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How to Make an Oil Candle?

Updated on June 12, 2013

What is an Oil Candle?

An oil candle is a replacement for a paraffine candle. An oil candle is usually made of vegetable oil or olive oil over a little glass jar with a cotton pad, match or fabric that may function as the burning wick. An oil candle can be made of many different sizes, depending on the container used. Oil candles can be used when an emergency light is needed or as a decoration item in the house.

Most oil candles can be made in glass, stone, brass, wood, aluminum, like aluminum bottles, or other containers, as long as they can hold the oil inside. The candle wick can be bought at any gift shop or you can make your own out of a piece of cotton or by using a match stick. The items needed to make an oil candle can be obtained at any convenience or gift store.

Things Needed to Make an Oil Candle

  • Glass jar
  • Water
  • Olive oil
  • Matches
  • Metal string
  • Colored water
  • Marble beads
  • Rounded piece of plastic

Items Needed to Make an Oil Lamp
Items Needed to Make an Oil Lamp | Source

How to Make Oil Candles?

To begin making an oil candle, configure the place where you're going to be working at; this can be a table, the patio of your house or the floor in your garden; place all the items needed in the place of work; pour pure water into the glass jar to about 3/4 its capacity; set the glass jar and water aside and continue with the rest of the project.

Glass with Water
Glass with Water | Source

Get the olive oil or any other kind of oil and pour about 1/4 of oil for the amount of water that is inside the glass jar. You can pour more oil as long as it does not spill over the glass jar.

Glass with Oil
Glass with Oil | Source

How to Make a Wick for an Oil Candle?

To make a wick for an oil candle, you can use a cotton pad, a piece of fabric or any other thing that can burn well in the candle. For this project, I used a match stick; To make the wick out of a match stick just cut the head off and use the rest as a wick.

Next, grab the little round piece of plastic and make a hole in the center with a piece of wire or the scissors; make the hole slightly smaller than the diameter of the match stick; now, grab the match stick and insert it into the hole; let half of a centimeter of the match stick go through one end of the hole.

Grab the little piece of plastic with your right thumb and index fingers and drop it gently into the glass jar, making sure that it floats over the water.

Glass with Piece of PLastic Inside
Glass with Piece of PLastic Inside | Source

The next step is very simple. To finally light up your oil candle, simply light up a match and carefully light the match stick coming out of the little piece of plastic inside the glass jar. Do this very carefully so that you don't lose the work done.

Lighted Oil,Candle
Lighted Oil,Candle | Source

You can make more attractive oil candles by using colored water instead of crystaline water. To do this, just buy some bags of flavoring water, such as orange or lemon flavored water. You can buy them at any convenience store.

Yellow Oil Candle
Yellow Oil Candle | Source

On this oil candle, I put a marble bead inside the glass jar and around it, a piece of metal string which I used to hold the wick in place.

Blue Oil Candle
Blue Oil Candle | Source


You may also put stones, marbles, shells, sand, etc, inside the jar before pouring the water. In this way, oil candles can be used as a decorative piece inside any part of the house.

There are many other types of oil candles and they all look great, but the one I made in this project saves you time and money to make since it's very simple. You can use other water containers, such as brass, stone, aluminum or wood containers and add your personal style for the decoration.


Submit a Comment

  • unvrso profile image

    Jose Juan Gutierrez 4 years ago from Mexico City

    Thanks for taking the time to read this hub, Dreamhowl!

  • Dreamhowl profile image

    Jessica Marello 4 years ago from United States

    These look easy to make, with great photos and and instructive video. I'll have to try this as a gift! Voted up and shared. Thanks for this great information!

  • profile image

    Rupa 4 years ago

    Hey thanks so much! I've always wanted to make my own candles without having to deal with the wax. This is actually do-able!!

  • unvrso profile image

    Jose Juan Gutierrez 4 years ago from Mexico City

    Thanks for reading!

  • cathie bridges profile image

    Hamza Arshad 4 years ago from Pakistan

    now i must make them ...too good

  • unvrso profile image

    Jose Juan Gutierrez 4 years ago from Mexico City

    Thanks for your comments, I really appreciate your comments. The following are some answers to some questions you may have regarding the candle, its function and the items used to make it.

    The piece of plastic can be any type of plastic, as long as it floats over the oil layer; The match will burn for as long as the oil lasts on the candle, approximately two hours; other wicks can be made that make a bigger flame, for example, a wick made from a cotton pad; this type of wick works fine if you're trying to make a bigger candle. Food coloring water is safe, it just adds to the beauty of the candle.

  • PattiKakes profile image

    Patti Henry 4 years ago from North Wildwood, NJ

    Congratulations, it was well-deserved. I live in area that if it storms we lose power a lot. Always good to know I can make a quick candle if I run out.

