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Using natural scents for the home is a lovely way to create a welcoming, homely atmosphere, whilst avoiding the chemical additives in synthetic room fragrances.
Whilst reaching for an air freshener spray, scented candle or diffuser stick may seem like a practical way to scent the home & mask unpleasant smells, these products are often laden with artificial chemicals. Many of these chemicals are harmful to the environment or release toxins into the air, which we then inhale.
Even scented products labelled as green or organic, may still contain potentially hazardous chemicals & it’s often impossible to tell exactly what a product contains, since companies aren’t legally required to disclose full fragrance ingredients.
So choosing natural scents for the home is not only more eco friendly, it’s likely healthier for you too.
1 – Natural Candles Made From Beeswax
Scented candles may seem like an obvious choice to scent your home – however most scented candles are made from paraffin wax. Paraffin wax is a petroleum waste product, which releases many of the same toxins as burning diesel fuel, when burned.
Scented candles also contain artificial fragrances, which release VOCs into the air.
And whilst opinions on the health impact of scented candles are divided, most scented candles aren’t natural, plus the industry around them is pretty unregulated.
For a more eco friendly, natural alternative, you can choose candles made from waxes such as beeswax, soy, canola or coconut.
Beeswax will scent your home with the subtle aroma or honey, as well as naturally purify the air, whilst soy or canola are suitable for vegans. Look for responsibly sourced & non GMO options to aid sustainability.
2 – Fresh Seasonal Flowers
There are few things more natural than the scent of freshly cut flowers. From sweet smelling jasmine & sweet peas to the unmistakable floral smell of roses, the options are endless. Place fresh flowers in vases or recycle old jam jars, then position them around your home to release natural floral scents into your favourite rooms.
Ideally, stick to seasonal & locally sourced flowers from florists to avoid the plastic wrap in most supermarkets, as well as reduce the carbon footprint of imported flowers.
If you have the patience you can also dry flowers, which means they’ll last much longer. Lavender & rose buds both dry well & are also well regarded for retaining their scent after being dried.
Here are some more flowers that dry well, plus a how to dry flowers guide.
3 – Essential Oil Diffusers
Using a steam diffuser to release the fragrance of essential oils is another way to naturally scent your home.
A healthier alternative to plug in air fresheners, or reed diffusers that contain synthetic additives, steam diffusers use ultrasonic vibrations to blend essential oil with water, before releasing it as a fragrant cool mist.
Essential oils are a versatile way to add fragrance to your home, as you can customise them to your preferences. Lavender, for example, emits a calming aroma, whilst lemon is more cleansing. Here are 10 essential oil blends for a great smelling home.
Keep in mind, essential oils are potent & may not be suitable if you have asthma or a respiratory condition. Here are some tips on how to use them safely.
Essential oil quality can also vary enormously. So it can pay to do your research & seek out organic oils & companies with an ethical stance, such as Plant Therapy.
4 – Dried Or Fresh Herbs
Like fresh flowers, the aroma of fresh or dried herbs is an inviting scent for the home that’s completely natural. Choose organic for pesticide free options.
Lemon balm, rosemary, thyme, lavender blossom, mint, chamomile & sage are all herbs that smell good & are commonly used in aromatherapy.
Fresh herbs such as chamomile have quite a delicate fragrance, whilst mint, rosemary & lavender tend to be more pungent. Place fresh herbs in bowls in the kitchen or bathroom & gently squeeze the leaves to ‘bruise’ them & gently release their natural scent.
Dried herbs also make lovely natural scents for the home, plus they’ll last you longer. You can either buy herbs already dried or try your hand at drying them yourself.
5 – DIY Natural Room Scent Jars
If you love the homemade route, it’s also really simple to make your own DIY natural scents for the home.
You can make your own DIY room scent jar by adding around 3 cm of bicarbonate of soda to a glass jar, with a few drops of your favourite essential oil. Carefully punch a couple of holes into the screw top lid or cover with a piece of cheesecloth. Bicarbonate of soda is good at absorbing odours & you can add more essential oil as required.
Or why not rustle up a natural scent for the bathroom, with some dried lavender in a cotton spice bag?
Re-purposing a piece of old cotton fabric into a drawer liner pouch or natural moth repellent for your clothes is also really easy. Simply cut out a square of fabric, pour some dried herbs into the centre, gather up the corners to make a pouch, then secure with some twine.
Here are some more ideas for DIY natural scents for the home.
Natural Scents For The Home – Conclusion
Switching to eco friendly ways to make your house smell good benefits both you & the environment.
Natural scents for the home such as dried herbs, fresh flowers, essential oils or beeswax candles are all natural alternatives to artificial air fresheners or synthetically scented candles.
Opening your windows at least once a day will also help fresh air to circulate around your home, improving air quality & helping to remove stale odours.