Are you a fan of home fragrances? If yes, you’re in good company! Nearly three out of four U.S. consumers say they use air freshener sprays and room deodorizers.
Whether fragrance products are used to cover up stale odors or to enhance living spaces, sprays, diffusers, and scented candles are big business, totaling $6.7 billion in 2018, globally, with strong growth expectations.
However, along with growing popularity, there has been increasing concern about potential risks to indoor air quality. If you want your living spaces to smell good while preserving a healthy environment, here are seven preferable options.
1. Open the Windows
Even in colder months, you may find a day warm enough to let nature come in and whisk away stale odors.
In warmer weather, plan on opening your windows at least once or twice a month. Set up fans to help circulate the air and create a breeze that flows across the house.
2. Fresh Flowers
Select a few highly-scented flowers and place them in the rooms where you spend the most time. This will improve your home’s smell AND its appearance.
Ask your florist to help you select among the best stems currently in stock. Think roses, gardenias, lilies, jasmine, lavender, lilac, and hyacinth.
Consider planting a few of your favorite varieties in your yard so you can harvest your own!
3. Essential Oils
Skip artificially-synthesized fragrance oils and go for the real thing. Just make sure you purchase essential oils from reputable brands that produce high-quality, chemical-free products.
You can use sachets dabbed with your favorite oils in your closet and drawers—or your air vents! Put a few drops of oil on cotton balls and tuck them inside bathroom toilet paper rolls for fragrance each time the roll is used.
Consider using electric essential oil diffusers or sprinkling essential oil over a bowl or basket of pine cones.
If you love scented candles, skip the highly-processed chemical versions and opt for beeswax or soy candles infused with your favorite essential oils.
4. Linen Spray
Between launderings, give your sheets and other bedroom linens a cleaner smell with a make-it-yourself fabric freshener. A search for “DIY linen spray” returns many recipes, using these components:
- Distilled water
- Preservative – vodka, rubbing alcohol, or witch hazel
- Essential oil – lavender is most popular, but you can combine various scents
- Spray bottle
Shake the bottle before lightly spraying sheets, draperies, and other textiles. In addition to helping your bedroom smell better, lavender is considered a natural sleep aid.
5. Natural Cleaners
Household cleaning products often include potentially harmful chemicals and artificial scents. Consider replacing them with a general, all-purpose cleaner that you make yourself.
First, select a dish detergent that contains no fragrance or dyes. Pure castile soap is a good option. Then, gently mix one teaspoon of your soap with two cups of water. Add 20 drops of essential oil.
In addition to smelling good, savory, lavender, oregano, peppermint, and bergamot have demonstrated antibacterial properties.
6. Bake Cookies
Few things make a house smell more inviting than the aroma of fresh-baked goodies. Bread or cake will produce the same smell-good effect.
If you’re watching your waistline, you can achieve a similar no-calorie (and no temptation) result by simmering water on the stove and adding cinnamon, cloves, and orange peels or cranberry, nutmeg, and rosemary.
7. Natural Reed Diffusers
Instead of purchasing an expensive reed diffuser, you can create your own by placing rattan reeds (purchased at a hobby or craft store) in a glass or ceramic container.
First, add a mixture of 1 tablespoon of rubbing alcohol, ⅓ cup of almond oil, and 20 drops of your favorite essential oil.
Consider using a fresh scent in the kitchen (like lemon) and something soothing for the bedroom (like lavender).
Helping your living space smell great doesn’t have to be expensive—or unhealthy!