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Are Candles Usually Vegan or Not?

Photo by Alisa Anton on Unsplash

Many candles are not vegan because they are made from beeswax. We explain why and look at ethical and vegan alternatives to beeswax candles including soy wax candles.

It can be tempting to pick some great-looking candles, perhaps with a sumptuous scent — or order over the internet in somewhere like our online shop — thinking there's not much to worry about. How many ingredients go into making a candle, apart from wax and a wick? you may ask yourself, before deciding they're among the simplest of products and can't do any harm. But that's not exactly the case.

When you want to imbue your home with hygge, for a growing number of people, the ingredients that go into making up their candles must be ethically sourced, cruelty-free and kind to people in the home as well as the creatures outside it.

Many of us have become acutely conscious of what we put into our bodies — and the effects not only on us but our fellow creatures and the environment. We are also becoming more aware of what goes into all the products we buy — including candles.

Make your home more hygge with YR Studio’s natural Hygge scented soy candle. With beautiful notes of sweet vanilla and a subtle hint of cinnamon and clove, your home will be touched by a warming, homely fragrance.

So Are Candles Vegan? Let's Find Out

While it may seem that candles are a fairly basic product made of very little, the reality becomes a bit more complex, the more we peer into the candle-making process. It turns out these cosy and heart-warming favourites that we love to place around the home during festive and romantic times — even just for the sake of it — are made from all kinds of stuff. Some of it may seem quite alarming.


pumpkin spice candle

Flaming Good: One of our vegan soy candles

The idea behind a candle is you take a solid material that's stable at room temperature and that melts and gives off light and a degree of heat once a flame is applied. What the source of this power — the body of the candle — is made from can vary greatly. You can get everything from tallow (fat from sheep or cows) to beeswax and more. Here at YR Studio, we specialise in vegan soy wax candles.

Beeswax is not exactly vegan, just as honey isn't either. The vegan way of living and eating means you don't use anything derived from animals — even the products of these nectar-seeking insects flying from flower to flower. As for the wick in candles, it's almost always vegan as it's usually cotton, which comes from a plant.

Risks of Non-Vegan Candles

Many candles on the market today are made with paraffin, which carries its own risks. Paraffin’s origin lies in crude oil, which is formed from fossilised animals from way back in time. Often, stearic acid — usually derived from animal fat — is added to it, to keep it solid at room temperature. Even more worrying, we now know that burning paraffin wax releases toxins into the air, some of which are known to cause cancers. Who knew the humble candle could cause so much trouble?


soy wax tea lights

Time for Tea: YR Studio’s soy-based tea lights are kind all around. 

This is one of the reasons why we created our soy candles, as they eliminate all the health and ethical risks in one stroke. Our vegan candles are made from soybeans and are entirely natural. They have the added benefit of burning slower and for longer than many other types of candle. They're good for you, our fellow creatures and the environment — what's not to like?

We also ensure our fragrance oils are not tested on animals, and as our candles are made in the UK, all environmental standards are met during production. While our soy wax comes from the US, our wicks are made in the UK — so there's no risk of any child labour or poisoned rivers and land as with many big companies that manufacture their products in developing countries.

Not all candles are made equal, and for many ethically aware and environmentally responsible people, soy is the only way to go.


All the cosy vegan candles you ever dreamed of await you at the YR Studio — including calming soy wax candles and soothing soy wax melts to imbue your home with that hygge feeling. Order yours today and get free delivery in the UK.

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