The Ultimate Candle Making Guide to Beeswax


Beeswax candles are made from the wax of honeybees. Beeswax is a natural product with many benefits. It is environmentally friendly and non-toxic. Beeswax candles burn cleaner than other candles, producing little to no soot. They also emit a subtle, sweet honey scent while burning.

Beeswax candles are often used in aromatherapy because they hold fragrance oil well. They can also be used for massage, as the wax is believed to have therapeutic properties. Beeswax candles are available in various colours, though the most common are yellow and white.

This article will discuss the benefits of beeswax candles, how to choose the right ones, and tips for making your beeswax candles. Let’s dive in!

What is Beeswax?

Beeswax is a natural wax that is produced by bees. It is a renewable resource and is non-toxic, making it a more environmentally friendly choice than paraffin wax. Beeswax is also hypoallergenic and burns cleanly, producing little to no soot.

How is Beeswax Made?

Beeswax is made by worker bees, who have eight pairs of special wax-secreting glands on the undersides of their abdomens. From these glands, they secrete liquified wax, which hardens into thin scales when exposed to oxygen and saliva from the worker bee. This task falls to the younger worker bees within the colony, as these glands shrink and decay with age.

A healthy worker bee can produce eight scales of wax every 12 hours at the height of its production. One thousand wax scales are required to produce one gram of beeswax. Once the hive has made enough wax, the wax needs to be extracted through five steps:

  1. Draining – the beeswax is drained from the honeycomb by tipping it over and allowing the wax to drip out.
  2. Cleaning – the wax is then cleaned by being strained through a honey strainer.
  3. Melting – the wax is then melted in a double boiler.
  4. Refining – after this, the wax is further refined to remove any impurities through cheesecloth or a similar straining device.
  5. Setting – the wax is then left to set and cure. Once finished, the wax is broken into wax shards or left in slab form for sale.

What are the properties of Beeswax?

Beeswax has several distinct properties that we reviewed across several candle wax samples. In the tables below, you will find all the information you need to get started with Beeswax and how this will impact your candle wax blend.

If you want to learn more about how Beeswax stacks up against other candle waxes, we encourage you to look at our candle wax blending guide and temperature management guide.

Melting Point in Fahrenheit (°F)Melting Point in Celsius (°C)
144 to 14962 to 65
Melting Point in Fahrenheit (°F)At what ambient temperature is the candle at risk of melting? (°F)How long can you leave the candle before it melts? (Minutes)
144 to 14993+60+
Flash Point in Fahrenheit (°F)Flash Point in Celsius (°C)
400204
Add Fragrance Oil at Fahrenheit (°F)Add Fragrance Oil at Celsius (°C)
150 to 16066 to 71
Add Essential Oil at Fahrenheit (°F)Add Essential Oil at Celsius (°C)
15870
Pour Wax at Fahrenheit (°F)Pour Wax at Celsius (°C)
16071
Suggested Cure Time
7 to 10 days
Properties
Soft (1) or Hard (10)High (10) or Low (1) CostMelting Point (°F)Finish
67120 to 180Yellow, Honey, Velvet
Properties
Strong (10) or Weak Hot Throw (1)Fragrance Oil Blending EaseSculptureBurn Time
4377
Common Issues
Ethical Issues, Expensive, Blooming
Added Benefits
Natural Honey Scent, Subtle Scent, Unique Natural Colour

What are the pros and cons of Beeswax?

Beeswax is another popular choice for candles, as it is also renewable and environmentally friendly. Beeswax comes from It has a higher melting point than most soy waxes, making it easier to work with, but getting the desired results can still be tricky. Beeswax candles also produce a pleasant honey scent when burned.

Benefits of Beeswax

Renewable resources – soy wax and beeswax are renewable resources. Beeswax is made by honeybees and can be collected without harming the bees.

Environmentally friendly – another benefit of beeswax is that it is environmentally friendly. It is a natural product that does not require the use of pesticides or other harmful chemicals.

Natural honey scent – beeswax candles also have a natural honey scent that appeals to many people.

Non-toxic – beeswax is also non-toxic, making it a safe choice for your home and family.

Burns cleanly – beeswax candles also burn cleanly, producing little to no soot.

Longer and slower burn – beeswax candles have a longer and slower burn time.

Drawbacks of Beeswax

More expensive – one of the potential drawbacks of beeswax is that it is more costly than soy wax and paraffin wax.

Beeswax will burn quicker – another potential drawback of beeswax is that it may burn faster than soy and paraffin wax alternatives.

Limited fragrance oil choice – the fragrance oil you choose must pair with honey because of the base scent. This can limit your options when compared to soy and paraffin wax candles.

