7 All-Natural Ways To Make Your Home Smell Like Paradise
Are you sick of “artificial” air fresheners? I wouldn’t be surprised if you were – most of them contain artificial chemicals, some of which might be toxic. Let’s face it, they are designed to “imitate” natural products – but anyone who is into aromatherapy and perfumery knows that while artificial substances create a predictable product, they just can’t compete with natural in terms of quality and healthfulness.
I don’t like artificial air fresheners. I feel as though they attempt to “overpower” and mask other smells, but I find them unpleasant. What’s the point in just putting more toxins in the air? It doesn’t make sense if you think about it.
Did you know that the U.S. EPA considers indoor air pollutants to be one of the top 5 risks to the public health? They have learned the dangers of being in an indoor environment surrounded by manufactured products, many of which are silently releasing chemical fumes.
Ok, enough doom ‘n’ gloom… now for the good news: Our friends over at Herbs And Oils World have come up with an amazing collection from around the web – of seven unique aroma products that you can make at home using all-natural ingredients! This is a fantastic list and we had to share.
I HATE chemical air “fresheners”.
To me, they smell toxic and I don’t like the idea of polluting my home with the artificial chemicals and fragrances, especially as there are so many ways to create amazing fragrances, scents and aromas in your home using natural herbs, spices and essential oils.
In this blog post I’m going to reveal seven wonderful ways you can make your home smell like paradise using the power of nature’s wonders.
How To Make Homemade Herbal Incense
How To Make Your Home Smell Like Vanilla
Here’s what you need to do…
– Put three tablespoons of vanilla extract into a coffee cup
– Place in the oven at 300 degrees for around an hour
– Within minutes your home will smell heavenly like vanilla.
How To Make Homemade Essential Oil Reed Diffusers
What You Need
Glass or ceramic container (glazed inside, so it doesn’t leak) with a narrow opening at the top. I decided to try this beautiful vase a friend bought for me, since it’s already in my bedroom and it has been deemed completely uninteresting to the felines.
Essential oils of your choice. I have lavender and eucalyptus.
I’ve heard of using mineral oil as your “base,” but I wanted to avoid petroleum-based products. Sweet almond oil or safflower oil are other options. But I was intrigued when I read about using vodka and water, mostly because I have some in the freezer, it’s not my favorite libation, and it won’t leave a greasy mess if it does get knocked over. Though I’ve also read that vodka will evaporate more quickly than something totally oil-based. It’s your call.
Reeds or bamboo skewers. You can find reed diffuser sticks online pretty inexpensively, but if you have bamboo skewers in the kitchen or craft room, just trim off the pointy ends before use.
1. If you’re using an oil base, you will blend a mix of 30% essential oil to 70% base oil. You can experiment with the percentages to see what works best for you. If you’re using the vodka and water mixture, you will want to add approximately 12 drops of essential oils to about 1/4 cup of water, then add a little vodka (the vodka helps bind the oils to the water).
2. Pour the mixture into your receptacle and place one end of the reeds or skewers into the solution, allowing it to saturate the reeds. Then take them out, and place the opposite ends into the bottle. Rotate which ends are in the scent solution about once a week.
How To Make Natural Room Scents
Fragrant items for naturally scenting your home:
citrus — I’ve tried other fruits. Some of them smell good initially, but they don’t hold up for more than one use. Citrus is sturdier, longer-lasting, and gives these scent recipes freshness. Lemons and oranges are particularly fragrant and have the best staying power in these scented waters.
herbs — Any herb can be used for making a room scent, but the ones that are sturdier and on woody twigs hold up the best. My favorites for room scents are rosemary and thyme.
pine or cedar twigs/needles — There may be other fragrant trees that will work, too; pine and cedar are the two I’ve tried for their appealing, fresh fragrance.
extracts — A touch of vanilla or almond extract improves most room fragrance mixtures. Mint extract has a nice fresh scent. You can also use whole vanilla beans instead of vanilla extract; pricey but amazingly fragrant.
spices — You can use ground or whole sweet spices. The whole spices look prettier, if your scented water will be in a location where it will be seen. I have found that cinnamon sticks and whole cloves have the most scent staying power. Cinnamon sticks can be rinsed off and reused several times. They keep on giving.
