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Shelf life of waxes


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I'm sure shelf life has probably been discussed here before.  I saw a comment on the candlemaking board at reddit where the information is so often incorrect -- (so much so that I can barely ever read there) -- it was noted that paraffin wax has a shelf life of five years.  I always thought that if you store paraffin wax properly, it can last indefinitely.  I don't post there, but thought I'd mention it here just to share and see how the more experienced crafters feel about this.

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1 hour ago, birdcharm said:

I'm sure shelf life has probably been discussed here before.  I saw a comment on the candlemaking board at reddit where the information is so often incorrect -- (so much so that I can barely ever read there) -- it was noted that paraffin wax has a shelf life of five years.  I always thought that if you store paraffin wax properly, it can last indefinitely.  I don't post there, but thought I'd mention it here just to share and see how the more experienced crafters feel about this.

Paraffin is inert, so not sure why they think it should expire. some of that old paraffin and petrolatum is worth its weight in gold given the stuff we are stuck with now.
 

How many grannies have old gulf canning wax made half a century or more ago still sitting nice as can be in their cupboards? We probably all have crayons in a junk drawer that are several decades old and still work like new.
 

many products have dates, only because they are required to. Often all that is required is to “recertify” a batch and give a new future expiration date.
 

I can see a benefit for retailers to say it’s expired so they can sell more wax 🤷🏻‍♀️ Let them give it to us, and they can but fresh. 

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19 hours ago, TallTayl said:

Paraffin is inert, so not sure why they think it should expire. some of that old paraffin and petrolatum is worth its weight in gold given the stuff we are stuck with now.
 

How many grannies have old gulf canning wax made half a century or more ago still sitting nice as can be in their cupboards? We probably all have crayons in a junk drawer that are several decades old and still work like new.
 

many products have dates, only because they are required to. Often all that is required is to “recertify” a batch and give a new future expiration date.
 

I can see a benefit for retailers to say it’s expired so they can sell more wax 🤷🏻‍♀️ Let them give it to us, and they can but fresh. 

 

 

I agree that paraffin wax does not expire.  If it's not stored well, it could get dusty or dirty and not be usable. 

 

So now I just did a search "shelf life of paraffin wax" -- and in the search result I keep seeing this "five year" myth on the result descriptions.  Some of the sites say it does not have a shelf life, but there is definitely some sort of misinformation trend going on.  I guess if you're referring to a candle (not just the wax), it could be that the scent could weaken, but I bet a paraffin candle that's decades old will burn just fine. 

 

So, anyway ... for those of you who may have been taken in by this story of the expiring paraffin wax and think your wax is going to expire any day now ... breathe a sigh of relief ... you're fine!!

 

 

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1 hour ago, Scented said:

Man if wax expires, there's a 1950s chunk of wax we have that is still white. Now if it starts orange/yellow or grow things, I would reconsider holding on to it. 

👋🏻 Hello fellow wax hoarder. Old paraffins are the BEST.

 

 

as for dust and debris in other open cartons, a quick run through a filter catches that.  Too many retailers just drop an open slab into a carton to ship that we learned to always just melt and filter. Same with beeswax and bayberry. Oh the junk we find in wax! 

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On 7/22/2022 at 4:10 PM, TallTayl said:

👋🏻 Hello fellow wax hoarder. Old paraffins are the BEST.

 

 

as for dust and debris in other open cartons, a quick run through a filter catches that.  Too many retailers just drop an open slab into a carton to ship that we learned to always just melt and filter. Same with beeswax and bayberry. Oh the junk we find in wax! 

Good to know they aren't partial with the types of waxes lol! I need a better filtering system for sure, but I need more space too! 

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Yes, paraffin does not expire.  It can change.  The oils in it can move around and may even leach out but once they are reheated they go back together. 

 

And if it is dirty filtering is great!  Or a lot of times the junk will fall to the bottom.  To filter we use a fine mesh metal filter.  That way if it freezes we can zap it with a heat gun.

 

Also, there is an expiration date on a lot of natural waxes.  What I have been told by manufactures is that it is actually closer to 3 years but you may see 1 or 2 years on it if it was processed in a food facility.  And much of the naturals can go much longer if stored correctly.  It can also get funky looking but often when melted will be fine.

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On 7/16/2022 at 9:39 PM, birdcharm said:

I'm sure shelf life has probably been discussed here before.  I saw a comment on the candlemaking board at reddit where the information is so often incorrect -- (so much so that I can barely ever read there) -- it was noted that paraffin wax has a shelf life of five years.  I always thought that if you store paraffin wax properly, it can last indefinitely.  I don't post there, but thought I'd mention it here just to share and see how the more experienced crafters feel about this.

I think I commented on that very same post! Someone had found some stored and I think it was about 10 years old. I remember someone saying 5 years. I told them use it, it's good! I told them they can test a small amount just to make sure. Which they could to calm their nerves of any doubts. 

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