A lot of effort can go into choosing the right kind of wax for your candle, since there are relative advantages and disadvantages to each. When making candles for long-term use, I prefer to use waxes that are longer burning, since long-lasting candle waxes produce less waste. But what are the best waxes to use to make longer lasting candles?
Beeswax is the longest lasting candle wax. Beeswax lasts up to 14% longer than the next longest-burning candle wax, which is soy wax.
These are the Top 5 longest lasting candle waxes:
- Soy Wax
- Coconut Wax
- Stearin Wax
Here is a chart I made that shows the burn times and relative costs of different waxes you can use in your candles along with their costs per pound to help you decide which wax is best for your long-lasting candles.
|Wax Type||Burn Length, 4-oz Candle, Single Wick, in Hours||Cost per Pound, in Dollars|
When it comes to the many candle waxes you can use in your candle, beeswax is a great choice for two reasons. First, it is the longest lasting of all the candle waxes. Second, this all-natural candle wax comes with a great scent all on its own, meaning you don’t have to add oils to your wax to achieve a pleasing aroma.
What is Beeswax?
Beeswax is just what it sounds like: bees’ wax. Normally beeswax is produced straight from the abdomen of worker bees. Beeswax naturally comes in different colors, depending on which part of the hive it’s from. You can see some of the different shades in the candles offered for sale at Beeswax Candle Company.
How Long Does Beeswax Burn?
Compared with paraffin wax, beeswax burns almost twice as long. You’ll get a burn life of up to 29 hours from a 4-ounce, single-wick beeswax candle versus 15 hours from a paraffin candle.
Comparative Cost of Beeswax
With all its advantages, you would think beeswax would be as expensive as liquid gold. It isn’t and usually can be obtained for only around $12 per pound. Each pound can make around four medium sized candles. I use beeswax in a lot of my candles, especially when I plan to give them as gifts.
Soy wax is the second-longest lasting candle wax. In addition to being long-lasting, it is also exceptionally clean burning, and the perfect choice when you don’t want a lot of soot flying around your house as you are burning your candle.
What is Soy Wax?
As its name suggests, soy wax is made from soybeans. This means it is a completely sustainable and renewable wax source. In order to become soy wax, the beans do go through some all-natural processing. After processing, they are hydrogenated, and soy wax is born!
How Long Does Soy Wax Burn?
With a 25-hour burn time per 4-ounce candle, soy wax burns almost the same length of time as beeswax. This makes soy wax the second-longest burning wax.
Comparative Cost of Soy Wax
While it burns almost the same length of time as beeswax, soy wax is only a third of the cost, as low as $4 per pound. The low cost of soy wax— along with its sustainability, clean-burning properties, and the fact that it is a great aroma carrier— is what makes soy wax my go-to candle wax.
Coconut wax is another viable choice when it comes to making long-lasting candles. Be aware, however, that coconut wax is very soft. It will usually need to be blended with another type of wax to make a viable candle. Candles and Supplies has a great selection of different coconut candle wax blends.
What is Coconut Wax?
Coconut wax is another all-natural vegetable-based wax, and it is made through a process of hydrogenation, like soy wax. The advantage of coconut wax in comparison to other waxes is the fact that it is the cleanest burning of all the waxes, producing even less soot than soy wax. It also has an excellent “scent-throw” or ability to conduct the fragrances you add to your candle through the air.
How Long Does Coconut Wax Burn?
Most blends made with coconut wax will deliver a burn time of around 20 hours per 4-ounce candle.
Comparative Cost of Coconut Wax?
The clean-burning awesomeness of coconut wax does not come cheaply, however, and it will set you back approximately $10 for a pound of pure coconut wax. Remember you should not use coconut wax alone for your candle, since it is too soft, so you need to pair it with another wax. You can buy coconut wax that is pre-blended with soy wax for around $5 per pound.
Stearin wax is made from a combination of plant and animal fats, so it is also considered sustainable and renewable. What distinguishes stearin wax is the fact that as it burns, it produces the least amount of carbine dioxide emissions in comparison to all the other candle waxes.
What is Stearin Wax?
