Ways to Use Beeswax In & Around the Home
What are the best uses for beeswax? Well, raw beeswax smells heavenly – it’s really something special. Used by the honey bee colony to create a home, we humans have come up with some unusual ways to use this hive product. Surely you have heard about beeswax candles – but there is so much more. In fact, you may be surprised at the many things you can do with beeswax .
How do We Get Beeswax?
Beeswax is produced by honey bees from special glands on their abdomen. The small pieces of wax are shaped into many sheets of honeycomb.
Here the bees live, raise young and store honey for Winter. In the right conditions, bees do a very good job of producing beeswax.
If bees need the wax, how do we get any? When beekeepers harvest honey, surplus wax is left over from the extraction process.
This extra beeswax is not thrown away. It is melted into blocks and stored to be used later.
Beeswax has value. In fact, selling the excess can be a nice little sideline income for a beekeeper.
In some regions, a beekeeper may produce more income from selling wax than with honey sales.
Whats so Special About Beeswax?
Have you ever held a piece of natural beeswax? It almost feels magical and smells great! It is used in its raw form for many projects.
But it can be mixed with other ingredients to create products that add value to our lives.
As a matter of fact, you may develop new appreciation for this natural substance when you ponder common questions about beeswax.
Beeswax plays a role in our health care, beauty, home life, and in the work shop.
Cleaning Beeswax for Use
No matter what you choose to do with your extra wax, it will need to be properly cleaned. Buying beeswax from a local beekeeper is the least expensive way to obtain it.
However, raw beeswax must be cleaned before it is used for projects. Left over bits of honey, propolis etc will be present in raw beeswax that has not been filtered.
For those of you who have a small amount of raw beeswax, you may consider making your own solar melter. This process is slow but – they are inexpensive and easy to make.
I love to use beeswax in my lotions and potions. Beeswax Alchemy is one of my favorite books. I have made many of the beeswax recipes inside.
It is unlikely that I will ever make every thing inside- because this book is so jam packed with information.
My projects don’t always turn out perfect but they are a lot of fun. It is very rewarding to take natural raw materials like beeswax and make a useful item for your home.
When you do, you know what is in it – and more importantly – what is not! No nasty additives please!
Melting Beeswax for Crafts
Beeswax is a material that lends itself well to crafting and being mixed with other substances.
It is a mixture of esters, Creotic Acid, hydrocarbins, water, alcohol, minerals, pigments and who knows what else.
It has a melting point of 143° F – 147° F (62° C-64° C). This is a relatively low melting point.
It makes our use of beeswax possible without special equipment and is safer to work with than some products.
Pure beeswax becomes pliable and easy to bend and form at 90° F-95° F (32° C-35° C). This means that it is a very versatile compound .
And if you mess up your recipe – you can usually remelt and try again!
Uses for Beeswax in The Home
Beeswax candles are a wonderful addition to any home. Candles made of beeswax have been used for centuries. They are still practical and useful today.
Making Beeswax Candles
One you understand the benefits of using beeswax candles in your home. You won’t mind the cost so much. Yes, they cost a bit more than conventional candles but have a lot to offer.
Maybe it’s time to melt some beeswax and learn how to make beeswax candles freestyle. It is not hard to do and you can use many different types of molds.
You do not have to be a crafting genius to be a successful candle maker. With some basic safety precautions to avoid burns, it’s a fun project to do with the kids.
An even easier way to use beeswax for candles is with rolled sheets of beeswax. Understand that while these candle will burn, they do not last very long.
They are a favorite for decorations. You can purchase rolled beeswax tapers in a variety of colors. They are very pretty.
Or, you can buy a beeswax candle kit and roll your own candles. This is a great activity for all ages.
You can use regular wax foundation to make rolled beeswax candles but it take a bit more practice than the commercial sheets as they are thicker.
Do your research regarding the proper ways to melt beeswax and choosing the best size wick. These details will make your beeswax project a success.
Beeswax candles are considered some of the best natural candles available. They provide many benefits to your home.
Use Beeswax on Sticky Wooden Drawers
Do you have a problem with sticky drawers? No, seriously. I am of course referring to the pull out drawers of your wooden furniture. Beeswax is the answer.
Take a small block ( piece of beeswax) and rub it on the runners of the bottom of the drawer. This should provide enough lubrication to permit the drawer to slide easily.
Beeswax is Helpful in Sewing
Many seamstresses know the secret of using beeswax for easier sewing. I wouldn’t consider myself a seamstress.
But, everyone needs to sew on a button or 2 at some point in their lives. You only need a small block of pure beeswax.
Cut your thread to the length needed. Wrap the thread around the block of wax and firmly slide it along the wax.
