Can I use citronella candles indoors?

Can I use citronella candles indoors?


For most people, using scented candles is a way of relaxing as well as a tool for creating a cosy atmosphere at home.

Those who use scented candles regularly, usually know how different fragrances can affect mood so they can use the best candles when needed.

If you are one of those people, you must know the unique benefits of citronella candles. But if you ever wondered about its proper use, this post is for you.

Let’s see if you can use citronella candles indoors!

Key Takeaways

  • Citronella candles require good ventilation when used indoors to prevent overpowering scent and smoke build up.
  • Keep citronella candles away from anything that can catch fire and never leave them burning without supervision.
  • Indoors, citronella candles are totally safe just assess the potency of the candle as citronella can be over powering sometimes and could affect pets. 
  • Safety precautions include using sturdy holders for the candles and keeping them out of reach of children and pets.
  • Consider other forms of indoor pest control like screens or electric traps as safer alternatives to citronella candles.

What is a citronella candle?

can you use citronella indoors

Citronella candles are made by using citronella, lemon or lemongrass essential oils or pre-made fragrance oils.

The purpose of this type of candle is to repel mosquitoes when enjoying an outdoor evening. Whether it’s a lovely candlelit dinner under the stars or a grill party with friends, enjoying summer evenings is one of the greatest things.

However, mosquitoes and other bugs can easily ruin it for us.

This is where citronella candle comes to the picture!

But how does it really work?

Citronella candle can mask our own scent so mosquitoes are not drawn to us while we are sitting outdoor.

Through this feature, citronella candle is a healthy alternative to the chemical products you can purchase. So if you also like to choose healthy and natural alternatives, citronella candles might be your solution.

Can I use citronella candles indoors?

As seen above, citronella candles are mostly made to be used outdoors. But still, you might ask yourself whether you can use it indoors as well.

During summer, it is always good to have extra protection against mosquitoes indoor as well.

Well, you’ll be happy to hear that you can use citronella candles indoors.

According to EPA, citronella candles are not harmful to human health, so you are safe. The reason is that citronella candles simply have the same risks as any other scented candles.

citronella indoors

However, most of the time this type of candle tends to burn with more smoke which can cause problems when using indoors.

Firstly, it can lead to poor air quality indoors, which is not ideal on the long term.

Secondly, it can cause irritation or breathing problems for people who are more sensitive. This can mean either eye or skin irritations, so you should watch out for those allergic reactions.

Apart from your health, it is also worth mentioning, that pets don’t really like such strong scents. So if you have a dog or cat at home, you shouldn’t burn citronella candle indoor. As it can quickly become toxic, you definitely have to avoid using it in this case.

As you can see above, citronella candle is a great healthy alternative to chemical mosquito repellent.

Keeping your health in mind, using citronella candle outdoors is the best natural bug repellent that you can choose.

However, when it comes to burning it inside, you have to be extra cautious. Mostly due to the excessive smoke, it is not as safe as other scented candles.


1. Is it safe to burn citronella candles inside my home?

Yes, you can use citronella candles indoors, but always make sure the room is well-ventilated to avoid the risks of inhaling citronella smoke.

2. Do indoor citronella candles really keep mosquitoes away?

Indoor citronella candles can work as mosquito repellent, but their effectiveness might be less compared to using them outdoors where they are most commonly used.

3. Can burning a citronella candle indoors harm my pets?

Citronella candle safety for pets is important; while not highly toxic, make sure your pets don't ingest any part of the candle or oil and ensure proper ventilation when in use.

4. What should I do to safely use a citronella candle inside for aromatherapy?

When using a citronella candle indoors, choose an indoor-safe product like a diffuser or ensure that there's good air flow and never leave it burning unattended for fire safety.

5. Are there alternatives to burning citronella candles for indoor insect repellent?

For those who prefer not to burn candles inside, consider natural remedies such as essential oils in a diffuser or other forms of indoor insect repellent that are designed specifically for interior spaces.