Before we went “green” a few years ago, I think it’s safe to say that I was completely obsessed with commercial air-fresheners. Spray fresheners, plug-in fresheners, scented candles, you name it. Every room in our home had some sort of air-freshening device that left a strong, fruity, cheery scent in the air.
Now that I know better (thank God!), commercial air-fresheners have become a thing of the past. And now that we don’t live with the constant strong scents in our home, it gets pretty overwhelming when we’re at a friend or family member’s house and all we can smell is those strong chemicals wafting through the air! Ughh, I still can’t believe we ever used those things, but as we’ve removed them from our home, our sense of smell has become much more sensitive to all those chemicals. I can barely make it through the cleaning and laundry aisle at the supermarket without getting a headache or watery eyes or a very irritated nose.
Homemade air-fresheners is an area that I’ve dabbled in only slightly because until now I was just in the “no smell is a good smell” camp. And that’s still very much true, but sometimes you just want a gentle, light scent to tickle your senses and lift your spirits.
I’m going to be experimenting with a few different options over the next few weeks, and today I’ll show you how easy it is to make some homemade reed diffusers – you know, those little jars of scented oils with all the sticks popping out of them? Yeah, those…
There are five items you’ll be working with here and all of them can be sourced pretty inexpensively.
I picked up these jars from the thrift store for $1 each. I didn’t know what I’d use them for but I knew I just had to have them, and I’m so glad I got them because they’re perfect for this project!
When choosing your jars, look for small, short jars with a narrow opening at the top. The smaller the opening, the slower your oils will evaporate. My jars had somewhat large openings but luckily, they came with cork tops, so I just drilled about a 1″ hole into the cork and voila! Smaller opening!
Examples of jars you can repurpose for this project include old perfume bottles, small oil bottles, small vases, spice jars and shakers, etc.
The Reeds (Sticks)
Technically, you’re supposed to use reeds made from rattan because it contains small channels that help the oil travel up the stick to scent the room. But I’m using regular bamboo skewers I picked up at the dollar store and they’ve been working ok so far. I did just order some of these reeds online to use once these diffusers stop working. Just make sure your reeds are about twice as tall as your jars so they can distribute the scent well.
Carrier Oil (Base)
From what I’ve read online, it seems the most common carrier oils to use are safflower oil and sweet almond oil, as they are lighter oils that will travel up the reeds more easily. I had just picked up some inexpensive grape seed oil (a fairly light oil) the other day so that’s what I used. You’ll use about 1/4 cup of oil for each diffuser, depending on your jar’s size, so try to source inexpensive oil, even if you have to order it online. Along with my reeds, I also ordered some safflower oil to have on hand for the next batch.
If you can’t find these oils, or don’t want to use oils as your base, you may also use plain water as the base. However, your diffuser base will evaporate much more quickly. Also, you’ll need to add some alcohol to help the essential oils bind to the water (see note below).
Essential Oils (Fragrance)
This is where it gets fun! You can either play it nice and simple with one or two essential oils, or you can get creative and experiment with different oil blends to create all kinds of lovely aromatic concoctions. Here’s a great list of essential oil blends that you can try.
For your 1/4 cup of carrier oil, you’ll use about 10-15 drops, depending on how strong or light you want the scent. I blended 2 oils for each of my diffusers – cinnamon and lavender for the living room, and spearmint and rosemary for the bathroom.
You’ll also add a splash of alcohol (about a teaspoon) to the oil mixture to help the oils travel up the reeds more effectively. You want as high a concentration of alcohol as you can get – at least 90%. You can use either perfumer’s alcohol, rubbing alcohol, or vodka. We don’t drink alcoholic beverages, and I don’t have access to perfumer’s alcohol, so I used 95% rubbing alcohol I picked up from the drug store.
Last week we discussed all the wonderful health benefits of chlorella – the green algae superfood also known as “nature’s multivitamin.” But once you’ve gone out and bought that bottle of chlorella powder or tablets, the next question is naturally, “what do I do with this stuff?” At least that’s what I was thinking. So this week we’re going over some tips and tricks to make adding chlorella to your diet easy-peasy!
Disclosure: I’ve included some affiliate links in this post. If you click on them and make a purchase, I’ll get a little kick back to help me keep running this little old blog of mine. Thanks so much for your support!
First, you’ve got to decide whether you’re going to choose to use the powder form or the tablets or capsules. The powder does have a noticeable taste, although not overpowering, so finding ways to add it to your drinks and foods is really up to your own tastes. The most common way to use the powder is by adding it to a glass of water or juice, or by sprinkling it over salads, yogurt, or cereal.
The tablets and capsules are virtually tasteless but of course, you’ll have to take more of them to get the recommended daily dose; and if you have issues with swallowing pills, this may actually be a little more difficult for you. Some people have been known to crush or chew the pills before swallowing them with some juice or water – I’m definitely not that brave!
Others have also opted to use a combination of the powder and the pills – adding the powder to their morning healthy drink, and taking some pills with them to work to eat throughout the day. Either way, it’s important to not only get the correct dosage, but to also start off slowly and pay attention to your body, since chlorella has a natural cleansing and detoxifying effect on the body.
Continue reading my complete post at the link below for more info on how to use chlorella, how much to take each day, and what precautions and tips you should be aware before starting your chlorella regimen:
Have you added chlorella to your diet yet? What’s your favorite way to take chlorella and what kinds of health benefits are you enjoying from it?
Image: Martina Lukacova
Hello dear friends!
Just a quick post today letting you know about the Top 25 Eco-Friendly Moms contest on Circle of Moms. As of writing this, Nature’s Nurture is in the #8 spot, thanks to our wonderful friends and followers. Thank you so much for your continued support and please remember to continue to vote for Nature’s Nurture everyday!
Have you heard of the health benefits of chlorella? I’d heard of chlorella before, but never really got into the details of how healthy and beneficial it is for our bodies. This stuff is pretty awesome – so much that it’s referred to as “nature’s multivitamin.” Chlorella is a tiny algae and contains an incredible amount of vitamins, minerals, and other important nutrients, like magnesium and iron. It’s a great source of protein for vegetarians, vegans, or anyone who’s reducing their meat consumption.
Have you started your Spring cleaning yet? I’m visiting my mom this week, and we’re planning on tackling some of those necessary cleaning tasks to get her house in tip top shape for the new season. We’ve got a pretty solid plan of attack that we’re confident will help us get through this in one piece, but we weren’t always this optimistic. In planning our cleaning routine, to be honest, we became a bit overwhelmed and felt almost defeated. Thankfully, we got out of our rut, thanks to some wonderful tips we found in an amazing book I came across this past week!