • 2″ diameter
  • 2.5″ diameter
  • 3″ diameter

The standard votive diameter is 2″ across. Mini votives can be 1″ while larger votives may be 2.5″ or 3″ in diameter.


  • 1″ height
  • 2″ height
  • 3″ height
  • votives hold symbolic meaning in prayer and devotion

  • 4″ height

Most traditional votives are 2″ tall. Smaller votives may be 1″ high, while extra tall votives can reach 3″ or 4″ in height.


  • 1 oz
  • 1.5 oz
  • 2 oz
  • 3 oz

A standard votive candle weighs approximately 1.5-2 ounces. Mini votives weigh about 1 oz, while larger ones may be 2.5-3 oz.

How much does a votive weigh?

The average weight of a single votive candle is around 1-2 ounces. According to Kindled Craft, most votive candles weigh about 2 ounces each. However, votive sizes can range from 1 ounce candles up to 3 ounce candles.

Smaller 1 ounce votive candles are quite petite and thin, with a height around 1 to 1.5 inches and diameter around 1.5 inches. These are on the lighter side and good for decor purposes.

Standard 2 ounce votive candles are a bit taller at 1.5 to 2 inches high and wider at 1.75 to 2 inches diameter. This mid-range size works well for most votive holders.

Large 3 ounce votive candles are the biggest and tallest, around 2 to 2.5 inches high and 2 to 2.25 inches wide. These substantial votives give off more light and fragrance but require wider holders.

So while 2 ounces is the norm, votive weights can vary based on height, diameter, wax type, and container. But most fall within 1 to 3 ounces each.

How is wax measured?

Wax can be measured by weight or volume, though weight is generally more accurate. The main units for measuring wax are:

  • Ounces (oz)
  • Pounds (lbs)
  • Grams (g)
  • Kilograms (kg)

When measuring wax by weight, scales can be used to directly measure the quantity in ounces, pounds, grams, etc. Measuring by volume uses units like cups, fluid ounces, liters, etc., but can be less reliable since wax density can vary.

For votives and other candles, wax is best measured by weight rather than volume. As noted by Cierra Candles, “Always use weight, not volume since water is more dense than wax.” Measuring by weight provides a more accurate quantity of wax regardless of variance in density.

Determining pounds of wax

To determine the total pounds of wax needed for votives, we first need to know the weight of each individual votive. According to Globalsources, a standard votive candle weighs approximately 0.5 ounces.

Using a pounds to ounces conversion calculator like this one, we can determine that 1 pound is equal to 16 ounces.

To calculate the total pounds needed for a desired number of votives, simply multiply the number of votives by the weight per votive (0.5 oz), and then divide by 16 oz/lb.

For example, for 100 votives weighing 0.5 oz each, the math would be:

100 votives x 0.5 oz/votive = 50 oz

50 oz / 16 oz/lb = 3.125 lbs

So 100 standard votive candles would require approximately 3.125 lbs of wax.

Number of votives in a pound

To determine the number of votives in a pound of wax, you first need to know the average weight of a single votive candle. The most common votive sizes are the standard 2″ x 2″ votive at approximately 1 ounce, the 2.5″ x 2.5″ votive at around 1.5 ounces, and the 3″ x 3″ votive averaging 2 ounces per candle.[1]

Given those sizes, a standard pound of wax (16 ounces) will make approximately:

  • 16 votives (2″ x 2″)
  • 10-11 votives (2.5″ x 2.5″)
  • 8 votives (3″ x 3″)

So the number of votives per pound ranges from about 8 to 16 depending on the size. Keep in mind that there is some variability in votive weights, so these numbers are approximate. It’s a good idea to buy a bit more wax than the minimum needed when making multiple votives per pound.

Other factors that affect votive counts

There are a few variables that can affect the number of votives in a pound of wax. These include:

Variations in wax density

The density of wax can vary between different types of wax, such as soy, paraffin, or beeswax. Denser wax will result in fewer votives per pound compared to less dense wax (Armatage Candle Company). Density can also vary within the same wax type depending on factors like the wax’s molecular weight.

Wick weight

Votives use cotton or paper wicks which have slight variations in weight. Heavier wicks make up a greater proportion of the votive’s overall weight, meaning there will be fewer votives per pound of wax if using heavier wicks (The Bottle Blog).

Accuracy of measurements

Small inaccuracies when measuring wax or votive weights can compound over large volumes and throw off final calculations. Using precise scales and consistent measurement techniques improves accuracy.

Recommendations for calculating totals

When estimating the number of votives in a pound of wax, it’s best to follow some guidelines for achieving the most accurate results:

Measure weights and dimensions as precisely as possible. Use a kitchen scale for wax amounts rather than estimating. And measure votive containers carefully with a ruler to determine volumes.

Allow for a margin of error in any votive count estimates. Since there are many variables at play like wax density and wick size, the total number of votives may be 10-20% off from calculations.

Take multiple measurements and samples and use the average values. Weigh several votives to determine an average votive weight rather than relying on just one. The more measurements taken, the closer the estimate will be.

Consult resources like the candle burn rate calculator for estimating totals based on extensive data.

Test different votive weights and numbers to determine the totals. Calculating with different averages and ranges will provide a better sense of the true totals.

Allow for extra votives to account for variability. Add 5-10% more votives than the estimated total as a buffer.

Uses for votive calculations

Knowing how many votives are in a pound of wax can be useful for several reasons, especially for people planning events or running candle-related businesses.

One common use is ordering supplies for events or businesses. When purchasing votives in bulk for weddings, parties, restaurants, spas, etc., it’s helpful to know how many votives a certain quantity of wax will make. This allows for accurately estimating the amounts needed. As an example, a wedding coordinator planning 100 centerpieces with 3 votives each would need approximately 12-15 pounds of wax.

Votive calculations also assist with budgeting costs. Wax is often priced by the pound, while votives may be priced individually or in bundles. Calculating pounds to votives helps determine the material expenses. For instance, if votives cost $0.25 each, 30 votives per pound of wax would cost $7.50 in votives per pound of wax.

Additionally, some people compute the number of votives per pound to estimate burn times. Though this depends on the size, typically one votive burns for 5-6 hours. So 30 votives from a pound provides approximately 150-180 hours of burn time. This helps with planning re-lighting and replacement.

In summary, determining votive amounts from pounds of wax comes in handy for event planners, businesses, and others needing to order votive supplies, manage costs, and estimate burn times.


In summary, the number of votives in a pound varies based on several factors:

  • The most common votive sizes are 1″ x 1.5″ and 1.5″ x 1.5″, with weights ranging from around 5-9 grams per votive.
  • One pound of wax is 453 grams.
  • Additional factors like wick weight, wax density, and production method can affect the total count.
  • Most sources estimate 50-60 votives per pound, though counts outside this range are certainly possible.

Given the standard votive weight of 5-9 grams each, one can expect a range of around 50-90 votives per pound of wax, with 60 as a reasonable middle-ground estimate.

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