Unethical Practices – Unfortunately, some beekeepers harvest beeswax using unethical practices. This includes using harmful chemicals and pesticides that can harm the bees. Make sure to do your research to find a beekeeper that does not use these practices.

How do I choose the right Beeswax for my candles?

Now that you know more about beeswax, you may be wondering how to choose the right beeswax for your candles. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Scent – as mentioned earlier, the fragrance oil you choose must pair with honey because of the base scent. This can limit your options when compared to soy and paraffin wax candles.

Colour – beeswax is available in various colours, from white to golden yellow. The colour of the wax will not affect the smell or burn time of the candle.

Price – as beeswax is more expensive than soy wax and paraffin wax, you may want to consider this when choosing the right beeswax for your candles.

Unethical Practices – as mentioned earlier, some beekeepers harvest beeswax using unethical practices. This includes using harmful chemicals and pesticides that can harm the bees. Make sure to do your research to find a beekeeper that does not use these practices.

Now that you know more about beeswax and how to choose the right beeswax for your candles, you can get started on making your own beeswax candles!

Sustainability of Beeswax

Is Beeswax sustainable?

Beeswax is a sustainable product as it comes from honeybees and can be collected without harming the bees. Furthermore, beeswax is biodegradable and will not pollute the environment.

Does beeswax harm bees?

Some beekeepers harvest beeswax using unethical practices. This includes using harmful chemicals and pesticides that can harm the bees. They may also not provide balance in their beeswax harvesting to protect the bees from the elements. Make sure to do your research to find a beekeeper that does not use these practices.

There have also been cases where beeswax has been harvested with no care and consideration for the bees. In some cases, many bees die due to no care being taken during extraction, with profit being the sole focus during the extraction process. A balanced method of beekeeping provides an approach that emphasises the welfare of the bees. If your source is local, you can visit and understand how the beeswax is extracted and whether this is a suitable candle wax for you.

If not, we suggest you try alternative waxes such as paraffin and soy. Be sure to check out our articles reviewing soy and paraffin waxes in detail to understand further sustainability issues with these waxes. This will allow you to make an educated decision.

Is Beeswax vegan?

Beeswax is not vegan as honeybees make it. However, there are vegan alternatives to beeswax, such as soy wax and paraffin wax.

What is the carbon footprint of beeswax?

The carbon footprint of beeswax is low as it is a natural product that does not require pesticides or other harmful chemicals. Furthermore, beeswax is biodegradable and will not pollute the environment. To ensure that you keep the carbon footprint low – aim to source your beeswax from local suppliers to cut down on carbon released from transportation methods.

How to make a beeswax candle?

Now that you know more about beeswax and how to choose the right beeswax for your candles, you can get started on making your beeswax candles! Here is a simple recipe to get you started:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of beeswax pellets
  • 1/4 cup of coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 10 drops of essential oil (optional)
  • Wick
  • Candle jar

Instructions:

1. Start by melting the beeswax and coconut oil together. You can do this in a double boiler or the microwave. If you use the microwave, heat the beeswax and coconut oil in 30-second increments, stirring in between.

2. Once the beeswax and coconut oil is melted, add the honey and essential oil (if used) and stir until combined.

3. Next, prepare your candle jar by adding the wick. You can do this by threading the wick through a wick holder and then placing it in the centre of the jar. Alternatively, you can glue the wick to the bottom of the jar.

4. Once the wick is in place, carefully pour the beeswax mixture into the jar, being careful not to splash any on yourself.

5. Allow the candle to cool and harden for several hours before trimming the wick and lighting the candle.

And there you have it – your very own beeswax candle!

Frequently Asked Questions – Beeswax

Does beeswax expire?

Beeswax does not expire. As time passes, a white powder will form outside the wax; this is nothing to worry about. You can remove this white powder by melting the wax. Ensure you store your wax in a sealed container to protect it from the elements.

How do I store beeswax?

Beeswax should be stored in a cool, dark place. We recommend keeping it in an airtight container to protect it from the elements.

How long do beeswax candles burn?

Beeswax candles will burn for longer than soy and paraffin candles. On average, a beeswax candle will burn for around 20 hours. This makes them an excellent choice for use around the home.

How long should you burn a beeswax candle for?

Do not leave a burning candle unattended. We recommend burning your beeswax candles for around 4 hours at a time to get the most out of them.

Final Thoughts

We hope this guide helped teach you everything you need to know about beeswax candles – from the benefits to how to make your own! Beeswax candles make a great addition to any home, and they make lovely gifts as well. With this guide, you should be well on your way to making your very own beeswax candles!

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