The content of beeswax in candles is an important quality criterium often used in marketing. Due to the high price of beeswax, it is often replaced by cheaper alternatives like paraffin wax. Stearin is seen as renewable and therefore green alternative to paraffin, as it is made of plant material and not of petroleum. To check marketing slogans, these main components can be detected due to the characteristic profile of wax compounds produced by bees or plants.
Here we present a fast method for the analysis: Wax can be stuck directly from the candle on the silver substrate and analyzed using SALDI-MS. No time-consuming dissolving step or chromatographic separation is necessary. Discriminant software like eMSTAT can determine main components, no deeper analytical knowledge is needed.