Homegrown Business: Holly Singer of Milk Jar Candle Co.

Holly Singer had two goals in mind when founding Milk Jar Candle Co. Provide people with clean-burning candles and have a vehicle to give back. In the years since she has been able to do that. With a range of products, from candles to shower steamers, Milk Jar Candle Co. is a scent lover’s paradise that customers can feel good buying from. We connected with Holly to learn more.

Milk Jar Candle

What is your business called and what does it do?

Our business is called Milk Jar Candle Company. We manufacture and sell candles, diffusers, perfume rollers, shower steamers and other scented goodies. We also provide candle-making workshops and custom candles for small to medium businesses.

What made you want to do this work?

When Milk Jar was born in founder Holly Singer’s kitchen in November 2016, it answered two of her desires: to bring clean-burning, beautifully smelling candles to the local market, and to be a vehicle for giving back. Years prior, while studying Kinesiology at University, Holly developed a close friendship with a boy with Cerebral Palsy and his mother. Forever struck by the resilience of people with disabilities and the barriers they face, it was Holly’s goal to raise $500 in Milk Jar’s first year for programs that support learning and growth. Little did she know, Milk Jar would grow to make a far, far greater impact than she ever could have imagined. Six years later, Milk Jar has become a household name in Calgary. Not only are we incredibly proud to model inclusive employment, but we’re also known for our yearly donations to non-profits supporting initiatives toward inclusion and safe workplaces. We still make (incredibly awesome, plant-based and phthalate-free) candles, but we’ve also expanded to include reed diffusers and fragrances.

Who are your clientele/demographics?

We want to bring clean burning candles and natural apothecary goods to all walks of life but we have seen the most interest from millennial women.

How does your business make money? How does it work?

We manufacture and sell candles along with diffusers, perfume rollers and shower steamers. We sell directly to consumers and wholesalers. We also provide private and public candle-making workshops where people learn the basics of scent blending and candle making, all while making their very own candles and diffusers.

Where in the city can we find your profession?

We have a Flagship Retail store in Calgary at our Factory space located at 1450 28 St NE # 7, Calgary, AB T2A 7W6. We also have over 128 Wholesalers selling our products throughout Alberta and over 400 Wholesalers selling our products worldwide!

Milk Jar Candle

What is the best question a prospective customer could ask a member of your profession when comparing services? Give the answer as well.

What’s in the candle? Are there any toxic substances, like phthalates, that will disperse into your space and eventually be breathed in by anyone around?

Our candles are made from a 100% natural blend of Coconut Soy wax, providing you with a candle that not only lasts longer, but coconut soy wax is also environmentally friendly, produces minimal to no soot while burning, and releases no harmful toxins into the air.

What is the best part about what you do? What is the worst part?

The best part of what we do is (hopefully) inspiring other people and businesses with our inclusive hiring practices and giving back to initiatives that support the disability community and foster a more inclusive environment for all.

The worst part of what we do can be attributed to the standard stresses of running a business; financial goals, managing employees and dealing with unexpected hurdles. All of these stresses really do melt away when we receive positive feedback from our customers and the people we’ve helped along the way.

What is your favourite joke about your own profession?

How does a candlemaker greet people?

With a warm glow and a wick-ed smile!

Where can we follow you?

Website | Instagram | Facebook

PAY IT FORWARD: What is another local business that you love?

We are huge fans of Lil E Coffee, Located in Calgary Alberta. We love their inclusive business model that really tries to change the mould of current hiring and staffing practices. They also brew a mean cup of coffee : ) Their Instagram can be found here.


About Demian Vernieri 543 Articles
Demian is an Argentinian retired musician, avid gamer and editor for the Montréal Guardian, Toronto Guardian, Calgary Guardian and Vancouver Guardian websites.