The Different Types of Candle Wax and Why Soy Wax Is Best
Did you know there’s more than one kind of candle wax? Paraffin, coconut wax, rapeseed and beeswax are just a few of the prevalent waxes poured into candle containers and molds today. But what goes into each of these waxes and what makes them stand out?
Here are the different types of candle wax and the pros and cons of each. Plus, we explain why Homesick prefers natural soy wax above all the others.
Different Types of Candle Wax
Not all candle wax is created equal and each offers its unique benefits and properties. For example, there are many distinctions between soy vs. paraffin wax. See what we mean with this quick lesson on the types of candle wax you will often find.
Paraffin wax is the most commonly used type of candle wax. However, it is a by-product of petroleum, crude oil refinement and the oil industry. While this part of the oil is at least not discarded, in the long run, it’s also not sustainable.
As a general rule of thumb, paraffin is also known for holding the scent better. However, if the scent uses high-quality oils, the type of wax shouldn’t really matter. Not to mention, the paraffin wax has been found to release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) when lit. While it’s a minuscule amount, if you prefer to avoid paraffin wax, there are plenty of other options!
Coconut wax is a relatively new type of wax. Generally, coconut wax is more expensive, but offers an eco-friendly choice like soy. Essentially, the coconut wax is created by harvesting the oil of coconut. Not to mention, coconuts are a renewable, sustainable crop.
Beeswax has quite a history, dating back to the Egyptian era even. While it is an incredibly healthy choice in terms of eliminating volatile organic compounds, beeswax does come with a major disadvantage: its signature honey scent. As you can imagine, not all fragrances mingle well with honey.
Rapeseed wax, or canola wax, is a somewhat new type of candle wax. Derived from a yellow flower that grows from mustard and cabbage-like plant families, rapeseed is not commonly used in the United States. Still, it is considered a locally sourced, sustainable resource in European countries.
Reducing its carbon footprint is one of the most significant advantages of rapeseed wax — if you live in the EU. However, brought to the States, it would negate the purpose. Still, if you’re across the pond and find this candle wax, you’ll discover it throws a scent rather well and offers a slow burn, too.
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Soy wax is considered a more eco-conscious type of wax, compared to paraffin. However, it offers many more advantages which is why we believe it is the best candle wax here at Homesick.
One benefit of soy wax and soy wax blends is it actually burns slower, allowing you to enjoy your candle for much longer than most. This means your Homesick Love candle will continue to last years.
Another benefit is the soy wax tends to burn cleaner, reducing indoor pollutants like soot and smoke, which is not only bad for your health, but can discolor a candle’s container or a nearby surface. And the scent profile doesn’t have to compete with said toxins since a soy wax candle gives a stronger aroma.
Last, but not least, unlike using a petroleum-derived wax, soybeans are a natural and renewable resource. Plus, the wax is biodegradable. Since the United States is the top global producer of soybeans, buying a soy-based product supports American farmers.
Wax Alternatives and Other Melting Tips
When burning candles or using any new type of candle wax, pay attention to your body. While candles are quite safe, if you, a loved one or pet feels or appears unwell, extinguish the candle and seek medical attention.
Worried your candle will create smoke? No matter what kind of candle you use, check out our candle tips to minimize indoor air pollutants and harmful VOCs.
And if you are concerned about candle wax or an open flame, a reed diffuser offers an excellent alternative, adding scent to the home all day long.