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Pros and Cons of Beeswax Candles, we review the facts

pros and cons of beeswax candles

It’s no secret on this blog that we started to keep bees and so it made sense for me to take a look at beeswax candles both for our home and our online shop. With so many types of candles on the market now, I wondered how they stacked up against other more popular candles.

The pros of Beeswax Candles are that they have a natural, rustic appearance, a natural scent, last longer and are eco-friendly to name a few. The cons of Beeswax Candles are that they can be both more expensive and harder to find as well as having a limited range of scents and colours.

As a quick lookup, I’ve included a table below with the most common pros and cons of Beeswax Candles but if like me you like to get into the detail there is much more information below so read on.

Advantages of Beeswax CandlesDisadvantages of Beeswax Candles
Natural scentCan be more expensive
Cleaner burnCan be difficult to find
Long lastingLimited range of scents
Rustic appearanceLimited range of colours
Eco friendlyNot suitable for vegans
Pros and Cons of Beeswax Candles
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Advantages of Beeswax Candles

1. Natural scent

The natural scent of beeswax candles can not be mistaken for anything else.

Beeswax candles are rarely if ever fragranced and so when you smell these types of candles for the first time the scent seems to come from the bees themselves which in a way it does.

The scent you smell is actually from the nectar used and honey produced by thousands of worker bees over weeks and weeks.

For some people including myself, the scent is a big advantage over other candles. Whilst soy candles can be fragranced with so many scents these days the sweet honey scent of a beeswax candle helps me to properly relax.

If you’d like even more detail about how these wonderful candles smell I’d encourage you to read my other article What Do Beeswax Candles Smell Like? From Hive to Home next.

2. Cleaner burn

Beeswax candles burn cleaner than other types of candles.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that beeswax candles do not emit soot but due to the fact they are natural and do not come from petroleum-based materials they do burn much cleaner and this can be seen by the omission of black or dark soot coming from the candle during use.

There’s another benefit, due to the ions they emit, burning beeswax candles helps to remove impurities in the air removing unpleasant odours when cooking for example.

I have to say this is one of my favourite benefits of beeswax candles, I really don’t like cooking smells lingering in the kitchen!

If you’re particularly interested in how clean different candles are, I wrote another article titled “Do Soy Candles Burn Clean? 3 types of candles compared” where I compared soy to beeswax to paraffin. It’s worth a read after this one.

3. Long lasting

Beeswax is considered a hard wax and so can be moulded into all kinds of shapes.

Being a much harder wax than say soy wax, beeswax candles do not need to be poured into a container either.

Being a hard wax, candles made from beeswax have one other big benefit – they last longer.

A few months back we did an experiment where we tested 4 types of candles and measured their burn times.

Feel free to read the article “Do Soy Candles Last Longer? We test 4 wax types to find out” next but for now here is an excerpt from that experiment where you can clearly see the beeswax candle came out top when it comes to burn time.

Wax TypeCandle SizeBurn Time (in hours)
Beeswax8 oz56
Soy Wax8 oz48
Blended Wax (Soy + Paraffin)8 oz37
Paraffin Wax8 oz32
Candle burn times by wax type

4. Rustic appearance

Natural beeswax candles always have that natural appearance.

The amber colour can change slightly depending on various factors including the types of bees that produced the wax, the location of the hive and the types of plants foraged by the bees.

Although many people love the colourful candles that soy wax can bring I personally prefer the natural rustic look, especially in older houses.

They may not be suitable for a contemporary modern house but in country cottages, they look fab.

5. Eco friendly

beeswax candles are considered eco friendly
Beeswax Candles are considered Eco Friendly

Whilst you would need to check the candle wick and of course the packaging the candles are sold in, one of the best advantages of beeswax candles is that they are considered to be eco friendly.

Being made from the wax bees produce it’s very rare for any additional chemicals to be added in their production however, as with everything, you should always check the description and/or packaging before buying.

Beeswax itself is 100% compostable and biodegradable and so if for any reason you find yourself discarding one of these delightful candles you can be sure it won’t be around in the environment for very long.

