Which Candle Wax is the Best?
Brenden. L William R
Grade 6


No video provided


OUR BIG QUESTION: Which candle wax is the best

Brenden- My hypothesis is that soy wax will melt the slowest because the melting point can be from 49-82°C.

Will - My hypothesis is that Beeswax will melt the slowest because it is made from completely natural ingredients and natural ingredients burn longer.


There are five different types of candle wax, paraffin wax, soy wax, palm wax, beeswax and gel wax.

Name Paraffin Wax Beeswax Soy Wax Palm Wax Gel Wax
Cost $12.99 $29.99 $14.99    
Melting point temperature 46 to 68°C 62 - 64°C 49 to 82°C 82°C 82°C
What the wax comes from Paraffin wax comes from petroleum and can be used for many different things. Beeswax comes from 8 producing glands in the worker bees soy wax comes from soybeans. palm wax is obtained from the oil palm tree Gel wax isn't actually a type of wax, it comes from minerals from paraffin oils and poly resins
How we get the wax we get it by dewaxing light lubricating oil stocks. We get the wax from removing the end of a honeycomb and what is left is beeswax You have to Hydrogenate soybeans to increase viscosity you can get this wax in southeast Asia. Gel wax is very similar to Paraffin wax and can be obtained by petroleum.
Interesting facts Paraffin wax was invented in 1867 when the first petroleum was drilled It takes 6 pounds of honey to produce only 1 pound of beeswax Soy wax burns with zero soot, which makes it a soot free candle palm wax has actually been discontinued in one company. they use jelly for gel wax

Paraffin wax -  pariffin wax is made out of dewaxed petroleum, it is solid at room temperature and can melt at a high between 49°C and 66°C

Soy wax -   Some study suggested that soy wax burns 30% longer than some synthetic candles (candles with fake smells)

Palm wax -  Palm wax is an all-natural, renewable resource that is obtained from the oil palm in Southeast Asia. Palm wax is very tough to melt its melting point is at 82°C

Beeswax -  Beeswax is made of the honeycomb of all types of bees, it has a burning point of 65ºC and is said to be the longest burning candle. 

Gel wax -  some studies have shown that gel wax can burn twice as long as paraffin wax  This candle takes approximately one hour to melt, and is made out of mineral oil.

did you know that the more natural the wax and ingredients, the better the quality of the candle. 

But if you do decide to make your own candles the raw materials need to be good quality that works well with all candle ingredients.


Controlled Variables Manipulated Variables Responding Variables

- wick material

- wick length above wax

- wick width

- number of wick per candle

- candle circumference

- candle height

- material holding/surrounding wax

- use timer for each candle to determine start of when the candle was lit

- environment (same room, table and temperature)

- type of wax

- burn time

- cost

- wax waste (leftover wax when wick is gone)



1. Buy candle wax

2. Make the candles



1.   Find glass containers for the candles (mason jars).

2.   Glue candle wax to the bottom of the container and hold it in the center with taped together chopsticks.

3.   Melt wax (soy, paraffin, and beeswax separately) in a double boiler.

4.   Once the wax is ready, remove it from the double boiler with water to boil.

5.   Pour the wax into your candle container making sure the wick stays in place.

6.   Let the candles cool overnight.

2.5. Weigh candles

3. Set candles up on a table 

4. Grab 3 lighters

5. Get 3 people (Will, Brenden, and Tina (Will's Mom))

6. Light all of the candles at the same time 

6.5 About every 2 hours record observations

7. Wait till they all burn 

8. Record information in observations

9. Present it in a video




Name Paraffin Wax Beeswax Soy Wax
Weight of candle before lit (grams) 195g 195g 196g
Cost $5.59 $12.90 $6.45
Burn Time 8h 4m 24s 8h 35m 18s 9h 0m 11s
Weight of candle after wick is done (grams) 157g 170g 166g
Diameter around wick 60mm 45mm 58mm
Notes of Interest

Always had holes in the wax when it was burning

Seemed to burn to one side more

Burned very evenly the whole time

Had very small diameter around the wick 

Seemed to burn a "tunnel"

