Citronella essential oil is extracted from the stem and leaves of the Cymbopogon plant, which is used for its aroma, helping you feel better and deal with exhaustion. The extract is also utilized as an organic and natural insect and mosquito repellant in several areas. The best Citronella candles can be used at home to create a relaxing atmosphere while also keeping pests at bay, or they can even be used during evening gatherings at home or on outings.
Aside from that, the plant’s essential oil has also been used to treat rashes on the skin (as an antifungal agent), parasite infections, and other skin problems. In this post, take a look at some of the tried-and-tested Citronella candles you can use regularly.
13 Best Citronella Candles For Keeping Pests Away in 2024
1. Best Long-Lasting: Tiki Brand Triple-Wick Galvanized Citronella Candle
The 28oz bucket-style citronella candle by Tiki Brand is a perfect option for outdoor occasions and night outs, as it offers a burn time of 32 hours at a stretch. The candle comes in a rust-resistant galvanized metal container and features a plastic lid to use the candle as and when required. Moreover, the enchanting silvery sheen of this outdoor citronella candle can add to the charm of your patio or indoor space.
- Triple wicks for a brighter flame
- Stylish and functional design
- Easy to handle and store
- A perfect gifting option
- Does not include a lid
- Bucket may not be dent-proof
"This product works wonders for keeping mosquitoes at bay. And the appealing aroma is a bonus. Despite the uneven burning with two wicks, I'd stick with it for its effective performance and easy usage."
2. Best For Aromatherapy:Tobeape Citronella Candles
One of the best candles with natural citronella scent, these are 100% soy wax candles with 100% lead-free wick. Also, they come in travel-friendly tins, which measure 4.4oz and burn for a good 40 hours. The dimensions include L13*H5cm. These outdoor party essentials are also suitable for stress relief.
- These are good for aromatherapy
- Eco-friendly candles made with soy wax
- Portable tins make it easy to carry
- Mosquito repellent product is smokeless
- Smell might be quite mild for some
- The smell might be quite mild for some
"I found this set of citronella candles to be quite effective. The scent is lovely and works well at keeping bugs at bay, but they may not burn as long as expected. The tin designs are appealing, but can heat up during use."
3. Best Smokeless:Meigao Citronella Scented Candles Gift Set
Infused with Citronella oil, these good-smelling candles come in soy wax buckets. Available in a pack of 12, these candles are smokeless and can be placed both indoors and outdoors and will not leave any fumes. The tried-and-tested wicks make the candles dripless.
- Come in a good-looking Tinplate bucket.
- Are smokeless.
- The wax bucket is great for decoration
- The smell is too mild
Tiki Brand Triple-Wick Galvanized Citronella Candle
Tobeape Citronella Candles
Best For Aromatherapy
Meigao Citronella Scented Candles Gift Set
|Soy Wax, Tin
|7"W x 4.25"H
|5.3"W x 2.1"H
|4.5 x 0.01 x 4.3 inches
4. Best For Indoor & Outdoor Usage:T&H Citronella Candles For Outdoor And Indoor
These fragrant citronella candles come in a large 1-pound soy candle wax. Being large makes them quite long-lasting, especially in terms of burning for a continuous 80 hours. According to reviewers, the large wax candle holds three wicks, to provide sufficient light and the citronella aroma can shoo the mosquitoes away during evenings.
- Made with natural soy wax and 100% organic cotton wicks
- Safe and gentle for indoor and outdoor settings
- Long, 80 hours burning capacity
- Great as a gift
- For some, the candle may not work in warding off mosquitoes
"The candle is beautiful and has a tolerable scent. Although the three wicks burned unevenly, they still managed to ward off bugs and light up my outdoor BBQ party. It deserves a repurchase, and the charming box will come in handy while gifting it to my friends and family."
5. Best Eco-Friendly:La Jolie Muse Citronella Scented Candle
Included among the best citronella candle brands, the La Jolie Muse citronella scented candle is made from 100% natural citronella oil. Its classic scent combines green citrus as the top note and clean, fresh fragrance as the bottom note. You can use it for various activities, including picnics, barbecues, travel, gardening, camping trips, and indoor use. This natural bug deterrent helps you embrace peace while keeping the buzzing insects away. The wicks are lead-free and made from pure cotton.
- Longer and cleaner burning without smoke
- Blended with natural soy wax
- Cruelty-free, eco-friendly, and biodegradable
- Can last for 45 hours
- Supports mosquito-freecamping trips
- Smell may not be pleasing to all
- May be smaller than expected
"I adore this scented candle. Although it tends to burn down the center, it works well in dealing with musty odors. Plus, it survived a week in my overstuffed suitcase without a scratch."
6. Best Fragrance:Murphy’s Naturals Mosquito Repellent Candle
The strong citronella scented candle is made with essential oils and soy/beeswax blend. This high concentration makes it effective in keeping the mosquitoes away. With a burning capacity of 30 hours, this decorative single-wick citronella candle is perfect for all kinds of events, making it one of the preferred choices of home experts. This outdoor citronella candle is packaged in a 9oz recyclable tin.