Five Natural Room Scent Recipes
These are all scents that my nose likes. But, scents that are pleasing to one person may not be to someone else. Consider how many different scents of perfumes, soap, and candles there are in stores in an effort to appeal to the masses. So, use my recipe combos as guidelines that you can tweak and customize to suit what your nose likes.
General procedure: Combine the ingredients in a 2 cup (pint) jar or container, or in a pan on the stove top. Cover them with water and heat.
Scent #1: Oranges, cinnamon & cloves (allspice and anise are optional). This is my favorite, both for it’s wonderful aroma and for it’s staying power. This scent carries into multiple rooms better, and it can be reheated to scent your rooms for several days.
Scent #2: Lemon, rosemary, & vanilla. It has a lovely freshness to it.
Scent #3: Lime, thyme, mint & vanilla extract. This combination has such a fresh, pleasant scent. I initially made it without the mint extract, but have found that it really kicks up the aroma.
Scent #4: Orange, ginger (fresh or powdered), and almond extract. This is a sweet, delicious scent.
Scent # 5: Pine or cedar twigs (or other fragrant twigs), bay leaves, and nutmeg. These scents combine for a complex aroma. If you have whole nutmeg, use a microplane to grate off the outer surface–this will release the scent. Add the whole nutmeg piece along with the gratings.
Make ahead and…
…store in the fridge. Uncooked jars of scented waters will keep in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks, so you can make these ahead to have on hand. I recommend adding all of the ingredients, including the water, to the jars before refrigerating them. I’ve tried refrigerating the fruit/spice/herb combos in jars without the water, but they don’t last as long that way.
…freeze them. I’ve tried freezing them both with and without the water added, and both ways work fine. I haven’t tested them in the freezer longer than 2 weeks, but I’m confident that they can be frozen for a month or longer. Make sure you use freezer-safe jars like these pint wide-mouth mason jars. (Not all mason jars are freezer-safe.)
How to heat the scented mixtures
I’ve tried a variety of methods, and all of these work to varying degrees. Some of them provide a more powerful scent than others. Just like the air fresheners you buy, none of these will scent a whole house; but I’ll show you some ways to set up individual scent sources in multiple rooms. Hopefully you already have what you need to try out one or more of these options.
Stove top method. This is by far the best way I’ve found to get the most powerful scent that will spread to more rooms the fastest. It’s easy as can be. Simply combine the ingredients in a pot on the stove, bring them to a boil, and then lower the heat to a simmer. They will immediately begin to scent your kitchen and spread to other rooms. How far the scent spreads depends on the size and layout of your house. A simmering pot like this makes all four rooms on our first floor smell good. The only drawback of this method is that you have to keep a close eye on the water level. If the pan dries out, you’ll be smelling burned citrus instead of sweet, fragrant citrus. NOTE: For a stronger scent, simply double or triple the recipe in a larger pot on the stove.
Uncovered Slow Cooker Method. This is my personal favorite. I use a mini slow cooker–the kind made for keeping dips and sauces warm. Mine only has one low heat setting. The mixture never actually bubbles and visibly steams. I leave it uncovered on my kitchen counter to slowly release scent throughout the day. It’s subtle, but creates a pleasant smell in my kitchen and a hint of scent in surrounding rooms. When I’m home, I keep my mini slow cooker going. It’s easy and uses very little electricity. When I fill mine in the morning, it won’t dry out for an entire day. If you’re concerned about accidentally letting it run dry, you can put a lamp timer on it so that it automatically shuts off at the desired time. I put a scented jar mixture in the microwave for 2 minutes to get it really hot before I add it to the slow cooker. That gives it a jump start on releasing the scent. NOTE: For a stronger scent, simply double or triple the recipe in a larger, full-size slow cooker and set it on high.
