How to Make Massage Candles for Romantic Nights In

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Use all-natural ingredients to make massage candles for you and your partner or for romantic gifts. Massage candles are lit like ordinary candles, but you use the melted oils directly on the skin as a warm massage oil. They’re warm and relaxing, and the combination of ingredients is great for your skin!

If you’ve not seen massage oil candles before, then you and your partner are in for a sensual treat. Though they can look like traditional candles, they’re actually solid body oil. Once you light them, the oils melt into a pool that you pour directly into your hand and use for massage. They don’t burn at all and feel decadent and sensual poured onto your back by the one you love. Though you can use the massage candle oil for a warm massage, you can also use them as a personal lubricant, with a caveat discussed further on.

Massage candles work by using ingredients such as shea butter and cocoa butter, which are solid at room temperature. If you blend them with a natural wax that burns at a low temperature, the oil pool that forms when the candle is lit will be warm, not hot, like ordinary candles. The liquid oil in the recipe helps lower the melting temperature even more and helps speed up how quickly the massage oil melts. You may hesitate to pour the melted oil into your hand (or skin) the first time. I think you’ll be surprised at its comfortable temperature, though.

Massage Candles are a Romantic Gift Idea

The tutorial below will take you through how to make massage candles and how to use them. The process of making them is very quick, and once all of your ingredients are assembled it’s a matter of minutes before each massage candle is poured and cooling. After that, it’s a matter of waiting overnight for them to harden up, then you can label them if you wish. Massage candles are a great bachelorette party gift, but you could save them for Valentine’s Day, your anniversary, or use them right away. Maybe several of those occasions!

Use all-natural ingredients to make massage candles for you and your partner or for romantic gifts. Massage candles are lit like ordinary candles, but you use the melted wax directly on the skin as a warm massage oil #makecandles #massagecandle #bacheloretteparty

The video at the end shows you how it’s done and also gives a demo of how you’d pour the massage candle wax into your hand. Honestly, the oil will be warm, not hot. Using a massage candle may look similar to using a normal candle, but they’re completely different. On that note, you should avoid using beeswax or paraffin wax in any massage candle project. Both melt at hot temperatures, so their melted wax will also be very hot. So stick with the ingredients listed, and if you use food-grade ingredients, massage candle wax can be edible too.

How to make Massage Oil Candles. Not actually real candles, they're solid massage oil that melts with the help of the flame. Amazingly, the "wax" feels just warm on the skin when it pour it on. Great handmade gift for Valentine's Day or an anniversary #aromatherapy #diybeauty
The assembled ingredients include cocoa butter, shea butter, and essential oils

Massage Candle Recipe

Massage candles are very easy to make. It’s a matter of gently melting the main oils, preparing the wick, pouring, cooling, and using them on a romantic night in. You can use massage candles the very day you make them if you wish! You do need to have the right ingredients, though, including pure oils, the right wick, and the container.

In the original video (see below) and recipe, I included 1/4 tsp of vitamin e oil. I’ve left it out as it’s not necessary, but you could still choose to add it if you wish. I used to use it as an antioxidant but learned later that most vitamin e oils are not strong enough to work as one. Work with ingredients well within their best-by date, and you don’t need an antioxidant anyway.

Use all-natural ingredients to make massage candles for you and your partner or for romantic gifts. Massage candles are lit like ordinary candles, but you use the melted wax directly on the skin as a warm massage oil #makecandles #massagecandle #bacheloretteparty
You’ll also need some candle-making equipment, including wicks and tins

One thing to remember is that candles that you burn to scent the home are different from massage candles. They are skincare, and as such, you need to ensure that all of the ingredients you use are safe for the skin. If you wanted to make a massage candle with edible oil, then choose food-grade oils and leave out the essential oils. Instead, you could flavor the massage candle with a cosmetic flavor oil such as vanilla, strawberry, or passionfruit. On that note, if you plan on using massage candles as a personal lubricant, please also avoid essential oils and be aware that oil can compromise latex. That means that oil and condoms are not a recipe for safe play.

