6 practical and pretty ways to give your used candles a second life

There’s no better time for some DIY

July 26 2021

We don’t know about you, but the ritual of lighting a beautiful candle instantly brings us joy. Yet, we can admit, it can be an expensive habit, and the more time we’re spending at home, the quicker we’re burning through our stash.

However, it doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom once you reach the end of the wax. Recycling your candle jar is an easy way to give it a second life – appreciating its beauty for longer than intended. 

How to clean out your empty candle jars

After you've let your candle burn all the way to the end, remove the wick with tweezers. When it comes to removing the wax, you can try one of two ways:

Freeze: Put your unlit, room-temperature candle in the freezer, and leave it overnight. The wax will harden so you can easily scoop it out.

Hot water: For any residual wax, fill the jar with boiling water and leave it for 30 minutes. This should help it to solidify and float to the top.

Now that you know how to clean out your empties, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite stunning candles, as well as the multiple ways the glass and ceramic vessels can be upcycled instead of ending up in the bin – did someone say DIY time?

1. Storing cotton pads and tips

Candle of choice: Diptyque Baies Candle

Diptyque candles smell as beautiful as they look. Our top pick from the range would have to be the Diptyque Baies Candle (from $53 at MECCA) – it must be the addictive scent of freshly picked blackcurrant berries and blooming roses that keeps us wanting more. When it comes to upcycling, using it to store cotton pads and tips work perfectly – a simple and chic way to give your bathroom counter a little makeover.

2. As a drinking tumbler

Candle of choice: Maison Balzac Le Matin Scented Candle

To say we’re obsessed with this glassware brand would be an understatement. From wine glasses and champagne flutes to jugs and vases, we have a long wish list. But it’s the candles that are a real gem. Each scent is so unique, but we love the Maison Balzac Le Matin Scented Candle ($69 at Adore Beauty) for when the mood calls for something fresh – think vibrant lemon, thyme and rosemary. The best part? Once you (thoroughly) clean out the wax, you’ve got yourself a beautiful drinking tumbler – hello Friday night cocktails. 

3. As tea bag and coffee pod canisters

Candle of choice: Glasshouse Fragrances I’ll Take Manhattan Soy Candle

An Aussie classic, Glasshouse Fragrances have some of the most recognisable scents in the candle game. We love the Glasshouse Fragrances I’ll Take Manhattan Soy Candle ($49.95 at Adore Beauty), for its blend of orchid, black rose and amber. As for when it’s done, you can turn these 380g jars into tea bag and coffee pod canisters – now that’s some clever upcycling!




4. To store home office supplies

Candle of choice: Jo Malone London Peony & Blush Suede Home Candle

Jo Malone London is an icon in the fragrance world. The range of unique scents pair beautifully with the classic branding that fits with any home decor style. We particularly love Jo Malone London Peony & Blush Suede Home Candle ($98 at Jo Malone London) – the notes of juicy apple, honey and in bloom peonies immediately transports us to a sunny spring day. Once finished, keep the candle vessel nearby on your desk to store pens and pencils.

5. As a vase

Candle of choice: Marloe Marloe Leather & Amber Scented Candle

This Gold Coast-based ceramic studio produces the most elegant artisanal creations. The range is predominantly homewares, however, when we saw they released the first Marloe Marloe Leather & Amber Scented Candle ($330 at Net-a-Porter), we added it straight to cart. The luxurious notes of vetiver, patchouli, silk musk and amber will have you swooning. It may be an extravagant purchase, but upcycling this work of art is an easy one: Fill it with citrus or flowers, this is a statement vase you’ll keep for years to come.

6. For makeup brush storage

Candle of choice: CIRCA Amber & Sandalwood Soy Candle

Say hello to the new-look CIRCA (previously known as Circa Home). From the refreshed packaging, longer burning time and updated scent range – we love the CIRCA Amber & Sandalwood Soy Candle ($39.95 at Adore Beauty) for its zesty orange and delicate magnolia combo – the relaunch is a winner. But, it’s the faceted glass vessels that are truly special; reflecting soft light around the room as the candle burns. The new 350g jars are also perfect for housing makeup brushes. Just fill the bottom with rice or beads, and your brushes will stand tall.




Main image credit: Supplied

Need some more scent inspiration? Here’s 7 fragranced incense sticks for a heavenly-scented home.

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