Are Wax Melts Better Than Candles? (Here Are The Facts)

In the last five years or so, wax melts have become more and more popular. There are several reasons why people prefer wax melts to candles, which we’ll explore further in this article.

But, if you want the quick answer to the question “are wax melts better than candles?” Simply put, wax melts are far superior to candles in terms of scent throw, cost and health and safety reasons. However, with that being said candles still have their place if you want to to relax in front of a calming and relaxing flickering flame.

A photo if my wax melts next to my soy wax candle
I have a lot of experience with both wax melts and candles and must say that I find wax melts have the most benefits.

Wax melts are healthier than candles.

An advantage of wax melts compared to candles is that no soot is produced when you use them. However, as you burn a candle, soot is common, and there’s not much you can do to stop it from being released into the air. In addition, over time, soot can stain surfaces that are close to the burning candle, such as paint on the wall or shelves and furniture. 

Soot is not only unsightly, but it’s also unhealthy. Being exposed to soot can affect a person’s health, especially if they have existing medical conditions like bronchitis, COPD, and asthma. 

In comparison, wax melts are completely clean. Since nothing actually burns and there’s no flame, you won’t have any problems with soot.

Paraffin in candles is bad.

Lots of mainstream candles, particularly the cheaper ones, are made with paraffin wax, these include popular ones like Yankee candles.

However, since paraffin is a by-product of petroleum – a fossil fuel from crude oil – all sorts of associated negative aspects come with it. For example, studies have shown that paraffin releases carcinogens like benzene. 

It’s worth knowing that some wax melt companies still use paraffin wax rather than more natural alternatives. However, this isn’t so much of a problem because wax melts are not burned. Instead, they’re heated just enough to melt the wax and release the fragrance. It’s still much better to choose natural waxes if you can, as paraffin comes from non-renewable sources that impact the planet. 

Have a read of this guide that I wrote to learn about the benefits and negatives of each of the popular waxes used in wax melts and candles.

Wax melts are more environmentally friendly

Paraffin aside, wax melts are much more environmentally friendly for other reasons. When you consider how candles are made, especially those that come in glass jars, you can imagine the processes that have to happen in a factory to arrive at the end product.

All those processes use electricity or other fuels, and they likely won’t come from renewable sources. There will also be a lot of water involved in the manufacturing process.

Not only is the making of wax melts more environmentally friendly, but so is the end product in terms of waste. Although glass can be recycled, not everyone will be recycling their candle containers and, even if they are, the recycling process is another system that uses electricity and water.

Furthermore, when glass containers aren’t recycled, they actually take a very long time to decompose. Glass is one of the longest-lasting materials made by humans. It can take hundreds of thousands of years for one glass bottle to decompose completely. So even though glass can be recycled, using wax melts does not need any processing or recycling procedures at all!

Wax melts are cheaper

Unless you’ve used wax melts before, you might be unaware that they’re very affordable. Considering their burn time and their retail price, wax melts are very kind to your wallet, especially for people who constantly have a scented candle on the go.

Since wax melts are just wax, they require much less in the way of manufacturing. In addition, there’s no wick or glass, making them much more affordable for consumers.

Wax melts are safer 

When used with an electric burner, wax melts are much safer than candles. They’re safer both in terms of no naked flames and also due to the temperature reached. Unlike candles that burn the wax, a wax burner will only go so hot as to melt the wax at a lower temperature. This also means that no nasty chemicals are being burned and released into the air. Instead, the process of the wax melting simply allows the fragrance to be released.

When there’s no open flame, parents and pet-owners will be much more relaxed when using them. That said, paws and small hands should still stay well away, but the chances of an accident are significantly reduced.

Secondly, without a naked flame, there’s less chance of an accident happening in the form of a fire. 

If you would like to know more about wax melts and how they work check outnthis amazing article.

Wax melts are more effective

While scented candles are great, wax melts are even better. With a wax melt, you’re in control of the amount of scent you release. If you want a stronger scent, you simply add more wax to the warmer. You can even mix scents to create something really unique.

Given that each little piece of wax has a lot of scent, the wax melts last longer than a scented candle.

Wax melts are more convenient

How many times have you gone to light a candle and realised you’ve run out of matches or can’t find a lighter?  When you have wax melts and an electric warmer, you never need to worry about them running out or where you put them again. Parents hiding lighters and matches from their children or pets don’t have to get a step stool out to reach the top of the cupboard either!

Wax melts are also convenient because of how compact they are. They’re easy to store, and it doesn’t matter if they get bashed or damaged because you’re just going to melt them anyway. 

I actually wrote a detailed guide on how long wax melts last and how to make them last longer.

Are there any benefits of candles over wax melts?

For a little bit of balance, yes, there are some benefits of candles over wax melts. However, the warm glow and flicker of a flame can’t really be replicated. Traditional candles will always be popular because of this. There’s no reason why you can’t have both, however. On the other hand, if you’ve moved to wax melts because of all of their benefits for scent, there’s no reason why you can’t burn a candle or two just for the glow and flame. 

If you’re going to do this and are still conscious of all of the reasons you stopped using candles, choosing beeswax candles is your best bet. Not only are these completely natural and free of toxins and carcinogens, but they have a lovely mild scent that will complement any wax melt you’re warming. There are also some very realistic electric candles these days too.

Final thoughts – are wax melts better than candles?

For all of the reasons listed in this article, it’s pretty safe to say that wax melts are better than candles. They’re safer, cheaper, more effective, more convenient, and more environmentally friendly. If you’re missing that warm glow and flicker of a candle, choose a beeswax one to complement your wax melts – even better if it’s one without a container as we’ve seen just how much processing they need and the issues we have with the leftover glass! Alternatively, choose a realistic electric candle, and you’ll not need ever to replace it. 

Andrew Scents and Aroma