Is Soy Wax better than Paraffin Wax

Is Soy Wax better than Paraffin Wax and vice versa?

Yes and No, No and Yes

Opinions are very much divided on which is the better, safer and healthier wax. At Shearer Candles we use many different types of waxes depending on consumer requirement and what we’re trying to achieve in a product.

Our skilled candle makers have their favourite waxes depending on what type of candle they are making, but there are so many variables when it comes to making candles and choosing a wax.

Read on to learn why we believe candle design is more important than the choice of wax when determining what is best.

Firstly what is soy wax?

Soy wax is a wax made from the oil of soy beans.

What is Paraffin wax?

Paraffin wax is a soft colourless solid derived from petroleum, coal or shale oil.

There are so many questions that could determine which wax is best:

  • Which wax is cheaper?
  • Which wax works well with other candle components, e.g. fragrance and dye?
  • Which wax works best as a jar candle or a pillar candle?
  • How & where is each wax produced and sourced?

We could write thousands of words on the pros and cons of each wax but what matters to us at Shearer Candles is creating safe and well performing candles every time. And to do this the candle needs to be designed properly (not just look good)

You cannot take any old wick, wax, fragrance, dye and container, mix it all together and expect the candle to work.

Candle development takes time. Here is a quick peek at our process:

Planning & brief:

Once we know the intended use of the candle, we can determine what ingredients we need and whether they’re available.

Trial & Error is a huge part of Product Development, but we can also draw on the experience of our staff and our past projects. We have skilled candle makers who have worked at Shearer Candles for over 40 years; they can take a brief and narrow down a list of ingredients that they think will work well.


There is still a lot of testing required with new products. Testing not only ensures the candle will work as intended – for example, throw a fragrance, but crucially that it will burn evenly and safely.

All the candle components need to work in unison, so alterations to existing products need to be tested. For example if we wanted to make the wax of our Lemon Zest scented candle yellow, we would most likely have to change the wick we use, and the candle would then have to be put back into testing.

Of course, the quality of the ingredients we use is key and the skill of the candle maker is essential. But the design is what makes a candle safe and perform well.

What we deem a safe & performing candle

  • Consumption of most of the wax – no tunnelling or flooding of wick
  • Minimal smoking
  • Good scent throw relative to size of candle and room
  • Safe flame size
  • Container doesn’t get too hot

We also advise you to follow our candle tips and safety for the perfect burn. You can find these here.

If there is a flaw in the design of the candle, it will not perform satisfactorily.

To conclude; soy wax doesn’t necessarily make a candle burn more cleanly and therefore isn’t always a “healthier” option to paraffin wax candles.

A well designed candle is safer and healthier and every Shearer Candle goes onto the shelf with that promise.

All views and opinions are our own.

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