DIY Non-Toxic Air Freshener: 3 Ways

DIY air freshener || Homemade air freshener || non-toxic air freshener || Naturally scent your home and improve indoor air quality with these 3 non-toxic DIY air freshener recipes – a great, simple, and healthy alternative!

Naturally scent your home and improve indoor air with these three non-toxic DIY air freshener recipes. They’re a great, simple, and healthy alternative to those store-bought, so-called “air fresheners” that actually pollute indoor air with unhealthy chemicals — ironic, right!?


After dating for nearly four years, I thought I knew everything about my boyfriend when we moved in together.

Goodness gracious, was I wrong! Turns out the man is a fiend for fragrance, totally obsessed with air freshener. (Hey, of all the strange things I could have uncovered, I’ll take it!)

Now this posed just the teensiest little bit of an issue with me considering everything I know about fragrance…

Artificial or chemical fragrance is basically a chemical sh**-storm made to smell like a bouquet of roses.

And by “basically” I do mean “literally.”

Though it appears as a single ingredient, “fragrance” is actually a catchall term used to represent some combination of over 3,000 chemicals that companies are allowed to conceal as trade secrets. This means that we’re really not sure what chemicals are being used to scent products – and this is very troubling!

That being said, the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health has stated that a third of the substances used in the fragrance industry are toxic and harmful to human health.

And one common chemical use in fragrance, styrene, has been labeled “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen” by the National Academy of Sciences’ Research Council.

Chemical fragrance is also known to trigger allergies, dermatitis, and respiratory issues, and may cause hormone disruption.

Needless to say, it’s best to avoid chemical fragrance (this extends to personal care products as well!).

But it’s so incredibly simple to make your own air fresheners!

And fun!

All you need are a few simple ingredients, a few minutes, and voilà! You can have yourself your very own natural, non-toxic air freshener.


The key to homemade air fresheners? Essential oils.

Essential oils provide natural, super concentrated scent.

The best part? You can mix and match and customize the scent to your liking!

non-toxic air freshener with essential oils || DIY air freshener || Homemade air freshener || non-toxic air freshener || Naturally scent your home and improve indoor air quality with these 3 non-toxic DIY air freshener recipes – a great, simple, and healthy alternative!

I personally get all of my essential oils (and just about all of my DIY skincare and beauty materials like carrier oils, butters, and clays) from Mountain Rose Herbs — most are certified organic so there’s no guessing as to the quality or purity.

Some delicious scents and combinations you may want to try:

  • Ylang ylang (my personal favorite!)
  • Lavender
  • Lavender and lemon
  • Lemon and orange
  • Rose and lavender

Alright, now let’s get to it!


Non-Toxic DIY Air Freshener #1: Classic Spray Air Freshener

Materials:

  • A small spray bottle
  • Water
  • Rubbing alcohol (80-90% alcohol)
  • Essential oils of your choice

DIY non-toxic air freshener spray || DIY air freshener || Homemade air freshener || non-toxic air freshener || Naturally scent your home and improve indoor air quality with these 3 non-toxic DIY air freshener recipes – a great, simple, and healthy alternative!

Directions:

  1. Combine 1/3 cup water with 2/3 cup alcohol
  2. Add 15-25 drops of essential oil of your choice (depending on how strong you want the scent)
  3. Shake the mixture before spraying.

NOTE: The alcohol will help the spray evaporate more quickly, but be careful: the floor may be a little wet for a minute or so after spraying.


Non-Toxic DIY Air Freshener # 2: Essential Oil Reed Diffuser

Materials:

  • A small glass bottle or bud vase
  • 5-10 bamboo kabob skewers (more skewers = more scent)
  • A carrier oil (sweet almond, safflower, or jojoba oil are light and can easily travel up the skewers)
  • Essential oils of your choice

DIY Non-toxic air freshener reed diffuser || DIY air freshener || Homemade air freshener || non-toxic air freshener || Naturally scent your home and improve indoor air quality with these 3 non-toxic DIY air freshener recipes – a great, simple, and healthy alternative!

Directions:

  1. Put 1/4 cup of carrier oil in the bottle/vase
  2. Add 15-25 drops of essential oil of your choice
  3. Stir the oils together with a skewer
  4. Place the rest of the skewers in the bottle/vase

Within a couple of hours, the oil should have traveled up the skewers and the scent should be noticeable!


