How to make a candle in a mug

How to make a candle in a mug

I'm sure we've all seen some of the candles on the internet that had some kind of mug as a candle holder. These DIY projects are a great way to dive into the world of hobby candle making, but of course there are some pitfalls to avoid So let's take a look at how to make a candle in a mug!

What type of mug can I use?

The most important thing to consider (besides looks, of course) is how well the mug can withstand the heat.

One of the most commonly used candle waxes is paraffin wax, this material has a melting point of around 145°F (or about 62° C), another natural alternative is soy wax, which has a melting point of 180°F (approximately 82°C). So you need to look for a mug that can easily withstand this heat for a long time!

For this reason, simple glass cups and mugs (no matter how good they look) are not suitable for candle making. Coffee and tea mugs made to be heat-resistant are the best choice, but you can often find candles made from enamel mugs.

Other things to look out for when choosing a mug

Another thing to keep in mind is the size of the mug: if you choose a mug that is too big, you will need a very high volume of wax and a long wick, which is not always worth it.

You should also pay attention to shape: a tall but thin mug will work much better as a candle than a short but wide one.

In addition to heat resistance and shape, here are a few other important things to keep in mind when pouring candles in a jar:

  • Once you have chosen the right heat proof mug, it is important to clean it properly, because if you leave any residue in it, it can prevent the wax from spreading evenly or burning cleanly.

  • If the mug was used to store some kind of chemical (like laundry detergent), pay extreme attention to cleaning, as toxins left on the walls of the candle holder can be released during combustion.

  • The walls of the mug need to be thick enough to withstand the heat of a lit wick for long periods of time (even hours). If a thin-walled mug is used, it can crack or break, which can lead to increased fire hazards.

  • It is important that the walls of your mug are smooth and non-porous. If the surface of the candleholder mug is porous (for example, in the case of an unglazed clay vessel), the hot melted wax can weaken the vessel by seeping into the surface irregularities. If the surface is not smooth enough, the wax can stick to it, preventing it from dripping down under the wick and burning. This can lead to shortened burn times and loss of some of the wax.


Candles in a mug can be beautiful and they always add a cosy atmosphere to a room. If we take the above into account, we can make candles that are both safe and decorative while we can upcycle an old mug as well.