Nobody has time for a stinky house. You want to be able to walk into your home and have it smell wonderful or at least have a neutral smell that you don’t even think about. With these natural and safe air fresheners for your home, you can be excited to walk in your front door again.
But you may be wondering what the big deal is. Aren’t there plenty of plug-ins, candles and sprays you can buy at the store to make your house smell fresh?
Yes, there are tons of wonderfully smelly options out there.
But they are full of unsafe chemicals. These industries are not closely regulated so they can get away with shady (or no) ingredient labeling. Many carcinogens and endocrine disrupters can be labeled “natural” and be sold in a can to “freshen” your home.
Don’t worry! Just because you want to be healthier and provide a non-toxic environment for your family doesn’t mean you need to be smelly.
Natural and Safe Air Fresheners for Your Home
1. Essential Oil Diffuser
Essential oils are only a natural and safe air freshener if you know and trust the processor of the oils. Just grabbing a bottle of essential oil from the candle shelf at the store is not going to be safe and natural.
Because essential oils are difficult to regulate, it’s hard telling what all is added to generic essential oils. The FDA is very loose on “natural fragrance” and many other chemical compounds when it comes to household products.
I prefer Young Living brand of essential oils. The company has been around for years and has never ebbed and flowed with the fads. I learned about them when I was a little girl because I was infatuated with the aromas and their beauty. I use essential oils for many things, but my favorite is diffusing.
The Young Living company is very transparent with every step of their growing, harvesting, processing and packaging. They always host tours and have high testing requirements.
Diffusing oils would be a similar effect to plug-ins available in the store.
2. Beeswax Candles
You’ll notice that candles do not top my list.
Generic paraffin wax candles that are a dime a dozen are a petroleum product that spew carcinogens and other yuckies into the air.
The first time I began considering the health ramifications of regular candles was when I was in college. My cousin and I were sharing a place and we decided to leave a candle burning all night because it was pretty in our dark bedroom and to empty the cute jar it was in.
As I began making and researching health topics for myself, I confirmed my suspicions of their danger. So for a while, I didn’t burn any candles at all.
Then everyone got on the soy candle train. I hesitated. Sure, soy based candles were better, but industry standard allows the soy label to be used even if there is some paraffin mixed in. Plus, soy doesn’t burn the cleanest, either.
One time I visited my brother and we had dinner at his friend’s house. They are a very health-minded family. Right away, I noticed their bow window was full of candles. Beautiful, natural looking candles of all shapes and sizes.
Later I asked my brother about it and he introduced me to the world of beeswax candles.
Beeswax candles actually purify the air by releasing negative ions. So you aren’t just covering up the smells, you are actually pulling them out of the air. One hundred percent, pure beeswax candles are the easiest and prettiest natural and safe air fresheners for your home.
The natural honey and floral scents present in the wax are wonderful but not super strong. You don’t burn a beeswax candle for the smell it gives but for the purity (and beauty) it brings.
Another plus: the wax is super hard and burns 10 times longer than regular candles!
3. Spices & Herbs
Put a blend of herbs in a pot of water and let it simmer away on the stove. Now remember, this is not a set-and-forget thing. You’ll have to remain in or around the house to make sure it doesn’t cook dry and remember to shut it off before leaving.
Herbs are very potent so you can get a couple day’s worth of scent out of your pot of herbs. Refill it the next day and simmer. Once the smell is gone, replace the herbs.
Another option is to let your herb blend simmer in your Crock Pot.
4. Charcoal Pouches
Activated charcoal is a great deodorizer. Activated charcoal has been heated to super high temps making if very porous. The porous surface pulls in and traps toxins and foul smelling bacteria where they die.
You can buy activated charcoal bags or just set out chunk of it in your room for unique decor.
5. Box of Baking Soda
Your grandma isn’t crazy for keeping an open box of baking soda in the fridge. Baking soda is an extreme base on the pH scale and most foul smells are acidic. It is constantly trying to neutralize everything therefore it pulls the odors out of the air… and out of my armpits!
Baking soda might not be super effective for a large room, but you can put cute jars or boxes of it in cupboards, cabinets and closets where there isn’t a lot of air flow and things can get musty or stale smelling.
6. Open a Window
This might be a no-brainer if you live in the country. I open my windows a lot to scent my house with fresh air.
If you live in the city or near a plant or factory, this may not be an options.
[Pssst! This is one solution from my Healthier Homemaking 5 day email challenge! Sign up below if you want some more great tips!]
Another no-brainer if you live in the country. But I so often forget about it! Bring flowers into your home. Lilacs, apple blossoms and roses are full of fragrance. If you grow fresh herbs in your garden, whack some off and keep them in a bouquet. Brush against them or rustle their leaves when you want more smell.
My favorite is to bring pine boughs or cedar boughs inside. Usually I just lay them around for decoration. If you don’t want that mess, put some small branches in a pot of water and let it simmer away as you would with spices like I mentioned above.
For a more exact recipe, check out this fruity evergreen combo!
8. Light a Match
The one place that you want instant results is the bathroom. It’s so easy to grab a can of air freshener and spray. Even though most bathrooms are equipped with a fan, it’s still not enough. And not everyone carries with them a cute little bottle of Poo-Pourri.
So you must keep a box of matches in the bathroom. If you stink up the bathroom, just strike a match (or two) and let it burn for a bit. The sulfuric smell of the burning match is enough to cover the bathroom smell.
Sure, the burning match smell is telltale of what just went down, but, hey, so is “Linen and Sky” scent.
Read More: Easy Ways to Refresh Your Home for Spring
I know, some of these options are a bit pricier than you are used to paying for a can of air freshener off the store shelf. But remember why you are doing it. Remember the health benefits. If not the health benefits, then remind yourself of what you aren’t spewing into your home’s air.
Switching over to natural and safe air fresheners for your home won’t happen overnight. But as you run out of one product or candle, replace it with a healthier, safer option. Your family’s health will thank you for it.