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Because You Asked

What Can I Do with a Used Up Candle?

By Recyclebank |

When the wick has burned down, find uses for the wax!

Dear Recyclebank,

What can I do with what is left from a used up candle? So far, I have used it to lubricate an old window slide, and to lubricate a nail before driving it into hard wood.



Dear Recyclebanker,

Way to be handy! Using leftover candle wax as lubrication for home-improvement projects is a good one. Here are a few more ideas you can try.

If you have a bunch of used up candles… collect all the wax together and make a new candle. New wicks are quite cheap, or you could use old birthday candles (before using any old wick, make sure it isn’t lead-cored). Birthday candles are usually burned for just a few seconds, and if it’s the kind shaped like a number, you might not have another use for it for a while. Pour your leftover wax around the candle so that only the top of the wick is showing.

If your used up candles have bits of burnt wick or matches in them… make a homemade fire starter out of them. Mix the wax with sawdust or dryer lint and store it in an old paper egg carton. It’s a project that’s 100 percent made of waste products!

If you have just a little bit of clean candle wax… use it to wax paper. It won’t be food-grade, but you can use it to clean gardening tools or line drawers. Waxing a pretty piece of stationery will preserve it and give it a different finish.

Of course, before you use the wax, you probably need to remove it from a container. The easiest way we’ve seen is to fill up the container with boiling water, then let the wax melt and float to the top. After it cools, you’ll have an easy-to-handle chip of wax, and maybe, an empty jar to reuse!


Do you make use of your used up candles? Tell us how in the comments below!

Share with Your Friends & Family
  • Tikvah D. 7 days ago
    Yes, I save all of my old wax and make new ones. Very easy
  • tommy b. 8 days ago
  • Claranne V. 28 days ago
    I separate used wax by color in to plastic coffee containers. I use the wax to makes candles in OUI yogurt jars. I count that as THREE recycled resources!
  • Michelle B. 1 month ago
    If you aren't going to upcycle your empties, consider another option.
    TerraCycle® and Newell Brands have partnered to create a national recycling program for all your favorite home fragrance products from Yankee Candle®, WoodWick® and Chesapeake Bay Candle®. Recycle all Newell Brands’ home fragrance products and packaging by dropping them off at a local Yankee Candle® retailer, or recycle from home by joining the program and downloading a free shipping label.
    Love our Fragrance. Love our Earth.®
  • Carrie P. 1 month ago
    I’ve made several candles and love the idea for fire starters with dryer lint!
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