Is candle wax good for your skin? This is a question commonly asked in the skin care industry. The answer, though, depends on what type of wax was used to make the candle.
Is Candle Wax Good for Your Skin? Dissecting the Adverse Effects of Paraffin Wax
What is paraffin wax used for? Most candles, including the ones used for skin care, use paraffin wax as a major ingredient. Paraffin wax is relatively cheap to produce and has a low melting point, which makes it highly desirable for manufacturers. In the beauty industry, paraffin wax is often applied to hands and feet with the goal of softening the skin.
But, while widely available, paraffin wax is not always compatible with your skin. In fact, there are certain risks associated with this ingredient when it comes to skin care. So, is candle wax bad for your skin? Let us count the ways.
Paraffin wax can come in multiple forms, and not all of those are good for your skin. Paraffin is a petroleum-based product, so it can cause irritation if you have chemical sensitivities. You may even find your skin breaking out or, worse yet, experiencing some minor swelling.
2. Heat Rash
Paraffin has a low melting point, which makes it ideal for skin softening treatments because it is less likely to burn you. But, if you have sensitive skin or if you just mishandle the wax, using paraffin on your skin can cause a heat rash to form. You will start noticing itchy red bumps on your skin, particularly your face and neck. In some cases, it could also spread to your upper torso.
If you are particularly sensitive to chemicals, paraffin wax may not be the best choice for your skin. There have been reports of people getting skin allergies as a result of applying paraffin wax. The fumes that come from burning paraffin wax can also aggravate your lungs, causing you to cough incessantly.
4. Clogged Pores
While paraffin wax is marketed as having the ability to open pores, some people experience the opposite effect. Applying paraffin wax has been associated with clogging your pores, leading to more skin problems than solutions.
More Serious Health Risks Associated With Paraffin Wax
Is paraffin wax toxic? While paraffin itself is not inherently toxic, there are some health risks connected to the ingredient. Burning paraffin wax, for instance, can release chemicals such as toluene and benzene into the air. When inhaled, you may experience lung irritation, nausea, and headaches. It is worth noting that benzene is also known to cause cancer.
Paraffin wax poses certain health risks and certain people are more prone to them than others. Do not use paraffin wax if you have any of the following:
- Open wounds
- Poor blood circulation
- Numbness in your hands or feet
- Chemical sensitivities
Before using products with paraffin wax, it is best to consult a doctor or your dermatologist. If you want to err on the side of caution, stay away from paraffin wax altogether. There are much better and healthier alternatives out there such as soy wax.
The Case for Soy-Based Lotion Candles
Is candle wax good for your skin? When you use lotion candles that don’t contain paraffin wax, then you are pretty much in the all-clear. Use lotion candles made with soy wax and other natural ingredients as an alternative to those made with paraffin wax.
Don’t believe us? Here are the benefits of candle wax on the skin if made with soy.
- Soy is a natural moisturizer and can keep your skin hydrated all day.
- The melanin-inhibiting properties of soy can help reduce hyperpigmentation and even out your skin tone.
- Soy promotes collagen and estrogen production, which can contribute to more elastic, younger-looking, and firmer-feeling skin. Plus, collagen can help smooth out fine lines and wrinkles.
- The antioxidants in soy can help brighten your skin.
- Soy is abundant in vitamin E and lecithin — two nutrients that promote skin health.
- Soy can help protect your skin from sun damage. Lotions made with soy can also reduce the appearance of scars caused by sunburns.
Paraffin Wax vs Lotion Candles: Settling the Debate
Is candle wax good for your skin? Generally speaking, candle wax made with soy is good for your skin. Paraffin wax, on the other hand, has been linked to skin and health risks. As such, it is best to stick to products made with all-natural ingredients.
Lotion candles made with soy, for instance, are a good place to start. Here at Fairy Secrets, we only use natural and healthy ingredients. Our lotion candles are made with soy and shea butter and come in a variety of scents (as well as an unscented option).