Massage oil candles make great Valentine’s gifts

Wicks for Massage Candles

Now that the ingredients are cleared up, you should also ensure that the wick you choose is either raw or primed with soy wax, not paraffin. I recommend that you get raw wick, and I show how to prime it in the instructions below. With raw wick, you can cut the length that you need, and that’s important for non-standard containers like ceramic pourers. You should also choose your candle wick type with care. Get wicks that are suitable for natural waxes and the diameter of the container that you’re using. If in doubt about the wick, check with a candle ingredients supplier.

Lovely Greens Massage oil Candles poured into a collectible handmade ceramic pourer by Kathryn Mitchell Ceramics
A former massage oil product of mine

Containers for Massage Candles

There are two types of containers shown in the photos for this massage candle recipe. The first is standard steel candle tins, which are very easy to find online. You can find them in silver, black, and other colors, and square tins or round tins. You may also use glass candle containers or ceramic pourers. Whichever you use is up to you. Because massage candles burn at lower temperatures and aren’t lit for very long, the container doesn’t get hot. When the candle is empty, you can even reuse the container. It washes out easily with hot soapy water.

Use metal candle containers or opt for ceramic pourers

How to Use Massage Candles

To use the candle, light it and leave it to burn for 5-15 minutes or until a sizable pool of warm wax has formed. During this time, the scent of the essential oils will begin to fill the air. Now blow out the flame and pour the warm oil directly into your hand and immediately massage into the skin with your fingertips. The first time you do this, you’ll be surprised at just how pleasant the oil temperature is.

Please be aware that if you leave the candle burning for more than half an hour, the tin can get warm. Be careful when picking it up, and also make sure that the temperature of the oil isn’t too hot. Kept sealed, the candles will have a shelf-life of up to two years. Have a fun time making and using these romantic candles ❤ And if you’d like to explore more candle ideas, here’s some further inspiration:

Massage Candle Recipe

Tanya Anderson
Use all-natural ingredients to make massage candles for you and your partner or for romantic gifts. Massage candles are lit like ordinary candles, but you use the melted wax directly on the skin as a warm massage oil.
5 from 6 votes
Author Tanya Anderson
Cost $20




Assemble the Wicks

  • Cut lengths of wick that when measured from the bottom of your candle container will stick out by 1/2".
  • After the lengths are cut, feed the wick through the hole of a metal sustainer using a wooden skewer. The sustainer helps hold the wick in place and you should choose a standard or slightly larger size for this project.
  • Slide it all the way down to the end of the wick so that no wick is sticking out of its bottom. Using pliers, squeeze the metal feed on the top of the sustainer over the wick so that the wick is held in place.

Melt the Oils

  • Place the butters, sweet almond oil, and soy wax in the saucepan and heat on low until completely melted. It's better to do this using the double boiler method but you can heat directly on a hob if you keep an eye on it and are stirring the entire time.
  • If you're using raw wicks that you've assembled yourself, place them into the oil so that they can absorb some of it – this primes the wicks and will help the wicks to burn cleaner. There's no need to put pre-made commercial wicks in the oil.
  • When the oils are fully melted, take the pan off the heat and set it aside to cool. Before you add the rest of the ingredients the oil will need to cool down to about 130°F / 54°C. While it's cooling, continue to the next step.

Get the containers ready

  • Using the wooden chopsticks, center your wicks inside your containers. If you've used raw wick and had it floating around in the oils, fish them out with your spatula and wring the extra oil out.

Add the essential oil

  • When the oils have cooled down, add the essential oils and stir well. The blend of rose-geranium and ylang-ylang is beautifully floral and relaxing.
  • Now gently pour the melted oil into your containers, using the spatula to scrape out every last drop. Fill the oil to 1/4" (6 mm) from the top of the container. If the wick bottom moves around during this time, use the wooden skewer to push it back into place. Leave the candles to sit for at least 12 hours to harden and cool. The oils will solidify to a creamy tone

Finishing up

  • Trim the wick when the containers are no longer warm to the touch and the oils have hardened. Remove the chopsticks and use a pair of scissors to cut the wick flush with the top of the container.
  • Clean the tins (and lids) with a clean, dry cloth and then fit the pieces together. You can decorate it simply with a ribbon or go all out and print labels. The pink label on my tin is printed using this design on a sheet of pink card paper. The labels are 1" (2.5 cm) tall and fit around the round tins perfectly. Secure them with a small piece of clear tape.