Push down with your finger if needed and you should have a light coat of wax on your thread. Waxed thread is easier to work with and less likely to knot!
How to Make Zippers Less Sticky
Do you have a favorite coat with a zipper problem? Sticky zippers can be so annoying. One of my beekeeper suits is prone to having a difficult zipper.
When this happens, I use a small piece of beeswax to rub along the teeth of the zipper. Works like a charm and it will work for your favorite coat too!
You Can Use Beeswax to Seal Envelopes
Due to its adhesive properties, beeswax can be used to seal envelopes. This sounds like such a neat idea to do – especially at Christmas time. The mail would smell very good!
Gently warm a piece of wax and rub it on the sealing edges of the envelope. You can purchase special wax stamps for this purpose too.
Make Your Own Beeswax Furniture Polish
Creating a furniture polish has been one of the most popular uses for beeswax for hundreds of years. You can make your own with this beeswax furniture polish recipe. It is quick and easy to make.
Another traditional recipe involves mixing equal parts of turpentine, boiled linseed oil and melted beeswax. Make sure your beeswax is free of dirt etc,
I melt mine and strain it through a piece of nylon. You do not need to heat this mixture.
Once the ingredients are combined in a glass jar, mix well and let it sit for a day or two.
After, it thickens you have a great natural furniture polish. Be sure to buff it out within 10 minutes for a nice shine. And always test any product on a small out of site spot first!
Beeswax as a Bronze Polish
Raw beeswax makes a good polish for bronze pieces too. Rub a warm beeswax bar (you can warm it with a hair dryer), on your bronze items and buff. The wax coating will prevent tarnishing.
Using Beeswax in the Kitchen
Canning – A Traditional Use for Beeswax
Beeswax has been used for hundreds of years in canning and preserving food. Though not as popular today, it was once used to prevent spoilage of jam or jelly.
Once the jam was finished, a thick coat of wax was applied directly over the food. I still do this if I have a 1/2 jar of jam and don’t want to bother with the lid.
(I must admit that I also put it in the refrigerator because I am not as fearless as Grandma was in her day.)
Make Your Own Beeswax Food Wraps
Our culture is finally getting the message about our exorbitant use of plastics. All this plastic has to go somewhere once we are finished.
Instead of adding to our ever growing landfills, consider making your own reusable beeswax wraps.
They are all natural and can be used without worry as they contain no toxic chemicals.
Using Beeswax For Non-Stick Coating
A small amount of beeswax can be rubbed inside your favorite frying pan or sauce pan.
The pan should be slightly warm to aid in wax transfer. Buff gently and you will have an all natural non stick surface for cooking.
Easier Grill Clean Up with Beeswax Preparation
Do you love to grill? I do. But, I sure don’t like having to clean up a messy grill afterwards.
Use warm beeswax for a quick rub on your grilling rack (before using it). A light coat of wax here works to avoid a messy buildup of food residue.
Do not do this with the grill fired up – beeswax does have a flash point.
Using Beeswax in the Shop
You don’t have to limit your use of beeswax to candles and inside projects. A small block of beeswax will come in handy in your garage or shop.
In fact, I have sold many small blocks of beeswax to folks who give them as small gifts!
We keep a small block of wax in our shop near the wood screws. Trying to insert a wood screw into a hard piece of old wood can be difficult even with an electric drill driver.
Rubbing the tip of the screw over the wax block makes the job a lot easier.
Beeswax Helps Saws Work Better
When using a hand saw in new wood, any carpenter will appreciate having a little beeswax on hand.
By rubbing the wax on the teeth of the saw, it will cut through the wood much easier. (This is the same principle as the sticky drawer problem we talked about earlier.)
Waterproofing with Beeswax
One of the often overlooked uses for beeswax is as a water-proofer. Do you have an older pair of work boots?
Maybe they still have a little use in them but they leak in rainy weather? I hate wet feet!
Melted beeswax may be the answer and help you get a few more steps out of those boots. Use beeswax for waterproofing old hiking boots and keep your toes dry.
How to Make Beeswax Fire Starters
If you enjoy backpacking or camping, you can use beeswax to make simple light-weight fire starters.
Brush melted beeswax onto small squares of cardboard. Let cool and pack. These are easy to carry, don’t take up much space and will help you start your next fire.
Need a quick way to start your campfire? Try these homemade beeswax fire starters – you can even give them as a gift.
Health & Beauty Uses for Beeswax
The natural properties of beeswax make it such a great ingredient for cosmetics and beauty recipes.
Let’s make beeswax lip balm.
