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Carnauba Wax VS Beeswax: The Key Differences

Are you wondering about the difference between Carnauba wax vs beeswax? Whether you’re a hobbyist or develop wax products for a living, you need to use the right wax for creating the best products. The right mix of Carnauba wax and beeswax is the key for making polishing products, cosmetics, lip balms, lotions, candles, and salves. 

The biggest difference between Carnauba wax and beeswax is the source of the wax. Carnauba wax comes from the leaves of a Brazilian palm tree, while beeswax is naturally produced by bees.

Learn more about Carnauba wax and beeswax, and their many uses.

What Is Carnauba Wax?

Carnauba wax is a natural, fatty wax found in nature. The yellow wax covers the stems and leaves of Brazilian palm trees, preventing them from losing too much water.

To gather Carnauba wax, the leaves are cut from the tree and dried. Once the wax dries, it becomes powdery. Then, the process of grinding and beating the leaves removes the wax.

Carnauba wax flakes

Purifying the dried wax comes next. Carnauba wax is the hardest of all the waxes, which is why it makes such a durable floor and automobile polish.

When making floor and automobile polish, the manufacturer melts the Carnauba wax and mixes it with other waxes and lanolin.

What Is Beeswax?

Bees secrete beeswax when they’re making their honeycomb. Beekeepers collect the wax by melting it. After collection, it’s purified by filtering. Depending on its use, the physical appearance of the wax can be bleached to make it a lighter color.

Multiple bees around a honeycomb

How Do Bees Make Beeswax?

Worker honey Bees make beeswax using eight glands that produce wax. These glands are on the bee’s belly.

The bees activate their glands by eating honey. It takes eight pounds of honey to make one pound of wax. That’s a lot of honey for the bee colony to produce.

The glands secrete clear, thin flakes that are brittle and tasteless. The bees use the flakes or scales to build their honeycomb. The best bees for making wax are only two to three weeks old.

They shape the wax flakes using their mouths and legs until it’s soft enough to form the honeycomb.

Each sheet has thousands of wax cells. The natural purpose of the cells is to protect baby bees and store honey. 

When the bees first make the wax, it is pure white. As it ages in the hive, the wax color changes from light yellow to light brown. This is because the honeycomb absorbs dirt, pollen oil, and resin made by the bees.

How to Make Your Own Carnauba and Beeswax Liquid Floor Wax

When you make your own floor wax, you can not only save money, but you know that no harsh chemicals are involved.

Using natural Carnauba wax is safe and makes your floors shine as if a pro polished them. It’s an eco-friendly polish that smells great and protects your hardwood floor in the same way as Brazilian palm tree leaves.

Using just a few ingredients you can find online or in any store that sells natural products, you can get started making homemade floor wax.

  • Olive oil
  • Carnauba wax
  • Beeswax
  • Scented essential oil

1. The night before you get started, mix one cup of olive oil with 20 drops of essential oil. Let it sit overnight so the oils mix well.

2. When you’re ready to make the floor wax, break up two ounces of Carnauba wax and one and a half-ounce of beeswax into a bowl.

3. Pour the essential oil mixture into a double boiler, then add the wax. Melt them together at low heat. Stir the mixture until it’s thoroughly mixed.  You can add more of your favorite essential oil for extra fragrance.

4. Once it’s all mixed together, remove it from the stove and let it cool off. Pour it into a glass jar or other storage container. Now, you have a safe, natural floor wax whenever you need it.

What Are the Uses of Carnauba Wax?

Since Carnauba wax isn’t creamy like beeswax, its most popular use is for polishing floors and automobiles, but it also has other applications.

  • Stiffening agent for lipstick
  • Coating whole fruit and vegetables for preserving
  • Stabilizer for cosmetics
  • Waterproofing
  • Blended with cocoa butter and beeswax for a harder texture

Most of the time, Carnauba wax is blended with other oils and waxes for emulsification and oil-binding.

What Are the Uses of Beeswax?

Did you know that beeswax has been used for thousands of years? It was found in the Egyptian pyramids, Viking ships, and Roman ruins. Even an ancient cave in Spain had paintings of people foraging for honeycombs.

Beeswax is as important today as it was in ancient times. Here are several uses for beeswax today:

  • Facial cream
  • Lotion
  • Ointment
  • Soap
  • Candles
  • Lipstick
  • Ski wax
  • Chewing gum
  • Lip balm
  • Crayons
  • Furniture polish
  • Car wax
  • Floor wax

Pharmaceutical companies also use beeswax as a biodegradable way to make drug capsules.

Carnauba Wax vs Beeswax a Good Mix

The main differences between Carnauba wax and beeswax are their hardness properties and how they form. Beeswax is creamy and Carnauba wax is hard. But, combining these two waxes together gives you many of the products you use on a daily basis.

From polishing your car, washing your face to taking your medicine, these natural waxes work together to make many essential products used in the world today.