There are three common types of wax used in making candles: paraffin wax, soy wax, and beeswax. Of these three options, the paraffin type is the least popular because of the health hazard it poses.
So, that leaves us with two better options: soy wax candles and beeswax candles.
So, with soy versus beeswax candles, which is better?
Well, beeswax candles trump soy wax candles in various ways. Hence, they are better than soy candles.
Beeswax candles are more ecofriendly, more fragrant, and more medicinal. However, soy wax candles are the cheaper option.
You should know that while beeswax and soy wax candles are different in some ways, they also have their similarities. A run through the differences and similarities of these two types of candles can guide your choice between them.
Soy vs. Beeswax Candles, Which Is Better?
Both soy wax candles and beeswax candles are better than paraffin candles. But when compared to each other, beeswax candles are better than soy candles. We give some reasons for this position below:
Beeswax Candles Are More Eco-friendly
Beeswax, which is a natural by-product of bees, appears to be more eco-friendly than soy wax.
Soy wax is biodegradable, renewable, and healthier than paraffin. However, it has been linked to deforestation due to increased demand for soy products, with the Amazon rainforest being one of the top victims.
Besides, in growing soybeans, farmers may use pesticides and herbicides on the farm. These chemicals can be harmful to the environment.
But beeswax, which is also biodegradable, natural, and non-hazardous, is a by-product of bees. Bees use it in building their comb, and they produce it regularly. So, there is really no harm from the use of beeswax on the environment.
Beeswax Candles Are Somewhat Medicinal
Beeswax candles offer some medicinal properties, especially for allergies. They are said to be useful in reducing allergies, hay fever, and asthma.
Soy wax candles, on the other hand, may trigger allergies in some people. This is even more likely when the soy wax is impure. Soy wax candles also produce some soot, albeit significantly less than that produced by paraffin candles.
Beeswax Candles Are Naturally Scented, Soy Candles Are Not
Another thing is beeswax candles are naturally scented. They come with their own fragrance. For soy candles, they need scents added to them to be fragrant.
Beeswax Candles Last Longer
Between both types of candles, beeswax candles last longer. They are denser than soy candles and therefore burn for longer.
Beeswax Candles Can Withstand Higher Temperatures
Beeswax candles can withstand higher temperatures than soy candles. Beeswax has a higher melting point than soy wax, hence, the heat tolerance seen in beeswax candles.
Sometimes beeswax candles and soy candles are mixed with some paraffin.
However, 100% beeswax candles will have no paraffin, while 100% soy candles may still have some paraffin. This is possible because paraffin is sometimes used in the treatment of soy candles.
Which Is Safer?
Going by the information above, it is clear that beeswax candles are somewhat safer than soy candles.
Differences and Similarities Between Beeswax Candles and Soy Candles
We know we said beeswax candles are better than soy candles. But do not just take our word for it, do your own analysis.
To guide your choice, we have listed those and other differences and similarities between both types of candles.
They Are Both Ecofriendly
Beeswax candles and soy candles are both biodegradable, renewable, non-carcinogenic, and non-toxic. At least more so than paraffin candles.
They Both Burn Longer Than Paraffin Candles
Beeswax candles and soy candles burn longer than paraffin candles. However, the conditions that favor longer burning in both types differ.
Soy candles burn at lower temperatures, and they burn slower than paraffin candles. Hence, the difference in longevity.
Beeswax candles are very dense and have a higher melting point. This is why they will burn longer than both soy and paraffin products. They also drip less than paraffin candles.
They Are Both Good for Your Skin
Soy candles and beeswax candles are both beneficial for the skin. They both help improve the skin, albeit in different ways.
Beeswax candles are thought to fight skin bacteria, heal the skin, and make it softer. Soy candles, on the other hand, help to moisturize the skin.
Which Is Better for the Environment?
While both are eco-friendly, beeswax candles are better for the environment than soy candles. The demand for soy wax has been linked to deforestation in some regions of the world.
Most commercially grown soybeans are genetically modified to be resistant to herbicides and pesticides to aid in their cultivation. Consequently, in producing them, they are sometimes sprayed with toxic pesticides or herbicides.
Which Has More Paraffin?
Some brands of beeswax candles and soy candles contain a percentage of paraffin. If it is not expressly stated that what you have is 100% beeswax or 100% soy, then there is a chance that it contains some paraffin.
When you have 100% beeswax, you can be sure that there is no paraffin. However, 100% soy candle may contain some paraffin. This happens because paraffin is sometimes used in the manufacturing process of soy candles.
The Type of Flame They Produce
There is a difference in the color and warmth of the flame produced by beeswax candles and soy candles.
They are closer to what you perceive from fluorescent light.
Beeswax candles, on the other hand, produce flames with a more natural color. The flames are also warmer than those from soy candles.
As one would expect, beeswax candles are honey-colored. Soy candles, on the other hand, need dyes to be colored. In some cases, the added dyes may be harmful.
Which Is Better for Your Skin?
If you consider how hot the wax will be on the skin, then soy candles are better. Since soy candles have a lower melting point, they do not get as hot as beeswax candles. They will not be as hot as beeswax candles when they touch the skin.
But when you consider safety, beeswax might be safer than soy candles. Soy candles sometimes come with added scents. When the wax from these scented soy candles touches the skin, it may trigger some health issues.
It may cause rashes, breathing difficulty, and even a headache. In some cases, it may even cause skin issues like eczema.
Which Is Better for Dogs?
In most cases, beeswax candles are better for dogs. Scented candles and candles containing some paraffin are bad for dogs. Since beeswax candles are naturally scented, they would pose no issue for dogs.
But soy candles are sometimes scented, so they could cause issues for dogs. Sometimes, they also contain some paraffin, which is bad for dogs.
In the absence of scents, paraffin, and other similar additives, beeswax candles and soy candles are both okay for dogs.
No matter which type of candle you use, you should monitor your dog’s reaction to it. If your dog reacts badly to your candle, you should stop burning and change it.
Which Is Good for Allergies?
It is said that beeswax candles are good for alleviating allergies. When burning, they release negative ions into the air, and these ions neutralize positively charged allergens.
On the contrary, soy candles might trigger one’s allergies. This is even more likely if the soy wax is impure or contains additives such as scents and paraffin.
Which Is Better for a Longer Burn?
If you are considering how long you have to burn your candle, then beeswax candles will burn longer. Beeswax candles are denser than soy candles.
They also have higher melting points and do not drip as much as soy candles. For these reasons, they burn longer.
Besides, because of their high melting point, beeswax candles are more suitable for various weather conditions.
Soy candles, on the other hand, have a relatively low melting point. Although they burn slowly, they may not last as long as beeswax candles.
Which Is Good for Asthma?
As the case is with allergies, so it is with asthma. Beeswax candles are good for asthma.
The negative ions they release into the air while burning purifies it. In essence, allergens and pollutants that can trigger asthma attacks are removed.
On the flip side, soy candles may trigger asthma attacks. This is likely if the wax is impure or mixed with specific additives. So, you should keep this in mind while buying a soy candle.
Beeswax candles are less common than soy candles. Soy is readily available, but bees need to be in top condition to produce beeswax.
As a result, beeswax candles are more expensive than soy candles.
All in all, beeswax candles offer more advantages than soy candles. They also create extra business for beekeepers.
However, they are more expensive than soy candles. So if you cannot afford beeswax candles, you can opt for soy candles. In all cases, you should keep away from paraffin candles; beeswax and soy candles are far better choices.