Soy Wax Candle Making – Complete Review Guide on Soy Benefits

tea light candle

As consumers and candlemakers focus more on eco-friendly and renewable resources, interest continues growing around soy wax as a quality sustainable candle wax option. Made from hydrogenated American-grown soybean oil, soy wax provides a natural alternative to paraffin wax candles. The clean-burning soy wax makes excellent container candles and an increasing number of manufacturers sell blended soy wax pillars and votives as well.

Soy wax generally costs moderately more than paraffin wax, but many candle enthusiasts feel the natural origins and renewable sourcing justify slightly higher prices. If seeking an eco-conscious candle material or just want to explore an easy-to-use wax, soy wax offers a great starting point for crafters.

What is Soy Wax?

Soy wax consists of hydrogenated soybean oil, converting the soybean plant oils into solid saturated fats by introducing extra hydrogen atoms in processing. Additional scents, hardeners, and dye are added to produce the soy wax used in candle making.

Compared to paraffin wax from non-renewable petroleum sources, soy wax comes from an annually renewable crop offering a sustainable alternative that continues growing in popularity as quality enhancements now rival paraffin candle qualities at modest costs.

Where Does Soy Come From?

Soybeans grown primarily across the Midwestern United States as well as in parts of Canada produce the majority of soy oil used in soy wax manufacturing. Soybeans grow well in soils less suitable for other crops and fix their nitrogen from the atmosphere reducing fertilizer.

As an annually harvested crop, soybeans offer sustainable sourcing for the wax. The soy itself gets produced domestically minimizing transport-related impacts and further increasing favorability as a green alternative for eco-conscious consumers.

How is Soy Wax Made?

Producing soy wax from the raw oil involves a multi-step process including:

  • Pressing – Extracting crude soybean oil from seeds using large mechanical presses
  • Degumming – Treating oil with water to remove phospholipids and gums
  • Alkali Refining – Sodium hydroxide removes free fatty acids, odors, and colors
  • Bleaching – Clays lighten the color of the refined oil further
  • Hydrogenation – Soybean oil reacts with hydrogen, converting to solid fats
  • Cooling/Flaking – Wax gets cooled under control temps then flaked

The finished soy wax offers exceptional quality for making clean burning candles.

What are Soy Candles?

Soy wax candles utilize wicks embedded within soy wax to draw fuel up through capillary action slowly releasing the wax hydrocarbons to emit light. The wax itself comes from soybeans, giving candles a natural plant-based composition. Soy candles typically don’t require additional blended saturated fats like paraffin needs since the hydrogenation process directly converts soy oil into saturated solids forming the soy wax itself.

However some soy wax candle manufacturers also incorporate small amounts of palm wax to further harden the soy wax, especially for pillars and votives. Popular for their renewable and sustainable sourcing, soy candles feature excellent scent throw and burn slowly clean.

Is Soy Good for Candles?

Soy wax produces excellent candle-making material generating little soot, burning evenly, and effectively dispersing fine fragrances. The natural soy composition allows compatibility with essential oils too without muting aromatic compounds like some synthetic waxes may.

Soy wax becomes pliable with warmth, allowing intricate artistic designs, however correct blending using additives helps hard hardening further. The renewable wax performs well in candle applications providing appealing characteristics:

  • Renewable & Sustainable – From plant oils, annually harvested
  • Natural Material – No petrochemicals used in production
  • Clean Burning – Very little soot or wax dripping
  • Excellent Hot Throw – Disperses scents efficiently when lit
  • Easy to Use – Has a lower melting point than paraffin
  • Skin Safe – Non-toxic with low allergy risk
  • Biodegradable – Decomposes readily preventing accumulation

With desirable eco-conscious qualities and impressive quality burn properties, soybean wax makes fabulous candles!

Benefits of Soy Candles

Soy candles offer appreciable benefits including:

  • Renewable Sourced Ingredient – Encourages sustainable practices
  • Natural Plant Composition – Free from synthetic petrochemicals
  • Warm Luxurious Glow – Inviting ambient light complements rooms
  • Vibrant Essential Oil Scents – Carries subtle aromas nicely
  • Artistic Potential – Pliable textures facilitate shaping candles
  • Non-Toxic Emissions – Almost no air contaminants released
  • Soybean Crops Help Environment – Fix your nitrogen requiring less fertilizer
  • Represent Eco-Friendly Efforts – Demonstrates consumer care

Best Soy for Candles

Seeking soy wax with higher melting point temperatures between 125°F and 135°F produces the best candle results. This allows finished candles to resist complete melting in warm surroundings. Fully hydrogenated soy wax containing saturated fats makes candles with a sheen and rigid finish.

Soy wax with lower melting points of around 115°F may never fully harden into stable candles. Reputable suppliers like Cargill, NatureWax, and EcoSoya offer quality soy suited for candle making.

