The difference is the wax. Paraffin wax is the final by-product of the petroleum refining chain. It’s what’s leftover…even after the asphalt is extracted! It releases potentially harmful petroleum pollutants in the air, including several known carcinogens, according to the EPA. You may find that burning a paraffin candle leaves the surrounding furnishings and walls covered in a black residue. This certainly doesn’t seem like something you’d want to breathe-in, either. There have been many studies done suggesting even more health risks from burning paraffin wax. Rather than continuing to focus on how bad another type of candle might be for you, we recommend you do a little research on paraffin for your own peace of mind, and we’ll shift the focus to soy wax.
Soy wax is made from soy beans, which are a renewable resource that is grown here in the United States. This vegetable wax burns much cleaner and does not produce the toxins that paraffin emits. Also, soy wax burns at a lower temperature than candles made with paraffin wax. This gives you not only a healthier environment, but a candle with longer burn times. Additionally, because of the lower temperature at which a soy candle burns, and if the candle is “wicked” properly, the soy candle will leave minimal wax residue on the sides of the container as it burns. Soy wax is biodegradable and just plain environmentally-friendly!
In addition to soy and paraffin candles, there are candles made with “soy-blends”. This is a combination wax created by mixing paraffin and soy together. Be aware that a candle can be called a soy candle with as little as 25% soy wax. Our candes at Burn and Groom, however, are 100% soy!