Ask anyone who knows me, I LOVE candles. They are scattered all around our house. It wasn't until I started researching and making candles did I understand that not all candle wax is created equal.
At Simply Noble Ltd., we only use soy wax in our candles and melts. Before we get to our "why," let me first talk about paraffin wax - the most widely used, and least expensive, candle wax on the market today.
Paraffin wax is petroleum-based and is created using crude oil (fossil fuel) which is extracted from the earth. On a molecular level, crude oil is a mixture of hydrocarbons that were created from the decomposition of plants and animals that lived underwater many years ago. Once extracted, crude oil is sent to refineries where it is then turned into finished products like lubricating oil. It is from the lube oil refining process that paraffin waxes are created.
Paraffin wax can produce certain emissions that can compromise the air quality in your home. These may include alkans, alkenes, and toluene which have all been reported to have harmful effects on humans.*
- Leaves a larger footprint.
- Produces more soot when burned.
- Harmful emissions.
- It is cheaper than other waxes.
- Great scent throw. Paraffin wax is not as dense as soy wax and therefore burns easier releasing more scent.
- Holds dye better than soy wax.
Soy wax is a vegetable wax made from the oil of soybeans. After harvesting, the beans are cleaned, cracked, de-hulled, and rolled into flakes. The oil is then extracted from the flakes and hydrogenated.
The hydrogenation process converts some of the fatty acids in the oil from unsaturated to saturated. This process dramatically alters the melting point of the oil, making it solid at room temperature. The leftover bean husks are commonly used as animal feed. The U.S. grows the vast majority of the world's soybeans, primarily in Illinois, Iowa, and Indiana.
Soy's greatest advantage is that it is completely renewable. While the global reserves of oil shrink and paraffin prices increase, the only limit to the soy supply is how much we choose to grow. In addition to sustainability, a well-made soy candle will burn cleanly and slowly.**
- More expensive than paraffin.
- More difficult to work with than paraffin.
- Does not hold dye or scent as well as paraffin.
- Soy wax is softer than paraffin.
- Made from a vegetable, not petroleum.
- Burns cleanly and slowly.
Now you know why we only use soy wax in our candles and melts. One last word about candle dye: CHEMICALS. That is why dye is never used in our candles and melts. Candle, melts + soap scents will be a future topic of discussion.
Save a dinosaur! Burn soy wax.
*lonestarcandlesupply.com (4/16/18 Soy v. Parrafin: The BIG Debate!)
**candlescience.com (Learning: What EXACTLY is Soy Wax?)