Fondue Pot Method. If you have a fondue pot, then you have a portable scent station. Set it up in any room you’d like to scent. Below is a small ceramic fondue pot I have that uses a tea light for heat. So, this will only remain warm as long as the candle lasts–3-1/2 to 4 hours. Like the slow cooker, this is a low level of heat and releases a very subtle scent–enough for a small room. Get the scent mixture boiling hot before adding it to the fondue pot. I like to set this up in our entry way when we have guests. It makes it smell wonderful when you walk through our front door. And, it looks pretty.
Mug Warmer Method. I normally keep this little mug warmer next to my computer to keep my coffee and tea warm. I’ve discovered it also can be used to keep a jar or small bowl of scent mixture warm. It only keeps it warm, it doesn’t actually heat it up. So again, be sure to heat the mixture before adding it the bowl. Or microwave a jar and set it right on top of the mug warmer. This low heat puts off a soft, subtle scent that is suitable for a small area like a bathroom.
Here’s a hint to keep it pretty. As the mixtures cook and lose their color, they’re not as attractive. You can spruce it up by floating a fresh slice of citrus on top. Or add a few cranberries (I keep a bag of them in my freezer); they float and add a touch of color.
Candle Warmer Method. These work just like the mug warmers. Candle warmers come with a little bowl on top for melting scented candle pellets. Instead, you can add some heated scented water. Or, remove the bowl and set a jar or other bowl on top.
Note: I tested the temperatures of these with a thermometer. The mug warmer and candle warmer both kept the mixture at about 120°F. That’s enough to let off a very subtle scent in a small area or room, but don’t expect these to strongly scent a big room. You need more heat and steam for a stronger scent.
Tea Pot Warmer Method. My tea pot warmer also uses tea lights. I can put two or three tea lights in mine to achieve the temperature I want. These only last as long as the tea lights burn, but they can get hotter than the mug and candle warmers, thus releasing more scent. I can put a bowl or jar on top of my tea pot warmer, as long as I put it somewhere that I can keep an eye on it. I don’t like to leave candles unattended.
Add more hot water as needed. As the water evaporates from any of these warming bowls or jars, top it off with additional HOT water. It needs to be hot when it’s added so that it doesn’t cool down the temperature of the scented water. Higher heat = more fragrance.
Gift them! These make a fun, unique hostess gift. Take one along to a party as a gift for your host that can be simmered and enjoyed the next day.
Reuse each mixture 2-3 times. After these have been heated and simmered for awhile, the water becomes cloudy and some of the ingredients lose their vibrant color. Although they don’t look as pretty, they still smell good. Usually, you can reheat and simmer these again 2-3 times. Jar them up and refrigerate them between uses. Open the jar and give it the sniff test–if it still smells good, reheat and reuse it. Add more water as needed.
How To Make Scented Olive Oil Candles
Olive Oil Candles
What you need:
Wide Mouth Jar
Wire or Paper Clip
#2 Wick or 1/4 Lantern Wick
Cut the wick a couple inches long. Wrap part of the wire or paper clip wire around one end of the wick. Wrap it tight enough that the wick can’t fall down but not so tight that you can’t move the wick up when you need to.
Bend the wire so it hooks onto the side of the jar.
You don’t want too much sticking above the oil because it needs to be able to soak the oil all the way up the wick to burn.
Add your olive oil and that’s it! These candles burn for a long time on a small amount of oil.
The awesome thing about this candle/lantern is that olive oil burns clean and doesn’t smoke. Add in your favorite candle scents and essential oils to add scent to these easy to make Olive Oil Candles. You could even add dried herbs to the candle for a very natural scent!
Top 5 Simmer Pot Recipes
How To Make Homemade Essential Oil Jelly Air Fresheners
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