There are a wide variety of candles on the market that are advertised as natural including, soy, palm (stearin), and of course beeswax. As a consumer, it can be difficult to directly compare the various pros and cons of each natural wax variety. Unlike paraffin, these waxes are not petroleum based, which is a great starting point, but they each carry a varying eco-footprint that should be considered.
As a natural wax, beeswax is unrivaled. While all other candle waxes such as soy require intensive extraction, industrial hydrogenation, and/or chemical processing before they can be formed into candles, beeswax is found in the hive in virtually its finished state. Beeswax will also never go rancid and has a pleasant honey aroma without the need for added fragrance oils.
As a natural by-product of the food pollination and honey industries, beeswax does not require dedicated land use to produce. Increased transparency regarding the questionable sustainability of the palm industry has highlighted the reality that natural isn’t necessarily synonymous with sustainable.
Ethically sourced beeswax supports beekeepers and healthy bee populations. Bees are important pollinators that are crucial to our eco-systems and many of our food crops depend on them. As a consumer, when you purchase honey and beeswax products, you are supporting beekeepers and their hives, and in turn promoting understanding and advocacy for all pollinator species.
The fact that you’re reading this shows that you are you’re working to make heathy choices for the planet and your home. The reality is that beeswax is a high value raw material and it’s understandable that the purchase of beeswax candles may require careful consideration. We certainly encourage you continue your research and educate yourself about the options available.