To breathe easier indoors, nix air fresheners. They can contain volatile organic compounds and phthalates that can cause headaches and eye, nose, and throat irritation and even worsen asthma symptoms. As an alternative, get rid of the source of the odor and leave an open box of baking soda in the area. or consider natural fragrances, such as herbs and spices boiled in water.
Making your home, apartment, or office a positive place to be is sometimes as simple as making it smell good. Scents can affect a person’s mood or work performance, as crazy as that sounds. Think about walking into your home after a day of work and smelling fresh cinnamon and baking cookies… How could you not be in a good mood and love everyone you see after that? It makes sense why consumers spend thousands of dollars on candles, oil diffusers, scent sprays and more. A fresh smelling space makes us much happier than a stinky, gloomy one (just think of how you felt in your gross college apartment). However, you don’t have to run to the store if you want to make sure your place is smelling great. These simple DIY projects are not only cheap, but they’ll leave your house smelling great in no time.
1.) Lemon-Rosemary Simmer Pot
To make this simple concoction, all you need is: -A small stockpot -Water -Rosemary -1 lemon -Vanilla extract. Fill the pot about 2/3 full with water. Add 1 lemon (sliced) and a few sprigs of rosemary. Then, add the 1/2 tsp of vanilla. Let this mixture simmer all day, it’ll fill your rooms with a heavenly scent. You can use the same mixture for about 2 days, but you’ll want to change it after that or else it’ll smell a little weird.
2.) Scented Wood Blocks
Making scented wood blocks is easy. Just make sure you have: -Wood blocks -Scented oil or perfume -Small paint brushes. By either painting or spraying it on, cover the wood blocks in the oil/perfume. After covering them, you can even put them in a closed container with extra oil. Shake it up to make sure they are coated. Let it sit in the oil overnight so that everything is absorbed. Then you’re done! You can even refresh your wood blocks over time by simply adding more oil to them.
3.) Orange Peel Candles
You thought oranges were just for eating? Think again. You can make simple candles out of them (without wasting the fruit). -An orange -Knife -Oil (canola, vegetable or olive) -Candle lighter The steps are simple, too. 1.) Begin by cutting your orange in half. 2.) Take your knife and run it around the edges of the orange. This will loosen the fruit from the peel. 3.) Take a fork and scrape out the inside of the orange. BE CAREFUL to NOT remove the inside stem. This is the white piece that rests in the center of the orange. It is rather tough, so just continue to scrape away the fruit around it. 4.) Once the inside of your orange is nice and clean, you can fill it ¾ of the way full with oil. Remember you can use any oil of your choosing. 5.) Let the oil sit in the orange for about 45 minutes. It is important to let the oil sit and the stem of the orange (the white piece) absorb it. This is what will help keep it burning well. 6.) In 45 minutes, you can try lighting your orange. You will need a candle lighter to do this as a match or cigarette lighter does not stay lit long enough to get the job done. Hold the lighter to the stem and let it heat up the stem. You will need to do this for 2-3 minutes. 7.) Let the stem rest for a moment. It should be nice and brown/black at this point. To the touch, it should feel dry now. 8.) Try relighting the stem. This may take a few seconds. You should hear a little crackling and then the flame should take off on its own.
4.) Gel Air Freshener
If you love air fresheners but don’t want an open flame in your home, this DIY gel air freshener may be just for you. You’ll need: -Heat proof jars (like mason jars) -4 packages of unflavored gelatin -Food coloring -Salt -Essential oils/fragrance 1.) Clean and prepare your jars. (This entire recipe filled up one pint jar, but you can use several smaller jars.) 2.) Add a few drops of coloring and approximately 30 drops of essential oil or fragrance (the more you add, the stronger it will be). 3.) Boil 1 cup of water on the stove. Pour in your gelatin packets into the pot. 4.) Make sure to keep whisking or the stuff will clump up. 5.) Once dissolved, add 1 cup of cold water and 1 tbsp of salt. Stir it all in. 6.) Pour into your prepared jars and stir. 7.) Let it sit overnight until the gel is set. 8.) Time to decorate your scented gel jar any way you choose.
5.) DIY Reed Diffusers
Oil diffusers are also a simple solution to scenting your home without using heat or an open flame. You don’t need much, either: -Vase -Baby Oil -Essential Oil -Bamboo Skewers (or rattan diffusing sticks for better scent) -Ribbon & Washi Tape (optional). 1.) Fill your vase with essential oil (as much as you want) 2.) Fill the remainder of the vase with baby oil 3.) Place washi tape at the end of the skewer and fold over (for decoration) 4.) Place skewers in the vase and tie a ribbon around to finish The oil will diffuse into the room up through the skewers. You’re done!
