Have you ever walked into someone’s house and it smelled absolutely amazing? With these tips from scenting experts & scent obsessed homeowners, your home can smell amazing too!
SCENT = HAPPINESS
With so many of us quarantined in our homes, we need ways to lift our spirits & bring “scents” of happiness to our families. There’s tons of research proving that scent has a powerful ability to improve our moods. If you’ve ever encountered a very specific smell that instantly brought back a strong memory, you’ve experienced the power of scent. Here’s how it works: Scent enters our noses & the reaches the amygdala & hippocampus, which are the emotional & memory centers of our brains, respectively. This is where smell is processed. It’s the same part of the brain that lights up when engaging in carnal pleasures. With a few simple tips, you can manipulate scent in your home to make your and your family feel better!
GET RID OF THE STINK
The first step to make your home smell amazing is to take care of these odor sources:
• Take out the trash
• Eliminate cooking smells by opening windows to let fresh air flow through your house
• Get rid of moisture. Acording to Rachel Hoffman, author of “Unf*ck Your Habitat”, moisture is the #1 cause of household odors. Measure the humidity in your home & use a humidifier. If you live in a humid climate, you’ll be amazed at how quickly your dehumidifier fills with water from the air.
• Clean out your fridge
• Clean surfaces & floors
• Wash bedding (including pet bedding)
• Clean out garbage disposal & drains
SUBTLETY IS KEY
Spraying can air fresheners & time-released aerosols can be super overpowering, giving the impression that you’re trying to cover up a bad smell. Think of scent like makeup, the more natural, the better. In the perfume world, there are niche perfumers who specialize in creating “skin scents”, which are subtle, softer scents made to enhance your natural scent. According to LA based perfumer, Ashley Eden Kessler, “Instead of asking,’What perfume are you wearing?’ people will ask ‘Is it you that smells so good?'” This is the effect we recommend for your home as well. A few simple tricks will add freshness to your space without overwhelming fragrance.
MAKE YOUR OWN AIR FRESHENING MIST
Instead of commercial air fresheners, which are costly & made with all kinds of chemicals, you can mix up your own. Nature’s Nuture blog has a great recipe for a DIY Air Freshening Spray:
- 1 tablespoon witch hazel (or rubbing alcohol / surgical spirits)
- 30 drops essential oil
- 1/2 cup distilled water (distilled is best, but filtered tap water is fine for short term storage)
- 4 oz. spray bottle
Add witch hazel or rubbing alcohol to the spray bottle.
Add your essential oils of choice.
Swirl the bottle about 10 times to combine oils with witch hazel.
Top off with water, leaving a little room at the top for shaking.
Shake well, and spray into the air.
DRYER SHEETS ARE GREAT FOR MORE THAN JUST LAUNDRY
Put dryer sheets in your closet & dresser drawers. You can even put them under your sofa cushions and hidden in nooks & crannies around the house. I also like to leave them in car (but that’s another post for another time).
DISPERSE CANDLES THROUGHOUT YOUR HOME
Candles are an obvious choice for scenting your home. Interior designer Dee Murphy says to “Anchor a few chandles where you would least expect them to be – but don’t light them. Try the linen closet, or anywhere fabrics might live and be able to absorb the scent. Not only do you get a nice surprise every time you open the door, but your linens will carry the aroma with them wherever you use them.” You might love your sugar cookie candles, but try to avoid those super sweet scents and go for lighter, natural fragrances made with essential oils. If you have to have a sweet scent, baking sweet treats will create a much more natural, sweet smell (plus your kids will love it!)
USE SAFE CANDLES
Look for candles made with pure beeswax, coconut oil, or soy. Not only are these candles safer to use, they also give off less soot & smoke than traditional candles.
USE AN ESSENTIAL OIL DIFFUSER
We’re huge fans of essential oils diffusers & nebulizers. Just use a few drops of essential oil in your diffuser and your home will smell great all day long. Essential oil diffusers come in many different shapes, sizes, and price ranges. Plus, some of them look super cute & can also serve as decor. You can use just one essential oil or create your own blend based on the mood you’d like to create.
NEUTRALIZE ODORS, DON’T JUST MASK THEM
There are many odor neutralizers available on the market. If you don’t want to use a commercial odor neutralizer or can’t leave your house right now, you make your own with this recipe from the Undomesticated Goddess:
Mix 2 tablespoons of baking soda with 2 cups of distilled water and 8-12 drops of pet-safe essential oil in a spray bottle.
SCENTING YOUR HOME IS FUN
Making your home smell amazing gives you motivation to clean. But, most importantly, it’s fun! Get the family involved & pick out scents together. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different scents. Mix it up & enjoy!