DIY Essential Oil Burner: Simple 6-Step Guide for Relief

After a long and tiring day at work, coming home to chill and relax is nice. A great way of taking the edge off is to relax with some essential oils filling the room. Having an essential oil burner is great. You can just light it up in your room or as you soak in a tub. Soon, your body will relax with the smell of the oil gently caressing your nose.

DIY Essential Oil Burner
DIY Essential Oil Burner

There are burners available but you can easily make one of your own. If you have an extra terra cotta pot with a lid, try out this DIY project. It’s very simple and easy to make. Just a drill and a drill bit and you’re good to go.

These easy-to-make diffusers will help you enjoy your favorite oils even more. Whether you want a simple design or something more elaborate, there’s a DIY essential oil burner here for you. Choose from ceramic, glass, or even metal diffusers – there’s something to suit every taste. So why not give one of these diffusers a try? You’ll be amazed at how much more you enjoy your essential oils when you have a beautiful diffuser to use.

Just drill some holes on a terra cotta pot and you're good to go.DIY Essential Oil Burner
Just drill some holes in a terra cotta pot and you’re good to go.

Making a Terra Cotta Essential Oil Burner


  • Terra cotta pot with saucer
  • Pencil
  • Bowl of Water
  • Tea light
  • Essential oil


  • Dremel
  • 562 Dremel Bit


1. Preparing Your Terra Cotta Pot

Begin by ensuring your terra cotta pot and saucer are clean and free of dust or debris. Fill a bowl with lukewarm water and immerse your pot and saucer, using a sponge to gently scrub their surfaces. If stubborn dirt is present, you may need to soak them a bit longer and repeat the scrubbing process. Allow the terra cotta pot to dry before proceeding to turning them into an essential oil burner.

2. Marking Your Design

Select the lower portion of your terra cotta pot for your design placement. With a pencil, sketch a simple oval or circular pattern. This design should be adequately sized to accommodate a tea light candle, ensuring the light and heat can emanate effectively.

3. Creating Ventilation

Securely attach a 562 Dremel bit to your Dremel tool. Carefully drill along the outlined pattern at the bottom part of your pot. This step requires precision and patience—take your time to create a smooth, clean hole that will serve as the primary ventilation for the heat from the tea light.

4. Positioning the Tea Light

Place a tea light candle inside the terra cotta pot, situating it directly beneath the drilled hole. This placement is crucial for optimal heat distribution and aroma diffusion from your essential oil.

5. Setting Up the Saucer

Position the saucer atop the terra cotta pot. This component acts as a holder for your essential oil, catching any drips and diffusing the scent as the tea light warms the pot from below.

6. Adding Essential Oil

Dispense a few drops of your chosen essential oil onto the saucer. The quantity can vary depending on the oil’s potency and your scent strength preference.

You can now light the tea light inside the terra cotta pot and enjoy the benefits of aromatherapy by taking a deep breath in and letting the oil’s scent relax and rejuvenate you!

Below is a video guide to give you a visual instruction.

Benefits of essential oils

Essential oil burners have become a staple in homes and wellness spaces worldwide, cherished for their ability to diffuse natural fragrances and therapeutic compounds into the air. By gently heating essential oils, these burners facilitate a process known as aromatherapy, where the inhaled aromas can positively impact mental, emotional, and physical health. Below, we explore the myriad benefits of essential oil burners, highlighting why they are more than just a source of pleasant scents.

Natural Stress Relief

One of the standout advantages of essential oil burners lies in their capacity to mitigate stress and anxiety. When diffused, oils such as lavender, chamomile, and orange envelop the space in a serene ambiance. This process helps in diminishing stress levels and fostering a state of relaxation. The essential oils, upon heating, disperse molecules that directly communicate with the limbic system, the part of the brain responsible for emotions. This interaction calming the mind, setting the stage for profound relaxation and stress relief.

Improved Sleep Quality

Essential oil burners also play a crucial role in improving indoor air quality. Lemongrass and orange oils have anti-microbial properties that can remove harmful particles from your body. This purification process is invaluable during seasons when colds and flu are prevalent, as well as in areas susceptible to allergens and pollution. By purifying the air, essential oil burners contribute to a healthier living environment, potentially reducing the incidence of respiratory issues and enhancing overall well-being.

Enhanced Air Quality

Another noteworthy benefit of using an essential oil burner is enhancing mental clarity and focus. Energizing oils like peppermint and rosemary are celebrated for stimulating mental activity and concentration. Diffusing these oils in areas dedicated to work or study can lead to increased productivity and improved focus. The invigorating aroma can sharpen cognitive functions, making tasks less daunting and more achievable.

