Our Story

Why Gel Candles?

In a nutshell...we love the way they look and burn but most importantly...value!  We love to burn candles from the feeling you get, like being wrapped up in a warm blanket, to the light that they give off and especially the smell.  We love to burn them when we are home for the day, in the evening when the lights are turned down low and we are sharing “our day”, having candlelit dinners and of course when we have company over; basically, we always have a candle burning.  With that in mind, you can go through a lot of candles burning them that much.  Gel candles burn far longer than any other type of candle; at least twice as long giving you more value and we love bringing that value to our customers.  As for what the gel is, it is comprised of 95% mineral oil and 5% polymer to thicken it up.  We pour them into jars that are heat safe making these candles safe to burn as opposed to pillar candles.  We use metal inserts in the candles so nothing is flammable, again making them safe to burn.  We are mindful of the wick placement so our metal images do not interfere with the burning process, again, making them safe to burn.  Now, these are candles, so you still need to use caution when burning any candle.  Do not leave them unattended, keep them away from kids and pets, trim the wick if needed and don't burn in a drafty area.  As the candle nears the bottom of the container, the glass can heat up so don't move the container until it cools off.   

The Process

Making gel candles has been a very rewarding process for us.  There is more that goes into candle making than one may think.  It has taken lots of time of testing different fragrances, temperatures to pour at, how much dye to add etc.  After the melting process, you add the color and scent then stir, stir, stir, stir.  You let the wax cool to desired pouring temperature, then pour into the containers.  The amount of bubbles depends on the temperature you pour it and the fragrance.  We have found that the gel is fickle and sometimes has more bubbles when it should have less so it is not perfect by any means.  If fewer bubbles are desired, you can place the candle in a sunny location and as the gel heats up, the bubbles will escape. We made a candle delivery south of us and due to the change in elevation and heat in the car, a couple of the candles were perfectly clear while others had not changed at all...go figure.   We have also found that some of the scents that contain more vanilla tend to pour "cloudy".  (Cinnamon Vanilla, Birthday Cake, and Pumpkin Pie)  For these fragrances, we prefer to pour certain images as it appears that they are in a morning mist or fog and look really cool.  As the candle burns and warms up, the gel clears up and the image is more visible.  Once the candle cools off, the image returns to the "mist".  We have found that making the gel candles are not exact and there is no way to pour them the same every time which we like as it makes them unique...just like us!


Our story!!

Chris and I are a success story for online dating...who knew!  Soon after we started dating, it didn't take long to realize that we have a very special connection.  

Our candle business adventure began when we were looking for something we could build together, make a decent income and allow me to work from home after moving to the Grand Canyon.  After lots of discussion of what it was that we could make, we excitedly decided on gel candles. 



You may ask yourself, why ” Mulepacker” Candles?  Well, at the time, Chris was the lead mule packer for the National Park Service at the Grand Canyon. 

We got married in 2018 where we rode in on our mules and had a perfect day. 


 Chris is a native Arizonan, born and raised in Williams.  Chris worked in construction growing up then managed a stable in the area, taking out dude rides.  Chris' work at the Grand Canyon started with being a wrangler for Apache Stables, taking out dude rides.  He then went to work for Xanterra taking dudes down to Phantom Ranch and that is where his mule packing career began. He then had the opportunity to get on with the National Park Service where he packed for 9 years. 


I am also a native Arizonan.  I was raised on a small ranch fifteen miles north of Parks. I have a very diverse working career which I truly believe gave me the experience I needed to now run our own business. 






We are so excited to grow our business, making C&M Mulepacker Candles a household name.  We are so thankful to our family and friends for their amazing support and encouragement on this journey of making our dreams come true!!