Just check the wick is made from a compostable material such as wood or organic cotton and you’re good to compost.

Disadvantages of Beeswax Candles

1. Can be more expensive

Whilst you may be able to get cheaper variations of beeswax candles this disadvantage is definitely true.

The main reason for beeswax candles being more expensive is that they cannot be manufactured in huge quantities, unlike other candle types such as soy.

Bees make the wax as part of their natural processes but beekeepers are restricted to the amount of wax they can take each year to make other products such as food wraps and candles. If the keeper takes too much wax from the bees the hive, and therefore the colony, could be put at risk.

So it’s a delicate balance and the size of the crop can vary from year to year due to weather conditions and other factors.

So you can see now why beeswax candles are a little more expensive however if we look at the burn time of the various candle types we have to agree that candles made from beeswax will last you longer.

Whilst the higher cost is a con of beeswax candles, in my opinion, the additional price is worth it given the benefits I’ve listed above but, you’ll have to make you’re own mind up.

2. Can be difficult to find

The scarcity of beeswax compared to say soy wax not only makes beeswax candles more expensive but also makes them harder to find.

In essence there just aren’t the numbers of beeswax candles being produced compared to their popular cousins such as soy or paraffin.

But with the drive for being more eco-friendly, and living a more sustainable lifestyle I am seeing more of these types of candles for sale which in my opinion can only be a good thing.

One of the best places I found to buy beeswax candles is in the local farmer’s markets or boutique shops which seem to have realised that the market for these types of candles is getting stronger each year.

3. Limited range of scents

soy wax - scented candles
Soy Wax Candles have many Scented Options

The power of the natural scent of beeswax candles is strong enough to deter candle manufacturers from adding any additional scents.

The sweet natural scent is what makes the candles special so whilst I have listed this as a con, it’s only a disadvantage if you prefer your candles to have a different fragrance. For people who buy beeswax candles, this is not an issue.

4. Limited range of colours

This disadvantage is very similar to the concern with scents.

Ultimately the whole point behind beeswax candles is that they are natural in both scent and colour.

Adding various additives to make them a different colour or to smell differently would in my opinion be taking us away from the natural product itself.

5. Not suitable for vegans

Although most beekeepers care greatly for their colonies because beeswax is a product made from animals these types of candles are not suitable for vegans.

This is clearly a disadvantage if this is important to you.

beeswax candles are not suitable for vegans
Beeswax Candles are not Suitable for Vegans

Common FAQs

Are beeswax candles safe?

Beeswax candles are considered one of the safest types of candles you can buy. This is due to the fact they are made from a natural product which ensures no toxic byproducts are produced when the candle burns. Of course, all candles can be dangerous if safety precautions are not followed.

If you are worried about how safe candles can be I’d encourage you to read my article “Are Soy Candles Safe – 10 top safety tips included” after this.

Are beeswax candles better than soy candles?

Beeswax candles and soy wax candles are both considered to be better than paraffin candles with beeswax candles considered to be a more natural product than soy. What is important to you will determine which candles are better but you should avoid candles made from petroleum-based material.

If you are weighing up the benefits between beeswax and soy candles you should read my article “Soy Candles vs Beeswax: Which is the best for you?” after this.


So there you have it, 5 pros and 5 cons of beeswax candles. I hope this information has helped you to move forward.

My own view is I love the natural look, feel and aroma of a beeswax candle but I do acknowledge that they are not for everyone.

Are you still unsure about whether to buy beeswax candles or perhaps you’ve already invested in your own? Either way please do leave a comment below and let me know.

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    2 thoughts on “Pros and Cons of Beeswax Candles, we review the facts

    1. Avatar
      Lily Bridgers says:

      I had no idea that one of the safest types of candles you can purchase is beeswax. You said that this is because their natural composition guarantees that no hazardous byproducts are created as the candle burns. This is great because my best friend just moved into her dream apartment and I want to give her the best housewarming gift. I know she’ll love beeswax candles so I’ll go look for some now. Thanks.

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