Burning So(y) Brightly

Make the switch to soy wax candles! Here’s why:

• Because they’re green. “By using soy wax, (you are supporting) and investing in a renewable resource rather than petroleum-based corporations,” says Way Out Wax’s Anna Barrett. “Every ingredient is an agricultural product.”
• Because they double as massage oil. That’s right–melted soy wax works as a fantastic moisturizer as well as a soothing massage oil, because it doesn’t firm back up when removed from a heat source.
• Because they burn better. “Clean burning soy leaves minimal wax residue and won’t produce the petroleum-based paraffin black soot residue known as ‘ghosting’ on furnishings or walls,” explains the creator of Verikira Naturals, Kira Peterson. Soy also is less likely to trigger allergy problems than paraffin candles. What’s more, the wicks of all featured candles here are made without the use of harmful lead.
• Because they support the community. “(We) are passionate about supporting American farmers … businesses and Mother Nature as we are about candles, and that’s the way we think it ought to be,” says Karen Schumacher, founder of Heirloom candles.
• Because they last longer. “Soy is a biodegradable and water-soluble product that burns cooler than paraffin and, therefore, slower,” says Christine White-Stanton of Scandle Candles.

Take eco-friendliness a step further with reusable ceramic canisters for the 7.5-oz massage candle, that you can have refilled at your local spa. $15.95.

Heirloom Candles
Savor the indulgent dessert, Creme Brulee, in a non-fattening way. $10.

Yon-ka Paris Aromatherapy Candles
Crafted from 100 percent premium natural soybean wax and 100 percent pure organic essential oils, these elegant candles feature lead-free wicks and come with their own little matchbox. Our favorite scent is the Ylang Ylang-Grapefruit-Thyme. Small candle, $18; large candle $32.

Paddy Wax
Transport yourself to the alluring scents of the orient with bamboo and green tea. $18.

Way Out Wax
The recycled tumbler features water color art inspired by the scents on its label. Cherry on top: The candles are handcrafted using GMO-free soy and 100 percent certified organic essential oils. $44.99.

The Soi Company
Celebrate the holidays all year long with Holiday Spirit, a candle that’s a festive blend of ground cinnamon, fruits, and spiced rum. $24.95.

WoodSprite Organic Body
Light a patchouli pillar candle and watch the tension melt away. $25.

Organic Spa Magazine is a national consumer lifestyle magazine about bringing spa wisdom into the modern green lifestyle. For a free digital subscription, click here.

By Myron Mariano, Organic Spa magazine


Marcia Machado
Marcia Machado6 years ago

Thanks for sharing.
Here in Portugal we have a machine (called Oon) that makes candles with used vegetal oil.

Heather B.
Past Member 8 years ago

Thanks for sharing this, Jana.

Patricia Genobaga

Love It!

Katherine Robb
Katherine Robb8 years ago

By melting together equal parts of soy wax and jojoba oil, you get a wonderful lip balm. The addition of oils and/ or herbs produces a wonderful healing salve.

Pattie P.
Pattie P8 years ago

how wonderful soy is....

Vural K.
Past Member 8 years ago


Hilary M.
Hilary M.9 years ago

If you don't like the idea of matches, flames, and smoke, try Scentsy (www.scentsy.com/hilmcd). They are beautiful ceramic "warmers" that gently melt food-grade paraffin wax and can be turned on and off with the click of a switch. There are over 80 lovely fragrances, and 50 or so warmers to choose from!

Jane Weeks
Past Member 9 years ago

In response to Poet Dancer: Palm oil is better than soy IF it comes from a sustainable smallholding, but it's still not a natural wax. I use organic virgin red palm oil from a small family farm in my organic hemp oil soap & shampoo bar.

Quote from British Columbia Hydro in response to someone's question: "I have seen a lot of palm oil candles or palm oil blended with other ingredients. Is palm a good alternative to paraffin?
'Palm is a good alternative in many ways: it burns with low soot emissions, it can be used to make all kinds and shapes of candles and oil palms can be grown without chemical fertilizers. However, palm is not without environmental implications. Most palm oil is imported from South East Asia. Tropical forests in Southeast Asia are being cut down to make room for more palm plantations to meet the increased demand for palm oil in all kinds of consumer products from food to fuel. As a result, much needed orangutan habitat is being rapidly destroyed and local communities have been negatively impacted. If you want to burn palm oil candles, only purchase them from Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certified companies.'"

Also, Palm wax candles are usually made with artificial colourants and fragrance oils (as opposed to natural essential oils), which are chemically made and toxic.

There is a detailed explanation in Wikipedia.

Poet Dancer
Poet Dancer9 years ago

Hi :) am back again with newfound info ..

Just last night was talking to my friend Ram and mentioned the Soy wax candles, while he admired my vast collection of candles. He mentioned that a friend of his makes scented candles from Palm-oil. Something that Americans call Soy wax.

Just thought I pass this info on here and wonder if anyone else has heard of that.

Still like to see / smell the Palm oil candles and will come back with more info :)

Jane Weeks
Past Member 9 years ago

As others have pointed out, soy is not necessarily good, and soy is not a wax so it is chemically treated to turn it into something that can be used to make candles. When I first began making candles, I tried soywax. Then I used my bean [head, that is] & did a bit of research, discovering the above.

I now use only pure, local beeswax to make my candles. Beeswax is the ONLY natural candle wax. It also smells lovely, cleans the air (although I'm still trying to find the scientific study that proves that its 'negative ions' do what many chandlers say), burns hotter, and lasts longer.