How can boiling oranges (or any citrus fruit for that matter) save your environment, health, and your family’s safety? Maybe you don’t realize that most household products include unhealthy chemicals that are silently endangering everyone who enters under your roof. Those fresh lemon scents of dish soap, fabric softeners, and even garbage bags, are all chemically perfumed. This means they are releasing harmful toxins into the air of your home, which family members and pets are breathing in every day. A recent study of name-brand air fresheners found that 86% contained phthalates. These chemicals are known to disrupt the endocrine system, causing hormonal abnormalities, reproductive problems, and even birth defects in children. If that doesn’t sound like something you want your family to be breathing in every day, it’s time to grab some of your favorite fruits and cook up some natural, chemical-free fragrances.
No one wants to smell cat litter and last night’s dinner when they walk into their home, but that doesn’t mean choosing between offensive odors or terrible toxins. Natural DIY scents are easy and fun to cook up – and it could be a great project for kids to help out with. Brainstorm your family’s favorite scents and gather your ingredients first. Citrus fruits work best, such as oranges and lemons. Add some delectable spices like cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, or rosemary for a scent combination that is refreshing and delightful. It can be fun to experiment with different combinations to find fragrances that express your taste and style best. Seasonal favorites like pumpkin spice or evergreen gingerbread can also make your home smell festive and inviting.
Some favorite combinations are:
- Orange slices
- Lemon slices
- Vanilla extract
- Rosemary or Thyme
- Mint leaves
- Vanilla extract
- Lime slices
- Almond extract
Whichever combination you choose, add your ingredients to a mason jar and fill the jar with water. The best part of making your own home fragrances is that you can make as many as you want and then store them to use whenever you’re ready. This will also allow the different scents to mellow together and create a stronger aroma when they are boiled.
When you’re ready to use them, empty the contents of one scent jar into a small pot and bring it to boil on the stove. Turn the heat down and simmer until your home begins to smell naturally divine! This can be done at any time of day, but it’s a great idea to boil scents about an hour or two before company arrives so the fragrance is fresh without being overpowering. As the fragrance evaporates in the simmering water, the air will be filled with delightful smells without any residual chemicals to breathe in. This is an especially great solution for those with allergies or asthma, who might be sensitive to commercial air fresheners and other home cleaning products. You might be surprised by the difference natural fragrances make to the air quality and atmosphere of your home!