DIY beeswax citronella candles

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DIY beeswax citronella candles are the safe, nontoxic way to enjoy a summer evening outdoors. Simple, affordable, and so darn cute!

Cute and functional, my favorite type of diy project. Trust me, when it comes to diy it doesn't always end up that way. But these little citronella candles really do work to keep mosquitos away. There's really something special about those warm summer evenings. Whether you're gathering with friends, soaking in a pool or the sea in the moonlight, or sipping on iced tea of the porch watching fireflies, you need this handy portable citronella candle to keep the pests at bay.

Why do we make our own candles?

Two year ago, I decided to break up with most candles. With two little ones in our home and a new baby boy, I don’t think lighting those candles would have been a healthy choice. Candles are one of those DIY projects that are so easy and affordable that it makes you wonder why not everyone makes their own? Let's start with my favorite reasons to make our own candles at home.

Reasons to make your own candles

  • Candle making doesn't create any large messes
  • It's quick, and simple
  • Its far more affordable than buying, even with the highest quality ingredients (essential oils and beeswax)
  • They are a pleasure to burn!
  • They are sustainable, as you have full control over the ingredients you use and can reuse the same jar or container over and over again

How to make your own beeswax candles at home

Step 1: Gather your tools and ingredients

Step 2: Secure your wick to the base of your candle jar
Step 3: Melt your beeswax
Step 4: add your essential oil and pour into your prepared jar, then you just wait for the wax to harden, trim the wick and enjoy! SO SIMPLE!

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

ARE PARAFFIN WAX CANDLES HARMFUL?

90% of the candles you find on the market are paraffin. Paraffin wax is cheap, keeping candle costs low to the average consumer. But, as usual, cheap and poor quality may come at a cost to our bodies and our surroundings. First and foremost, I want to be very clear; not all paraffin is bad or toxic. Some can even be food grade. However, the process of refining paraffin can be so toxic; you would immediately stop purchasing them if you could only understand how bad they can be to the quality of the air you’re inhaling, potentially polluting in your home.

It is my understanding that a regular candle (one made from paraffin wax) made from a reputable small-batch creator – from within the US would most likely be using good quality paraffin, along with a quality wick in their candles. However, if you’re purchasing from offshore manufactures, they may be using crude paraffin to create candles. These types are toxic may still contain up to 11 toxic compounds and chemicals.

To prevent “fear-mongering” and misinformation, paraffin can be very safe. Please don’t boycott your local candle maker who is doing all of the right things. The problem arises when you’re purchasing from a large wholesale distributor, and the source of the candle is unknown. How do you know what quality it is? It’s something I would rather avoid. I like to keep things as natural as possible when there’s a possibility to do so. And regardless of who’s making them, paraffin candles should be avoided by those with allergies or asthma.

WHY SHOULD I AVOID SOY CANDLES?

Soy is a trendy “healthy” alternative to paraffin candles right now. However, despite being trendy, we would opt to avoid soy candles in our home. Soy is terrible for our environment due to deforestation to grow soy to feed livestock animals. Growing soy has been known to cause soil erosion and reduce water availability. Soy candles are likely to be made from genetically modified soy crops typically sprayed with toxic pesticides. Lastly, to be labeled as a pure soy candle, it only has to be 50% soy. The rest would be paraffin. I would actually prefer to burn a paraffin candle than soy!

Sources:

The Growth of soy and impacts.

Habitat loss in Brazil

WHY CHOOSE BEESWAX FOR CANDLES?

Beeswax is environmentally friendly and safe. Beeswax burns clean, and the wax is natural and biodegradable. These candles are actually considered good for the environment by naturally cleaning and purifying the air. It naturally has a nice scent and as unrefined as they came. It also burns much longer than paraffin or soy! Long-lasting, natural, earth-friendly is my preferred choice. I also had a challenging time finding a candle that is both made from beeswax and fragrance-free. When I say fragrance, I refer to artificial fragrance, which is 99% of the time added to candles. I used this beeswax.

WHY SHOULD I MAKE MY OWN CANDLES AT HOME?

There are no regulations on disclosing candle ingredients. Candles labeled as “beeswax” may actually contain as little as 5% beeswax. Unless a product is labeled “100% pure beeswax candles”, it would be avoided in these parts.

ARE CANDLE WICKS SAFE?

The lead was once regularly added to candle wicks to help them stand up straighter and the candle burning better. Obviously, burning lead will lead to health issues if vaporized into the air and inhaled. Fortunately, CPSC Banned Candles With Lead-Cored Wicks in the USA years ago. However, if you’re unsure of the origin of your candle, how do you know for sure? You should definitely look for cotton wicks, like these. In this photo.

DOES CITRONELLA essential oil WORK TO REPELL MOSQUITOS?

In a study, citronella oil demonstrated 100% activity for 2 hours against mosquitos (source)

From experience, it is working wonders in our yard as we enjoy peaceful dinners in the garden and a cup of tea in the evenings. We also use our family friendly all natural bug spray.

What can I use instead of citronella oil?

If you don't have citronella, you can try one of these essential oils, or a combination! These oils also are effective at repelling mosquitos.

  • lavender
  • lemongrass
  • arborvitate

WHAT DO I NEED?

What you’ll need to make your own candles are:

  1. A tempered glass jar, or these mini buckets.
  2. Beeswax pellets
  3. Organic cotton wick, wick stabilizer, wick stickers
  4. Pour pot
  5. Citronella essential oil

Click the image below for a shoppable link (affiliate links)

(You can also use this affordable kit, which included 3+4 – the cotton wicks, stabilizer, stickers, and pour pot)

INSTRUCTIONS: 

miniature bucket with homemade candle with dried flower petals surrounding

DIY beeswax citronella candle

Yield: 1 beeswax candle bucket
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Active Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated Cost: $10

DIY beeswax citronella candles are the safe, nontoxic way to enjoy a summer evening outdoors. Simple, affordable, and so darn cute!

Materials

  • A tempered glass jar, or these mini buckets.
  • Beeswax pellets
  • Organic cotton wick, wick stabilizer, wick stickers
  • Pour pot
  • Citronella essential oil

Instructions

    Prepare your jar by securing your wick. If you are using a cotton wick with no base, tie it to the center of a pencil, and lay the pencil across the top of the candle, to hold wick in the center. If you are using a double sided sticker and upright wick, place your double-sided sticker on the bottom, securing your wick to the base of your jar. Keep plenty of wick at the top (do not cut yet)


    Pour your beeswax into your pour pot. To determine how much you need, add the exact amount of beeswax pellets your glass jar will hold, plus ⅓ that amount.


    Melt your beeswax on low heat until it's entirely melted.


    Once melted, turn off your heat and add 25 drops of your essential oil and one tablespoon of ground cinnamon for every 1 oz of wax. Stir gently.


    Quickly pour the beeswax into your jar.


    Wax will start to solidify at room temperature. Allow it to solidify completely before use.


    Trim wick to the desired length.

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Facebook

Can you believe it’s really that simple to make your own homemade beeswax candle in a floral glass jar? I couldn’t either.

If you’re ready to try some other candle recipes, check out these posts and pin for later!

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