Orange wax melt sits in a green candle wax burner beside flowers, book and glasses

How long do wax melts really last?

The scent in wax melts fades over time due to the gradual evaporation of the fragrance oil infused in the wax. Typically, the scent can last anywhere from 8-20 hours, depending on the specific wax melt and the strength of the fragrance. The wax itself can last for multiple uses, usually 8-12 hours, before it loses its ability to release the scent effectively.

What affects wax melt shelf life

Wax melts are a popular way to add subtle fragrance a space. However, their shelf life can be affected by several factors. From storage conditions to the quality of ingredients used, these factors can impact how long your wax melts will maintain its scent and performance. Understanding and paying attention to these factors can help you enjoy your wax melts for an extended period, saving you money and ensuring a consistent scent experience.

Several factors determine the duration of wax melts. The size of the wax melts, the percentage of fragrance oil used, and the melting temperature all play a role in how long the scent will last. The larger the wax melt, the longer it will release your favourite scents. Additionally, a higher percentage of fragrance oil and a lower melting temperature can extend the duration of the scent.

Wax melt companies ensure effectiveness and safety by following guidelines set for the production of their products. This includes using high-quality ingredients, adhering to safe melting temperatures, and providing clear instructions for use. By following these guidelines, wax melt companies can guarantee that their products will provide long-lasting fragrance while maintaining safety for the user.

Type of wax

There are several types of wax commonly used in wax melts, including soy, coconut, paraffin, and olive oil. Each type of wax has unique characteristics and benefits.

Soy wax is known for its clean burn and excellent scent throw, meaning it releases the scent over time and well when melted. It is also a renewable and biodegradable resource, making it an environmentally friendly option.

Coconut wax is also clean-burning and has a good scent throw. It is known for its longevity and ability to hold a high fragrance load, resulting in a longer-lasting scent.

Paraffin wax is a by-product of petroleum and has been a popular choice for wax melts due to its affordability and strong scent throw. However, it is not as clean-burning as soy or coconut wax and may release harmful chemicals when burned.

Olive oil wax is a natural and renewable alternative that provides a clean burn and good scent throw. It is also biodegradable and has minimal impact on the environment.

While paraffin wax is widely used, it has drawn concerns over its environmental impact and potential health hazards due to the release of toxins when burned. Choosing natural and renewable waxes like soy, coconut, and olive oil can help minimise these concerns.

Elevate any space with our soy wax melts - they still smell delicious after 20 hours.

Scent concentration

Scent concentration in wax melts is crucial for achieving the desired fragrance intensity and longevity. The level of scent concentration determines how strong and long-lasting the fragrance will be when the wax melt is melted. A higher concentration of fragrance oils in the wax will result in a more intense scent that lasts for a longer time. On the other hand, a lower concentration may result in a milder scent that dissipates more quickly.

Different producers have their own unique formulas for scent concentration, which can greatly impact the overall experience of using wax melts. Some producers may prioritise a stronger scent, while others may focus on a more subtle and nuanced fragrance. This means the same fragrance from different producers can yield different results in terms of intensity and longevity.


Wax melts can come in bags, loose, or in plastic components. Plastic is a common occurrence because it's cheap, compared to eco-friendly options. Melts tend to keep their scent longer when packaged over being sold loosely.

At buff, we are committed to minimising our environmental impact during the manufacturing process through the use of bio-degradable products and packaging. We utilise soy wax and biodegradable glassine bags in our packaging materials to ensure they are eco-friendly. This not only reduces our reliance on petroleum-based products but also ensures that our packaging materials are compostable and do not harm the environment.

In addition to bio-degradable materials, we also use cardboard boxes, tissue paper, and recyclable packing peanuts (or reuse packaging from suppliers) for our packaging. These materials are not only eco-friendly but also provide effective protection for our products during shipping. By using these recyclable and bio-degradable materials, we can minimise our carbon footprint and reduce our waste.

How long can you leave a wax warmer on?

The maximum amount of time you can leave a wax warmer on is typically four hours. It is recommended to never leave a wax warmer unattended while it is on to ensure safety. For candle-lit warmers, the recommended burn time is around 2-3 hours, while for electric warmers, it is safe to keep them on for 4 hours at a time. Usually, when using a tealight candle flame, they self-extinguish at the 3-4 hour mark.

To prolong the life of wax melts, it is important to store them properly. Keep them in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and heat sources. This will prevent them from melting or becoming misshapen before use. Additionally, to prevent scent fatigue, it is recommended to rotate between different scents rather than using the same one continuously. This will help to keep the scent fresh and potent for longer.

For larger burners or for a stronger scent, try our soy wax melt tarts - they are similar to snap bars!

How long do wax melts last in storage?

Wax melts can last a long time in storage if stored properly. To ensure their longevity, it is important to keep them in their original packaging to protect them from outside elements. Store them in a cool, dark, and dry location away from direct sunlight and heat sources, as these can cause the wax melts to melt or lose their scent.

Additionally, placing them in an airtight container can help protect them from moisture, preserving their scent and quality. By following these storage guidelines, wax melts can last for months or even years without losing their beautiful fragrances or effectiveness. Proper storage is key to maintaining the quality and longevity of wax melts.

How often should you change a wax melt?

To determine when to change a wax melt, consider the fragrance longevity and any pet influences. Lower-quality wax melts typically have a shorter recommended usage time, usually around 8-10 hours, while high-quality wax melts can last 20 hours or more.

If you notice a musty odour or are unable to smell the aroma, it's clear that it's time to change the wax melt. Pet influences can also affect the scent retention of the wax melt, so if you have pets in the house, you may need to change the wax melt more frequently. Keep an eye (or nose) out for any signs that the captivating scent is no longer as potent as it used to be.

Overall, paying attention to the recommended usage hours and being mindful of any changes in scent will help determine when it's time to change a wax melt. Companies should list the average/recommended burn time on their packaging for any melts and tarts.

How long do wax melts last if unused?

When it comes to soy wax melts, if stored properly, they can last for up to 2 years. Over time, the fragrance throw from soy wax melts has the potential to become stronger as the oils continue to blend and develop within the wax.

Various variables can impact the duration of unused wax melts, such as the size of the room they are used in, the type of electric burner or candle melter being used, the type of wax used (soy wax, paraffin wax, etc.), and the fragrance load. Taking these factors into consideration can help maximise the longevity and performance of unused wax melts.

Try to use wax melts within 12 months of purchase to help maintain their hours of fragrance. If you've stuck a packet at the back of the drawer and forgotten about it, the best test is just to see if it still gives off a scent. If they do, use them on your next round. If they don't, it's likely the fragrance has evaporated over time.

Discover our range of invigorating wax melts, available in two sizes and five scents.

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vegan soaps, lip scrubs and candles you'll love

our handmade soap bars are vegan, homemade in the UK and cruelty-free. there's no palm oil, parabens or SLS in our products and they're designed with you and the earth in mind. soaps have added shea butter for nourishment, whereas lip scrubs are infused with vitamin E and sweet almond oil to help nourish the skin. when it comes to our soy wax candles, they're made up of vegetable wax, eco-friendly cotton wicks and recyclable glass jars which can be re-used or re-purposed to prevent waste.

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