Aromatherapy: Making your own Scented Candles

Scented candles are a perfect way to release fragrant aromas into your environment slowly and gently over a sustained period of time. Their effects are subtle and gentle, influencing your mood and emotions more than they do physical complaints, although they are good for easing conditions with an emotional cause, such as headaches brought on by stress or PMT. They also make ideal room fresheners and are smaller and easier to transport than oil vaporisers.

Beautifully scented wax

Scented candles are made by infusing melted wax with oils before it sets. When the infused candle is re-lit and the wax melts, the oil evaporates as it is heated. You can buy scented candles ready-made, but you can also personalise any candle with your favourite scent.

The Best Scents for your Candle

A great insect repellent - burn candles in the garden or on holiday to keep bugs at bay.

Grapefruit's invigorating scent gives you a boost of energy when you're feeling sluggish. Burn a candle first thing in the morning to help you wake up for the day.

This gentle scent eases headaches when burned in the background. Burn a chamomile candle in your bedroom for an hour before retiring in order to aid sleep.

Aromatherapy chamomile

This floral aroma fills your room with beautiful fragrance and helps cheer you up if you're feeling down.

A natural antiseptic and purifier. Pine candles are effective room fresheners, good for covering up lingering odours.

Soothing Dimmed Light

Candlelight can have both physical and psychological effects on your mood.

  • Candles provide low lighting levels, more similar to twilight conditions than harsh electric lights. Your brain associates the low-level lighting with bedtime and it sends signals to the rest of your body, preparing for a good night's sleep.
  • Use candles scented with calming, relaxing aromas such as chamomile, lavender and neroli in the evening to help you unwind as bedtime draws near.

Making a Scented Candle

Start with any unscented candle. Basic tea lights are ideal for beginners, as they are cheap and burn rapidly, allowing you to judge the scents you have created quickly.

  • Light an unscented candle and leave it to burn until there's a small pool of melted wax around the wick.
  • Blow out the candle before you add the oil. Some oils are volatile, so never add them to a candle while it is still lit.
  • Add a few drops of the essential oil or oils of your choice to the collected pool of wax, then leave the candle to harden.
  • When the wax has cooled and hardened, you can light the candle again. The aroma you have added will slowly release.
aromatherapy candles

Candles On The Move

If you're taking a selection of aromatherapy oils on holiday, add a couple of unscented tealights to your luggage. You can then add whatever different oils are required if you need to:

  • Relax and wind down after taking a long-haul flight.
  • Keep your room or apartment and terrace bug free.
  • Make even the most dodgy hotel room smell lovely.
  • They always come in handy if you happen to get caught in a power cut, for example, if you're staying in a rural area.

Safety Precautions

  • Never add oils to a lit candle, this can prove to be very dangerous.
  • Always remember to blow out your candle before you go sleep or if you leave the room or house, and place it somewhere safe while it is lit.
  • Add only a few drops of oil to a candle, as more than this will probably be overpowering when lit.