Beeswax in Candle Making
Beeswax is a natural wax produced by honey bees in their hives. The female worker bees make this wax to build honeycomb cells for three reasons: to raise their young, store honey, and pollen. It takes eight times the amount of raw honey consumed to create the wax. It is estimated that bees fly 150,000 miles to make one pound of beeswax.
The color of the wax varies depending on the type of flower collected by the bees, ranging from white to brown, with yellow being the most common. The color of beeswax begins white and gradually darkens with age and use. It is especially true if it is used to raise young bees. The hue has no significance as to the quality of the wax. Previously, beeswax was bleached with ozonization, sulphuric acid, or hydrogen peroxide, introducing chemicals into the wax. Nowadays, reputable candle manufacturers and other natural wax suppliers have stopped bleaching their products.
Applications of Beeswax
60% of beeswax is used to make candles, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals. It is also used as a protective coating for aging cheese and polishing materials for shoes, furniture, models, and pool table fillers. Vegetable oil can soften beeswax and make it more workable.
The most vital aspect of beeswax candles, besides their naturalness, is that they burn brighter, longer, and cleaner than any other candle! The flame virtually emits the same light spectrum as the sun, and in burning, negative ions are released, to clean the air and invigorate the body. Negative ions are what the air smells like after a storm.
The honey and nectar of flowers packed into the honeycombs naturally scent this 100% natural fuel created by bees and give off a subtle fragrance as it burns. If the beeswax smells medicinal, it has likely been bleached or chemically altered. Always look for 100 percent beeswax, as the legalities of labeling these candles state that a mere 55 percent content can be called beeswax, and a minimum of 20 percent soy wax can be called soy.
Paraffin Wax in Candle Making
Paraffin wax was the most common wax used in candle making. Mineral oil, also known as liquid paraffin, is used for a wide range of cosmetic and medical purposes. It is a white semi-transparent hard wax that can be used in a wide range of candle-making applications.
Paraffin wax is not sticky like beeswax and releases well from most molds. It burns faster than beeswax and has no scent. Paraffin has different melting points, so it is vital to purchase the correct melting point for the type of candle you are making.
Beeswax v/s Paraffin Wax :
Beeswax is a natural fuel produced entirely by bees.
Beeswax burns cleaner than any other.
– It burns for a longer time and does not drip.
– emits a bright light with a spectrum similar to that of the sun,
– emits negative ions, which clean the air and energize the body.
– The honey and flower nectar packed into the honeycomb within the beehive give it a natural scent.
– comes from a renewable resource.
Petroleum, also known as crude oil, is used to make paraffin candles, which are made from a nonrenewable resource.
– Many of the same toxic fumes found in the auto exhaust are
– are relatively short-burning and dripping excessively,
– is a hazardous byproduct of the oil and gas industry.
– produce a disorganized light spectrum similar to that of traditional incandescent bulbs.
– Toxic petrol soot is produced, which stains all interior surfaces over time.
– Typically, they contain artificial fragrances and colors, which also produce toxins and stains when burned.
The wick is just as important as the wax type. When you burn a chemically processed or metallically reinforced wick, large amounts of soot are released, into the air, you breathe, potentially causing health problems. Bleach, petroleum products, lead, and zinc are among the metals and chemicals found in these wicks, and they are released into the air for you to inhale.
Also, look for 100% unbleached cotton wicks. Drag or rub the wick on a white paper to see how it reacts. Any metal that makes contact with the white paper leaves a mark.
Beeswax is often used in soap making as well. Put the wax in with the oils at the beginning, as this natural wax has a high melting point and may not fully melt if added at a trace. Typically, this wax is added to soap to increase the hardness of the final bars. The scent of honey is a bonus! To your total of oils and fats, add only 1.5 % wax. Too much wax could make it sticky and gummy.