Can You Put A Candle In The Microwave? (Find Out Now!)

Emily Carr
by Emily Carr

In the last few years, there’s been a lot of talk about whether or not it is safe to put a candle in the microwave. Getting rid of the residual wax at the bottom of your used candle is a great way to repurpose a throw-away item into something useful.

You shouldn’t put a candle in the microwave due to the fact that most fragrances are flammable. Other reasons include the type of wax and a hidden metal wick holder that could start a fire if heated. Follow the ‘boiling method’ if you wish to repurpose your candle jar for something like a planter around the house.

Keep reading to learn if you can put a candle in the microwave and how to melt a candle safely. We’ll also discuss some of the uses for a candle container after the wick is completely burned out!

Is It Safe to Put a Candle in the Microwave?

Microwaves are a great way to reheat things or melt items quickly, especially if you’re in a time crunch. Is a candle a good candidate?

There are mixed reviews on this, although due to the lack of concrete evidence, we recommend not putting a candle in the microwave. Some people have reported a fire igniting as a result, and others claim it doesn’t work at all.

Here are some things to consider regarding if your candle is safe to microwave:

  • Type of wax
  • Candle container
  • Size of the candle
  • Added fragrances
  • Wick holder material

We’ll discuss why each attribute is relevant in more detail below.

Type of Wax

Different waxes have different melting points. For that reason, the temperature of your microwave may or may not be sufficient enough for the job.

Here’s a detailed list of different types of candle waxes and their melting temperatures:

  • Paraffin wax: ~134.5 °F
  • Beeswax: ~146 °F
  • Soy wax: ~127.5 °F
  • Palm wax: ~140 °F

Depending on the type of wax your candle is made of, it may take longer to melt.

Candle Container

Candles come in all different types of containers- some are glass, some are metal, some are colored, and some have designs. What your candle looks like has a huge impact on if it can go in the microwave.

Any type of metal container can never be microwaved. Metal is an electrical conductor, which means sparks will fly if you attempt to do so.

Additionally, any design element like ink or labeling is a fire hazard. It will melt off during the nuking process and contaminate the inside of your microwave. These toxins pose a threat to the food you heat up thereafter.

Some candles don’t have a casing at all, in which case you would be left with a puddle of wax should you try to melt it in the microwave.

Size of the Candle

The height and width of your candle is also a factor.

Some larger candles may not even fit in the microwave, while smaller ones may melt and burn too quickly. This makes it a little riskier to attempt melting your candle in the microwave.

Added Fragrances

The fresh perfumy aroma is one of my favorite aspects of a candle. However, what if I told you that’s what makes them dangerous to heat?

Alcohol-based fragrances, in particular, are incredibly flammable. Putting your Le Labo candle in the microwave is a huge no-no (unless you’re TRYING to burn down the house).

Even by looking at the ingredients on the label, it’s sometimes impossible to determine what exactly is in your candle. Some scents are custom, and companies refuse to reveal how they’re made.

For this reason alone, keep your candles away from the microwave!

Wick Holder Material

Have you ever wondered what keeps the wick in place when they pour the candle into its holder?

There’s a small wick holder at the bottom of your candle, and typically it’s made of metal. This component is completely hidden until you burn the candle all the way down.

So, sometimes if your candle appears completely encased in glass, there’s still a dangerous metal piece lurking at the bottom.

How to Safely Melt a Candle

Now that we’ve ruled the microwave out, what can you do to melt down your candle and repurpose its container?

The best way to safely melt a candle is by using the boiling method. Here’s how to do it:

  • Put a large pot or pan on the stove and fill it up with a couple of inches of water.
  • Place your candle inside to make sure the water won’t capsize it once it’s in place.
  • Remove the candle, and turn your burner on.
  • Raise the water temperature to a light simmer (boiling is too aggressive).
  • Place your candle inside using metal tongs.
  • Allow for the wax to melt completely, then remove your candle, taking care not to burn yourself (using the same tongs or oven mitts).
  • Dispose of the candle wax safely in the garbage; remember that when the wax cools, it will reharden, so pouring it down your disposal will leave a difficult-to-clean residue.
  • Wash out your candle holder, and it’s ready to be used for something else!

Uses for a Candle Container After the Wick Is Burned Out

If you want to recycle your candle container, what are some things you can use it for around the house?

Here are 10 ways to upcycle an old candle jar:

  • A cocktail glass
  • Pen & pencil holder
  • A planter
  • Cotton swab and cotton ball holder in the bathroom
  • Spare change jar
  • Makeup brush container
  • Small flower vase
  • Tealight holder
  • Storage for hair ties, clips, and bobby pins
  • Pour a new candle inside.

These are just a few of the ways people have reused their burned-out candle containers over the years!

Related Questions

Can you put a candle in your carry-on?

This is a fairly common question.Yes, you can bring wax candles on an airplane in your carry-on bag. However, candles (or rather air fresheners) made out of gel must be checked according to TSA guidelines.Gel candles fall under the ‘gels and aerosols’ category.

Can you put a candle out with your fingers?

Putting a candle out with your fingers is an old party trick. If you dare to try, here’s how to do it.

  • Make sure there’s enough room around your candle (and a glass of water nearby, just in case).
  • Lick your index finger and thumb.
  • Position your fingers about an inch away from the wick.
  • Quickly, grab the wick with your index finger and thumb, and pull away immediately.

We prefer just blowing a candle out the regular way! So, be careful and have a first aid kit available in case things go awry.

Why is my candle burning black?

This is never a good sign. In fact, it can get into your home’s ventilation system and wreak havoc on your white furniture.

A candle burning black wax generally occurs when it’s been lit for too long. Oftentimes, your wick will have a black bubble to indicate that it’s time to cut it down.

Keep your candle away from valuable furniture, and stop burning it if you notice black soot coming from the flame.

The Bottom Line

It is never safe to put a candle in the microwave. This can cause an unsafe fire hazard and should not be attempted by anyone who values their safety.

The best way to melt down your candles without fear of injury or home damage is by boiling water on the stovetop. You can also reuse old candle holders for other containers around the house!

Which project will you try first?

Emily Carr
Emily Carr

Emily is a copywriter with over five years of experience in crafting content for the home renovation and remodeling industry. She loves house projects, whether it be painting a room or tweaking small design elements to transform a space. Her favorite aesthetic is french modern because of its clean lines and airy feeling! When not writing, Emily loves to travel and check out architectural details all over the world.

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