Non-Toxic DIY Air Freshener # 3: Baking Soda Odor Eater

This air freshener is great since it constantly emits a light scent while the baking soda works to absorb any unwanted scents. When you need more scent, just give it a little shake! This air freshener may or may not have found its home in the bathroom.

Materials:

  • A small glass canning jar
  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • A piece of cloth or sturdy paper to cover the jar (which will allow the scent but not the contents to escape the jar)
  • Essential oils of your choice.

baking soda air freshener || DIY air freshener || Homemade air freshener || non-toxic air freshener || Naturally scent your home and improve indoor air quality with these 3 non-toxic DIY air freshener recipes – a great, simple, and healthy alternative!

Directions:

  1. Add 1/2 of a cup of baking soda and 15-25 drops of essential oil to the jar and stir them together.
  2. Place the lid and jar covering (cloth or paper) on top and you are ready to go!
  3. Give the jar a little shake whenever you need to release a bit of scent.

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  1. Eye-iiiiii know you like to think to your….. don’t stink, but lean a little bit closer. Roses really smell like poo poo pooooooo. You a outkast for sho. Love it!!! I’m totally taking these ideas to the bathroom and a few other places!

  2. A variation on the baking soda theme: my husband loves those dangling air fresheners from Yankee Candle, but they make me sneeze, so I had to come up with a substitute. SI fold an envelope of lovely paper and fill it with baking soda mixed with EO’s. Then I poke a few holes with a pin to let the scent out and hang it with twine from wherever the Yankee Candle things hung before. A shake every now and then redistributes the fragrance and freshens it up again. I know it seems like the baking soda would spill out the holes but it doesn’t. I just make them with stick pins so they are tiny.

  3. I tried the diffuser in my room, but I can’t smell it and I’ve had it sitting on my shelf for months. I used jojoba oil and some lavender oil, lots of lavender oil, but nothing. When I sniff the opening of the bottle I can smell the lavender and on the skewers, but the smell isn’t in my room. 🙁 I love the smell of lavender and would love to have it in my room.

  4. Wow Nadia, I love you site!
    I am just starting to use essential oils and am very happy to find your site.
    trying to get away from chemical face care products, and home product that are hazardous to family and our puppies.
    My puppy is so afraid of thunder and lightening, I use lavender around him when it happens and he calms right down…of course i have to cuddle with him also 🙂 Thank you for all the info on going back to Natural!
    your site is in my favorites list and will send it to my daughter.
    Thank you so much
    Cathy/ Colorado

  5. Thanks so much for the kind words, Cathy! And wow – so amazing how EOs have helped your pup 🙂 So happy to have you as a new reader!! (P.S. I’m on vacation in CO right now. SUCH a beautiful state!!)

  6. Hi,
    I tried the baking soda shaker (I used thin cotton fabric for the top instead of paper) but it failed to emit any fragrance. Much like Carmen’s comment, I can smell it if I put my nose to it but as far as freshening the air, the scent is undetectable. I even tried adding more drops of the EO, but that did nothing. Any suggestions?

  7. Essential oils should be used and kept with caution. Some can be harmful if ingested or applied to skin. It is important to educate people about their proper use before advising them to use essential oils in their home. Think about young children and poisoning. We have to approach DIY products the same way we approach commercial cleaning products and air fresheners- with caution. http://www.poison.org/poisonpost/thirdedition2014/essentialoils.htm

  8. You mention the ingredient alcohol, do you mean some for of liquor or the stuff you buy at the pharmacy of different percentages, i.e. 70%, etc.? Please advise. Thanks D

  9. Can’t wait to try these! I have two small dogs and a cat. Can’t tell you how smelly the house can get from them, especially my kitty. Thanks for the ideas!!

  10. I just got my own place together, but with a lot of 2nd hand (smelly) furniture. It is also a studio so when I cook the food smell really goes everywhere. I was only planning to make a spray but your recipe for the Baking soda shake air freshener caught my eye. I didn’t have a mason jar so I improvised using a regular glass jar. Racking my brain I finally remembered that I have cute cupcake holders! So I covered the jar with that and put an elastic around it to keep it in place! It looks really cute, even if I am planning to put it in my closet to keep my clothes smelling fresh! Thank you for the recipes I will definitely use them again!

