A Comprehensive Guide to Soy Wax in Candles

In the enchanting world of candles, a new star has risen that combines sustainability, performance, and a touch of luxury: Soy Wax. Born from the humble soybean, soy wax has revolutionized the candle industry, offering an eco-friendly alternative that's taking the market by storm.

Whether you're a seasoned candle enthusiast or a curious novice, our comprehensive guide to soy wax in candles will illuminate everything you need to know about this remarkable material. From its unique benefits and creation process to its promising future, let's embark on a journey into the heart of soy wax candles.

Introduction to Soy Wax

Soy wax, a natural and renewable resource, has become a popular choice for candle makers and enthusiasts alike. It is a cleaner-burning, longer-lasting alternative to the traditional paraffin wax. But what exactly is soy wax, and how did it come to be a significant player in the world of candles?


soy fields

The History and Origin of Soy Wax

The story of soy wax begins not in a candle shop, but in the fields of agriculture. Soy wax was invented in the early 1990s by Michael Richards, an American candle maker on the quest for a cheaper, natural alternative to beeswax. He turned his attention to soybeans, an abundant and renewable resource, especially in the United States, which is one of the world's largest soybean producers.

Richards discovered that hydrogenating soybean oil could create a vegetable-based wax perfect for candle making. The result was a softer, lower melting point wax that burned longer and cleaner than its paraffin counterparts. Today, soy wax has become a standard in the candle-making industry, beloved for its eco-friendly properties and superior performance.

Understanding What Soy Wax Is

Soy wax is a vegetable wax derived from the oil of soybeans. After harvesting, the soybeans are cleaned, dehulled, and rolled into flakes. The oil is then extracted from these flakes and hydrogenated. During this process, the oil's fatty acids' unsaturated components are saturated, thereby solidifying the oil and transforming it into wax.


soy beans in a bowl


Soy wax is biodegradable, renewable, and burns at a lower temperature, making it last longer than traditional candle waxes. Its low melting point also means that it provides a larger liquid wax pool around the wick, which helps to disseminate fragrance more efficiently, making your living space smell wonderful for longer.

In the next sections, we'll delve into the benefits of choosing soy wax candles, as well as how soy wax stands up against other types of candle waxes. So, whether you're considering making candles, looking to switch to a cleaner alternative, or simply curious about soy wax, read on for a comprehensive understanding of this remarkable material.

The Benefits of Choosing Soy Wax Candles

Soy wax candles have been gaining popularity, and for a good reason. They offer several unique advantages over traditional paraffin candles in terms of environmental impact, health benefits, and overall performance.

It's also important to note that soy wax has also found a home in wax melts for all the same reasons as with candles. So let’s dive into why choosing soy wax can be a beneficial decision.

Environmental Advantages of Soy Wax

Soy wax is derived from soybeans, a renewable resource. Unlike paraffin, which is refined from crude oil, the production of soy wax has a smaller carbon footprint and contributes less to global warming. Furthermore, soy candles are biodegradable and easy to clean up with soap and water, making them an environmentally friendly choice in every sense.

Soy wax candles also burn cleaner than paraffin, producing significantly less soot. This means that they don't release harmful carcinogens into the air or leave unsightly black soot stains on your walls and furniture.


soy wax flakes on a table

Health Benefits of Soy Wax Candles

In addition to being better for our planet, soy wax candles are also better for you. Paraffin candles often contain toxins and can release harmful chemicals when burned. On the other hand, soy wax is a healthier option as it burns cleaner and produces 90% less soot than paraffin, reducing the risk of allergies or asthma issues.

The Performance of Soy Wax Candles

When it comes to performance, soy wax outshines its competition. Due to its lower melting point, soy wax provides a slower, cooler burn that lasts up to 50% longer than paraffin candles. This means more bang for your buck and longer-lasting fragrance.

Speaking of fragrance, soy wax has good scent-throwing abilities, although not as good as paraffin, or coconut waxes.

In conclusion, soy wax candles offer an array of benefits that make them a superior choice for candle lovers. They're environmentally friendly, healthier, and provide a great value for your money. Whether you're a candle-maker or a candle lover, the advantages of choosing soy wax are clear.

Most Popular Wicks Used In Soy Candles

The wick is the heart of the candle, determining how well it burns and how its fragrance diffuses. Choosing the right wick for your soy candle can significantly enhance its performance. With a variety of candle wicks available on the market, it can be challenging to know which one is the best fit for your soy candle. Based on popular usage and recommendations, here are some of the most commonly used wicks in soy candles.

