Soy Candles? What Will They Think of Next?
Quick: What comes to mind when you think of soy candles? Before my formal introduction to soy candles, I thought organic (read expensive) and BEIGE! And not just the color beige, but beige as an overall description for soy candles—blah like baby food, ground chick peas, and a pale winter pallor. I had no idea why it would even occur to anyone to purchase a soy candle.
I couldn’t have been more wrong in my assessment! After gaining a working knowledge of candles, soy candles reside front and center in my growing candle collection. When you learn the facts, you will probably replace your paraffin candles with the soy version, at least on an attrition basis. If you’re still at the beige stage, read on while we shed a little light on the subject.
Paraffin vs. Soy
First, clear your mind of all preconceived notions that you’ve conjured up about soy candles. Replace those thoughts with just two thoughts for now: clean and fresh. Traditional candles made of paraffin are actually petroleum-based products.
• Oil is not only a finite resource, primarily imported from the Middle East, it recently made a new all-time high. You see it reflected at the gas pump, and you’ll see it reflected in candle prices, if you haven’t already. You pay no premium to reap the benefits of soy candles, because soy candles are priced competitively with their paraffin counterparts, and soy candles last up to 50% longer than paraffin candles.
• Petroleum products do not burn cleanly. If you wouldn’t voluntarily walk into a burning petroleum field, then why would you burn paraffin in your home? If you burn candles regularly, try this experiment. Move a picture on your wall. If you see an outline on the wall at the edge of the picture, soot from burning candles is the culprit. That same burning petroleum deposits itself in your lungs, and it’s a known carcinogen. Soy candles are non-toxic, burn cleanly without smoking, burn cooler than paraffin candles, and use all-natural cotton wicks.
• If you’ve ever spent hours cleaning spilled wax on your floor or carpet, you know what an exercise in futility it can be. Sometimes there is simply no removing it. Spilled melted soy wax cleans up with soap and water, and it does come out, unlike some paraffin spills. Biodegradable soy has its practical advantages as well as its health advantages.
• Made in the USA! Soy is a renewable resource, made right here in the United States, and you don’t see much of that these days. You’re helping the economy by using soy-based products, and charity begins at home.
Scented Soy Candle
With all these good-for-you attributes, you may wonder if you’ll have to settle for the aroma of melting soybeans. Not only are scented soy candles available, but they are typically scented with a natural essence rather than a synthetic fragrance. With “flavors” such as Crème Brûlée, Gingerbread, Jeweled Citrus and Banana Nut Bread, you can easily tease your appetite with soy candles. In fact, soy candles burn more evenly than paraffin candles, and the fragrance lasts through the entire candle, rather than burning off in the top half of the candle.
Aromatherapy Soy Candles
It would seem a contradiction of terms to use a pure essential oil in a candle of paraffin, but it’s a common practice. The highest-quality aromatherapy candles use pure essential oils, soy wax, and cotton wicks. If you’re going to pay a premium for aromatherapy candles, and there are numerous benefits in doing so, make sure that the candle is comprised of 100% unadulterated, natural products. Otherwise, why bother?
As an educated consumer, you have the power to further the advancement of superior products through your purchases. Every industry requires research and development to make advancements, and the natural candle industry will evolve at a rate that makes economic sense. Through your support of natural candle products, you can effect a healthy change while enjoying the benefits and the pleasures of burning soy candles.