How to Naturally Freshen Your Home |

How to Naturally Freshen Your Home

dona April 2, 2013

By Megan Ciampa, Contributing Writer

Ever since I learned about the hazardous toxins in everyday fragrances, I’ve been more and more inclined to find ways to naturally freshen your home without succumbing to Febreze or other synthetic air fresheners.

Keeping your home clean and neat–a task in and of itself–can go a long way to naturally freshen your home, so sometimes all that’s needed is a quick wash of the dishes or emptying of the trash cans.

When you feel your home needs a little boost, here are some simple Do-It-Yourself methods for naturally freshening your home:

  • Sprinkle baking soda in your carpets or rugs before you vacuum; it is a natural deodorizer and will absorb odors instead of masking them. In a humid climate? recommends a light spray of distilled white vinegar instead.
  • Open your windows when the weather is nice and breezy to let in some outside air to filter and clean your home.
  • Sunning your clothes, linens (if appropriate) or towels can also naturally bleach and freshen your laundry.
  • Have leftover mulling spices from fall & winter entertaining? Use them to create a fragrant welcoming scent by boiling them in water, then reducing heat to low and letting them simmer for 3-4 hours.
    Simmering mulling spices on the stove can create a warm and inviting scent and help to naturally freshen your home.
  • Hang your own potpourri of dried, crushed herbs in a sachet in front of the air registers so it can waft the fragrance across the rooms and naturally freshen your home.  No herbs? Try soaking a thin washcloth in a mixture of water and an essential oil and draping it in front of the air vent instead.
  • Leftovers lemons?  Drop them in your garbage disposal and let them grind up a bit; it will create a clean, fresh invigorating scent in your kitchen.
  • Did you know vinegar can also absorb odors?  Place a bowl of vinegar in a room where you need a little help with the odors and let it sit overnight.  The same can be done with a cut-up onion, although your room might smell like a fajita at first.
  • Make your own essential oil air freshening spray.  All you need is a spray bottle, water, and a few drops of an essential oil (e.g., lemon).  Mist around rooms or spray at an air vent to allow it to circulate and naturally freshen your home.

    Naturally freshen your home

What DIY methods have you tried to naturally freshen your home?  Share below!

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  1. […] talked before about the nasty ingredients in synthetic air fresheners and why you should avoid those, and what you can do instead.  Thanks to a savvy friend, I learned of a new way to freshen your […]


  2. I open the windows when weather is nice (not too humid, between 50-80 degrees). Ventilation fans in bathrooms are fabulous too. I also have some favorite candle scents, one is cinnamon-clove and the other is plain vanilla. Just lighting a match quickly takes care of yucky airborne odors too. I otherwise do not use air “fresheners”. Vinegar gives me headaches, so I do not have it in my home. Baking soda works well on the carpet, but it is hard to get it off upholstery, so I do keep a bottle of Febreeze on hand for fabric odor “emergencies” (like throw up or pee-pee accident on the couch… no matter how much you scrub, the smell lingers). That being said, one bottle lasts 1-2 years. When the garbage disposal/sink gets smelly, I use lemon. My hubby uses lemon in his water, so the “used” lemons work great. And you’re right… just keeping the kitchen cleaned up, the laundry under control (especially the soggy muddy soccer socks), and the trash emptied is the best way to prevent odors in the first place! One area I struggle with is when the boys have ‘bad aim’ in the bathroom. No matter how quickly I clean up or what I use, the kids’ bathroom always smells faintly of urine.


    • Pam, for those hard to get rid of urine smells, there’s a product called “Nature’s Miracle” sold in pet stores and online that contains natural enzymes and isopropyl alcohol (to help evaporate and sanitize) the area. For carpets or upholstery, you literally saturate the area and a bit beyond it and let it air dry. you will NOT be able to detect anything again, but left with a pleasant citrus smell for awhile. For hard surfaces, you could put it in a spray bottle and spray the area, leave for awhile and then wipe it up.

      It works wonders!!


  3. You can also boil orange peels with or without cinnamon sticks. Lemon or grapefruit would probably work well too.


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Hi, I’m Kate.  I love medical freedom, sharing natural remedies, developing real food recipes, and gentle parenting. My goal is to teach you how to live your life free from Big Pharma, Big Food, and Big Government by learning about herbs, cooking, and sustainable practices.

I’m the author of Natural Remedies for Kids and the owner and lead herbalist at EarthleyI hope you’ll join me on the journey to a free and healthy life!

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