Soy Wax vs. Beeswax for Candle Making: Which is Better? (2022)

As paraffin wax has a bad reputation, especially in recent years, soy wax has seen a rapid increase as a healthier and cleaner alternative. While the discussion of soy wax vs. paraffin is always the hot topic of different craft forums, soy wax vs. beeswax for candle making is ongoing at the same time. It’s true that soy wax is renewable, biodegradable, and cleaner than paraffin. But, when compared with beeswax, can soy wax still stand out as the healthiest candle wax? Which one is better for candle making, soy wax, or beeswax?

In this article, we are going to examine the differences between soy wax and beeswax closely. However, choosing candle wax is to some extent a personal preference. Here, we won’t come to the conclusion that one is the devil and the other is a life-savor. Instead, we just want to help you make informed purchases, whether that is the wax or the finished candles.

  1. Bottom Line
  2. What is Soy Wax?
  3. What is Beeswax?
  4. Soy Wax vs. Beeswax: The Differences
  5. Soy Wax vs. Beeswax: Which is Better

Bottom Line

Before we dive into the soy wax vs. beeswax debate, we’d like to give you our bottom line.

Beeswax and beeswax candles are better than soy wax and soy wax candles in terms of how healthy and how environmental-friendly they are. However, it doesn’t mean soy wax and soy candles are harmful or even toxic. In fact, both beeswax and soy wax are natural, healthy, and environmentally friendly when compared to paraffin wax. Whether you prefer beeswax or soy wax, you’re choosing a green living style.

Based on this spirit, let’s start our soy wax vs. beeswax discussion.

What is Soy Wax?

Soy wax is one of the most environmentally friendly candle waxes available today. It is made from soybeans through the hydrogenation process. And because of that, soy wax has a relatively low melting point. Usually, soy wax comes in flakes form to be used for candle making.

Soy wax doesn’t produce as much soot as other synthetic waxes like paraffin. It is cost-effective, sustainable, biodegradable, and natural. Though soy wax doesn’t have a long history as beeswax and paraffin wax, it has gained popularity quickly and widely among both candle consumers and DIY candle makers.

Except for pure soy wax (100% soy wax), there are still a wide variety of soy wax blends. The most widely used blends include soy-paraffin blends and soy-coconut blends.

What is Beeswax?

Beeswax is the oldest wax for candle making which can date back to Ancient Egypt. Today, beeswax is still one of the most important candle making supplies. Harvested from bees’ combs, beeswax is all-natural, organic, and eco-friendly.

(Video) Beeswax vs Soy Wax vs Paraffin Wax! Place yer bets!

When made into candles, beeswax releases less soot and doesn’t contain harmful chemicals. What’s more, beeswax candles can also purify the air while burning, by eliminating dust and unpleasant odors in the rooms.

Beeswax comes in a naturally sweet scent and yellowish color. It is also hard in texture so it burns slowly.

Soy Wax vs. Beeswax: The Differences

In this part, we’ll compare soy wax and beeswax in 10 aspects to help you create a full view of both waxes.

1. Sourcing

Soy wax is sourced from soybean plants, which are largely grown in North America. Through harvesting, cleaning, squeezing, and hydrogenating, soybean oils are converted into soy wax. Soybean plants are natural, renewable, and biodegradable.

However, in order to increase soybean production and to resist pesticides, herbicides, and other agricultural plagues, most soybeans are grown from genetically modified seeds in America. That’s why some candle makers turn from this modern wax to the traditional beeswax.

Beeswax, on the other hand, is sourced from all-natural materials – the bee’s combs. It is produced by eight glands of worker bees. They collect this wax to form cells and store honey. The whole process is natural and organic.

The raw beeswax needs to be filtered for candle making. in the candle industry, most beeswax comes in natural yellow color. However, in order to extend its usage, there is still some bleached beeswax which is white. White beeswax is also widely used in the cosmetic and food industries.

Winner: Beeswax

2. Environmental Impact

Except for GMOs, do you know the soy industry is closely linked to deforestation? In order to have more land to grow soybean plants for money, more and more rainforests have been cleared and tilled. It threatens the most important habitats in South America as well as the ecosystem of the whole world.

Contrarily, beeswax is an all-natural product from the beekeeping industry. It won’t do damage to our environment to promote beekeepers or develop more bee farms.

(Video) Beeswax vs Soy wax vs Paraffin wax candle

Winner: Beeswax

3. Scent

Now we come to soy wax and beeswax for candle making.

Soy wax comes without a scent. So, it’s very easy to make scented candles by adding fragrance oils or essential oils. On the candle market, you can see a variety of scented soy candles. Soy wax can hold some amount of fragrances, but its scent throw is poorer than paraffin wax. That’s why so many consumers are questioning how to make soy candles smell stronger.