- Rich concentration of peppermint, rosemary, citronella, cedarwood, soybean, and lemongrass oil
- The strong concentration of oils makes it an effective mosquito control method
- Has a pleasant smell
- Long-lasting–30-hour burning capacity
- Not effective for outdoor mosquito protection for some
"I've used these candles multiple times, and they've consistently proved effective at repelling bugs. Although the scent is slightly strong, it is herbal and pleasant. Overall, it's a fantastic product that has helped me keep bugs at bay indoors and outdoors."
7. Best Mosquito Repellent:Repel Insect Repellent Citronella Candle
This is one of the best mosquito repellant candles. This citronella candle comes in a green container of 20-ounce, which is quite convenient to be kept anywhere. According to reviewers, the container is portable and can be carried to any place. Effective in repelling mosquitoes, it can burn for up to 40 hours.
- Comes in a portable container
- Supports mosquito-free outdoor living
- Has a 40-hour burning capacity
- Real citronella oil in the candles wards off mosquitoes
- Not effective for the value
- May not last long
"This citronella candle has worked well in various weather conditions and even provides ample light. The container looks slightly tacky, but a few spritz of paint solved that issue. Despite a few kinks, it's indispensable for keeping bugs away from humans in open-air environments, making it a worthy purchase."
8. Best Floating:Hyoola Tealight Citronella Candles
Available in a beautiful round shape, this set of citronella candles offers a soothing and pleasing scent. Each candle burns for almost four hours. They are made of paraffin wax and natural, real citronella plant. The tried-and-tested candles are also deet-free and chemical-free. Whether you put them indoors or outdoors, they work well as a mosquito repellant.
- Can twinkle and float in water
- Safe, non-toxic, and natural
- 100% cotton wicks
- Can repel flying insects and bees
- Wicks may break at times
- Some may find them smaller than expected
"These candles have kept mosquitoes away from us all year round. Despite burning out quicker than preferred, their efficiency is proven. I appreciated the subtle scent and gentle light it offered. Moreover, they remarkably eliminated a sudden gnat problem at home after just a day."
9. Best Non-Toxic:Fabulous Frannie Bug Away Pure & Natural Soy Candle
Made from a mixture of citronella oil and soy wax, this candle offers a burn time of 45 hours. Apart from using it outdoors, you can also use this candle for aromatherapy. The material used is natural and non-toxic. This candle offers the fragrance of lemongrass, eucalyptus, lavender, and citronella essential oils.
- Can help with repelling bugs and flying insects
- Soothing scent
- Useful for garden mosquito control
- Easy to put in other candle holders
- Durable and long-lasting
- Repelling effect may be temporary
- Candle may crumble
"With these wax blocks, I noticed a significant decrease in mosquitoes in my office and home. It even keeps wasps away from bird feeders and acts as a repellent against fleas and ticks. Although slightly crumbly, it outperformed all other alternatives, and the fantastic smell keeps me returning to it."
10. Best Hand-Poured:Just Makes Scents Candles And Gifts Citronella Scented Blended Soy Candle
Suitable for indoors and outdoors, this citronella candle eradicates distractions and makes the space more relaxing and comfortable. It is available in four soothing scents: original, orange, lime, and berry. The candle jar burns for almost 40 hours, making it long-lasting and practical. It is made with a soy blend wax that comprises oil from soybeans.
- Offers clean, smoke-free burning
- Environment-friendly candle
- Top note of green citrus, and the bottom note of camphor
- Hand poured
- Wick’s position may have to be adjusted
- May be smaller than expected
"I've found this citronella candle remarkably effective in keeping mosquitoes at bay, even in hot and humid conditions! It doesn't make my space smell too strong and burns evenly. Although the wick may require adjustment, its proficiency in mosquito-repelling is undeniable. Despite my distaste for the citronella smell, I'd happily repurchase it for the mosquito-relief it offers."
11. Best Non-GMO:I & Candle Aromatherapy Soy Wax Scented Candles
Scented with a natural, pure blend of essential oils, these insect-repellent candles don’t have any dyes or harmful chemicals. They offer a refreshingly rejuvenating scent that can make any space more cozy and lively. They feature 100% non-GMO soy wax, natural cotton wick, and essential oils; thus, they burn clean till the end.
- Contains a mix of citronella, lavender, andlemongrass oil
- Offers three hours of burn time
- Suitable as an insect repellent
- May not have a strong smell
- May be smaller than expected
"I'm enchanted by this candle's refreshing, spa-like aroma. Besides warding off bugs, it has been perfect for creating a relaxing environment and boosting concentration. I purchased both the rosemary mint and rose lavender. The soy wax of the rosemary and mint one melts a bit, but it is still one of my favorites."
12. Best For Crackling Wooden Sound:Coleman Scented Citronella Candle with Wooden Crackle Wick
This pine-scented citronella candle packed in one 6oz tin can is an effective one. With a wooden crackle wick, it burns for up to 25 hours. It’s a great outdoor pest control candle recommended by home experts, as it can effectively keep the pests at bay.
