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Soy Vs. Paraffin

Kringle Candles are made with only 100% pure food-grade paraffin. Soy candle makers would have you believe paraffin is “unnatural,” “unhealthy” or otherwise undesirable when compared to their products. Nothing could be further from the truth, but much misinformation exists.

Paraffin wax is refined from naturally-occurring crude oil, the product of animal and vegetable matter that has been locked inside the Earth for millions of years and refined into more useable products including fabrics, plastics, etc. Virtually all of Kringle’s paraffin is domestically-produced. Soy wax is vegetable matter made from the oil of soybeans. A hydrogenation process converts some of the fatty acids in the oil from unsaturated to a saturated form. This chemically alters the melting point of the oil, making it a solid at room temperature. Most soy wax that is used for candles is not made in the United States; it is imported. Soy’s “no soot” myth is #1. Soy sellers love this claim, but there is zero truth and much hype behind it. All organic compounds – including soy – emit some hydrocarbons (soot) when burned. This is due to incomplete combustion, as evidenced by the yellow-orange flame of any typical candle. There is simply no such thing as a soot-free candle. Soy wax does produce soot, and not all soot is black. “White soot” cannot usually be seen with the naked eye. Soy wax will typically produce little black soot – unless the candle is improperly wicked, made or burned, but it does produce nearly-invisible white soot. All candles (and nearly any burning material) give off elemental carbon particles. So do heating systems, kitchen toasters and cooking oils. These everyday household sources are not considered a health concern, and are chemically different from the soot formed by the burning of diesel fuel, coal, etc. The myth of “soot free soy candles” is totally untrue. It is merely an effort by soy boosters to frighten the public. Soy wax is much softer and denser than paraffin, and transmits light very poorly. Soy candles are notoriously dim and add little ambience to a room. Chemical additives are needed to make soy candles hold shape better, and in most cases, paraffin wax is still a much better material for many types of candles. The National Candle Association has thoroughly researched this topic and provides the following statements: All waxes are primarily hydrocarbons, whether of animal, vegetable, or petroleum origin. The chemical composition of all candle making waxes is similar, and all candle waxes burn in the same manner. No specific type of wax or wax blend is considered “best” for candle making. All waxes – when provided in high-quality format – have been shown to burn cleanly, safely and in the same manner. No candle wax has ever been shown to be toxic or harmful to human health. There is no such thing as a soot-free wax. In the end, both paraffin wax and soy wax are both good choices for candle wax. Neither is more “environmentally friendly” than the other, and there has never been any scientific evidence that paraffin wax is harmful to your health in any way at all. It’s a personal choice, and naturally, we hope you’ll choose Kringle Candles!