Beeswax has a subtle honey smell that is sweet and natural. If you want to enjoy a scented candle but don’t hope to risk the unsafe fragrance oils, unscented beeswax candles might be a nice option. On the other hand, if you want to scent your beeswax candles with a different fragrance, you may be disappointed. Its natural scent is so significant that you have to add more fragrance oils to overpower that.

Winner: Both

4. Color

Soy wax comes in milky white and works well with different candle dyes. You can make nearly any colored candle with soy wax.

However, natural beeswax is honey-colored, which is yellow or gold. It’s a challenge to color beeswax into a different color. If you prefer the natural properties of beeswax but want a different color, you can try white beeswax pellets which allow you to add some colors.

When adding fragrance oils and dyes to beeswax, you should know that you’re trading off the all-natural property of beeswax. The additives in those fragrance oils and dyes may be potentially dangerous.

Winner: Soy wax

5. Flame

When choosing a candle in the store, it’s important to consider which flame you prefer.

(Video) Here’s Why I Add Beeswax To My Soy Candles…. Should YOU Be Doing The Same?

Soy candles tend to produce white light, which is similar to fluorescent light like your smartphone screens.

The flame of beeswax, however, is more natural and warm, which is within the same spectrum of the sunlight.

The difference in flames between soy wax and beeswax won’t affect their burn performance. But, if you want a warm and bright light in the cold winter, I personally recommend beeswax candles.

Winner: Beeswax

6. Burn Time

Beeswax is denser than soy wax in texture. So, beeswax can last for a longer time while burning. However, soy wax is also good in terms of burning time as it has a low melting point.

Winner: Beeswax

7. Presence of Paraffin

Pure soy wax is very soft. To extend its usage, manufacturers usually mix it with other waxes. The most widely used is paraffin. For example, in order to increase the melting temperature of soy wax, a small amount of paraffin may be added. In order to optimize the fragrance holding property, paraffin wax may also be added to soy wax. On the candle market, as long as the material contains at least 51% soy wax, it can be advertised as soy candles. So, if you don’t want paraffin in your soy candles, make sure they are marked as 100% soy wax.

Beeswax can be completely free of paraffin.

Winner: Beeswax

8. Vegan

If you’re in favor of strict veganism, soy wax is the ideal choice. It is harvested from soybean plants which are vegan and natural. Soy candles are absolutely safe for vegans.

(Video) How to Make Beeswax Candles - Tips and Tricks from an Expert Candlemaker | Bramble Berry

Beeswax is sourced from honey bees, which may be hard for those who are against animal cruelty.

Winner: Soy wax

9. Shipping

Soy wax has a relatively low melting point. It means if you want to ship soy candles in the summertime, you may suffer wax melting problems. It can be a big cost for small candle businesses.

On the contrary, the melting point of beeswax is higher. That makes beeswax candles suitable for shipping at any temperature.

Winner: Beeswax

10. Price

Soy wax is one of the most affordable candle waxes on the market. If you have a limited budget, soy wax candles can be a great choice to brighten and scent your house.

Beeswax is rarer than soy wax as well as other waxes. Worker bees need to work hard to produce wax. And about 6 pounds of honey can only produce 1 pound of beeswax. However, beeswax candles burn much slower than other candles. It’s worth the high price.

Winner: Soy wax

Soy Wax vs. Beeswax: Which is Better

Have you got answered which one is better for you, soy wax or beeswax? As candle makers ourselves, we can’t simply give you a conclusion. Both soy wax and beeswax are natural, healthy, eco-friendly, and clean-burning.

If you’re more concerned about the price, then soy wax and soy candles can be good enough. They are easy to scent, easy to color, and burn for a long time.

(Video) Candle Making | Candle Wax | Soy, Paraffin, Coconut and Beeswax

If you prefer a more natural and environmentally friendly life, don’t hesitate, beeswax candles are the best.

Anyway, soy candles and beeswax candles are safe, clean, and affordable for our daily lives.

Read more: Paraffin vs. Soy Wax vs. Beeswax: Which is Better for Candles?

FAQs

Which wax is the best for candle making? ›

Paraffin wax—a very inexpensive wax—is most widely used across candle brands, says Fitchl, because it can hold a high amount of fragrance and color. It also comes in various melt points, making it suitable for making many different types of candles, from containers to pillars.

Is soy wax as good as beeswax? ›

Conclusion. The main difference between beeswax and soy wax is that beeswax candles are completely free of paraffin while oy wax candles contain some amount of paraffin. Moreover, beeswax candles tend to produce a sweeter, more natural fragrance and tend to burn longer than soy wax.

