8 Eco-Friendly and Natural Tips to Make Your Home Smell Fantastic
By Sara Smith
Everyone loves walking into a home that smells amazing.
Unfortunately, many products, such as aerosol room sprays, plug-in units or wax melts, also come with questionable ingredients and unnecessary packaging.
If you crave a wonderful smelling space in a more natural and earth-friendly way, it's never been easier. We've compiled this handy list, along with a few simple DIYs that will be as delightful to your wallet as they are to your sense of smell.
1. Reed scent diffusers
Reed diffusers, a low-maintenance home scent option, use natural hollow reeds that absorb a scented oil and naturally disperse the fragrance into the air. It's easy to dial the effect up or down by adding or removing the reeds and the vessel can easily be refilled when the oil has evaporated.
Pro Tip: Keep these out of the reach of pets and young children to avoid finding a giant puddle of oil on your living room rug.
2. Eucalyptus in the shower
There's nothing like the crisp smell of eucalyptus to add a refreshing element to your bathroom routine. This plant has long been touted as an anti-inflammatory, so it's especially helpful if you're feeling a cold coming on. Roll a few sprigs of fresh eucalyptus under a rolling pin to unlock their aromatic oils, then tie the bundle with an elastic and hang it over the back of your shower head. The warmth and humidity of the shower will release the leaves' healing essence. Bonus: this trick will also make your bathroom look even more Pinterest-worthy.
Pro Tip: Some research indicates eucalyptus can be dangerous for young children and babies, so skip this option if you share your bathroom with little ones.
3. Orange clove pomander
A favourite around the holidays, orange clove pomanders bring a spicy, warm and delicious fragrance into your home. They also make for a fun family craft! All you need are some fresh oranges and whole cloves. Use a toothpick to punch holes in the orange peel, and press in the little clove “studs” in any pattern you choose. Soon you'll have a bowl filled with bedazzled, heavenly-smelling oranges.
Pro Tip: Dispose of fresh orange pomanders before they can develop mold–usually after a few days. To prolong their life, you can also hang them from a length of twine in a cool, dry place until dried. This will also enhance their irresistible scent.
4. Essential oils on your furnace filter or vacuum cleaner bag
A few drops of your favourite essential oil will easily diffuse throughout your home with a little help from the forced air of your furnace or vacuum.
Pro Tip: Sprinkle baking soda on your carpet before vacuuming to help deodorize at the same time.
5. Lavender linen spray
Refresh your linens between washes (and gain instant credit as the host with the most delightful-smelling sheets) with a DIY lavender linen spray. Believe it or not, low-priced vodka makes the best basis for this concoction: simply mix one part vodka (or witch hazel) with three parts water in a glass spray bottle, Next, add 10 drops (or more depending on your preference) of high-quality lavender essential oil. Spray whenever a sheet, curtain or closet is in need of refreshing.
Pro Tip: Lavender is known for its calming properties, so this spray can pull double-duty as a pillow spray to help you nod off to dreamland.
6. Cotton balls with essential oils
Adding a few drops of your favourite essential oil to cotton balls is one of the simplest DIY home scent hacks that can also go pretty much anywhere. Stash them in your closet or drawers, in bathroom cupboards or behind your computer at the office (if scents are permitted). Be careful not to add too much oil or the ball may leave a stain on surfaces.
Pro Tip: Scented cotton balls are an easy swap for plastic car vent air fresheners. Simply wedge a few into your dash vent or under the floor mats. When the heat is on, the hot air will swirl the fresh aroma around your vehicle.
7. Vanilla or almond extract on light bulbs
Here's a sweet way to scent your space at the flip of a switch— remove a cooled light bulb from its socket and apply a few drops of pure vanilla or almond. Allow it to dry fully and replace it back in its fixture. Anytime you turn on the lights, you'll be rewarded with a yummy glow, as the warmth of the bulb spreads the scent throughout your room.
Pro Tip: This trick also works with lemon juice if you prefer the zing of citrus.
8. Simmering potpourri
This eco-friendly method fills your home with fragrance using only water and what you can find around the kitchen. All you need is a simmering pot of water on the stove (or in a slow-cooker). Add a blend of your favourite scents: apple cores, citrus peels, extracts or whole spices such as cinnamon sticks or star anise. In no time, your space will be infused with delicious, comforting or invigorating smells.