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Environmentally friendly Wax

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Hi everyone!

 

I'm new to the candle making world, and I'm trying to decide what type of wax to use. Ideally, I would like to use the most environmentally friendly wax possible, but am having a difficult time with this. When using a lot of the Soy and Coconut waxes (either 100% natural or blends), I've found that many of these waxes will still contain paraffin or other ingredients that don't fit the aesthetic of being as eco-friendly as possible. On top of that, a lot of proprietary blends do not list their ingredients, which makes sense as they are proprietary, but also gives me pause as I'm not 100% sure that there wouldn't be paraffin or palm oil in the blends. Does anyone have any recommendations on a good soy or coconut wax to use that is the most safe? We've used Ultra Wax coconut blend from General Candle, and the staple 464 that seems to be super popular, but we just don't know how eco-friendly they really are. Any recommendations or advice on what to would be extremely helpful. We don't want to mislead our customers if we're not actually using a completely eco-friendly wax like we're marketing...

 

Thanks in advance!

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Hi and welcome!

 

What wax is the most eco friendly is kind of a philosophical question. None are if you think about it.  there’s a cost to growing, harvesting, extracting, stabilizing, packaging and distributing the wax. a lot depends on where you are, and how that wax gets to you. All are about equally good and bad as far as carbon footprint and such.  In the end, paraffin is probably one of the least troubling as it is using a super cleaned, inert fraction of petroleum oil from waste that is already being produced, versus throwing it away as garbage. It is made of plants and dinosaurs so it is as “natural” as soy.
 

Palm wax gets a terrible rap thanks to the soy lobby.  It is a wonderful natural wax and is less damaging to the planet than soy. 
 

Even “natural soy” is pretty unnatural when you consider how much chemical fertilizer and Roundup is sprayed to grow it  then there’s the hexane required to extract the oil from the beans. That oil is then hydrogenated to make it into a familiar feeling, convenient wax. additives and chemicals to stabilize are required so it will hold the amount of fragrance most candle makers want to use and look pretty.  

you could use beeswax, but then bees are harmed. With colony collapse and the new Murder Hornet killing hives we are running out of options... 

 

Oh, yeah, if you are adding fragrance (including essential oils), it is not natural either, so I guess I’m saying don’t over think it. Just make a safe, clean burning candle and you’re going to achieve your goal. 

 

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This was actually a perfect answer and exactly what we were looking for. We felt like there really wasn't a right answer after doing a ton of research, so i think we just needed a gut check to make us realize we were overthinking it. Really appreciate the response and helping out a new team. I guess we just have to do our part to make sure our candles are as eco-friendly as possible with the materials available. 

 

Thank you again for the help!

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I don’t want to be disrespectful. Just giving food for thought.
 

Kind of like the natural skin care folks that will not put anything on their skin that they wouldn’t eat. I love a good ghost pepper but there’s no way I’m wiping that in my armpits or anywhere else in my skin.

 

The people that fear monger to turn me off of the competition are always 100% of the time trying to sell me something. I get resentful of that. Especially since we know many are just out for a quick buck and really don’t give one bit of care once they get our money.

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Paraffin.  It's recycled dinosaurs that wouldn't be used for anything else anyway.

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13 minutes ago, Darbla said:

Paraffin.  It's recycled dinosaurs that wouldn't be used for anything else anyway.

Some of it comes from plants so depending on your lot it might be vegan friendly. 

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49 minutes ago, TallTayl said:

Some of it comes from plants so depending on your lot it might be vegan friendly. 

 

See?  Win-win, all around.

 

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12 hours ago, TallTayl said:

Hi and welcome!

 

What wax is the most eco friendly is kind of a philosophical question. None are if you think about it.  there’s a cost to growing, harvesting, extracting, stabilizing, packaging and distributing the wax. a lot depends on where you are, and how that wax gets to you. All are about equally good and bad as far as carbon footprint and such.  In the end, paraffin is probably one of the least troubling as it is using a super cleaned, inert fraction of petroleum oil from waste that is already being produced, versus throwing it away as garbage. It is made of plants and dinosaurs so it is as “natural” as soy.
 

Palm wax gets a terrible rap thanks to the soy lobby.  It is a wonderful natural wax and is less damaging to the planet than soy. 
 

Even “natural soy” is pretty unnatural when you consider how much chemical fertilizer and Roundup is sprayed to grow it  then there’s the hexane required to extract the oil from the beans. That oil is then hydrogenated to make it into a familiar feeling, convenient wax. additives and chemicals to stabilize are required so it will hold the amount of fragrance most candle makers want to use and look pretty.  

you could use beeswax, but then bees are harmed. With colony collapse and the new Murder Hornet killing hives we are running out of options... 

 

Oh, yeah, if you are adding fragrance (including essential oils), it is not natural either, so I guess I’m saying don’t over think it. Just make a safe, clean burning candle and you’re going to achieve your goal. 

 

Thank you for your response! And thank you to the OP for the question. I am new to candle making, too. In fact, I have coco 83 coming in the mail and purchased this because I heard good things about it after initially thinking of going to 464 route. I also want to promote the most healthiest candles, too - to whatever lengths that would be. Coco 83 has been promoted as all-natural and Cal Candle Co. just informed me that it is vegan, all-natural, but not organic. I hear this wax has palm in it, but their site does not say it does. All very confusing. 

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I don't think anyone can claim their wax as "eco-friendly wax" when we put all the considerations together.  But, you still can make and market "eco-friendly candle" by using most eco-friendly ingredients & parts such as container, packaging, etc.  

 

Actually there is one real eco-friendly wax, and it is in Japan.  It is called Japanese Wax or Sumac wax used by small artisan candle makers in Japan.  They make their own wax without using any chemicals, and wax is not for sale.  

*Sumac wax that is available in US are mostly made in China with using chemical process.  Even the ones available for sale in Japan are chemically processed ones.

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On 5/7/2020 at 8:29 AM, TallTayl said:

I don’t want to be disrespectful. Just giving food for thought.
 

Kind of like the natural skin care folks that will not put anything on their skin that they wouldn’t eat. I love a good ghost pepper but there’s no way I’m wiping that in my armpits or anywhere else in my skin.

 

 

Oh come on. That would make a great Youtube video and possibly pay you a lot :D

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