Making Your Own Citronella Candles

Are you tired of pesky mosquitoes ruining your outdoor gatherings? Look no further than making your own citronella candles. Not only are these DIY candles an effective way to repel insects, but they also provide a lovely ambiance for any outdoor space. In this article, we will discuss the benefits of citronella candles and provide a step-by-step guide on how to make them yourself.

Citronella candles are a popular choice for many homeowners due to their natural insect-repelling properties. The essential oil derived from citronella grass is known for its ability to deter mosquitoes and other pests, making it an excellent addition to any outdoor setting. In addition to their practical use, citronella candles also emit a pleasant aroma that can enhance the overall atmosphere in your backyard or patio.

To get started on making your own citronella candles, you will need a few essential materials such as soy wax, citronella essential oil, candle wicks, and mason jars. These supplies are readily available at craft stores and online retailers, making it easy to gather everything you need for this DIY project. Stay tuned as we provide detailed instructions on the process of creating your own citronella candles and offer tips for customizing them to suit your personal style.

Materials Needed

To make your own citronella candles, you will need a few supplies to get started. Here’s a list of the materials you will need:

  • Soy wax: Soy wax is a natural and eco-friendly alternative to paraffin wax, making it a popular choice for homemade candles. It has a lower melting point and burns cleaner, resulting in a longer-lasting candle.
  • Citronella essential oil: The key ingredient in citronella candles, citronella essential oil is known for its insect-repelling properties. It has a fresh, citrusy fragrance that can help create a pleasant outdoor ambiance while keeping mosquitoes at bay.
  • Candle wicks: Wicks are necessary for providing the flame that burns the candle. When choosing wicks for your citronella candles, opt for ones specifically designed for use with soy wax to ensure optimum burning performance.
  • Mason jars: Mason jars are versatile containers that are perfect for making citronella candles. Their sturdy construction and tight-sealing lids make them suitable for outdoor use, and they come in various sizes to accommodate different candle-making needs.

In addition to these main supplies, you may also want to consider using a double boiler or a heat-resistant pitcher for melting the wax, as well as a thermometer to monitor the temperature. Once you have gathered all the necessary materials, you’ll be ready to start making your own citronella candles and enjoying their benefits.

Step-by-Step Instructions

When it comes to making your own citronella candles, the process is easier than you might think. Here are step-by-step instructions for creating your own citronella candles to keep those pesky mosquitoes at bay and add a beautiful ambiance to your outdoor space.

First, gather all the materials you will need for this project. This includes soy wax, citronella essential oil, candle wicks, and mason jars. You may also want to have a double boiler or a large heatproof glass bowl and a saucepan on hand for melting the wax.

Next, begin by melting the soy wax in a double boiler or large heatproof glass bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Once the wax is completely melted, remove it from the heat and allow it to cool slightly before adding the citronella essential oil. For every 1 pound of soy wax, you will want to add about 1 ounce of citronella essential oil for optimal insect-repelling benefits.

After adding the essential oil to the melted wax, stir gently to ensure that it is well combined. Then carefully pour the mixture into clean mason jars, being sure to leave a little bit of room at the top. Dip the candle wicks in melted wax and then place them in the center of each jar, ensuring they are standing straight up. Allow the candles to cool and harden completely before trimming the wick to about half an inch.

Materials NeededSoy Wax, Citronella Essential Oil, Candle Wicks, Mason Jars
Step 1Melt soy wax in double boiler or heatproof glass bowl
Step 2Add citronella essential oil and stir gently
Step 3Pour mixture into mason jars and insert candle wicks
Candles With Flowers Inside

By following these easy steps for making your own citronella candles, you can create custom insect-repelling candles perfect for enhancing outdoor gatherings or simply enjoying some peace and quiet in your backyard.

Safety Precautions

When making your own citronella candles, it is important to prioritize safety throughout the entire process. Working with hot wax and essential oils can pose some risks, so it’s crucial to take the necessary precautions to avoid accidents and injuries.

Protective Gear

Before you begin, make sure to equip yourself with the appropriate protective gear. This includes wearing heat-resistant gloves to protect your hands from potential burns when handling hot wax and using safety goggles to shield your eyes from splatters or spills.

Well-Ventilated Area

When melting the wax and mixing in the citronella essential oil, it’s vital to work in a well-ventilated area. Inhaling fumes from molten wax or concentrated essential oils can be harmful, so consider working near an open window or using a fan to promote air circulation.

Handling Hot Wax

Always exercise caution when dealing with hot wax. Use a double boiler or a dedicated wax melter to melt the soy wax, and never leave it unattended while heating. Take care when pouring the liquefied wax into containers, making sure not to spill any on yourself or nearby surfaces.

Essential Oil Safety

Citronella essential oil is potent and should be handled with care. Avoid direct contact with the skin and eyes, as it can cause irritation. Be mindful of proper measurements when adding the essential oil to the melted wax, as excessive amounts may result in overpowering scents that can be unpleasant or even harmful.

By following these safety precautions and handling hot wax and essential oils with care, you can enjoy the process of making your own citronella candles without compromising your well-being. Prioritizing safety ensures a smooth and enjoyable DIY experience from start to finish.

Choosing the Right Container

When it comes to making your own citronella candles, choosing the right container is an important decision that can affect both the aesthetic appeal and functionality of your finished product. Mason jars are a popular choice for citronella candles due to their classic look and wide availability. They provide a clean and streamlined appearance, making them versatile enough to blend in with various decor styles. Additionally, mason jars are sturdy and durable, which makes them ideal for outdoor use.