Boosts Mental Clarity and Focus

Aromatherapy through an essential oil burner can also enhance mental clarity and focus. For example, peppermint gives off an invigorating smell that can boost your focus and productivity. By diffusing these oils in a workspace or study area, individuals may experience increased productivity and heightened focus.

Emotional Balance

The use of essential oil burners can play a significant role in balancing emotions and improving mood. Oils like ylang-ylang and jasmine have uplifting properties that can combat depression or low mood. The gentle warmth of the burner allows for a consistent release of these mood-enhancing aromas, providing a natural and gentle way to maintain emotional well-being.

In conclusion, essential oil burners offer a simple yet profoundly effective means of harnessing the natural benefits of essential oils. Whether seeking stress relief, improved sleep, air purification, enhanced focus, or emotional balance, these burners can provide a holistic approach to wellness that complements the body’s natural healing processes.

DIY essential oil burner design ideas

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Decorative Ideas for Your DIY Essential Oil Burner

Incorporating a DIY essential oil burner into your home or workspace enhances the ambiance with soothing aromas and serves as a unique decorative element. By customizing your essential oil burner, you can create a piece that reflects your personal style and complements your decor. Here are some creative ideas to decorate your DIY essential oil burner, turning it into a focal point of beauty and tranquility.

Paint and Patterns

Give your terra cotta essential oil burner a splash of color by painting it with acrylic paints. Choose colors matching your room’s palette or contrasting shades to make the burner stand out. Geometric patterns, floral designs, or simple stripes can add a touch of elegance or playfulness. Use stencils for precise patterns, or freehand designs for a more organic look. Sealing the paint with a clear coat will ensure the colors remain vibrant and protect the design from heat and oil exposure.

Natural Embellishments

Adorn your essential oil burner with natural elements to enhance its earthy appeal. Glue pebbles, seashells, or dried flowers around the base or on the saucer for a touch of nature. These embellishments can be themed around the seasons—think pine cones in winter or bright seashells in summer—to bring a piece of the outside world into your home. Such decorations beautify the burner and evoke a deeper connection to nature as you enjoy the natural scents of your essential oils.

Vintage Chic

For those who love a vintage or rustic look, aging your terra cotta essential oil burner can add character and charm. Techniques such as distressing the paint or applying a crackle finish can give the burner an antique feel. Pairing this with vintage-inspired essential oils like rose or patchouli can transport you to a bygone era whenever you light the burner.

Personalized Themes

Customize your essential oil burner with themes that reflect your interests or passions. Whether it’s a celestial theme with moons and stars, a botanical theme with leaves and flowers, or a minimalist design with sleek lines and dots, your burner can truly express your personality. These thematic elements can be painted, drawn, or even carved into the terra cotta for a more permanent design.

Illumination and Shadow Play

Enhance the ambiance created by your essential oil burner by incorporating elements that play with light and shadow. Small perforations or cut-outs in the terra cotta can project mesmerizing patterns on the walls when the tea light is lit, creating a serene and dynamic atmosphere. This technique not only adds to the visual appeal but also amplifies the burner’s ability to transform a space through light, shadow, and scent.

Lace and Fabric Accents

Wrapping or adorning your essential oil burner with lace or patterned fabric can introduce texture and a soft, elegant touch to the design. Choose materials that can withstand heat or attach them to areas not directly exposed to warmth. A lace overlay can offer a vintage or shabby chic look, while a vibrant fabric band can add a pop of color and pattern.

Beads and Jewelry

Embellish your essential oil burner with beads, old jewelry pieces, or decorative charms to create a unique and sparkling effect. You can glue these adornments around the rim of the saucer or create patterns and designs along the pot. This approach adds a personal touch and can even repurpose broken or unused jewelry, transforming it into something new and beautiful.

Mosaic Magic

Create a mosaic on your essential oil burner using glass or ceramic tiles, broken china, or colored stones. This technique allows for endless creativity, enabling you to craft intricate designs or simple, elegant patterns. A mosaic project can be a fun and engaging way to customize your burner, resulting in a stunning piece that’s both functional and artistic.

Calligraphy and Quotes

For a more personal touch, add calligraphy or meaningful quotes to your essential oil burner. You can use a paint pen or a thin brush to write inspiring words, names, or dates that hold special significance. This idea not only beautifies the burner but also infuses it with personal meaning, making it a heartfelt addition to any room or a thoughtful gift.

Seasonal Decor

Customize your essential oil burner with decorations that can be changed with the seasons or holidays. For fall, think about adding small faux autumn leaves or pumpkin shapes; for winter, attach snowflakes or glitter to mimic frost. These seasonal decorations can be temporarily affixed with non-permanent adhesives, allowing you to update the look of your burner throughout the year.