  11. Hi. Is there another option for people with severe MCS? Even essential oils make me sick and give me a horrible headache. Thanks.

  12. Wow thank you for this! I have been looking for a nice room spray for quite a while. I was tired of all of the chemicals in the ones in the store. Besides, how often do they actually smell like what the are labeled? So I made up 2 small room sprays; one for me and one for my Mom. She has 5 dogs and I have 3 cats, so room sprays are kind of essential sometimes!

    I made up one with Lavender and Sweet Orange. I tried it out and it smells really nice! I will be trying to make the baking soda ones today also for at least my Mom. 😀 My brother still lives with her and with 2 men in the house (1 bathroom) things can get…icky.

  13. Hi. I want to try your DIY air freshener BUT how does this emit any scent with a lid on top of it please ? This makes no sense (using a lid) ! TIA

  14. I’m so happy to have found this wonderful site,a huge thank you for sharing your creativity with us.
    Ilive in the UK and in many ways we are still behind the US in cleaning our homes naturally,even as a die hard vege/vegan since 1978 when Iwas a girl ,I still often reach for the chemicals out of laziness and loathe it.
    I have a rescue cat aged 15 ,got my Pixie last year from being euthanised all because my darling is 15 yrs old and was attacked by a dog ,last owners were horrid.Anyway I have Lupus/MS and get really sick,unfortuantely Pixie cat is doing her poos as best as she can in her 3 litter boxes ,BUT weeing all over my hall and living room carpet and the place has gone from immaculate to stinking in a year.I’m alone totally and on morphine+chemo and totally worn out and in pain 24/7..Can any of you guys suggest the best way of de-stinking fitted carpets,I’ve bought nasty cattery cleaning chemicals to go in the carpet Bisell carpet shampooer and I’m in trouble wih my nasty neighbour who hates animals and now my landlord,just in so much pain and qualify for no phys help in the UK as I’m ‘too young’ at 49 ,been sick 25yrs.
    At the end of my tether but won”t part with my little girl cat ,she does NOT foul the bedroom but the floor will attempt at shampooing some at weekend ,can you help with stopping aPixie re-peeing on the carpet.I’m going to have a go at the air freshener tomorrow ,got a lovely big bottle of lavender and sweet almond oil and isopropyl,btw in the UK it’s hard to buy as nobody uses is it ? rubbing alcohol? I use Biofreeze on my shoulder could I make my own does anyone know .
    Aorry I procrastinate but I’m a scouser from Liverpool (y’know The Beatles ,.and all that) LOL and we talk for England up north.
    THabks,love and Peace to all Sophie+Pixie Cat xxx

  15. In researching rubbing alcohol, this comes up:
    Side Effects of Inhaling Isopropyl Alcohol. … However, if isopropyl alcohol is inhaled there can be serious side effects. Inhalation can cause a number of symptoms, including headaches, nausea, vomiting, irritation of the nose and mucous membranes, throat irritations, and even difficulty with breathing.
    Is there an alternative to rubbing alcohol this is safe when sprayed?

  16. I have tried baking soda in my home. But I have added little alcohol there. Which gives great smell. I am wondering where else I can use baking soda. Very powerful thing it is!

  17. Sounds like a nice idea,unless you have cats or some other animals, remember that useing essential oils around
    Some animals, particularly cats is ment to be dangerous and can be deadly,there are web sites that tell you about this.
    would think those awful shop brought ones would be very bad also. If you are going to use something you need to find something safe and natural.

  18. Superb ideas
    These are specially good if you have toddlers as the artificial chemical perfumes disturbs there hormonal balance

  19. These sound lovely! I hope non-toxic air fresheners catch on more. The other options are soooo awful! For the second one, do the skewers have to be bamboo, and can’t be plain wood? Can’t wait to try these!!

  20. Good question! I’ve never tried plain wood. If you want to give it a try, I’d think a softer wood would probably be best so it really absorbs the oil quickly (like the bamboo does). Please report back if you try that 🙂 I’d love to know!