Okay, it’s not only beeswax. You can imagine that dragging a block of wax across your lips wont work.
Still, the beeswax plays an important part in our recipe. It protects and moisturizes your skin.
Honestly, it is so easy to Make Beeswax Lip Balm, everyone should be doing it. Just add a 2 other ingredients and your lips will be smacking with joy.
You can add a few drops of peppermint essential oil if you wish to give your beeswax lip balm a buzz.
Use Beeswax for Cracked Heels
Human skin and beeswax recipes are a match made in heaven. The moisturizing properties of beeswax help sooth itchy, dry skin and promote healing. Make your own beeswax balm and soothe those cracked heels.
You can add some magnesium flakes if you wish (optional). Once the cream has set, it should be stored in the frig. Rub the beeswax cream on your heels at night and put on a pair of socks.
Beeswax Body Butter
Ready to treat yourself to a special all natural moisturizing experience. Here it is – the only Body Butter Recipe with Beeswax you will ever need. This Lavender Scented recipe produces a luxurious whipped body butter.
Homemade lotion is another special item to make at home. This beeswax lotion recipe is exactly what you need when your skin wants some extra attention.
Once you have a bit of crafting with beeswax experience, you may wish to try your first homemade soaps? Here are some great ideas to get started – Easy Beeswax Soap Recipe.
Hair Care with Beeswax
A mixture of 1/2 beeswax and 1/2 coconut oil is often used as a hair dressing. It makes a great beard balm for the guys and can be used to condition dreadlocks.
Beeswax for Ouchies!
Beeswax is used as a major ingredient in many salves, creams and ointments. From promoting healing for burns to preventing infections, you can use beeswax to create a natural healing product.
Using Beeswax for Hobbies
Beeswax for Woodwind Instruments
If you or someone you know enjoys playing woodwind instruments, beeswax deserves a place in your equipment bag. A thin coat of wax on the reeds will ensure a good, tight fit.
Protect and Improve Your Tambourine
Do you play the tambourine? A light coating of wax on the surface allows fingers to roll off better.
This gives you a chance for a better performance and protects your instrument.
Artistic Uses for Beeswax
Beeswax is used to create many varieties of art and home decor. Express yourself using wax on silk painting or other batik styles. You are only limited by your creativity.
Yes, I said crayons. As a child I loved to smell my crayons – who knows what I was breathing in.
If you want to give your children or grandchildren a more natural approach, use beeswax crayons.
Using Beeswax for Plant Propagation
Gardening is a great hobby. For those of you who enjoy developing new plants, beeswax can be a valuable tool.
Beeswax is often used for grafting. It is the perfect medium for holding 2 parts of plant material together. It is all natural and non-toxic.
Using Beeswax for Craft Projects
While this natural project made by bees can do some serious work, it has a fun side too. There are many creative beeswax uses involving home decor and seasonal decoration.
Preserving Leaves in Beeswax is an easy craft that the whole family can participate in with a little supervision (you do have to melt wax).
Christmas ornaments and tree decorations have been created using beeswax for hundreds of years.
In the past tin molds were used, today it is really easy to make your own beeswax Christmas ornaments with clay cookie molds.
And, if you want more of a folk-art look check out the Blackened Beeswax Christmas Ornaments.
Avoid the nasty chemicals present in many commercial wax melts. You can make your own all natural melts with beeswax – DIY Bees Wax Melts Recipe.
Another great use for a small amount of beeswax is creating natural air fresheners. These DIY herbal wax sachets with beeswax are just right to freshen up a small space and so easy to make.
Recap of Awesome Uses for Beeswax
- making beeswax candles
- sliding sticky drawers
- as a sewing aid
- smooth running zipper
- sealing envelopes
- make your own furniture polish
- prevent bronze tarnishing
- use in canning to seal jars
- make natural food wraps
- a natural non-stick pan coating
- easier grill clean up
- makes shop hand saws work smoother
- lubricate wood screws and nails
- traditional water proofer
- fun fire starters
- make you own beeswax lip balm
- ease cracked heels
- make a luxurious body butter
- coat reeds of woodwind instruments
- protect surface of tambourines
- batik art
- silk painting
- make natural beeswax crayons
- use for plant grafting
- beeswax for craft project
- it just smells good – just kidding – many, many more….
These are just a few of the uses for beeswax that you can take advantage of for your home, shop, garden or hobbies. You can often buy beeswax from a local beekeeper.
One of the beauties of working with beeswax is that it never spoils. Store your wax in a place that does not experience hot temperatures and it will be there for you to use whenever you are ready.
There are so many things you can do with a little beeswax. Don’t let your experiment stop here – give it a try. What can you do with beeswax?