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All about Candelilla Wax

Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla Wax)

Euphorbia L.



Candelilla is a tufted perennial usually growing 1-1 1/2 ft. tall but occasionally reaching 3 ft. The numerous, rarely branched, waxy stems resemble a cluster of slender, pale-green candles. Tiny, narrow leaves, present only on new growth, fall off early, and, along with the flowers, are inconspicuous. The small white flowers, deep pink at the base, 1/16-1/8 inch across, grow near the tips of the stems. This plant is in the same genus as the holiday favorite Poinsettia.

The common name of the “Candelilla” plant appears to have been derived from the particular shape of the plant stalks – long, straight, erect and wax-covered – giving the appearance of little candles.  Other sources indicate that the Candelilla plant was burned directly for illumination, serving the purpose of a candle.

Candelilla Wax is used in many different products such as lipsticks, creams, mascaras, lotions, chewing gum, glazing agent, candles, phonograph records, polishes, lubricants and more.


What’s in Candelilla Wax?

Candelilla Wax includes hydrocarbons, esters, free fatty acids, free fatty alcohols and resins.

Typical Candelilla Wax Composition

candelilla wax compostion

Physical-Chemical Properties of Candelilla Wax

physical chemical properties of candelilla wax


Benefits of Applying Candelilla Wax on Skin

Here are some of the benefits of Candelilla Wax in Skincare Products:

  • Locks in moisture.
  • Helps protect skin from the elements.
  • Allows for smooth application with a wonderful glide consistency.
  • Gives product stability.
  • Great VEGAN alternative for beeswax.
  • candelilla-plant

Facts at a Glance:

Vegetable Wax
Beneficial for Topical Use
High Ester, Fatty Acid and Resin Properties
Protects from Elements
Beneficial for Topical Use
High Ester, Fatty Acid and Resin Properties

Candelilla Contains:

Free Fatty Acids
Free Fatty Alcohols


Kingdom Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass Rosidae
Order Euphorbiales
Family Euphorbiaceae – Spurge Family
Genus Euphorbia L. – spurge
Species Euphorbia antisyphilitica Zucc. – candelilla



TWC Staff, “Euphorbia antisyphilitica”. Wildflower Center. n.d. web.

“Properties”. Candelilla Institute. n.d. web.

For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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