Soy Wax Candles DIY

Making basic soy candles presents a straightforward starter project using common household items. Follow this simple tutorial:

Materials Needed:

  • Soy Wax Chips
  • Fragrance/Dye Oil
  • Wicks – Paper cored for containers
  • Containers – Heat-resistant glass/metal
  • Double Boiler
  • Thermometer
  • Spoons, Mixing Cups


  • Melt wax slowly in a double boiler maintaining 185°F – 190°F
  • Remove from heat; add dye/fragrance using 0.5-1 oz oil per pound of wax
  • Carefully pour just enough wax to anchor the wick keeping centered
  • Allow to partially set up for 5 minutes so the pour doesn’t pull the wick off the center
  • Top off the candle vessel fully with the remaining soy wax
  • Let cure undisturbed for 48 hours
  • Trim the wick then enjoy your creation!

Feel free to get creative with vessel shapes, colors, layering, and scents!

Why is Soy Wax Used for Candles?

Positive Energy soy wax Candle

Soy wax provides several advantageous properties making it a premier renewable candle wax:

  • Made from annually-grown sustainable crops
  • Has a lower carbon footprint than petroleum-based waxes
  • Provides natural waxes without synthetic additives
  • Offers an excellent scent throw when burning
  • Aesthetically pleasing luminous glow from natural wax
  • Very clean burning with minimal soot emissions
  • Relatively affordable compared to other natural waxes
  • Works well for artistic candle designs

How to Use Soy Wax for Candles

Candle-making using soy wax follows similar steps as traditional waxes:

  • Melt wax slowly in a double boiler up to 190°F
  • Add essential oils for fragrance at lower concentrations
  • Cool wax to approximately 180°F then pour carefully
  • For best results pour candles in the room around 75°F
  • Allow candles to cure for 48 hours before lighting
  • Trim wicks to 1⁄4 inch height for cleanest burn

Soy wax even makes lovely natural massage candles. Melt wax lower to prolong setting time allowing application directly to skin. Experiment with embeddable botanicals too!

Why is Soy Wax Expensive?

While soy wax costs moderately higher than paraffin wax, it remains affordable for small-scale home candle making averaging $2-3 per pound. Bulk orders for soy in larger quantities also lower pricing further.

The moderately higher rates over very inexpensive crude oil-derived paraffin come from extra processing like growing, harvesting, and physically pressing expansive fields of lower oil-content beans.

Additional steps then extract and refine the oils into waxes. Compared to other natural waxes like beeswax though, soy wax still costs less. For consumers supporting renewably sourced products or seeking candles free from petrochemicals, the small bump in candle costs seems reasonable.

Soy Wax Candle Recipe

Once comfortable using soy wax, challenge creativity with this vibrant layered candle:


  • 1 lb Soy Wax Chips
  • Oil Based Dye – Red, Blue, Yellow, 1⁄2 tsp each
  • 20 Drops Essential Oil – Grapefruit, Lavender, Lime
  • Heat Proof Container & Wick


  • Prepare 4 small pouring pitchers, dying wax in different colors
  • Heat pitchers in boiling water bath until wax melts fully
  • Remove, add 5 scent drops per pitcher; cool slightly
  • Carefully pour colored wax into the container in alternating layers
  • Cool 10 minutes between thin layers to allow setting up
  • Insert wick keeping centered before pouring the final layer
  • Finish final layer; allow to fully cure 48 hours
  • Trim the wick and enjoy your vibrant creation!

Soy wax allows amazing possibilities for self-expression through candle art!

Environmental Impact of Soy Wax Candles

As a natural plant-based wax, soy wax offers environmental advantages over petroleum-based paraffin wax including:

  • Made from annually renewable crops instead of finite crude oil
  • Production requires less energy overall than refining procedures
  • Carverbon fertilization needs to be lessened since soybeans fix their nitrogen
  • Bio-based composition allows easy biodegrading versus accumulating in landfills
  • Combustion releases drastically fewer air contaminants – mostly trace water and CO2

The renewability, low-emission burning, and biodegrading capabilities make soy wax very eco-friendly. Even factoring production impacts, soy wax rates superior environmentally over paraffin and even other natural waxes. It remains affordable too allowing easy transition for those seeking greener candle options.

In conclusion with remarkable performance nearly on par with paraffin candles combined with renewable and sustainable sourcing, soy delivers quality sustainable candle-making material. The natural composition emits delightful light alongside essential oil scents. Creative crafters will delight in soy wax flexibility enabling diverse candle designs.

Soy container candles make easy novice projects while more advanced recipes allow limitless artistic flair. Environmentally-conscious consumers also rest easier knowing production through the burning of soy candles actively helps preserve ecosystems.

Although costs exceed petroleum waxes, the modest bump seems reasonable for impressive candles supporting American agriculture. For beautiful, clean-burning candles from field to flame, turn to versatile soy wax!


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