Behind the scenes: wax on the train tracks

Train carrying Scentsy wax for bars

How does Scentsy get its wax?

With so many fragrance fans around the world, it takes a lot of scented wax to keep your favorite Scentsy products coming. In the past, we’ve given you a behind-the-scenes look at how Scentsy Bars are made, but this is only part of the story! Before we can mix in fragrance oils or pour Scentsy Bars, wax has to make its way to our home office in Meridian, Idaho. Getting it there can be more challenging than you might think:

Step 1: From Canada, with love

Most of our unscented wax travels by rail all the way from Toronto, Canada! Liquid wax is poured into train car tankers — each capable of carrying roughly 150 thousand lbs. (68 thousand kg) of the stuff — to make more than 923 thousand Scentsy Bars! Here’s a little industry side fact: Since the volume of wax actually changes depending on its temperature, we always measure quantities of wax by weight. Once all the cars are loaded, they begin their long journey to Idaho — a trek that can take as long as 10 days to complete.

Step 2: Unloading the wax

Scentsy’s storage and manufacturing warehouses are conveniently located right next to the train tracks, but offloading a shipment is no small feat. Even at the height of summer, wax will cool and solidify in transit. To get it out again, Scentsy’s boiler technicians pipe steam into the outer shell of the tankers — heating the inside to around 160° F (71° C). Once brought to the proper temperature, the liquified wax is piped directly from the rail cars to four massive storage tanks.

Person unloading wax from the train

Step 3: Wax storage

Blair Johnson, one of Scentsy’s boiler technicians, calls the wax storage tanks “crock-pots” — a reference to the cookware Scentsy Co-Owners Heidi and Orville Thompson used to make scented wax in Scentsy’s early days! Just like a slow cooker, these boiler-heated tanks keep wax warm and liquified. Unlike your standard kitchen appliance, however, these tanks hold tens of thousands of pounds of wax at any given time! Technicians like Blair work with advanced computer programs to keep these tanks at an ideal temperature — if it gets too hot its quality could be reduced; too cold and the tanks could become the world’s biggest Scentsy Bars.

Step 4: Going with the flow

Once on-site, wax is kept liquefied until it becomes Scentsy Bars or Bricks. But rather than sit in tanks waiting for use, the liquid wax is continuously circulated via roughly 3,200 ft. (975 m) worth of underground pipes that run between the storage facilities and the manufacturing warehouses. This continuous circulation helps keep the wax from hardening and ensures the next batch of Scentsy Bars can be poured at a moment’s notice!

Why it matters

At Scentsy, we believe in the power of fragrance to warm the heart, enliven the senses and inspire the soul. Creating products that live up to those ideals means a commitment to quality ingredients and smart manufacturing solutions. Thousands of miles of railway tracks, complex boiler systems and the know-how of skilled technicians all play a hand in creating the Scentsy Bars you love.

Want to see the latest fragrances we’ve poured? Explore our current Scentsy Bars!

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