* It’s better to use a few smaller containers than one large jar. Why? Ease of use, reduction in dirt and potential contaminants over a period of time, and weird oil hardening. If you pour this entire batch in a large jar you’ll probably find that it doesn’t solidify with a smooth surface. There will likely be a big pit in the middle. It doesn’t affect the product, but it doesn’t look great either.
Tried this project?Let us know how it was!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I made this recipe today. It set up fairly quick in my home and I tested it in a clean uncontaminated wax warmer. Worked beautifully! I worked into my legs after a shower. I used small molds, and I was able to pop one out and set inside the warmer. I need wicks, so this idea worked.

  2. 5 stars
    Cool massage candle recipe !!

  3. 5 stars
    Amazing and I’m using it as a hand moisturiser at my office

  4. 5 stars
    Hi, how long do you leave it to rest before using it? Is there some wait time like with other candles?

    1. No rest time, aside from allowing the massage oil candles to cool and harden, is necessary for this recipe.

  5. Hello, thanks for post. I noticed recipe said for hand salve , is it for massage candle or hand salve? Also what soy wax do you use that has no scent . The one I buy is all natural but still has a scent to it . Thank you !

  6. Hello! What is the best skin-safe soy wax to use for someone who has very sensitive skin and is interested in using the massage candle as a form of skin care? I And is it possible to make a massage candle without using wax at all?

    1. Hi Rin, without soy wax (or another low-temperature burning vegetable wax) I don’t think the candle would burn very well. For the safest soy wax for skincare, choose one that’s marketed for skincare from a skincare ingredients supplier. Which country do you live in?

  7. 5 stars
    Hi Tanya, thanks for sharing all this content. I would like to know which oil can you use instead of almond oil to make the recipe edible with a nice flavor?

    1. Hi Karen, any oil that is liquid at room temperature will do! If you’re making an edible recipe, make sure to leave the essential oils out too.

  8. Home Lights Candle says:

    I love candles and massage too! This is a great idea, love it :)
    Thank you!

  9. Hi can i use rapeseed wax instead of soy wax?

    1. Technically yes, but I’ve not tried making the recipe in that way before. The final firmness may be the same, or it may be different. If you try, I’d love to hear how it came out!

      1. Hi Tanya, thanks for your reply. When I try rapeseed wax I will let you know however I made the massage oil candle for a birthday present and one for me to try it out – with soy wax, shea butter, argan oil and skin safe fragrances (vanilla and cinnamon). It came really good and gets the skin soft the smell is also nice. I would like to use wooden wicks I believe that there might be wooden wicks good for soy wax and pouring. I hope to try and see which one works best. I am also struggling to find pouring jars with a handle and a lid.

  10. Can I change the soy wax for beeswax? And if is possible , if the quantity is the same?

    1. Changing the soy wax to beeswax could make this recipe dangerous. Soy wax melts at a much lower temperature than beeswax so isn’t hot on the skin. Beeswax melts at a much higher temperature (even mixed with other oils) and might burn if you use these as massage oil candles.

      1. 5 stars
        Wow! Thanks for answering that! I was about to make mine with beeswax!!😳😳

  11. Hey!

    Which form of shea butter is better, refined or unrefined?


    1. Up to you! Unrefined is darker in color and has a distinctive scent though. Not everyone’s favorite scent either, so see if you can smell it first before buying a large amount?

  12. Hi I’d like to make hemp candles , I’d like you use hemp oil, soy wax and shear butter , would I need to use anything else please.??

  13. Jason Komlodi says:

    Where do you get your Vitiman E oil?

  14. Dominique says:

    Hi, I was wondering if I could use other essential oils instead of the geranium and Palmarosa? Did you use these because they smelled better with the cocoa and shea butter? Thank you :-)

    1. You can use other essential oils but it’s difficult to explain how much of each you could use. There are so many variants, and each essential oil will have a different maximum usage rate for leave-on skincare products. Using too much can lead to skin irritation, which is why it’s very important to follow recipe amounts when making DIY skincare.

  15. mayleen rivera says:

    I was wondering, can I use different fragrance oils other than the essential oils listed? If so, would the measurements still be the same?

