Whether you’re an existing wax melt user wondering about having them around an expectant baby or have a baby and are wondering about wax melts, you might have lots of questions. Wax melts have many benefits and are a great choice when it comes to different ways to add fragrance to your home. But, are wax melts safe for babies?
The majority of wax melts will be safe to melt around babies. If you choose soy wax or beeswax wax melts, you’ll be even safer as these are 100% natural (provided they have no additives). You will need to be careful when selecting scents though as some fragrance oils and essential oils can be dangerous for babies.
Let’s take a look in more detail about the safety of wax melts around babies.
Wax melts are a healthier choice
If you’re looking for ways to add fragrance to your home, a wax melt warmer with natural wax melts is a healthier option. Burning candles with their naked flames produce soot. This is obviously bad for babies as their lungs are smaller and are still developing.
As well as soot, candles can give off other harmful chemicals and toxins, including carcinogens like benzene. This is a problem if you burn paraffin candles. If you burn natural waxes, they aren’t toxic like paraffin, but you need to check that they are 100% natural. To be labelled as a particular wax, it only needs to contain 51% of the main wax.
Another reason wax melts are healthier is that they are only heated enough to melt and release the fragrance. Since they’re not being burned, even paraffin wax melts are not as harmful.
For more information about the types of waxes used in wax melts and candles check out my guide.
Paraffin wax problems
As well as contributing to the development of cancer with chemicals like benzene, paraffin wax is also known for contributing to kidney damage, headaches, lung and throat irritation, low birth weight, congenital disabilities, respiratory issues, bone marrow damage, and nausea.
Wax melts are safer to have around babies
There’s no doubt about it, burning a candle around a baby is a hazard, particularly once the baby can move. Each year, many house fires are started by candles, so it’s not worth taking the risk. Fire can spread fast and can light a whole room in a matter of seconds.
Wax melts are, therefore, much safer. Wax warmers are available in two types – electric warmers and ones that use tea lights. If you’re buying a wax warmer and wax melts because you want to avoid naked flames around your babies, you should choose an electric wax warmer. Electric warmers don’t have the risk of fire, and they also run at a lower temperature. That said, you should still place this well out of the reach of babies.
It’s also worth mentioning at this point that wax melts should be stored away from babies when not in use. We all know that babies like to put things in their mouths, and you don’t want to turn around to find your little one chewing on a cold wax melt!
Wax melts are cheaper
Being a parent is expensive, so you need to consider costs when choosing to fragrance your home. Since wax melts have no wick or container, they’re cheaper to make, which reduces their price. Natural waxes, particularly beeswax, are more expensive than paraffin wax. But, when it comes to the safety of your babies, cost shouldn’t come into it.
Are the fragrance oils in wax melts safe for babies?
While wax melts are considered to be safe around babies – in moderation, of course. There are some fragrances you should avoid. Firstly, you should avoid any wax melts containing peppermint oil. When this essential oil is inhaled, it can cause issues to the respiratory system. Since babies’ lungs are so small and still developing, this can be even more dangerous. If babies are exposed to peppermint essential oil, they could become fussy and be off their milk or food.
As well as being harmful to the lungs, strongly scented wax melts can also affect a baby’s sense of taste. An example that many breastfeeding mums experience is their baby refusing to feed when they wear perfume. A strong smell can make food and drink taste different. For example, wax melts with lavender essential oil might make their milk taste different.
So, when wax melts contain essential oils and fragrance oils, they will diffuse these oils into the air that babies breathe. So, before choosing a scented wax melt, research different essential oils to make sure that they’re safe for babies and children to inhale.
Check out this guide I wrote to learn more about fragrance oils vs essential oils in wax melts and candles.
Wax melts are more effective at clearing odours
As many parents know, babies can produce some awful smells! If you want to use something to make your home smell nicer, wax melts will do the job in less time than a scented candle. Since the wax is melted just enough to release the fragrance, none of the scent or essential oil is burned away. You’ll be able to use a wax warmer with a wax melt for much less time than you would have to light a candle.
I wrote an awesome guide about what wax melts are and how to use them. Check it our if you would like more information
Wax melts in a baby’s room or sleeping area
Despite wax melts being safe to use around babies, it is advised not to use fragranced products in the environment where a baby sleeps. Whether this is in the parents’ room, their nursery, or in a downstairs napper, you should avoid this to protect babies’ developing lungs.
What are the best wax melts to use around babies?
As mentioned, strong scents are to be avoided. One of the best wax melts to use are 100% beeswax. This is because is this is a wax that is 100% natural. What’s more, it has a lovely, natural honey scent when it melts, so there is no need for fragrance oils or essential oils to be added to it.
Final thoughts – are wax melts safe for babies?
As we’ve mentioned, wax melts are safe around babies. That said, there are some precautions that you should take to ensure complete safety. Firstly, choose an electric warmer. If you’re choosing a warmer that works with a tea light, you’re not really reducing safety as you’ll still have a naked flame. Next, choose a natural wax like soy wax, beeswax, or coconut oil wax. Even though the wax isn’t being burned, paraffin wax on its own is toxic and could cause serious problems if ingested.
Another thing to be mindful of is the scents you choose. Choose wisely and do your research so that babies aren’t put off their food and drink if the odour is too strong. Finally, the safest thing you can do is choose a wax melt that is made from 100% beeswax. With its naturally warm odour, you know that your baby is breathing in nothing harmful. And remember – never use a wax warmer in any room where your baby sleeps!
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