Stearic acid is a hardening agent that can be added to a variety of materials to make a hard wax, so be aware that the exact content of stearin waxes may vary. The burn times and cost of stearin wax cited in this article are based on industry averages but include various formulations.
How Long Does Stearin Wax Burn?
Like with coconut wax, specific blends may vary slightly, but on average stearin wax blends will net you around 18 hours of burn time per 4-ounce candle, making it one of the Top Five longest-lasting candle waxes.
Comparative Cost of Stearin Wax?
You can buy stearic acid on its own to blend with other waxes for around $10 per pound. Commonly, however, is sold already premixed with waxes, such as soy wax and paraffin wax. You can buy “slow melt” paraffin wax-stearic acid combinations for around $4 per pound.
On its own, paraffin wax is criticized as producing a significant amount of soot as it burns. However, it does have an advantage in terms of being the highest scent-throwing candle wax, as well as being the least expensive wax.
What is Paraffin Wax?
Paraffin wax is one of the softer waxes on the list and is a by-product of petroleum. For this reason, it is not considered an environmentally friendly, sustainable option. Besides being used in candles, it is also present in many lubricants and electrical insulation.
How Long Does Paraffin Wax Burn?
Despite being the lowest performer on the list in terms of burn time, paraffin still lasts for a respectable 15 burn hours per 4-ounce candle.
What is the Comparative Cost of Paraffin?
Cost is where paraffin wax shines. Paraffin is the cheapest of the waxes and can be purchased for around $3 per pound. I use paraffin wax in candles that I make for outdoor use. These paraffin candles are ideal for camping, as well as for storing in a car or boat in case of emergency.
How to Extend the Life of your Candle.
Using the long-lasting candle waxes on this list is not the only way to extend the life of your candles. Check out these candle hacks you can use to extend the life of any candle, no matter what wax is used.
There is a simple, inexpensive way to extend the burn life of any candle: add salt. Salt works by slowing the burn rate of your candle wax. Here are the steps to using salt to prolong the life of any candle:
- Light your candle and let the wax around the candle melt a bit. Extinguish the flame.
- Sprinkle salt into the warm, liquid wax.
- Stir the salt into the wax using a toothpick.
The next time you light the candle, the added salt will lengthen the burning time.
Freeze Candle After Each Use
For the same reason longer lasting candle waxes tend to be harder, freezing your candle will make even your soft wax candles burn longer. Make sure you leave your candle in your freezer long enough to freeze it all the way to the core for the longest burning experience.
Trim Your Wick
Did you know that the shorter you keep your wick, the longer your candle will burn? It’s an old trick, recently fallen out of fashion, but if trim your wick before each use, you will find that the resulting smaller flame will consume the wax in your candle more slowly, increasing the burn life of your candle.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do we put candles on birthday cakes?
Blowing out candles on cake is an ancient tradition, dating back to the Greeks, who did it as a tribute to moon Goddess Artemis. Candles were eventually placed on birthday cakes to ward off evil spirits, which were said to visit people on birthdays.
What is the longest burning candle in history?
Believe it or not, the world record for longest burning candle has been around since 1897. It was 127 feet tall and featured in the 1897 World’s Fair in Stockholm, Sweden.
Looking to start your own candle making business, check out my startup documents here
Please note that the contents of this blog are for informational and entertainment purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Any action taken based on the information provided in this blog is solely at your own risk. Additionally, all images used in this blog are generated under the CC0 license of Creative Commons, which means they are free to use for any purpose without attribution.
Meet Shawn Chun: Entrepreneur and Candle Business Fan.
I’m a happy individual who happens to be an entrepreneur. I have owned several types of businesses in my life from a coffee shop to an import and export business to an online review business plus a few more and now I create online candle business resources for those interested in starting new ventures. It’s demanding work but I love it. I do it for those passionate about their business and their goals. That’s why when I meet a candle business owner at a craft fair, farmers market, retail location or anywhere else I see myself. I know how hard the struggle is to obtain and retain clients, finding good employees all while trying to stay competitive. That’s why I created Candle Business Boss: I want to help candle business owners like you build a thriving business that brings you endless joy and supports your ideal lifestyle.