Use of Sculptural Elements

Incorporate sculptural elements by attaching clay or metal shapes to your essential oil burner. Whether it’s small animals, geometric shapes, or abstract forms, these three-dimensional additions can turn your burner into a striking piece of art. Ensure these elements are securely attached and positioned in a way that doesn’t impede the functionality of the burner.

By exploring these decorative ideas, your DIY essential oil burner becomes more than just a vessel for aromatherapy—it becomes a piece of art that enhances your space both aesthetically and olfactorily. Embrace creativity and let your essential oil burner reflect your unique style and ambiance preferences.

Eco-Friendly and Sustainable Practices for Essential Oil Burners

In today’s environmentally conscious world, incorporating eco-friendly and sustainable practices into our daily routines is more important than ever. With sustainability in mind, your essential oil burner can benefit both you and the environment. This section explores practical tips and strategies for making your essential oil burner usage more sustainable and environmentally friendly.

Choose Sustainable Essential Oils

Sourcing Responsibly: Opt for essential oils from companies that prioritize sustainable harvesting practices. Look for certifications that indicate the oils are sourced ethically and without harming the environment. Supporting these businesses helps promote the conservation of natural resources.

Organic Options: Whenever possible, choose organic essential oils. Oils with these organic brands are made from ingredients that are cultivated without chemicals or synthetic fertilizers.

Eco-Friendly Burner Materials

Repurpose and Upcycle: Creating your DIY essential oil burner from repurposed materials not only adds a unique touch but also reduces waste. Consider using items like old ceramics, glassware, or metal objects that can withstand heat. Upcycling these materials gives them a new life and keeps them out of landfills.

Natural and Renewable Resources: Terra cotta, bamboo, and recycled glass are excellent choices that minimize environmental impact. Using these materials helps lower the use of limited resources and the amount of landfill space.

Minimize Waste

Refillable Containers: Use essential oils that come in refillable containers or bulk sizes to reduce packaging waste. Many eco-conscious companies offer programs where you can bring your containers for refills, cutting down on plastic use and waste.

Proper Disposal: Be mindful of how you dispose of empty essential oil bottles and used materials. Glass bottles can often be recycled, while other components might require special disposal methods to avoid harming the environment.

Sustainable Practices in Usage

Conservation in Use: Be conscious of the amount of essential oil and energy you use. A few drops of oil are often enough to create a pleasant aroma without overuse. Similarly, extinguish the tea light or turn off the burner when not in the room to conserve energy.

Educate and Share: Spread awareness about eco-friendly practices in aromatherapy by sharing tips and encouraging sustainable habits among friends and family. Education is a powerful tool in fostering a more environmentally conscious community.

By integrating these eco-friendly and sustainable practices into your use of essential oil burners, you contribute to a healthier planet. Each small step towards sustainability helps preserve our environment for future generations, all while enjoying the natural benefits and pleasures of aromatherapy.

FAQ on Upcycling a Terra Cotta Pot into an Essential Oil Burner

Can any terra cotta pot be used for an essential oil burner?

Ideally, use a small to medium-sized terra cotta pot to ensure the heat from the tea light efficiently warms the essential oil. Ensure the pot has a hole at the bottom for ventilation and is clean and free of any decorative paint or glaze that could emit harmful fumes when heated.

How do I drill holes in the terra cotta pot without cracking it?

Start by placing a piece of masking tape where you plan to drill; this helps prevent the drill bit from slipping. Use a drill with a ceramic or masonry bit and apply gentle pressure, drilling at a low speed to avoid cracking the terra cotta. Keeping the area slightly wet can also reduce dust and ease the drilling process.

What essential oils are best to use with my DIY burner?

The choice of essential oils depends on your desired effect. For relaxation, consider lavender or chamomile. For a mood lift, citrus oils like orange or lemon are great. For improving concentration, peppermint or rosemary can be effective. Always choose high-quality, pure essential oils for the best and safest aroma.

Can I decorate my terra cotta essential oil burner?

Feel free to paint, stencil, or glue decorative elements onto your pot and saucer. However, ensure that any decorations or paint used are non-flammable and can withstand heat. Always decorate the exterior parts that do not come directly in contact with the flame.

Is it possible to refill or replace the tea light in my essential oil burner?

Yes, you can easily refill or replace the tea light candle. Ensure the burner is cool before handling. Simply lift the used candle out and replace it with a new one. Using beeswax or soy candles as eco-friendly and cleaner-burning alternatives is also recommended.


Making your own essential oil burner is a great way to enjoy aromatherapy’s benefits without spending much money. Plus, it’s a fun project that you can do at home!



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