Another option for container choices for citronella candles is tin cans. These containers are great for creating a rustic or vintage look and can add character to your outdoor space. Tin cans are also lightweight and often come in a variety of sizes, making them easy to transport and arrange in different areas of your yard or patio.

For those looking to add a touch of elegance to their outdoor ambiance, tea cups can be a unique and charming choice for citronella candles. Tea cups come in various designs, colors, and patterns, allowing you to showcase your personal style while enjoying the benefits of citronella candlelight outdoors. However, it’s important to note that tea cups may not be as suitable for windy conditions as mason jars or tin cans.

Ultimately, the container you choose for your citronella candles will depend on your personal preferences and the overall atmosphere you want to create. Each type of container has its own pros and cons, so it’s important to consider factors such as durability, aesthetics, and practicality when making your selection. Regardless of the container you choose, making your own citronella candles provides an opportunity for creative expression while also effectively repelling mosquitoes and other insects during outdoor gatherings.

Customizing Your Candles

Using Dried Flowers and Herbs

One way to add a unique touch to your citronella candles is by incorporating dried flowers or herbs into the wax. This can be done by placing the flowers or herbs at the bottom of the container before pouring in the melted wax, or by sprinkling them on top once the wax has started to solidify. Lavender, rose petals, and chamomile are popular choices for adding a pleasant scent and aesthetic appeal to the candles.

Adding Colorants

In addition to dried flowers and herbs, you can also customize your citronella candles by adding colorants to the melted wax. This can be achieved using dye chips or liquid candle dyes, which come in a wide range of colors. Whether you prefer vibrant hues or more natural tones, adding colorants is a fun way to make your candles stand out and complement your outdoor decor.

Experimenting With Different Containers

Another way to personalize your citronella candles is by experimenting with different types of containers. While mason jars are a classic choice, you can also use tin cans, tea cups, or even vintage glassware for a more eclectic look. Each type of container offers its own aesthetic appeal and gives you the opportunity to get creative with your candle-making project.

Understanding Candle Making

By customizing your own citronella candles with these creative ideas, you can elevate not only their functionality but also their visual appeal. The possibilities are endless when it comes to adding personal touches to your homemade citronella candles.

Tips for Using Citronella Candles

When it comes to using citronella candles, there are a few tips and tricks that can help you get the most out of these natural insect repellents. Here are some useful pointers for using and maintaining citronella candles:

  • Placement: Place the citronella candles strategically around your outdoor space to create a barrier against mosquitoes and other insects. For maximum effectiveness, consider placing them near seating areas or entry points where bugs may enter.
  • Burn Time: It’s important to allow the citronella candle to burn for at least 30 minutes before expecting full effectiveness. This will allow the scent to disperse into the surrounding area and help repel insects.
  • Maintenance: Keep the wick of your citronella candle trimmed to about 1/4 inch before each use. This helps control the size of the flame and ensures a steady, even burn throughout the candle’s lifespan.

In addition to these tips, proper storage of your citronella candles can also contribute to their longevity and effectiveness. When not in use, store your citronella candles in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. This will help preserve the integrity of the candle and prevent any melting or warping due to heat exposure.

Finally, don’t forget to keep an eye on your citronella candles while they’re burning. Never leave them unattended, especially if there are children or pets nearby. By following these tips for using and maintaining citronella candles, you can ensure that they continue to provide a natural and pleasant way to keep pesky bugs at bay during outdoor gatherings or leisure time.


In conclusion, making your own citronella candles can be a fulfilling and practical DIY project. Not only do these candles provide a natural way to repel mosquitoes and other insects, but they also add a pleasant ambiance to outdoor gatherings. By following the outlined materials needed and step-by-step instructions, you can easily create your own citronella candles at home.

Additionally, customizing your citronella candles with various containers and personal touches allows you to tailor them to your specific style and preferences. Whether you choose mason jars for a rustic look or tea cups for a more eclectic vibe, the possibilities for creating unique citronella candles are endless.

Overall, by taking the necessary safety precautions and following the tips provided, you can successfully make your own citronella candles that not only enhance your outdoor experiences but also serve as lovely handmade gifts for friends and family. So why not try your hand at this rewarding DIY project and enjoy the benefits of having natural insect repellent and beautiful outdoor d├ęcor all in one?

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Make Your Own Citronella Candles?

Yes, you can make your own citronella candles at home. All you need is some wax, citronella essential oil, wicks, a container, and some basic crafting supplies. It’s a fun and relatively easy DIY project that can help keep mosquitoes at bay.

What Kind of Wax Do You Use for Citronella Candles?

The best kind of wax to use for citronella candles is soy wax or beeswax. Both types of wax are natural and sustainable options that can hold the scent of citronella essential oil effectively. It’s important to use a high-quality wax to ensure that the candle burns evenly and releases the citronella fragrance properly.

What Can I Put in Homemade Candles to Keep Mosquitoes Away?

In homemade candles to keep mosquitoes away, you can put not only citronella essential oil but also other essential oils such as lavender, eucalyptus, peppermint, or rosemary. These oils have insect-repelling properties and can enhance the effectiveness of your homemade citronella candles in warding off mosquitoes and other pesky bugs.

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