    1. You could but you would need to use skin-safe fragrances — some are meant only for candles and infusers and will burn your skin. Each fragrance will have recommendations for quantity so check with the manufacturer.

  16. Raghuveera Bharadwaja says:

    can i use beeswax instead of soy? If so at what temperature shall i mix essential oils and vitamin E. I think beeswax suits to all types of skin. Thanks for your tutorial.

    1. I have the same question..can you use beeswax?
      Thank you!

      1. You should not use beeswax in this recipe since it burns hot and can burn your skin. Stick with soy wax since it has a much lower melt temperature :)

  17. Elisabeta says:

    Thank you for sharing this information! It is very helpful!
    I already used your recipe and I got a really satisfying masaj candle. It feels really good on the skin and it leaves it smooth.
    But I was wondering if I can use olive wax or coconut wax instead of soya?
    Thank you! ?

    1. Absolutely, though you may need to tinker with the recipe to get the right amount. You want the final candle firm when at room temperature.

  18. Hello! I love this and will be trying my first massage oil candles very soon!
    I would like to make something with a more sensual scent. I’ve heard ylang-ylang, patchouli, sweet orange, jasmine, etc, have an aphrodisiac effect. If I tinker around with those, is that OK…as long as the essential oil amount stays the same as you listed (I believe it was 1.8 ml)?
    Thank you in advance!

    1. Generally speaking, yes, aside from sensitizing essential oils. Keep it on the low side with citrus types at 1% of your recipe or under.

  19. HI
    I was wondering if these candles burn as long as a standard candle? I have been wanting to make candles with essential oils but I know the scent does not last long when burning.

    1. These are not standard candles and are not meant to be burned as one. You blow out the flame as soon as a pool of wax is formed so that you can use it as warm massage oil.

  20. Emma Cullen says:

    Hi there, I hope you are well :)

    I just wanted to ask a question with regards to the massage candle if thats ok. I really love this recipe and can’t wait to make it but was just wondering if the Shea butter is essential? can it be substituted with coconut oil or just extra cocoa butter?
    Thank you so much for such lovely inspiration :)

    1. Hi Emma, for my recipe it is essential. You’re welcome to tinker with it to try to omit the shea but I can’t guarantee the results. Best of luck!

    2. You can try substituting mango butter for shea butter. It’ has a less greasy feeling on the skin than shea. Coconut oil is not a good substitute for shea butter as it melts at a much lower temperature than shea or mango butter. Cocoa butter isn’t of the same hardness / texture as she or mango butter either.

  21. Why are coco, shea, and soy used? Can simply soy be used in lieu of all of them? Asking because I don’t want various partially used ingredients laying around

    1. Soy wax is not absorbed into the skin whereas the others are. If you use too much soy then your skin will end up being covered by a thin layer of wax.

  22. Hi I was wondering if there is something I can use other than soy wax and get the same results also if I wanted to use other essential oils for different scents would it be the same measurements?

    1. I imagine that you could use other types of plant waxes including olive wax, hemp wax, and loads of others. If you end up trying one, please let us know how it goes.

      1. Thank you! Another quick one I’m in the US and seem to only find soy wax I did find coconut but it’s GMO my Google searching skills aren’t the best could you offer some direction to where I can find other plant based waxes?

  23. Can you use jojoba oil instead of sweet almond oil?

    1. You could and it would be lovely, but it would be quite a bit more expensive. You could create a mix of the two though if you were interested. The almond oil in this recipe can be substituted for any other (relatively) light liquid oil such as sunflower or olive oils.

  24. Teresa Roberts says:

    Why was the almond oil used along with the essential oils but in a different order? I think I know why but I want to clarify before I start my candle making progress.

    1. I’m not sure what you’re asking? All of the ingredients are listed together.

  25. LENORA WILSON says:

    If I add dye to the candles will if transfer onto the skin during the massage

  26. massage chair says:

    Massage oil provide all benefits of a massage, in the comfort of your home without having to visit a spa or massage parlor. Thus helps save time and money.

  27. I’ve always wanted to make candles. Thanks so much for this post!

    1. You’re very welcome Minnie :) Keep in mind that these are Massage Candles though — they’re like a hot oil massage rather than your standard candle.