How to Make Citronella Candle Bug Repellent Lanterns

Marinade in a Glass Jar for Honey Garlic Chicken
June 15, 2020
June 25, 2020

How to Make Citronella Candle Bug Repellent Lanterns

The lamp made of a jar with a candle is hanging on a tree at night. Wedding night decor. Night ceremony

That’s right. You can keep away the pesky mosquitoes while still adding on great ambiance to your backyard look for your next summer BBQ with this all natural solution: a DIY mason jar Citronella lantern! Sorry, no bugs to the party. So, here’s how to make mason jar citronella candle lanterns in under 10 steps.

Items Needed:

  • Mason jars with wide opening (preferably 2.25″). Or any other quality wide mouth glass jar (like the ones pictured above) will work just as good.  Candle jars like square rocks and square prism jars are good too.
  • Wires and Chain (or chicken wire, hemp rope, etc.)
  • Hooks (if needed)
  • Pliers
  • Sturdy Tape or Hot Glue (And an additional glue gun for the latter)
  • Candle Wicks
  • Wax (bar or flakes)
  • Pot
  • Spoon
  • Crayons or some other type of waxy colored item (For optional color)
  • Pencil (No, this is not elementary school. We promise. Just trust us on this one.)
  • Citronella oil. Unfortunately, many commercially sold “citronella” candles that you see online and in stores are not natural. Look out for items that are labeled “citronella scented” that signal the scent as being synthetically made and containing none of the natural citronella oil needed to do the job. Get an all-natural essential oil because essential oils are a proven, long-used solution for invading insects. Citronella oil, extracted from a grass related to lemongrass, is very, very good at keeping mosquitoes away. It is a common ingredient in bug sprays and, once the scent is in the air, mosquitoes keep their distance.


1. Secure wire and chain to rims of jars.
2. Affix wicks to bottoms of jars using sturdy tape or hot glue.
3. Measure wax. Wax may come in bar form or flaked. Bear in mind, the volume of flaked wax will reduce to about one half when in solid form. 4. Melt wax. In a double boiler or a mixing bowl nestled atop a pot of boiling water, melt the wax. Once liquid, it will be clear and resemble olive oil.
5. Stir in the citronella oil. Add roughly three drops per cup of wax.  6. Add some color if you’d like. Better yet, make it patriotic! Stir in an old crayon or two in red, white, and blue shades. When adding color, be aware the cooled wax will be much paler than it appears in liquid form. 7. Pour wax into prepared jars. Use pencils to keep the wicks centered in the jars. 8. Trim the wicks. Once the citronella candles have cooled, trim them to half an inch or so from the surface of the candle.


Hang your mason jar lantern/insect repellent citronella candles off of any hook or hook-like fixture in your backyard. Around the patio could be a great touch as your crowd settles in for the night to watch the light show in the sky this upcoming July 4th. But really, it works great for any outdoor event.

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