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Paraffin wax for making candles

Despite the growing tendency to use natural waxes in the candle production process, for years past the most popular and most used candle wax is still paraffin.

Famous world manufacturers, as well as manufacturers of luxury candles, do not give up paraffin wax precisely because of its many advantages compared to all other types of wax on the market.


Advantages of paraffin wax:

Consistency and predictability

When making candles, the consistency and predictable behavior of the wax during the making process itself is extremely important.

Natural waxes often have unique characteristics of each batch. These variations can arise from various factors, including seasonal changes in raw materials, geographical origin or processing method. On the other hand, manufacturers who use paraffin know what to expect from each batch of paraffin wax, which makes it easier to maintain consistent quality of their candles.

Strong aroma

Paraffin wax is considered indisputable for achieving a strong candle scent. As it burns easily and quickly, scent molecules are more easily released from the layer of melted wax into the surrounding air.

Another advantage of working with paraffin is that it requires a smaller amount of fragrance oil compared to other waxes, usually 3-6%. If we take into account that fragrance oils are often the most expensive component in the production of candles, it is clear that these are big savings.

Visually attractive candles

High-quality candles, in addition to top performance, also focus on aesthetics and presentation. Paraffin wax can create candles with a smooth, polished surface, which is especially important if you are making decorative freestanding candles.

Also, paraffin absorbs color very well. As it is naturally colorless and transparent, by adding pigments, faithful, strong and bright candle colors are achieved, which do not lose their intensity over time.

Versatile application

Depending on the type of paraffin you use, paraffin wax can easily be shaped into decorative candles of various shapes or used for candles in containers.

And not only that, you can mix paraffin with other waxes. If you want to increase the strength of the candle or if you want candles made from natural waxes to have some of the qualities of paraffin, such as a stronger scent or a brighter color, you can add a certain percentage of paraffin wax to your formulation.

Short curing period

Paraffin has a stable crystal structure. Molecular bonds that are once created are inert and do not tend to change much over time, unlike natural waxes, whose polymorphic crystals develop over time and strengthen mutual bonds. This is the reason why the famous period of 14 days is recommended for the candle to "age" after pouring.

With paraffin, that period is much shorter, the candle is ready for use after 3 days, which is another item that simplifies the production process.


Although high-quality paraffin wax is not necessarily cheap, it is often more economical compared to some alternatives such as coconut or soy wax . This economic profitability allows you to maintain a balance between quality and price.

If you have not encountered this wax before, and the consistency, stability of the finished product and its overall performance intrigued you, read more about the characteristics and way of working with paraffin below.

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Paraffin wax is also known as mineral wax. It is created during the crude oil refining process, where the highest degree of refinement gives the highest quality product, free of impurities and decolorized. The completely refined paraffin wax thus obtained contains less than 0.5% oil, is solid at room temperature, low viscosity, white in color and slightly transparent. It is also of "food grade" quality, which means that it can be used in the food industry.

Most candle manufacturers use fully refined and/or semi-refined paraffin wax.


When buying wax, pay attention to the parameters that determine the quality and type of paraffin:

  • Melting point
Paraffin can have different melting temperatures, ranging from 46°C to 68°C, which enables a wide variety of applications. Any kind of candle can be made from paraffin: softer waxes with a lower melting point are suitable for pouring candles in containers, while harder paraffin waxes are ideal for making decorative and classic cylindrical free-standing candles.
  • Oil content in wax

Fully refined paraffin wax has less than 0.5% oil. As the purity of the wax decreases, the oil content increases and then we are talking about semi-refined paraffin.

  • Penetration (needle penetration)

The needle penetration test is performed to measure the physical hardness of the wax. The lower the number, the harder the wax. A higher number will mean that the wax is softer.


The process of making candles from paraffin wax is very easy and simple, especially when you know the material you are working with and follow the manufacturer's recommendations:

  • Melt the wax at a temperature of 85°-90°C.
  • Add the desired fragrance and/or color and mix gently for 2 minutes to allow the ingredients to integrate well with the wax before the wax cools to the recommended pouring temperature of 80°C (±5°C).
  • The paraffin wax will begin to harden immediately, so do not move or adjust the candle until it is completely set.
  • Due to its ability to expand when heated, i.e. increase its volume by up to 15%, additional pouring after hardening is often necessary.
  • The ambient temperature should be as stable as possible. The recommended temperature of the room where the candles are made and cooled is in the range of 22°C to 25°C.
  • The candle should cool as slowly and evenly as possible to avoid sudden shrinkage of the wax. In order to slow down the cooling, you can use thermal insulation material such as aluminum foil or you can wrap the candle in a towel and thus retain the heat.

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Despite following all recommendations, when working with paraffin, you may encounter several types of imperfections in poured candles that are easily solvable.


The first thing you will notice are the indentations, most often in the central part of the candle around the wick, after the wax has cooled. Don't worry, this is a completely normal characteristic of paraffin, which, like all harder, high melting point waxes, tends to shrink and compact towards the center as it cools.

The solution to this problem is to always leave a small amount of wax that you will use for additional pouring of the poured candle after hardening. Heat the additional wax at a temperature approximately 5-10°C higher than the original poured wax to avoid creating a visible line between the two layers.

Air pockets

Also, with larger candles (molds, containers), it can happen that depressions or holes are created in the candle itself, under the surface, which are not visible until you light the candle. These air pockets lead to poor candle combustion.

In order to correct this problem, after pouring the wax, wait for the surface of the candle to cool down and use a stick thermometer or a similar thin, long stick to drill several holes around the wick and then pour an additional amount of heated wax over the candle. This will allow trapped air under the surface to escape while the liquid wax fills any pockets that have formed.

Horizontal lines

Horizontal lines or rings around the candle that appear when the candle cools are an aesthetic defect and do not affect the burning of the candle in any way. This happens in situations when the container (mold) is cold compared to the wax or when the temperature of the wax is too low. Practically, in both cases, the wax in contact with a cold surface instantly cools and thus leaves a trace, which appears on the finished candle in the form of thin lines.

To avoid the formation of unsightly lines on the surface of your candles, heat the container/mold immediately before pouring the wax and make sure that the wax is within the intended temperature range. In case you are trying to find a solution for an already poured candle (applies only to candles in containers), you can use a hot air gun or hair dryer and use it to melt the surface layer of wax on the parts where imperfections are visible.

Bubbles / whitish spots

Another aesthetic defect that may surprise you after you remove the candle from the mold is the appearance of small bubbles on the surface. As in the previous case of the formation of horizontal lines, the phenomenon does not affect the quality of the candle burning, and the main culprit of these imperfections is, of course, again, the temperature of the mold!

Make sure that the container/mold you pour the wax into is completely dry, clean and smooth. Heat the container/mold immediately before pouring the wax with a hot air gun or in the oven. After pouring the wax, gently tap the sides of the mold to release trapped air bubbles.

Happy candle making!



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