What Candle Wax is Best for the Environment

While we can mostly agree that candles are a popular way to add ambiance and fragrance to a room, and with a growing variety of scents for any occasion, the choices can be endless. But, the materials used to make them can have a negative impact on the environment. Traditional candle waxes, such as paraffin wax, are derived from non-renewable fossil fuels and can have a lasting effect on our planet. Let’s look at some environmentally friendly choices for candle wax when choosing, or making a candle. 

What Kind of Wax is Best for Candles and the Environment?

The Buzz About Bees Wax Candles

Bees Wax on the Comb

One of the best candle waxes for the environment is beeswax. Beeswax is a natural wax produced by honeybees and is biodegradable and non-toxic. When burned, beeswax candles release negative ions which can help to purify the air in a room. Additionally, beeswax candles burn longer and brighter than other types of wax, making them a great value.

Benefits of Bees Wax Candles

  • Renewable resource: Beeswax is a natural wax produced by honeybees and is a renewable resource.

  • Clean burning: Beeswax candles burn cleaner than other types of wax, releasing negative ions that can purify the air in a room.

  • Longer burn time: Beeswax candles burn longer and brighter than other types of wax, making them a great value.

  • Biodegradable and non-toxic: Beeswax is biodegradable and non-toxic, making it safe for the environment and for human use.

  • Sustainably sourced: Beeswax can be sustainably sourced from well-managed sources, protecting the health of the bees and their hives.

  • Unique crystal pattern: Beeswax candles have a unique crystal pattern that can add a decorative touch to any room.

  • Natural honey scent: The mild sweet honey scent of unbleached yellow beeswax is perfect for a relaxing evening by candlelight.

  • Supports artisans: Beeswax candles can be made by artisans, supporting the livelihoods of small communities.

  • Great for aromatherapy: The negative ions released when burning beeswax candles can help to purify the air, making them a great option for aromatherapy.

  • Eco-friendly: Beeswax candles are made from a natural, renewable resource and burn cleanly, making them an environmentally friendly option.

Soy Wax Candles, Soy What?

Another environmentally-friendly candle wax option is soy wax. Soy wax is made from soybeans, a renewable resource that is biodegradable and non-toxic. Soy wax candles burn cleaner than paraffin wax candles, and they do not produce any soot or harmful chemicals when burned. Soy wax candles also have a longer burn time than paraffin wax candles.

Benefits of Soy Wax Candles

  • Soy is a renewable resource: Soy wax is made from soybeans, which are a renewable resource and can be locally sourced.
  • Clean burning: Soy wax candles burn cleaner and do not release harmful chemicals into the air compared to paraffin wax candles.
  • Longer burn time: Soy wax candles have a longer burn time than paraffin wax candles.
  • Biodegradable and non-toxic: Soy wax is biodegradable and non-toxic, making it a safer and more environmentally friendly option.
  • Easy to clean up: Soy wax is easy to clean up with soap and water.
  • North American grown: Soybeans are grown in both the U.S. and Canada, supporting local farmers and adhering to agricultural guidelines.
  • Veggie-based: Soy wax is made with vegetable-based ingredients, which makes it a option when looking for a natural and organic wax. 
  • Cooler burn: Soy wax burns at a cooler temperature than other types of wax, reducing the risks of some higher temperature waxes.
  • Pours well in container candles: It does a great job holding fragrance and color and has a good adhesion to glass – making it a perfect partner for jar candles, like ours!
  • Eco-friendly: Soy wax is considered more sustainable and environmentally friendly  than paraffin wax. It’s also biodegradable and does not release harmful chemicals like carcinogens when burning.

The Sojourn Company are made with local quality Soy Wax. Check them out!

Palm Wax Candles

Palm wax is also a great option for eco-conscious consumers. It is produced from the oil of the fruit of oil palms, which is a sustainable and renewable resource. Palm wax candles have a unique crystal pattern and they burn longer and cleaner than paraffin candles.

Finally, there are also some new options like Rapeseed or Canola wax which are made from oilseed crops grown in Europe and are also considered environmentally friendly.

When choosing a candle wax, it is important to consider the environmental impact of the materials used to make it. By choosing eco-friendly options such as beeswax, soy wax, and palm wax, consumers can enjoy the ambiance and fragrance of candles while also reducing their impact on the environment.

Benefits of Palm Wax Candles

  • Stronger scent throw: Palm wax candles hold fragrance oils better, so they have a stronger scent throw.

  • Better for sensitive skin: Palm wax candles are hypoallergenic and free of chemical additives, making them better for people with sensitive skin.

  • Biodegradable: palm wax is a natural, biodegradable product made from the fruit of the oil palm tree.

  • Versatility: Palm wax can be used to make a variety of different candle types, including pillars, votives, and tapers.

  • Sustainability: The oil palm tree, which is the source of palm wax, is a highly sustainable crop that can be grown on land that is not suitable for food crops.

What's the Ecological Impact of a Candle?

When considering the eco impact of a candle, there are a few factors to keep in mind before lighting up. The most commonly used candle wax is paraffin wax, which is derived from non-renewable fossil fuels like coal and oil. When burned, paraffin wax candles release harmful chemicals into the air, such as benzene and toluene, which can negatively affect human health.

The process of extracting and refining fossil fuels to make paraffin wax can also be harmful to the environment.

Another problem with traditional candle waxes is the use of synthetic fragrances, which can contain potentially harmful chemicals such as phthalates, which can be toxic to human health.

In addition to the environmental impact of the materials used to make candles, their production and disposal also has an impact. Many candles are packaged in plastic or other non-recyclable materials, and when they are disposed of, they can end up in landfills where they will not degrade for hundreds of years.

The Imporatance of Locally Sourcing When Possible

Locally sourcing ingredients for candles is important for several reasons:

Environmental sustainability: By sourcing ingredients locally, candles manufacturers can reduce the carbon footprint associated with transporting ingredients from faraway places. This can help to minimize the environmental impact of the production process.

Economic impact: Buying ingredients from local suppliers can help to support the local economy by keeping money circulating within the community. This can help to create jobs and stimulate economic growth. Quality control: When ingredients are sourced locally, manufacturers have the opportunity to visit the farms or suppliers and inspect the quality of the ingredients. This can ensure that the ingredients used in the candles are of the highest quality.

Community engagement: Sourcing ingredients locally allows manufacturers to build relationships with their suppliers and the local community. This can foster a sense of community engagement and support for the business.

Traceability: Sourcing ingredients locally allows manufacturers to trace the origin of the ingredients, ensuring their authenticity and quality and reducing the risk of fraud.

Seasonal availability: Locally sourcing ingredients can also allow manufacturers to take advantage of seasonal ingredients, creating unique and special candles that reflect the change of the seasons. Reduced dependency on imports: Locally sourcing ingredients reduces the dependency on imports and make the business more resilient to changes in global markets.

What to look for When Choosing a Candle

When choosing your next candle, we suggest using eco-friendly candles made from sustainable and renewable resources such as soy wax, coconut wax, and beeswax.

These types of waxes burn cleaner, are biodegradable, non-toxic, and support American farmers. The article also mentions the importance of choosing fragrances that are free of unhealthy ingredients and avoiding the use of dyes and fragrance enhancers.

Here at the Sojourn Company, we source North American Soy Wax for our collection of nature inspired candles. Our goal is to offer candles that will transport your senses back to nature, while causing a minimal impact to our planet. try them out – we think you’ll love them as much as we do.