4 Animal Wax Types

Posted: June 10, 2016

Did you know some waxes come from animals? There are a variety of animal waxes, each produced from a unique source. Learn more about four types of animal waxes:

1. Beeswax

Beeswax is the most common type of animal wax. Worker bees produce it in a hive, and honeybees use it to build honeycomb cells. The wax is harvested by melting an empty honeycomb in boiling water. Beeswax is used in many products, including candles and cosmetics.

2. Tallow

Tallow is rendered from animal fat (typically beef). It has been used in candles for centuries because it is an inexpensive wax. Candles made from tallow are slow-burning, so they are good for emergency kits. Tallow is also used as a lubricant and a leather conditioner. This wax type is also being experimented with for aviation biofuels.

3. Lanolin

Lanolin (also called wool wax or wool grease) comes from wool-bearing animals like sheep. One of its most common uses is in personal care products like creams, lotions, lip balms and lipsticks. It is also useful for rust-proof coatings. Many baseball players use this wax to soften their gloves.

4. Ambergris

Ambergris is produced in the intestines of sperm whales. The whales make this waxy substance to protect their intestines when they eat something sharp. After the ambergris has built up inside of the whale, they get rid of it. The ambergris washes up on the shore where it is harvested. This expensive wax is used in some high-end perfumes to help the scent last longer. In the past, it has also been used to enhance the flavors of food and wine.

We are wax experts. If you need a specific blend for your application, contact us. We can help you find a wax that is best for your product.

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