Are You Confused about What might be the Best 'Natural' Candle?

Are You Confused about What might be the Best 'Natural' Candle?

Mar 12, 2014 By Pat Cattermole

beeswax candlesticksIt is understandable if you are confused about 'natural' candles. We read a lot about which candle is best and why. I think it often depends on the individual’s point of view.

For example I have heard that someone with a vegan point of view may not like beeswax candles. The production of beeswax is seen as exploiting bees and harming them. As we choose to make beeswax candles above all other ‘natural’ candles I would like to address these concerns.

I would guess if a vegan is concerned about the exploitation of honey bees that would mean that 30 – 33% of the fruits, nuts and vegetables they would not eat because they were likely pollinated by honey bees. This would include amongst many, almonds, apples and strawberries. Except for Martina, a Honey Candles employee, we are not beekeepers. I like to talk to Martina about how she cares for her bees. I have noticed that one thing that beekeepers have in common is they love their bees. Honey bees are a certain amount of work and just like with most animal husbandry there is a relationship between the cared for and the care taker.  I see a relationship with honey bees and beekeepers  and I don’t believe that beekeepers would intentionally do anything that would harm their honey bees.

So then I guess that leaves paraffin (which isn’t ‘natural’), palm wax or soy wax.If you are conscientious as I am assuming a vegan would be I would think their choice would not be paraffin. Paraffin is not natural but cheap and full of toxins. It is a by-product of petroleum.  It has many of the same toxins as cigarettes. Read more about paraffin.

Palm wax on the other hand makes a very beautiful candle with a crystalline pattern. However there is enough doubt about the environmental impact of palm plantations on the native animal species and the environment that many environmentally conscious people shun palm wax. We made palm wax candles ourselves until 2009. Enough questions were raised in our minds that we stopped. Please read more as to why we made that decision.

Soy wax, like palm wax is hydrogenated. The majority of soy is GMO. Two strikes against it right off. Is soy ‘kind’ to insects and animals? I grew up in a farming community and know how big farming equipment is. It moves without discrimination through the soil. Those tines and discs churn it up and in that soil are all kinds of insects, earthworms and small rodents.  So I don’t think soy wax can be considered a good vegan candle choice either.  For more about soy wax click here.

These are the reasons I choose beeswax candles as my ‘natural’ candle choice. You each have to make your own decision:

  • Beeswax is in its natural native state, except for a little filtering it is not altered
  • By buying honey and beeswax we are making beekeeping more sustainable. We need honey bees to pollinate to produce food to feed this growing planet
  • Beeswax candles are environmentally- friendly, they produce no toxins when they are burning
  • Beeswax candles clean the air as they are burning

Honey Candles® 100% pure beeswax candles are made in Canada from 100% Canadian beeswax. They are available in many stores across Canada and the US or may be purchased at our on-line store.

I would like to know which candle you choose to burn and why. Please share this article if you found it interesting.

If you want to know more about beeswax candles here are two articles:

So many Reasons to Choose Honey Candles® 100% Pure Beeswax Candles

Candle Choices for your Home

Photo by Marlie Marchewka

Published By Pat Cattermole
I had the good fortune to be hired at Honey Candles in the fall of 2004. Experience managing a small rural printing business and 15 years as an elected public school trustee has been a benefit as Honey Candles moves through the need for flexibility and the demands of rapidly changing natural products marketing. I am the Sales Manager and most likely to be the one answering the phone when you call. Social Media and blogging for Honey Candles has been a recent addition to my list of skills.

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