Relax and let the soothing scents of wax melts pervade your home, creating an alluring ambiance. Melt fragrant wax melts in a candle warmer—also called a wax warmer—to create a sense of peacefulness, cleanliness, or vigor. The best wax melts are available in a variety of wax materials and scents that melt in either an electric or a non-electric (tea-light) wax warmer.
Made from soy wax, paraffin, and other wax materials, scented wax melts exude pleasant fragrances to enhance the atmosphere in homes, offices, and other indoor spaces. Read on to learn about the materials, ingredients, and characteristics of the best wax melts to suit your purposes, and then discover some of the top-rated options on the market today.
- BEST OVERALL: Happy Wax Fresh Mix Soy Wax Melts
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Febreze Wax Melts Air Freshener, Gain Original Scent
- BEST ESSENTIAL OILS: E&E Company All Natural Soy Wax Melts
- BEST FLORAL: Shortie’s Candle Company Natural Floral Soy Wax Melts
- BEST STRONG SCENT: Farm Raised Candles Fall Spice Wax Warmer Melts
- BEST FOR ODORS: Febreze Unstopables Fresh Wax Melts Air Freshener
- HONORABLE MENTION: Shortie’s Candle Company Vanilla Wax Melts Pack
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Wax Melts
Wax melts function as air fresheners and fragrance sources. They’re available in a variety of wax types, sizes, shapes, and scents. Formulated to melt in wax warmers, they offer a safe alternative to burning scented candles. But with an abundance of options on the market, it may be confusing to make a choice. Below are some ideas about selecting the best wax melts for indoor environments.
Manufacturers offer various types of wax melts made from diverse wax materials. Here’s a summary of the types of wax melts available on the market today.
- Paraffin wax is capable of a strong scent throw, but some users avoid paraffin because it is a byproduct of petroleum oil processing. The ongoing debate about the toxicity of paraffin candles continues, but the current consensus holds that well-made paraffin wax melts are safe and non-toxic. Additionally, paraffin is less expensive than other types of wax.
- Soy wax is the most popular material for scented wax melts. It is made from soybeans and is, therefore, a safe, vegan, non-toxic material. Soy wax is an environmentally friendly product, as it can be made from a responsibly grown agricultural source.
- Palm wax is similar to soy wax in that it is produced from a plant. Made from hydrogenated palm oil, palm wax exhibits a greater degree of hardness than soy wax.
- Beeswax is one of the oldest candle-making materials. Even without the addition of essential oils, beeswax emits a gentle fragrance of honey as it melts.
- Gel wax is made from mineral oil and resin, and gel wax melts are available in small cups. Users remove about 1 teaspoon of scented gel at a time and place it in a wax warmer for melting.
Size and Shape
Wax melts are small, scented pieces of wax produced in correct proportions to fit into the bowls of wax warmers. They are sometimes also referred to as “tarts” since they resemble the size and shape of those tasty baked confections.
Wax melts are produced in various shapes and colors, as they are made by pouring melted wax into molds. Popular shapes include stars, hearts, round discs, and little bears.
Many wax melts are available in sheets of break-off cubes, with six cubes per sheet. Typically, each cube weighs 0.5 ounces and produces enough melted wax to fill the bowl of a wax warmer.
A plethora of scents await individuals who use wax melts to enhance the ambiance of their indoor environment. Common fragrances include florals, fruits, spices, plants and trees, favorite foods, and fresh laundry. Additionally, some wax melts eliminate unwanted odors to freshen indoor air.
For many wax melts, the scents derive from the infusion of essential oils. Users who show concern for maintaining a healthy environment should be careful to search for wax melts that contain only pure, natural, and non-toxic essential oils.
The term “scent throw” refers to a wax melt’s capability to produce a strong, noticeable scent that permeates the air. Shoppers might look for wax melts that feature a strong scent throw as well as a quick melting time. This means that the scent disperses quickly into the air and spreads throughout the indoor space.
A wax melt consists of a small piece of wax infused with additives that emit fragrance or scent when it is heated to a melting point. As the wax melt heats up, the fragrance from the additives is released into the air. Typically, these additives consist of essential oils.
To maintain a healthy indoor environment, many users look for wax melts that contain all-natural, non-toxic essential oils. Additionally, they may look for wax melts that don’t contain harmful chemicals, such as phthalates.
Diethyl phthalate (DEP) is a chemical that is frequently used in many types of fragrance. DEP increases the hot scent throw from soy wax. Health-conscious users might look for wax melts that feature phthalate-free qualities.
The term “burning time” comes from the world of candles and refers to the length of time that a candle can burn before the wick is used up and the candle wax is gone. In the world of wax melts, the term “burning time” refers to the length of time that the wax melt continues to produce a noticeable scent.
