You and I both know the bathroom can be a source of, ahem, unpleasant smells. But before you reach for those store-bought air fresheners, consider this: 75.7% of store bought air fresheners scored a D or F from the Environmental Working Group. Instead of grabbing an air freshener that may pose some health risks, you can make your own homemade air freshener to naturally deodorize your home; and you’ll know everything you’re putting into the air.
Did you know that companies do not have to disclose any ingredients they use to make “fragrance”? This is because “fragrance” is considered proprietary. Honestly, I would rather know what’s in the products I use, so I have been replacing a lot of store-bought cleaning and personal care items with homemade versions. That way, I know exactly what I’m applying to my body, or breathing into my lungs.
What You Need to Make Your Own Homemade Air Freshener
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Ingredients Needed for A DIY Air Freshener Using Baking Soda & Essential Oils
- Baking Soda
- Essential Oil of Your Choosing (Not sure where to buy essential oils? Check out this post.)
Ingredients Needed for A Homemade Air Freshener Using Coffee Grounds
- Fresh Ground Coffee– You can certainly go with a regular, classic roast coffee, but I prefer flavored coffee grounds for an sweeter scent.
Supplies Needed to Make Your Own Air Freshener
- Empty Spice Jar (Preferably with a Lid)
- Washi Tape or Other Decorating Items (Optional)
- Silicone Funnel– Optional, but makes it easier to fill the spice jars
How to Make A DIY Air Freshener
Decorate Your Spice Jar (Optional)
If you happen to have some empty spice jars on hand, go ahead and grab one. Otherwise, you can purchase empty spice jars online.
If you want to decorate your spice jar in any way, do so prior to making the air freshener contents. I went with a simple go-round of washi tape, but feel free to let your creativity flow. I think burlap, ribbon, and/or buttons would also work well. If cutesy isn’t your thing, you can just leave the jar alone, and not decorate it at all. Totally up to you.
Choose Which Homemade Air Freshener You Want to Make
There are two different ways you can naturally freshen your home using a homemade air freshener.
Option 1: Baking Soda & Essential Oils– Baking soda absorbs unpleasant odors and essential oil creates a pleasant scent. The fun part about using essential oils to deodorize your home is you can create any scent combination you like.
Option 2: Coffee Grounds– A nurse I used to work with swore that coffee grounds are great for eliminating odors. While working in the hospital, she would put coffee grounds in a patient’s room when there were “less-than-ideal” odors wafting into the hall. Within minutes, the smell was gone. If you love the smell of coffee (like me) this is an easy way to absorb odors while leaving behind that heavenly coffee scent.
How to Make A DIY Air Freshener with Baking Soda & Essential Oil
Start by filling your spice jar with baking soda (leaving a little room at the top). Then pour that baking soda into a glass mixing bowl. This assures you have the right amount of baking soda for the size of your spice jar. Depending on the quantity of baking soda and desired strength of scent, add anywhere from 5-15 drops of essential oil into the baking soda and give it a good stir. I have found the easiest way to transfer the baking soda/essential oil mixture into the spice jar is with a silicone funnel, however, you can also try scooping it in with a spoon if you’d like.
How to Make A Homemade Air Freshener Without Essential Oils, Using Coffee Grounds
Replace the Lids On the Spice Jars
Replace the lid with the holes in it as this will allow the air freshener to do its job.
You can also replace the regular lid in order to keep the odor-absorbing power and scent in the jar until needed.
Now set them on a shelf or vanity and use as needed.
If you prefer a room spray, try this tried-and-true DIY Room Spray recipe. It’s one of my favorite recipes!
Common Questions About Homemade Air Fresheners
How Long Will A DIY Air Freshener Last?
The answer to this question will depend on a few things. If you are willing to replace the solid lid on the spice jar when not in use, the air freshener will last a lot longer simply because you are not releasing any of the scent while the lid is closed, and the ability to absorb odors is preserved. Another factor is how much essential oil you added to the mix (if going the baking soda/essential oil route). If you added a stronger concentration of essential oils, the scent will last longer. Multiple sources state that baking soda will absorb odors for up to 3 months. I would assume coffee grounds will do the same. However, if you notice the scent has faded and odors are not being eliminated, it’s time to make a new batch.
Where Can I Use A Homemade Air Freshener?
I know the first thing we think of when we hear the word “air freshener” is the bathroom, and while these homemade air fresheners would be perfect for that space, you can also use them in a coat closet (I’m thinking of those smelly shoes) or in your car (just place them in the cup holder).
Which Essential Oils are Good for DIY Air Fresheners?
There are so many essential oils you can choose to use when making a homemade air freshener. You can go with a single essential oil, like lavender, grapefruit or peppermint. Or choose from a variety of blends (which are pre-mixed essential oils used to create various scent combinations). I love using Christmas blends during the holidays and citrus blends for warmer months.
Are Homemade Air Fresheners Safe to Use Around Children & Pets?
As with most cleaning products, you should store your homemade air freshener out of the reach of children and pets. I don’t think anyone would feel great if they ingested baking soda or coffee grounds. Yuck! There are also some essential oils that should be avoided around pets, particularly cats. I am not an expert on essential oil use around animals, so I will refer you to these articles so you can determine which essential oils you are comfortable using in your home.
Homemade Air Freshener
- Baking Soda & Essential Oil OR
- Fresh Coffee Grounds
- Spice Jar
- Decorative Material optional
- Silicone Funnel optional, but very helpful
- Start by decorating your spice jar, if desired. You can use any material you'd like. I went with washi tape, but you could use anything from fabric to buttons to ribbon
- Choose whether you want to make your air freshener with baking soda and essential oils or fresh coffee ground.
- IF USING BAKING SODA AND ESSENTIAL OILS: Add baking soda to your spice jar and then dump it into a glass mixing bowl. This assures the proper amount of baking soda. Add 5-15 drops of essential oil depending on the amount of baking soda and the desired strength of scent. Stir and add to your spice jar using a silicone funnel.
- IF USING FRESH COFFEE GROUNDS: Fill your spice jar with fresh coffee grounds using a silicone funnel
- Replace the spice lid that has holes in it. Leave it open to freshen your space. For longer shelf-life, replace the solid lid when not in use.