Wick flattened out at the end

Very little wick is sticking out

Has bubbles made of wax around its perimeter

Burned evenly


After 2h 16m 42s
Name Paraffin Wax Beeswax Soy Wax
Weight 187g 187g 189g
Diameter around wick 45mm 40mm 48mm

Holes in all sides


Melting evenly all over

Not melting evenly

No holes

2nd place


Didn't silitify as quick as the other ones

Melting very evenly

1st place

No holes



After 4h 34m 38s
Name Paraffin Wax Beeswax Soy Wax
Weight 127g 130g 133g
Diameter around wick 55mm 40mm 50mm

Holes got bigger

Burned alot of wax evenly

3rd place

Stayed the same diameter around wick

Not melting evenly

Has small diameter around wick

2nd place

Did not silidify very quick

It burned more around the wick

1st place

no holes


 After 6h 45m 38s


Paraffin Wax Beeswax Soy Wax


164g 174g 175g
Diameter around wick 55mm 40mm 57mm

Only 1 hole

Burnt down quick and evenly

1 side seems to have more wax than the other side 

2nd place

About half of the wax is actually getting melted

Did not burn evenly

Seems to be the lowest

3rd place

Has widest diameter around the wick

Burns evenly 

Burned with no flickers

1st place




In the end soy wax fueled the flame for the longest amount of time. It seemed to burn the wax evenly and efficiently, which led to a longer burning time. Also, it did not soildify as quickly as the other ones, which means that the wax had a higher burning point then the rest, so it had to get hotter in order to burn, so it takes longer. Even though soy wax topped the charts for lasting the longest, pariffin wax was the real chart topper. It beat the rest in the cost per minute section with 1.08¢/min, while beeswax had  2.50¢/min and soy wax had 1.19¢/min, which means it is the cheapest for the amount that it burns. Also it had the least amount of wax left over with only 157g left over. Beeswax though did not impress us as much as the other waxes. It seemed to melt in a straight tunnel down and did not use the wax efficiently. 


For the final results we had Soy wax in 1st, Beeswax in 2nd, and paraffin wax in 3rd (last). In conclusion Will and Brenden's hypotheses were neck and neck but Soy wax came out on top.

Paraffin wax (3rd place)- Paraffin wax had a bad strat with really big flames which made it burn faster. When the first 2 hours were up this wax had holes in two sides. by the time we did another 2 hours paraffin wax was super deep and bigger around the hole candle two it mad one of the holes disappear.

Beeswax (2nd place) - (Beeswax was Will's hypothesis) Bees wax had an OK start it did not have big flames and no holes after the first two hours the beeswax only went a bit out and a bit deep it was in good shape and it was extremly close to getting 1st place.  After the next 2 hours it did nothing to make the hole that it had bigger it stayed the exact same in length but it went a lot deeper.

Soy wax (first place) - (Soy wax was Brenden's hypothesis) Soy wax had an amazing start with tiny flames and really slow burning you would think that it would burn out but it just kept on going. In the first 2 hours it almost looked like it. You only lit it for 1 hour. This wax was extremly interesting and fun to work with  after the next 2 hours it was really still in shape and it didn't look like Bees was going to take over. 


You can use this experiment the  next time you are buying candles. It will help you find which one is the cheapest, will have the least amount of waste and which one will burn the longest. It will save you money, save the world and will keep the air smelling nice for the longest.

Sources Of Error

It was hard to find candles that listed ingredients so I had to make them.

Will and I could not find palm and gel wax so we decided to just make the three candles made from soy, paraffin and beeswax.

We found out that palm wax was toxic to the environment 

We used different scales and the weights came out  alot different as you will notice in the last two burning times


Youtube ehowhome Step-by-Step Candles Making for Kids : Basic Candle Making           Gel Information – Little Creek Candles      CraftExpert 

Paraffin wax | chemical compound | Britannica       Mother Earth News    Wikipedia     


Thanks to Tina (Wills Mom)  -  Bought the waxes and really helped us on info we were stuck on.     

Thanks to Stephanie (Brendens Mom)  -  helped get stuff organized taking picturns and helped melting the wax

Thanks to J. Saville (science fair coordinator)  -  Kept us noteefied on any new changes and told us how all this works