  • unvrso profile image

    Jose Juan Gutierrez 4 years ago from Mexico City

    Thanks for your comments. I was surprise this morning to know that this hub was chosen as hub of the day. I would like to thank each and every one who read this hub I appreciate your commentaries.

  • pinto2011 profile image

    Subhas 4 years ago from New Delhi, India

    My mom used to make it throughout my early childhood and your hub simply rekindled those memories hidden somewhere in the backyard of my memory lane. These candles are very useful, unique, handy, and yes so cool. I am definitely going to make one and enjoy tonight.

  • Bishop55 profile image

    Rebecca 4 years ago from USA

    I love crafty hubs. Nicely done. I just wondered, what exactly is the "round piece of plastic" you mention? you have any photos of what happens when the match stick burns all the way down? What else have you used for wicks? And in your example what kind of burn time did you get? Sorry...I ask lots of questions. and food coloring for the water would be safe right? I could have used this idea when I got married! I can really visualize some great center pieces, candles are expensive! Voted up!

  • srsddn profile image

    srsddn 4 years ago from Dehra Dun, India

    Thanks for sharing. Looks so simple but quite useful.

  • anglnwu profile image

    anglnwu 4 years ago

    Wow, this so simple and attractive. I love candles and could definitely use this idea. Love the video too. Rated up and congrats on HOD.

  • prasetio30 profile image

    prasetio30 4 years ago from malang-indonesia

    Very informative and beautiful creation as well. Thanks for writing and share with us. I like the step by step instruction with pictures. Voted up and take care!


  • cathylynn99 profile image

    cathylynn99 4 years ago from northeastern US

    simple and nice.

  • RonHawk profile image

    Ron Hawkins 4 years ago from California, United States

    I love the presentation and the content is excellent.

    Instead of throwing out used cooking oil, one can put it to good use and add light to the world!

  • SidKemp profile image

    Sid Kemp 4 years ago from Boca Raton, Florida (near Miami and Palm Beach)

    Thanks - I never knew it was this easy. I'm going to play around with food coloring and marbles or beads, I think. Voted up and useful, and congrats on Hub of the Day.

  • Thelma Alberts profile image

    Thelma Alberts 4 years ago from Germany

    Awesome HOTD! It sounds easy to make with your step by step instructions. Thanks for sharing;-) Congratulations!

  • techygran profile image

    Cynthia 4 years ago from Vancouver Island, Canada

    How very cool! I definitely cannot stand parafin any more and was rather put off by the cost of soy candles and the complexity of making them... this sounds like the trick I've been looking for! Thank you for your very detailed instructions and the video. And of course, congratulations on being the Hub of the Day! I'm getting the word out there!

  • leahlefler profile image

    Leah Lefler 4 years ago from Western New York

    This is so cool! I didn't know how to make your own wick - this would make very inexpensive table decorations at a party or wedding. I love it! Congratulations on the HOTD!

  • MartieCoetser profile image

    Martie Coetser 4 years ago from South Africa

    Brilliant HOTD! Laziness keeps me from doing this kind of decorations, but this looks easy and quick to make. I feel inspired. Thanks!

  • pstraubie48 profile image

    Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

    Thanks for sharing. These would be perfect for an evening party in the garden patio area. Congrats on HOTD. :) ps

  • StephanieBCrosby profile image

    Stephanie Bradberry 4 years ago from New Jersey

    Very cool. My sister and law has asked me to make special oil candles for her. But I was so stuck doing research for the best oil carrier for the scents I will be using. Since my company is based on all natural ingredients, I have to be careful of any natural scents the oil carries because many essential oils require a good amount to get a good, strong scent. Thanks for sharing.

  • paiva25 profile image

    Paiva 4 years ago from Goa, india

    Nice idea for decorative in Goa people usually fill the entire container (brass: you get them specially made for these candles) with coconut oil and roll up a piece of cotton to form the wick...

    The wick lasts forever, just gotta keep refilling the oil..

  • CZCZCZ profile image

    CZCZCZ 4 years ago from Oregon

    Very cool idea! I like the video that you have included in this hub, thanks for sharing it.

  • RTalloni profile image

    RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

    Neat to know about this method of making an oil candle. Could be very handy, and is definitely an interesting project to do with older kids!

    Almost forgot to say congrats on your Hub of the Day award!

  • unvrso profile image

    Jose Juan Gutierrez 4 years ago from Mexico City

    Thanks for reading and leaving your comment.

  • BrightMeadow profile image

    BrightMeadow 4 years ago from a room of one's own

    I recall reading about someone making an oil candle in the Little House books. This was very informative. Thanks.

  • unvrso profile image

    Jose Juan Gutierrez 4 years ago from Mexico City

    Thanks for reading! I appreciate it!

  • MsDora profile image

    Dora Weithers 4 years ago from The Caribbean

    You're kidding! I can do that. Thanks for the instruction and the demonstration. Voted Up, Useful and Interesting!