- Pleasant pine scent
- The wick when burns gives a crackling wooden sound
- Perfect for outdoor activities like camping trips
- Long-lasting with a capacity of 25 hours burning
- Small and not so effective in warding off mosquitoes at times
"These easy-to-ignite citronella candles are very handy in keeping bugs and mosquitoes away from my family. They filled my outdoor area with a strong aroma and remained effective for a long time. It did have slight issues with wind, but the compact size made it possible to place it in the corner of my patio, eliminating the issue caused by winds. Overall, I'm pleased and have already acquired more."
13. Best Variety:Cutter Scented Citronella Outdoor Candle
This citronella-scented single-wick candle is infused with real citronella oil and contains vanilla and lavender. It’s available in other fragrances like cinnamon spice, fresh rain, sweet cedar and tropical oasis, honeysuckle and lilac, as well as unscented. It comes in an 11oz boxed container with frosted glass.
- Made with real citronella oil
- Provides effective mosquito prevention
- Available in awide range of fragrances
- Packed in a container with beautiful frosted glass
- Adds an attractive glow, which is good for outdoors.
- Offers 30 hours of burn time
- The wick inside the wax is not of great quality
"The citronella candle is a practical and aesthetic addition to my house. I enjoy the soft aroma of the lavender vanilla notes and love that it has effectively warded off mosquitoes. The wick does fold onto itself at times, but the effectiveness of the candle more than makes up for that minor hassle."
How To Choose The Right Citronella Candles?
Consider the below factors before choosing the Citronella candles:
- Citronella oil: It is important that the candles have a good concentration of citronella oil as they ensure that the candles are effective in keeping mosquitoes and bugs away.
- Blended with other essential oils: Other than citronella oil, the candles should have other aromatic oils to make it smell nice.
- Dripless wick: To ensure the candles offer a longer burn time, the wicks should be dripless.
Ilia Mundut, an expert in home design and owner of the decor website HeftyBerry, says, “When choosing a citronella candle for pest control, it is important to consider its size, scent, and burn time. These factors ensure that the candle provides maximum protection without sacrificing the ambiance or convenience. Additionally, select candles made from natural ingredients and materials to minimize any negative environmental impact.”
How Does Citronella Act As An Insect Repellant?
The pungent odor of citronella acts as a repellent. The oil extracted from the lemongrass species plant can work to ward off mosquitoes in two ways. One is through the application of oil, and the second is through infusers.
The oil, which is an active ingredient in repellents, irritates the mosquitoes and prevents them from coming towards the source of the smell. It is believed that it masks the carbon dioxide and lactic acid scent that the mosquitoes like.
Citronella-based repellents are available in several forms, including incense sticks, sprays, and even bracelets.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do citronella candles deter insects, or do they kill them?
The strong smell of citronella is repulsive for insects and mosquitoes and prevents them from coming closer to the area infused with the aroma. The extracts are thus helpful in keeping mosquitoes away and not killing them.
2. How safe are citronella candles to use?
The US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) recognizes citronella oil as safe for use. As long as the candle or products are used as instructed, they may not be harmful (1).
3. Should I take citronella candles with me when traveling to an area where mosquitoes are prevalent?
Citronella candles might not be effective in open spaces with strong winds. When traveling to an area infested with mosquitoes, one should carry mosquito sprays or light traps to electrocute the bugs.
4. What bugs do citronella candles repel?
Citronella candles may help repel certain species of mosquitoes, sandflies, ticks, fleas, black flies, and other flies to some extent. However, no extensive studies have been conducted to determine what bugs citronella scent can repel.
Why Trust MomJunction?
Wedetso Chirhah specializes in household products, electronics, and books. His passion for providing detailed information to his readers drives him to create original articles. After referring to many websites and online reviews, Wedetso has curated a list of the best citronella candles that smell heavenly and keep mosquitoes away. You may read about each product in detail along with its pros and cons. Furthermore, you can browse the buying guide with helpful tips and answers to some frequently asked questions.
An easy way to keep pests away is by purchasing the best citronella candles. These high-quality citronella candles are made using citronella essential oil as the primary ingredient, and their scent naturally repels mosquitoes and insects. Citronella candles can also set a lively ambiance and light up your day. However, there are certain factors to consider before purchasing the ideal candle. These factors include a high concentration of citronella oil blended with other essential oils for a pleasing fragrance and the dripless wicks to make the candle long-lasting. To enjoy the fragrance of pine and the sound of crackling wood, choose the Coleman Scented Citronella Candle. For outdoor settings, the Repel Insect Repellent Citronella Candle is recommended, as it comes in a pot with a handle for easy portability. You can consider the soy and beeswax-based Murphy’s Naturals Mosquito Repellent Candle for a more natural option.
Infographic: Plants That Keep Insects Away
Several plants other than citronella can be used as insect and mosquito repellents. Many manufacturers include these plants in their formulations for organic insect repellent. Explore the infographic below for some notable plants whose extracts can be used as natural insect repellents.
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