6.) Cinnamon Stick Candles
All you will need is -Pillar candle, at least 3-inches in diameter -Cinnamon sticks -Floral shears -Hot-glue gun -Dish or coaster. 1.) Measure candle height; cut cinnamon sticks to size with floral shears. You’ll need about 20 lengths per candle. 2.) Run hot glue along cinnamon stick; affix it vertically to side of candle. (Use low-temperature setting to minimize melting.) 3.) When first stick is dry, glue next stick snugly against it; repeat to cover candle. 4.) Place finished candle on a dish or coaster. Not only will it be pretty, but you can also smell the glorious cinnamon!
7.) Custom Potpourri
Potpourri isn’t just for outdated offices and homes. It can be a simple and brilliant idea. Just follow these steps, -Dried flowers -Essential oil -Any herbs, spices or other trinkets you want to include (have fun with it!). 1.) Prior to making your potpourri, you’ll need to dry out your flowers. Gather a bouquet and tie the stems together with some twine. Hang them upside down and give them a couple of weeks to fully dry out. 2.) Once your flowers are dry, put them in a container and add a few drops of essential oil. It’s recommended that you close the container and allow the flowers to absorb the oil for a couple of weeks. 3.) Then, arrange all of your ingredients in a bowl or jar. You can add any extra oils or scented ingredients that you’d like.
8.) Baking Soda Air Freshener
Baking soda isn’t just good for making your fridge smell fresh! This recipe can make any room fresh, too. -1/2 cup baking soda (per jar) -Essential oil of your preference (8-12 drops) -Mason jar -Scrapbook paper -Tapestry needle -Scissors and pen 1.) Take the scrapbook paper and trace out the inner lid of the mason jar (not the screwable ring). Cut out that piece of paper. 2.) Pierce the small piece of paper with the tapestry needle, making holes so the scent can waft through. 3.) Pour about 1/2 cup of baking soda into the mason jar and add in 8-12 drops of essential oil of your choice. (Start off by adding less oil and if you find it’s not strong enough to scent your room add in a bit more. A bigger room will need more oil and a smaller room like a bathroom will use less.) 4.) Place the scrapbook paper inside the mason jar ring and tighten it onto the jar. Gently shake up the baking soda/essential oil mixture. This air freshener is more natural than chemical sprays… and it’s flameless.
9.) Pouch Air Freshener
You can keep a car, small room or closet smelling fresh with just small sachets or pouches of scents. Plus, this is easy. -Light weight fabric -Thick hemp or thread -Makeup pads or cotton balls -Scented oils/spices/incense cones -Items to decorate the pouches such as stamps, paint, or dried flowers -Scissors -Sewing machine (or needle and thread) 1.) Begin by cutting rectangles of fabric 5×10 inches. 2.) Then, start the sewing process by sewing a loop on each end of the rectangle. 3.) Then, with the edges of the loop facing outward, fold the fabric in half and sew each side up to the loop. 4.) Next, flip the pouch right side out and begin decorating. 5.) Then, thread a large piece of hemp through both loops to where both ends come out of each loop, facing the same direction. 6.) To add scents to your pouches, pour in spices, incense cones, and oil soaked makeup pads or cotton balls (you’ll want to change out the spices regularly to keep them fresh). And that’s it. The most difficult part will be sewing the little pouches, but it’s still not hard.
10.) Lemon-Basil Spray
Room sprays keep your place fresh, but many contain harmful chemicals. This one, however, does not (and it’s just as effective). http://hellohomeshoppe.com/blog/2013/8/22/lemon-basil-linen-spray -16 oz spray bottle -1 1/4 cups water, divided into 3/4 cup and 1/2 cup -4 tablespoons of dried basil -Coffee filter -Funnel -1 tablespoon vodka -5 drops of lemon essential oil 1.) In a small pot, bring 1/2 cup water to boil. Add your 4 Tablespoons of dried basil to the water and let steep for a few minutes. 2.) In another pot, bring 3/4 cups of water to a boil. 3.) Line your funnel with a coffee filter and place funnel in your opened spray bottle. 4.) Pour in your steeped basil water mixture into the funnel, making sure that the coffee filter catches the tiny pieces of basil. Remove the filter. 5.) Pour in the boiling water, vodka, and essential oil. 6.) Put on the spray bottle top and shake to mix.
House cleaning needs.