Waxes are mixtures of organic compounds that characteristically consist of long aliphatic alkyl chains, although aromatic compounds may also be present: (natural waxes) unsaturated bonds and include various functional groups such as fatty acids, primary and secondary alcohols, ketones, aldehydes and fatty acid esters; (synthetic waxes) often consist of homologous series of long-chain aliphatic hydrocarbons (alkanes or paraffins) that lack functional groups.
Animal waxes[edit | edit source]
Waxes of animal origin typically consist of wax esters derived from a variety of fatty acids and carboxylic alcohols.
Spermaceti: (occurs in large amounts in the head oil of the sperm whale) one of its main constituents is cetyl palmitate, another ester of a fatty acid and a fatty alcohol. Lanolin is a wax obtained from wool, consisting of esters of sterols.
Beeswaxes[edit | edit source]
A major component is myricyl palmitate which is an ester of triacontanol and palmitic acid.
"The total [polycosanol] PC contents of wheat straw (164 mg/kg) and sugar cane peel (270 mg/kg) were of the same order of magnitude. The total PC contents of brown beeswax were about 20 and 45 times higher than those of the [wheat germ oil] WGO-solids and sugar cane peel, respectively. Commercial dietary supplements contained less total PC than were claimed on the product labels."
Chinese waxes[edit | edit source]
Chinese wax is produced by the scale insect Ceroplastes ceriferus.
Lanolin[edit | edit source]
Lanolin is from the sebaceous glands of sheep.
Shellac waxes[edit | edit source]
Shellac wax is from the lac insect Kerria lacca.
Plant waxes[edit | edit source]
Plants secrete waxes into and on the surface of their cuticles as a way to control evaporation, wettability and hydration. The epicuticular waxes of plants are mixtures of substituted long-chain aliphatic hydrocarbons, containing alkanes, alkyl esters, fatty acids, primary and secondary alcohols, diols, ketones and aldehydes.
Bayberry waxes[edit | edit source]
Bayberry wax is from the surface wax of the fruits of the bayberry shrub, Myrica faya.
Candelilla wax[edit | edit source]
Candelilla wax is from the Mexican shrubs Euphorbia cerifera and Euphorbia antisyphilitica.
Carnauba wax[edit | edit source]
Carnauba wax is from the leaves of the Carnauba palm, Copernicia cerifera.
Castor waxes[edit | edit source]
Castor wax is catalytically hydrogenated castor oil.
Esparto waxes[edit | edit source]
Esparto wax is a byproduct of making paper from esparto grass, Macrochloa tenacissima.
Japan waxes[edit | edit source]
Japan wax is a vegetable triglyceride (not a true wax), from the berries of Rhus and Toxicodendron species.
Jojoba waxes[edit | edit source]
Jojoba wax is a composed almost entirely (~97%) of mono-esters of long-chain fatty acids and alcohols (wax ester), accompanied by only a tiny fraction of triglyceride esters, from the seed of Simmondsia chinensis.
Ouricury waxes[edit | edit source]
Ouricury wax is from the Brazilian feather palm, Syagrus coronata.
Rice bran waxes[edit | edit source]
Rice bran wax is obtained from rice bran (Oryza sativa).
Soy waxes[edit | edit source]
Soy wax is from soybean oil.
Tallow tree waxes[edit | edit source]
Tallow Tree wax is from the seeds of the tallow tree Triadica sebifera.
Petroleum waxes[edit | edit source]
Paraffin waxes[edit | edit source]
In waxes of plant origin, characteristic mixtures of unesterified hydrocarbons may predominate over esters.
Brown coal waxes[edit | edit source]
Montan wax is a fossilized wax extracted from brown coal and lignite.
Lignite waxes[edit | edit source]
Ozocerites are found in lignite beds.
Ceresin waxes[edit | edit source]
Ceresine occurs naturally as Ozokerite.
Ceresin (also cerin, cerasin, cerosin, ceresin wax or ceresine) is a wax derived from ozokerite by treating with heat and sulfuric acid. It is an alternative to beeswax in ointments.
Peat waxes[edit | edit source]
Raw peat wax is typically a mixture of three primary components: asphalt, resins and wax.
See also[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- Wilhelm Riemenschneider1 and Hermann M. Bolt "Esters, Organic" Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry, 2005, Wiley-VCH, Weinheim. doi:10.1002/14356007.a09_565.pub2
- Sibel Irmak, Nurhan Turgut Dunford and Jeff Milligan (March 2006). "Policosanol contents of beeswax, sugar cane and wheat extracts". Food Chemistry 95 (2): 312-318. doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2005.01.009. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0308814605000816. Retrieved 15 July 2021.
- Uwe Wolfmeier, Hans Schmidt, Franz-Leo Heinrichs, Georg Michalczyk, Wolfgang Payer, Wolfram Dietsche, Klaus Boehlke, Gerd Hohner, Josef Wildgruber (2002). Waxes In: Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. Weinheim: Wiley-VCH. doi:10.1002/14356007.a28_103.
- EA Baker (1982). DF Cutler, KL Alvin, CE Price. ed. Chemistry and morphology of plant epicuticular waxes In: The Plant Cuticle. Academic Press. ISBN 0-12-199920-3.
- Ivanovsky, Leo (1952). Wax chemistry and technology. https://books.google.com/books?id=urFTAAAAMAAJ.
- Akrochem (15 July 2003). "AKROCHEM® CERESIN WAX" (PDF). p. 1. Retrieved 21 July 2021.
- A. J. Howard. D. Hamer, The Extraction and Constitution of Peat Wax. A Review of Peat Wax Chemistry. The Journal of the Americal Oil Chemists' Society. October 1960 No. 10 Vol. 37 Page 478
Further reading[edit | edit source]
- Eric Braverman (1979). "Orthomolecular Medicine and Megavitamin Therapy: Future and Philosophy". Orthomolecular Psychiatry 8 (4): 265-72. http://www.orthomolecular.org/library/jom/1979/pdf/1979-v08n04-p265.pdf. Retrieved 2014-08-20.