Our home environment is full of toxins from commercial cleaners, air fresheners containing artificial fragrances and personal care products. Using essential oils safely in the home can lessen the toxic load, and at the same time, provide therapeutic benefit.
There are many ways essential oils can be used in the home. Before you begin using them, please be sure you know the safety of the essential oil(s) you wish to use before making your choice. Choose essential oils safe for children, if children are present, and consider the health issues and medication(s) your guests may be on before diffusing. When diffusing, run the diffuser in shorter increments 10-15 minutes on/off at a time for maximum benefits.
Placing a bowl of dried flowers or unscented potpourri in a bowl near the entry and sprinkling a few drops of essential oils on top can provide a welcome aroma when one walks through the door. Sweet Orange Essential Oil is fresh and inviting, but the possibilities are endless.
Placing a diffuser in a living area can be a great way to replace air fresheners in your home. During cold and flu season, diffusing Tea Tree Essential Oil can help kill airborne germs due to its anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties. Adding Lemon to the Tea Tree will give added benefits.
- Garbage can freshener: add ½ cup baking soda to the bottom of your garbage can, and shake 10-15 drops of desired essential oil on top before lining with your garbage bag. Try Tea Tree or Lemon Essential Oils.
- Killer kitchen paste: combine ½ cup baking soda, 2 TBSP hydrogen peroxide and 10 drops Lemon Essential Oil. You can adjust the amount of hydrogen peroxide based on if you want the consistency like Comet or Soft Scrub. Works great on refrigerators, sinks, ovens and more.
- Counter spray: Add 12 drops Peppermint Essential Oil per ounce of hydrogen peroxide (most effective) or white vinegar and spray surfaces (shake before using). Avoid spritzing with children under age 6 present due to the menthol.
- Sponge refresher: add 6 drops each Tea Tree and Lemon essential oils per ounce of liquid soap and add to squeeze bottle. Drizzle ½ teaspoon of this mixture on a rinsed, damp sponge and let sit overnight.
- Air freshener: place some copal resin in a decorative bowl and place on or near the back of the toilet. Shake 5-10 drops essential oil to the resin as needed. Patchouli, Cedarwood and Cinnamon Leaf are best for masking unpleasant bathroom aromas, as well as Lemon and Sweet Orange.
- Killer bathroom scrub: combine ½ cup baking soda, 2 TBSP hydrogen peroxide, and 10 drops Lemon Essential Oil. You can adjust the amount of hydrogen peroxide based on if you want the consistency like Comet or Soft Scrub. Works great on bathtubs and sinks.
- Basic bathroom spray: to a 6 ounce spray bottle, add 40 drops Lemon Essential Oil, 30 drops each Tea Tree and Peppermint essential oils and 20 drops Cinnamon Bark essential oil (use Cinnamon Leaf if pregnant or breastfeeding). Fill to the neck with white vinegar or hydrogen peroxide (more effective). Shake before using.
- Bleach alternative: this is a recipe useful for brightening clothes and lifting stains. Add to an empty gallon jug (white vinegar jug works great) 1 ½ cups hydrogen peroxide, ½ cup lemon juice and 12 drops Lemon Essential Oil. Shake up before using.
- Laundry booster: to 4 cups washing soda add ½ teaspoon (50 drops) each Tea Tree and Lemon essential oils. Stir. Use 1-2 TBSP per load of laundry as a boost.
- Dryer balls: add 5-10 drops essential oil (Lemon, Geranium or Lavender) to a wool dryer ball and toss in with your wet laundry in your dryer.
- Linen spray: add 12 drops preferred essential oil per ounce of water or hydrosol. Spritz on a freshly made bed and pillows. Use Sandalwood or Cedarwood before bedtime to help encourage sleep. Ylang Ylang and Vanilla can encourage romance.
As you can see, there are a myriad of uses for essential oils in the home. What’s your favorite blend and why?