If you’re looking for an effective way to keep the mosquitoes away this summer, give these DIY balloon dipped citronella candles a shot. They’re packed with citronella essential oil and provide the prettiest ambient glow as the sun begins to set…

Glass tumblers
Citronella java essential oil
Soy wax
Wax wicks
Stir stick –  a wooden kabob stick works great!
Standard sized vinyl balloons

Measure twice the volume of the amount of wax you’d like in each glass vessel, and melt on the lowest setting in a saucepan solely dedicated to candle making. (I picked one up a thrift store.) Use a stir stick to stir the wax every so often.

While the wax is melting, place a wick in each glass tumbler. Wrap the excess wick around a pencil, and rest the pencil on the opening of the tumbler.

Once the wax is melted, remove from heat, and dip each metal wick plate in the wax. Then adhere to the bottom of the glass. Use your stir stick to set in place.

By this time, the wax will have cooled slightly, and we’re ready to add the essential oil. I used roughly 150 drops (50 drops per 1c unmelted wax chips) to make sure they’d pack enough punch to keep the mosquitoes away. Add the essential oil drops right into the saucepan of wax and give it a stir.

Divide the the wax between the glass tumblers. Center the wicks, and allow the wax to cool for about 2 hours, then trim the wicks to 1/4″ with a scissors.

Prepare the balloons by trimming off the neck of the balloon and the bottom point with a scissors.

Stretch and slide the balloon onto the bottom 1/3 of the glass. It’ll take a little adjusting to get it into place.