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5 min read / 18 January 2023 / Laura Garvin Gomez

How to Use an Essential Oil Burner

Learn the simple steps to safely and effectively use an essential oil burner to enhance your home's ambiance and reap the benefits of aromatherapy.

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From adding them into soap and candle recipes, to applying them to your skin or bathing in a warm relaxing bath, there are lots of ways to enjoy essential oils.

Another popular method is by using an essential oil burner, which allows their unique fragrance to spread throughout your home. Burning essential oils can help with things like insomnia, anxiety and stress, so to give you more insight about how they work, we thought we’d take some time to explain how to use an essential oil burner.

What is an essential oil burner?

An essential oil burner is a traditional oil burner that evaporates essential oils using a heat source. The design features a bowl shape where you place the essential oils and a space underneath to position a lit candle. Once the candle is ignited, the heat warms the oil, so it transmits the scent before it eventually evaporates.

They are safe and easy to use and can also be a fun, decorative feature for any room in your home. Essential oil burners come in all shapes and sizes, so you should be able to find a design and style to suit your tastes without much difficulty.


Health and safety advice

Before you get started with an essential oil burner you should be aware of some of the risks involved. Depending on the type of oil burner you buy, they can become very hot, so you should always handle them with care and place them on something heat resistant to protect the surface underneath. Ceramic oil burners are popular because the material is good at managing heat levels, while a material like copper can become quite hot.

Keep a close eye on the amount of oil left in the bowl because if it is left to become completely dry and is still being heated by the candle, it could create a burnt smell and even some smoke. Also avoid leaving the candles unattended and keep the burner out of the reach of young children and pets.

Oil burner with candle lit


How long do essential oils last in an oil burner?

Essential oils will last for different periods of time, depending on the type of oil that is being burnt. This is because not only is the composition of every oil different, but where and how they are burned will also affect the evaporation rate. When burning an essential oil in an oil burner, it is generally advised to only do so for periods of 30 to 60 minutes to avoid the aroma becoming too overwhelming.

How to use an oil burner with essential oils

To learn how to use an essential oil burner follow the steps below:

1. Fill the bowl on the oil burner with water and add a few drops of your chosen essential oil. You can also use essential oil wax melts as an alternative.

2. Underneath the bowl place a tea candle in the space provided, which will then start to gently heat the water, so it mixes with the essential oil. As it evaporates the aromas will be emitted around the room.

And that’s really all there is to it. Most tea candles last for around 3-4 hours at a time, although as we mentioned above, try not to leave the oil burning for too long as it can become overpowering.

How do you clean an essential oil burner?

Good maintenance is key to ensuring your oil burner remains in good condition. It’s a good idea to clean it up after use because if neglected for too long it could leave behind stains and residue that becomes difficult to remove.

Before attempting to clean, wait for the oil burner to cool down completely so you are not at risk of burning yourself. Use a damp cloth along with washing up liquid to remove any grease from the bowl. For more stubborn stains, baking powder and vinegar is very good at tackling hard to shift dirt. Avoid using a metal scourer as this could damage the burner.

What are the best essential oils for a burner?

When it comes to finding the best essential oil for a burner you will be spoilt for choice as there are so many to choose from. To get you started, we’ve handpicked a small selection for you to try:

Fight off coughs and colds with Eucalyptus Essential Oil

From easing a cough and clearing your chest, to disinfecting wounds and helping to soothe skin sores, eucalyptus essential oil has so much to offer. Its purifying scent can help to improve respiration and clear the airways and reduce mucus thanks to its expectorant and decongestant properties. Adding it to a burner can be a refreshing air to your home and make it easier to breathe, which is great news for anyone struggling during the cold season.

Lavender Essential Oil brings calm and serenity

Lavender essential oil is one of the most enduring oils around, with many people finding it useful for calming nerves and anxiety. If you struggle with sleep, you could try burning the oil in the bedroom for a short while before you get under the covers, its peaceful, floral aroma helping you to relax and hopefully drift off faster. Lavender is a scent that almost everyone adores, so it works just as well in any room you wish.

Strengthen your body’s defence system with Immune Boost Essential Oil Blend

Stress is something we all have to contend with, although levels can rise to difficult levels at times and you may need a little extra assistance in keeping it under control. This immune boost essential oil blend can help your body during these moments, working to bolster your immune system if it is weakened by stress. It’s a wonderful blend of and providing strong antioxidant properties when you need them most.

Bergamot Essential Oil could help reduce symptoms of anxiety

Another fresh and invigorating scent you could enjoy with an oil burner is bergamot essential oil. It has a light, lemony fragrance that can bring calmness and stillness to your home, offering a natural remedy for managing changing moods and bouts of anxiety. Burn the oil for a short while to enjoy a more uplifting ambience that can hopefully transform your thoughts and keep you in a more balanced space during the day.

Botanical illustration

If you are new to essential oils, it may seem like there is a lot to learn. However, there are a lot of uses, and it will be better for you to take your time to find the right aromas and health benefits for your body. Using an essential oil burner is easy and hassle free and allows everyone living in your home to enjoy them. They are affordable and easy to maintain and can be used almost anywhere, so feel free to use our suggestions above to get some inspiration.

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Medical Disclaimer

The content in this article is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to take the place of medical advice. Please consult your personal physician for any advice or treatment regarding specific health questions. Neither the article editor, writer, nor the organisation of Nikura takes any responsibility for possible health consequences following the information given in any article. All readers should consult their physician before taking any advice given within these articles.

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