Wax melts should quickly transform to a liquid state to begin exuding fragrance into the air. However, users want that fragrance to last for many hours before it fades away. Many wax melts will continue to release fragrance for 8 to 12 hours before they need to be replaced.
When the fragrance of a wax melt dissipates, users can place cotton balls in the warm bowl of the wax warmer to soak up the liquid wax and then dispose of the cotton balls in the trash. Alternatively, users might choose to scrape cooled and hardened wax that has lost its scent out of the wax warmer. Placing a wax warmer with hardened wax into the freezer for a few minutes causes the used wax to release more easily from the surface.
To work their magic, wax melts must be heated and melted in safe containers. Electric and nonelectric wax warmers are designed for this function. They’re made from heat-proof, fire-resistant materials and feature a heat source as well as a bowl for the melted wax.
Electric tabletop wax warmers have cords that plug into household outlets, and they may also feature light bulbs. Alternatively, some wax warmers plug directly into wall outlets and do not take up space on tables or countertops. Many electric wax warmers function as night lights as well as fragrance sources.
Nonelectric wax warmers require tea lights as a heat source. These are tiny, disc-shaped candles in tin cups. Although the tea lights produce open flames, they are placed within the partially enclosed areas beneath the bowls of wax warmers. In this way, nonelectric tea-light wax warmers can offer a safe alternative to burning scented candles.
Our Top Picks
This list of the best wax melts comprises a variety of wax types, scents, additives, shapes, and sizes, plus budget-friendly options, air-freshening capabilities, and long-lasting scents. These top picks include high-quality products from reputable manufacturers with an emphasis on safe, non-toxic choices.
The small, bear-shaped wax melts in this 8-ounce bag from Happy Wax are made from all-natural soy wax with infused fragrances from phthalate-free essential oils. They are non-toxic and long-lasting, providing more than 200 hours of burn time.
This half-pound bag contains a mixture of tiny wax melts in three scents, including Lemon Verbena, Fresh Cotton, and Baby Powder. Lemon Verbena is a blend of tangy lime, grapefruit, and lemon. Fresh Cotton combines the cotton scent with additional floral and woodsy notes. Baby Powder is a complex scent formulated from white cedar, ylang-ylang, cypress, patchouli, and musk.
Shaped like tiny bears and attractively colored in white, green, and yellow, these wax melts may be irresistible to babies and small children. Although the all-natural soy wax is non-toxic, adults should take care to keep these wax melts away from curious little hands.
Odors from cooking, pets, and gym bags sometimes pervade the air, even in the tidiest homes. Rather than layering on heavier scents to mask these odors, Febreze MELTS clean away odors as they melt in electric or nonelectric wax warmers. Additionally, these wax melts release a light scent, reminiscent of freshly washed laundry.
This four-pack includes six wax melt cubes in each pack for a total of 24 cubes. These are available at an economical price, so it’s easy to keep a supply on hand to freshen the air when needed. The cubes fit electric and light bulb warmers as well as non-electric tea light warmers.
All of the 24 wax melts in this 4-pack exude the fresh scent of Gain laundry detergent. They’re suitable for use in kitchens, bathrooms, entryways, or any rooms in the home.
The all-natural soy wax in these wax melts by E&E Company melts cleanly to infuse the air with fragrances from chemical-free essential oils. Made from American farm-grown soybeans, the wax contains zero paraffin, coloring, chemicals, or dyes.
Exuding calming scents into the air, the soy wax melts contain phthalate-free fragrances from infused essential oils. Based on their all-natural, vegetable-based composition, they pose no risk to the health of adults, children, and pets.
This two-pack contains six wax melt cubes each of two scents. Eucalyptus Mint is a blend of eucalyptus, spearmint, and jasmine, and it creates a refreshing, cooling scent. Lavender Fields emits a soothing scent derived from its blend of lavender, rosemary, and eucalyptus oils.
Let the scents of a summer garden permeate the air with these long-lasting, all-natural wax melts. Made from soybeans grown in the U.S., the wax is 100 percent vegan, clean-burning, and non-toxic. The essential oils that create the floral scents are also derived from U.S.-grown flowering plants. These wax melts from Shortie’s Candle Company contain no phthalates and no paraffin.
Formulated for long-lasting fragrance, each wax melt cube exudes fragrance for more than 10 hours when melted in 1-hour increments. Each pack of wax melts contains six cubes. These wax melts are made from moldable soy wax that holds fragrance. They are designed to melt at a low temperature point, making them melt faster and throw scent farther into the air.
Made from organic soy vegetable oil, these wax melts contain infused essential oils to produce the scents of the fall season. Fragrances include Fall Spice, McIntosh Apple, Home Sweet Home, Cinnamon Caramel Swirl, and Pecan Waffles. The five-pack includes one pack each of five scents. Each pack contains six cubes, for a total of 30 wax melt cubes, and each cube fits into either electric or nonelectric wax warmers.