Ultra Core Wicks

Ultra Core Wicks are versatile and work well in virtually any wax, including soy. They are known for their consistent burn and minimal mushrooming, making them a popular choice for many candle makers.

Eco Wicks

Eco Wicks are another great option for soy candles. These coreless, cotton flat wicks are interlaced, ensuring an even burn. They are designed specifically for natural waxes, with soy wax being one of the best matches.

Wooden Wicks

Wooden wicks have gained popularity due to the crackling sound they make when burning, mimicking the feel of a cozy fireplace. They are suitable for all types of candles, including soy. When used in pure soy candles, it's recommended to use large or extra-large wooden wicks for optimal performance.

HTP Wicks

HTP (High Tensile Paper) wicks are highly versatile and can be used in both paraffin and soy waxes. These wicks are constructed from two plied threads that provide a high rate of capillary action and a controlled curling of the wick. This makes HTP wicks self-trimming, which results in a cleaner burn.

CD Wicks

CD wicks are also a good fit for soy candles. They are made from cotton with a paper core and provide a consistent burn, which makes them suitable for larger diameter candles.

Comparing Soy Candle Wax with Other Waxes

When it comes to candle making, the type of wax you choose can significantly impact the overall quality and performance of your candles. Let's compare soy candle wax with other popular types of wax: beeswax, paraffin wax, and coconut wax.

Soy Wax vs. Beeswax

Beeswax is a natural wax produced by honey bees and has been used for centuries in candle making. It burns slowly and brightly, and it also purifies the air by releasing negative ions. However, beeswax is typically more expensive than soy wax due to its production process.

Soy wax, on the other hand, is a plant-based option that is biodegradable and renewable. It burns cleaner and longer than beeswax. While it doesn't release negative ions like beeswax, it doesn't produce harmful byproducts when burned either.

Soy Wax vs. Paraffin Wax

Paraffin wax is a petroleum byproduct and is the most commonly used wax in commercial candle making because it's cheap and readily available. However, paraffin wax can release harmful toxins when burned, and it also produces a significant amount of soot.

Soy wax is a healthier alternative as it is non-toxic and produces minimal soot. It also burns up to 50% longer than paraffin wax, making it a cost-effective choice in the long run despite being slightly more expensive upfront.

Soy Wax vs. Coconut Wax

Coconut wax is another natural, eco-friendly wax derived from the oil of coconuts. It has a creamy white appearance and excellent scent throw. However, coconut wax is often more expensive than other types of wax due to its high oil content and the cost of raw materials.

Soy wax, while not as luxurious as coconut wax, is more affordable and still offers a great scent throw. It also burns slower than coconut wax, extending the life of your candle.

Many people have started blending coconut and soy waxes. These coconut soy candles are gaining in popularity because they offer the strengths of each individual wax with no downside.

While each type of wax has its own unique advantages, soy wax stands out as an environmentally friendly, healthy, and cost-effective choice for candle making.

Conclusion: Why Soy Wax is the Future of Candle Making

As we move towards a more sustainable and health-conscious society, soy wax has emerged as a frontrunner in the candle making industry. With its myriad benefits and growing popularity, it is poised to shape the future of candle making.

soy wax and other natural components

The Growing Popularity of Soy Wax Candles

Soy wax candles have gained significant traction over the last few years. Consumers are becoming more aware of the benefits that soy wax offers over traditional waxes like paraffin. Its eco-friendly nature, coupled with its ability to burn cleaner and longer, has made it a favorite among candle enthusiasts. Moreover, the excellent scent throw of soy wax allows for a more enjoyable and aromatic experience, further increasing its appeal.

The Future of Soy Wax in the Candle Industry

Looking ahead, the future of soy wax in the candle industry appears bright. As consumers continue to prioritize sustainability and health, the demand for soy wax candles is expected to rise. Furthermore, advancements in soy wax production and formulation are likely to enhance its performance and make it even more cost-effective.

In addition, soy wax's versatility opens up exciting possibilities for innovation in the candle industry. From exploring new scent combinations to developing unique candle designs, the potential for soy wax is vast.

In conclusion, soy wax is not just a trend; it represents a shift towards healthier and more sustainable living. With its growing popularity and promising future, soy wax is undoubtedly part of the future of scented candles.