Almost nothing makes me more paranoid than not knowing whether or not my house stinks! I get so frustrated when I buy scented candles, air fresheners, or anything else, and I can HARDLY smell them! Yet whenever I go to someone else’s home and they have similar products, I get full blast of their aroma right away! Could it be that I’ve gone nose blind to the scent (s) in and around my home? While that may be the reason I can’t smell a lot of my scented products after the first use, that also may be the reason I can’t smell any of the less pleasant aromas lurking around, and I worry that if and when I have guests over, it will be the first thing they notice when they walk in the door!
Because of this, I’ve gathered many tips and tricks to keep my home smelling fresh WITHOUT using too many harsh chemicals! While candles and plug-in fresheners are great once in a while, I don’t like to overload on them, especially now that I have pets with sensitive lungs!
Here are some of my favourite smell-good tips for your home!
1. Use a Natural Scent Diffuser
Do you have an empty glass jar, some wooden skewers, and some yummy smelling essential oils? Then you’ve got all the things you need to make your own reed diffuser! You can also buy them in many housewares stores. These things work great to give you a burst of beautiful scent when you walk into any room. For an added bonus, try placing one near your front door, so that you (or your guests) will be sure to smell something lovely right when you/they walk into your home! I found this post from Jessi at Practically Functional super helpful for directions on how to make your own!
If you don’t want to use a reed diffuser, there are some great essential oil diffusers on Amazon that work great to diffuse scents in your home! I use THIS one and love it (affiliate link)! You simply fill it with water, and a few drops of your favourite smelling essential oil, and turn it on! Right away you will see the water vapour diffusing. You will definitely notice a difference in the smell of your room. As an added bonus, it shines pretty colours as it works!
2. Grab Some Vanilla Extract
Do you LOVE the scent of Vanilla as much as I do? Good news – now you can use vanilla extract to make your home smell lovely! Simply put a few teaspoons or caps of vanilla extract in an oven safe bowl or mug, and place in the oven at 300 degrees F for about an hour. Within minutes, your whole home will smell heavenly! Apparently this is a common hack used among realtors when staging homes!
Of course, the alternate option here would be to just bake some delicious cookies…. you know, that always works too!
3. Deodorize With Coffee Beans
Did you know that coffee can be used as a natural deodorizer? In fact, many stores that sell scented products will also have beans on display for you to sniff before smelling other products, as a way to neutralize your scent receptors! You can use coffee beans or grounds in many different ways to get rid of odours in your home. My favourite way is to place coffee beans around a candle in a case or a jar (just make sure the jar is big enough!) and then light the candle. The heat of the candle will diffuse that warm, delightful coffee scent around your home, while the coffee also works to neutralize any questionable smells. You don’t even have to use scented candles for this to work.
You can also make your own little coffee air freshener pouches, using your favourite beans or grounds, and a cut up pair of panty hose, or tights. These work great for small spaces like your car, your closet, or your drawers!
4. Make a Stove Simmer
Here’s a neat trick! You can throw just about any lovely smelling ingredients into a pot with some water and let them simmer on low heat for a few hours, or however long you’d like, and an absolutely DIVINE scent will permeate your home for hours, leaving a lasting scent that’s stronger than any scented candle I’ve ever tried! And the best part? It’s completely customizeable! You can also create your own stove simmers, and place them in mason jars to reuse a handful of times, just replace the water when it gets low. This is a great trick when you have last minute guests coming over (a surprise visit from mom?) and need a quick fix solution. Also, heads up – a jar of stove simmer makes a GREAT inexpensive gift!
Some great things to add to a stove simmer are essential oils, cinnamon sticks, cloves, citrus peels, fruit, berries, fresh herbs, and even flowers! You can create any recipe you want to mimic any scent, you can even make ones themed for the holidays!
I love this post from A Beautiful Mess with some amazing smelling stove simmer recipes! Those ladies are complete domestic goddesses!
5. Open the Windows
This one may seem like a no-brainer, but really, a little bit of fresh air seems to be the answer to just about anything! Opening your windows for an hour or two, or even a day, or even just leaving them open regularly REALLY helps to circulate the air in your home, which in turn helps to carry those foul odours right outside where they belong! So if your climate permits, crack a window, or two, or seven, and let in that fresh air!
6. Keep Your House Clean!
Again, another seemingly obvious solution, but this is something a lot of us lazier folk tend to neglect. Alas, if there are foul smells in your home, chances are they have a source, and eliminating the source means eliminating the smell! Of course, a lot of times this is easier said than done, especially when you have kids or pets (or messy housemates!) running around! Believe me, nothing gets me more down on cleaning than spending the entire day on my hands and knees scrubbing, only to have my boyfriend get home that evening, and make a complete MESS of the kitchen! It’s one of the absolute worst feelings in the world! But I’ve learned that sometimes you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, and in the name of a clean and fresh smelling home, I just keep swimming!
Don’t forget to tackle those tiny crevices or areas which we often neglect in our cleaning schedule, like the drain (or garbage disposal), your fridge, the bottom of your trash bin, and even the back of your closet! If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that odours can lurk in the darkest of places.
Enjoy these tips? Be sure to share some of your favourite smell-good tips with me in the comments, and make sure to share this article with your friends, so we can create a beautiful smelling world together! 🙂