Farm Raised Candles formulates these wax melts to be free of paraffin, petroleum oil-based substances, and contaminants. They infuse their wax with only 100 percent natural essential oils for added fragrance. The soybeans grown for the wax in these melts constitute a renewable, responsibly sourced, agricultural product from the U.S.
Febreze Unstopables wax melts deliver long hours of bold, strong scent to clean away unwanted odors. The fragrance is notably fresh and clean, providing an invigorating effect for those who enter the environment. Additionally, the scent lingers for hours, delivering value for users.
These wax melts are compatible with electric wax warmers, light bulb warmers, and tea-light warmers. They help solve the problem of unwanted odors from pets, cooking, dirty laundry, and other sources. Place these wax melts in warmers located in kitchens, bathrooms, entryways, living rooms, and bedrooms.
The scent of vanilla is a classic fragrance with universal appeal, and this three-pack from Shortie’s Candle Company contains three vanilla-based scents. The rich and buttery Vanilla Bean scent hearkens to the jungles of South America. Cinnamon Vanilla is infused with essential oils and mixes the spicy aroma of cinnamon with the gentle fragrance of French vanilla. Vanilla Maple evokes the bouquet of vanilla blended with maple sugar.
These highly scented wax melts contain no chemicals or toxins, and they’re made with natural essential oils. However, they do contain food-grade paraffin, an ingredient that contributes to the strong scent throw.
Each of the three packs in this set contains six wax melt cubes, for a total of 18 cubes. Each cube provides more than 5 hours of burn time, exuding a strong scent.
The Advantages of Owning the Best Wax Melts
Scented candles and wax melts provide two methods for introducing pleasant fragrances into the air of an indoor environment. For safety reasons, wax melts provide advantages over scented candles.
Whereas candles have open flames and should never be left unattended, many wax warmers operate on electricity, offering a safer alternative. Nonelectric wax warmers require tea lights for heat, but these tiny candles are contained in fireproof tin cups and placed in partially enclosed areas of the heat-proof wax warmers. Therefore, even the nonelectric wax warmers offer greater peace of mind than scented candles when it comes to fire safety.
The sensation of scent, fragrance, or odor is perceived by the action of stimuli on the olfactory system. Research indicates that these stimuli are processed in the brain according to emotional content. This explains why scents have positive and negative emotional associations. Pleasant scents can elicit feelings of calmness, relaxation, well-being, fond memories, and other positive emotions.
For this reason, wax melts provide additional advantages for individuals who want to enhance ambiance and create a fragrant indoor environment. Depending on individual scent formulas combined with those positive emotional associations, wax melts can elicit a variety of pleasant feelings. They can:
- eliminate unwanted odors from cooking, pets, and other sources
- promote a feeling of relaxation
- create an atmosphere of cleanliness and freshness
- elicit positive memories and pleasant associations
FAQs About Wax Melts
For those who are just getting started with wax melts or looking for new and different fragrances to add to an existing collection, the choices can seem endless. Collecting a variety of scented wax melts offers opportunities for creating a relaxing and pleasant atmosphere in a home, office, or another indoor environment. When using new wax melts, the answers to these common questions may be helpful.
Q. What are the differences between candles and wax melts?
Wax melts do not have wicks that burn as candles do. Unlike pillar candles and tapers, a wax melt loses shape as it melts into a puddle within the bowl of the wax warmer. Wax melts require a heat source, either electric or nonelectric, for melting.
Q. What kind of wax is best for melts?
Soy wax tends to be the most popular type of wax for melts. All-natural, vegetable-based soy wax is non-toxic and safe for use around adults, children, and pets.
Q. Are wax melts safe for pets?
All-natural soy wax melts are non-toxic and safe for use around pets. However, users should not allow pets to chew or swallow soy wax melts.
Q. How do I use wax melts without a warmer?
Heat a small amount of water in a medium-size pot on the stove. Place a wax melt in a smaller pot, and insert it into the pot of heated water. This is similar to a double-boiler, but the water does not need to be at the boiling point.
Q. How long can I use wax melts?
Most high-quality wax melts will emanate a scent for 8 to 12 hours. They last longer if users turn off the wax warmer after 1 to 2 hours of use. The scent will continue to pervade the environment for a few more hours, and the wax melt will last through numerous uses.
Q. How can I dispose of wax melts?
When the wax is melted and hot, users can place cotton balls into the warmer to absorb the liquid wax. Then, throw the cotton balls in the trash. Alternatively, users may place a cold wax warmer in the freezer for 10 to 20 minutes. The frozen, hardened wax will easily pop out of the warmer and wipe away with a paper towel.