Thursday, December 6, 2012

Is my Beeswax Real?

After buying  my beeswax candles from the farmer's market, I decided I wanted to try to make my own! A few weeks ago, I bought a one pound block of "organic" beeswax from Amazon in hopes of making lip balm and hard lotion. I'm not really sure how to tell if it is organic or even 100% beeswax but it seems to have a waxy look and smell to it when compared to my farmer's market candle of 100% beeswax. See the difference below:

A little on the hopeful side, I thought the lighter appearance might be "bloom" which is a white powdery substance that forms on the surface of high quality, pure beeswax (1). It takes about nine months to accumulate and can easily be wiped off with a cloth (2)

I am pretty sure that what I bought off of Amazon is not pure beeswax, but this is my first time purchasing beeswax ever so I can't be sure. I'm assuming if it smells different and looks different than my 100% beeswax candle, it probably is not 100% pure. But maybe it is very old? Any ideas?

Here is information about beeswax referenced from a pamphlet I received from Bukor Apiaries in Longmont, CO.

-Beeswax is non-toxic and is "excreted from the worker bee's abdomen in pinhead-sized scales. It takes 800,000 scales to make one pound of beeswax...
-Bloom refers to the frosty coating caused by certain oils that rise to the surface of the beeswax...
-Beeswax candles burn about five times longer than petroleum-based paraffin candles do...
-Beeswax candles actually emit negative ions that clean the air of dust and allergens."

*Beware of candles that are not 100% beeswax. Sometimes they add "fragrance" or "added color" which may not be healthy when burned.

In the future, I decided I will just buy the 100% beeswax candles from the nice man at the farmer's market who gets his beeswax from a local bee farm. But for now, I'm off to try to make my own beeswax candles!

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