What are the negatives for using beeswax to make candles? ›

CONS
  • It is a natural wax, therefore, is more expensive.
  • Does not hold scent as well as other waxes.
  • Can be difficult to add colorants because of its natural yellow tent.
  • To lower production cost, it can be combined with other waxes. Make sure the wax you are buying is 100%.
18 Feb 2021

Which wax gives the best scent throw? ›

Paraffin wax is a derivative of petroleum and is made by removing the waxy substance from crude oil. It is one of the most popular kinds of wax used in candle making as it is very efficient at releasing the fragrance oil due to its molecular structure. Paraffin-type waxes will maximise your scent throw.

How can I make my candles smell stronger? ›

How do I get the fragrance to smell stronger?
  1. Use the recommended percentage of fragrance oil for the type of wax you're using. ...
  2. Be sure to weigh your fragrance oils on a scale, not measure in a cup or spoon.
  3. Add fragrance oil at 185Fº and stir gently and thoroughly with the melted wax.
29 Oct 2021

What is the healthiest candle wax to burn? ›

Beeswax. Beeswax candles are the healthiest choice in candles. Made from the caps of bee honeycombs, beeswax candles burn clean, are very long-burning, and give off a pleasant natural fragrance as they burn. Beeswax candles are dripless when burned properly, and release negative ions which help clean the air in a room.

Can I mix soy and beeswax for candles? ›

I like to use a blend of both soy wax and beeswax and don't add additional color. The more beeswax you use, the more honey-colored the candle will be. Beeswax also gives off a sweet honey aroma, so the more you use, the less added fragrance you will need.

Which is cheaper soy or beeswax? ›

Soy wax is usually cheaper and more cost-friendly than beeswax. Soy wax is commonly made from genetically modified soybeans and soybeans treated with chemicals and pesticides making many soy wax candles slightly more toxic in nature.

Why are beeswax candles the best? ›

Beeswax has the highest melting point of any wax meaning the candles burn for longer than paraffin. They are the tidier candle in that they don't release any soot and they tend to drip less. They also emit a much more ambient light, making for a cosy atmosphere.

Do beeswax candles actually clean the air? ›

When beeswax candles burn, they clean the air like a great, natural, air purifier. Just like lightening, beeswax produces negative ions when burned. These negative ions attach to positive ions (like dust, pollen, mold, odor, toxins) floating in the air and in this process cleans the air.

Is beeswax toxic when heated? ›

Hazard statement(s) If Beeswax is heated it may cause burns, wear personal protective equipment as suggested in Section 8. Slightly hazardous in case of ingestion. Essentially Beeswax is non-irritating to eyes, skin and if inhaled.

What wax is used in Yankee candles? ›

Yankee candles are made from paraffin wax, as well as essential oils for fragrance and cotton for the wicks.

Why do my homemade candles not smell? ›

When asking ourselves, “why does my scented candle not smell?”, the answer might be due to the candle not being burned for long periods of time. However, one of the main causes of a candle not producing smell or enough smell is usually due to the fragrance not being added to the wax at the proper time.

Does beeswax hold fragrance? ›

Homemade beeswax candles on their own have a faint yet delightful honey-like scent. But, if you'd like to make aromatherapy candles, you can add essential oils. However, beeswax doesn't hold fragrance as well as other candle waxes.

What candles smell the strongest? ›

Mahogany Teakwood High-Intensity Candle

Not only did these two give off strong scents, but they smelled the best, too. Yankee Candle and Bath & Body Works candles gave off very heavy, in-your-face scents, whereas Le Labo and Byredo released complex, luxurious scents you'd expect in a fancy hotel.

How do you make premium candles? ›

How to Make Premium Soy Candles - YouTube

What makes a great candle? ›

The best quality candles will have a wick that is the right size and construction for the candle. You can tell your candle has a good wick if it burns cleanly, evenly, and creates a pool of liquid wax all the way across the surface of the candle within 2 to 4 hours.

What to avoid when making candles? ›

Candles made from paraffin are suspected to release toxic chemicals including toluene and benzene. Benzene is a known carcinogen and toluene is linked to developmental and reproductive toxicity.

Is beeswax more expensive than soy wax? ›

One of the biggest differences between beeswax and soy wax is the price. Beeswax is by far the most expensive candle wax on the market. Soy, on the other hand, is one of the cheapest wax options, especially in the eco friendly candle industry.

Is beeswax toxic to humans? ›

Beeswax is considered nonpoisonous, but it may cause a blockage in the intestines if someone swallows a large amount. If an ointment is swallowed, the medicine component may also cause side effects or poisoning.

Should you add coconut oil to beeswax candles? ›

Adding some coconut oil to your beeswax should help the candle burn more consistently and avoid tunneling, but technically you can also make a 100% beeswax candle as well. Pour the wax and oil into your candle containers and let them set for 1-2 days before using.

