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Ski Wax, Snowboard Wax and our Environment

Purl Wax


Considering the big environmental issues facing us today, ski wax and snowboard wax might not seem to play such an important role… but a traditional stick of fluorinated wax bears more toxic potential than generally known.

There are two main areas of concerns with fluorinated waxes.  The first area is related to wax technicians inhaling toxins from the fumes and dust. Read the article below called Human Exposure to Fluorinated Ski Wax. 
The second concern is related to the production process. Manufacturing fluoro products requires some nasty chemicals, including Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). These chemicals can end up in the water streams and are proven linked to negative health effects.


  • The EPA and Regulating the Ski Wax Industry, By Jason Albert, Faster Skier, July, 2019
  • Tainted water: the scientists tracing thousands of fluorinated chemicals in our environment, By XiaoZhi Lim, Nature, March, 2019
  • Cross-Country Skiing’s Dirty Little Fluorinated Secret, By Bill Donahue, Bloomberg, August, 2019
  • See where PFAS pollution has been confirmed in the American West, By Paige Blankenbuehler, High Country News, May 30, 2019
  • Human Exposure to Fluorinated Ski Wax: This study was performed by the Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine in Sweden.
  • Ski Wax: Extra Speed Could Carry More than Just a Steep Price Tag. From New West Snow Blog, By Brendon Bosworth, February 14, 2011
  • Biodegradability of petroleum waxes and beeswax in an adapted CO2 evolution test. Science Direct, August 1992
  • U.S. EPA Hazard Characterization for Waxes and Related Materials, September 2011
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