How long do beeswax wraps last?
How long do beeswax wraps last
How long do reusable wax wraps last? Well, that all depends on how often you use them and how well you look after them. But the general consensus is that if you use them regularly but look after them well you will be able to use them for about a year.
However, if you like you can refresh your wraps using a refresher block and an iron or a few minutes in the oven, making them good as new as often as you like, which massively extends their lifespan.
Another point to make it it’s not just about how long they last in your kitchen. Once your wax wraps have come to the end of their useful life, whether that’s 6 months, a year, two years or more, they are made from natural materials which can be composted, or you can cut them into strips and twist them into excellent firelighters. This is in stark contrast to clingfilm which you can use once and cannot recycle so, therefore, is destined to end up in landfill, or worse our oceans, for hundreds of years.
How to make your wraps last as long as possible
1. Don’t wash them more than you need to.
We seem to live in a culture where everything has to be washed after every use. But look at them first. If you have a bowl of salad in the fridge and the wrap hasn’t even come in contact with the food do you really need to wash it?
The same applies to our clothes, they will also last longer if you wash them less. How often do you put something in the wash after wearing it once regardless of whether it’s dirty or not? And even our bodies are happier not being constantly cleaned.
2. Clean them gently, using lukewarm/cool water, and allow them to air dry.
If you wash your wax wraps with hot water it will melt the wax and you can wash it off. It’s why they don’t like the dishwasher either.
And be careful where you dry them. The kitchen tap might seem like the ideal place but if you then use the hot tap it will melt the wax, I know, I have done this.
3. Warm them in your hands a little before you mould them.
This will help stop cracks appearing where they get folded in the same place. This is also especially important if your wraps have been in the freezer.
4. Give them the occasional refresh.
Every few months or when they start looking a bit crumpled or the wax is beginning to flake off you can refresh your wraps and make them pretty much as good as new again. You can do this either in the oven or using an iron.
You tube has lots of video tutorials but essentially if you are using the oven heat a baking tray that you have either covered or don’t mind ruining and place the wrap in top of it, leave for a minute or two (keep watching) until the wax has melted and redistributed into any cracks or crevices that have appeared in the fabric. Hold up by the corners and waft until cool.
To use an iron you will need to place the wrap between two sheets of greaseproof paper and iron with a hot iron for a minute or so, keeping the iron moving at all times so as not to burn the wax. Again then you just hold up by the corners and waft until cool.
The added bonus of refreshing your wraps is that you pasteurise them at the same time getting rid of any nasties that might be lurking.
5. Re-wax your wraps.
Make do and mend was a mantra of previous generations. We seem to now be in a very disposable culture and people have lost the skills they once had in terms of mending clothes, toys, appliances, to the point that many things are designed not to be mended.
Re-waxing your wrap however is a simple process and the power of the internet makes it even easier. Get yourself a refresher block and add a bit of extra wax to your wraps to make them last even longer.
Next up: Vegan Wax Wraps - All you need to know