Is white or yellow beeswax better? ›

Both of them are refined but white beeswax undergoes natural bleaching and is not as natural as yellow beeswax. White beeswax is better for cosmetic purposes, while yellow beeswax is often better when it comes to making candles.

What is the best wick for beeswax candles? ›

Experts in the field have deemed braided cotton wicks the best. Originally designed for beeswax candles, the square braided wick offers many benefits including: Better flow of vapour, the more open structure of these wicks channels the vapour up the wick better, even with impurities present.

Can you substitute soy wax for beeswax? ›

Soy wax can be used as a substitute for beeswax in a 1:1 ratio in candles, lip balms, and skin products.

Do beeswax candles smell good? ›

Beeswax candles have a very subtle, natural scent, which evokes the earthy, yet sweet aroma of honey. This makes them perfect to burn on the dinner table, as they don't overpower food. If you want a heavily scented candle, with a strong scent throw, please choose a different candle.

Is coconut wax better than soy wax? ›

Soy wax has a lower melting point and helps release essential oils easily, however when compared to coconut wax, it cannot carry quite as much scent. It can hold only up to 10% of the scent in its wax and its scent throw is not as great as coconut wax.

Why is soy wax better than paraffin? ›

Soy wax contains nothing artificial, which makes it a better alternative to old-fashioned paraffin wax, which is made from petroleum oil and produces harmful by-products when burned or melted. Soy wax is non-toxic making it better both for the environment and your health!

Can I mix soy and paraffin wax? ›

Typically, you can mix together 2 parts soy wax and 3 parts paraffin wax. This will make for a great-looking and smelling candle. If you want to make a pillar candle, then we suggest blending 7 parts paraffin wax and 3 parts soy wax. For a harder wax, you should blend 80 percent soy wax and 20 percent paraffin wax.

Can you mix beeswax with soy wax? ›

You can add soy to beeswax, not the other way around...if you make beeswax candles. This way they burn a bit better, but no scents added! It is hard to overpower the beeswax scent, and why would you want to?

Does beeswax hold fragrance? ›

Homemade beeswax candles on their own have a faint yet delightful honey-like scent. But, if you'd like to make aromatherapy candles, you can add essential oils. However, beeswax doesn't hold fragrance as well as other candle waxes.

What is the most sustainable candle wax? ›

Beeswax and coconut wax are amongst the most sustainable waxes. They both burn clean and slowly, with beeswax famous for its incredibly bright flame. But with anything, ensuring you're buying from farms and makers who support ethical farming techniques is vital.

Are beeswax candles better? ›

Beeswax has the highest melting point of any wax meaning the candles burn for longer than paraffin. They are the tidier candle in that they don't release any soot and they tend to drip less. They also emit a much more ambient light, making for a cosy atmosphere.

Why soy candles are the best? ›

Not only are there “green” advantages to choosing soy wax over a different type of candle wax, but soy wax also burns slower than paraffin wax, meaning you get a candle that lasts longer. While all candles emit some black soot while burning, candles made from soy wax burns cleaner and results in less soot.

Why do soy candles burn longer? ›

Soy Wax Lasts Longer!

So soy candles burn longer because the wick is not burning as hot and therefore the wax is not burning off as fast as regular paraffin candles. This is why soy candles burn twice as long as regular candles!

How much fragrance do I add to soy wax? ›

As a rule of thumb, you need 1 oz fragrance oil in 1 pound of soy wax. Technically, it is 6.25% of the fragrance load. We have calculated it by dividing 1 oz of scented oil with 16 oz (1 pound of soy wax).

What wax is better 444 or 464? ›

444 wax is slightly harder and has a higher melting point than 464. Ranging from 119 to 125 degrees Fahrenheit versus 113 to 119 for 464 wax. This wax can be a good option if you need to make sure your candles won't soften or melt in warmer weather.

How do you get the best scent throw from soy candles? ›

Candles should be cured with their lids on, away from sunlight and in a space that is around room temperature. The minimum cure time can range from 3 days to several weeks. I have found that the longer they cure, the stronger the hot throw. I aim for at least a full week (7 days) before burning/selling.

How many candles will 1kg soy wax make? ›

When using 20cl candle glasses, 1kg of wax will make a total of 6 candles. Around 166.66g of candle wax will be used per candle. It is important to remember to leave a centimeter gap between the wax and the rim of the container. 1kg of wax will make a total of 4 candles when using 30cl candle glasses.

What happens if you add too much fragrance to soy wax? ›

Adding too much fragrance oil can cause the wax to become unstable, it becomes frothy, can become a fire hazard, and cause the flame to burn irregularly all without improving the candle's hot scent throw. As the oil and wax mixture cools the excess fragrance oil will seep to the top of your candle.

How do you make an advanced candle? ›

DIY at home Soy and Paraffin Wax Hybrid Candle - YouTube

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