We are Ike & Janiece: college sweethearts, parents and music lovers, living in Texas with our daughter. Nigermany is a lifestyle journal dedicated to our pursuit of a simple, healthy and good life.

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The Ultimate Guide to Non-Toxic Home Fragrances & Air Fresheners

non toxic air freshener - nigermany

Have an unpleasant scent lingering in your house and need to mask that odor? Or maybe you simply want to add a pleasant home fragrance to your living space. In situations like these, many of us turn to commercial air fresheners. 

But the truth of the matter is that traditional air fresheners often come with harmful chemicals and biological components that can actually have a negative impact on your inner air quality. These synthetic fragrances and toxic air fresheners might leave your home smelling good – but they are not good for your health. 

If you’re like me, keeping your home safe and healthy for your family is an important priority. But you also want your home to smell great! Don’t worry, there is a way to do both. In this article, I’m going to walk you through using air fresheners without harmful chemicals so that you can enjoy a whiff of fresh air minus the dangerous chemicals. 

Do Air Fresheners Impact Your Healthy Home?

Whether you are using a spray, a diffuser, a candle, or an essential oil, some commercial air fresheners (think of the plug-in type that you might find at Target), can have a negative impact on your health and the environment. How? They can introduce hazardous pollutants into the air, elevating levels of VOCs, or volatile organic compounds. 

Ultimately, exposure to these VOCs is associated with health problems like respiratory issues, migraines, asthma attacks, dermatitis and more. So whenever you purchase an air freshener, it’s crucial to check the ingredient list. You want to stay away from household products that contain phthalates as well as components like formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, benzene, and toluene.

But that doesn’t mean that you have to suffer through a smelly house. You can still find air fresheners – or make them at home – that are safe to use and include natural ingredients like essential oils, citrus, incense, spices, herbs, and even dried florals. These non-toxic air fresheners are not only better for your health – they are also more sustainable and eco-friendly, benefitting the environment, too. 

The Best Non-Toxic Air Freshener Options

When it comes time to freshen the air in your home, you want to choose non-toxic and safe air freshener options that diffuse pleasant smells throughout your home. There are many attractive options, including ones you can make at home as well as ones that you can purchase online or in-store. Here are a few of my go-to options to make both air and fabric smell fresh and light. 

#1: Essential Oil Diffusers

Many essential oils have anti-fungal, antibacterial, and restorative properties that not only will help you diffuse an enticing aroma throughout your home but also can improve your health with no preservatives and natural air fragrances. As you use essential oils, you have a few options. First, you can boil water and add in a few drops of your favorite scent. Then let the water evaporate to disperse the fragrance throughout your home. 

You can also purchase an essential oil diffuser (I love this low-profile, bamboo diffuser from Amazon), which will help the fragrance oils distribute into every room through misting. Wondering what scents to use in your diffuser? I typically alternate between lavender, eucalyptus, rosemary, and tea tree – but citrus scents like lemon, orange, or grapefruit can also be energizing and refreshing. 

#2: All-Natural Candles

Beware labels that claim candles are made from “natural ingredients.” Even candles that have this label sometimes include other problematic chemicals, even if most of the components are plant-based and naturally occurring. Whenever you are looking for a scented candle, ensure that the scent is naturally derived – such as an oil or extract – and that the body itself is made from either soy or beeswax instead of paraffin candles. These ingredients are healthier for your home. 

One of my go-to air freshening candle brands is Mrs. Meyers. I love the lavender scent in this soy candle. It will last longer than air freshener plug-ins and will spruce up your home with a nice scent. Plus, the ingredients are simple and toxin-free, so you don’t have to worry about your family’s safety.

#3: Activated Charcoal Bags

These bamboo charcoal bags are a great way to absorb scents in your home without worrying about toxic ingredients. The activated charcoal can help get rid of the need for air fresheners altogether – and the best part? They’re recyclable. The faint smell is unobtrusive, but the odor absorption capabilities are unmatched. These bags will purify your home’s air and absorb odors while they do. 

#4: All-Natural Odor Absorbing Gel

Another great smell absorbing option to use around the house, these stench absorbing gel tins typically last about a month. Choose a plant-based option like this Fresh Wave product to use as a deodorizer without introducing toxic chemicals into your home. 

#5: Non-Toxic Plug-In Options

If you are a devoted user of air freshener plug-ins, you will be happy to know that there are environmentally friendly and healthy options on the market for you. For instance, Enviroscent makes these safe scent plugs to grow fragrance in your home. This one smells like lavender and eucalyptus, but they have many other attractive options, too. Enviroscent is a great brand for family-safe home products. 

Reusable, Renewable Product to Keep Your Home Healthy

If you are reading my blog, then we probably have something in common: It’s important to both of us to keep our homes safe, healthy, and happy. That is why all of the products I have recommended in this article are safe for use even with young children and pets. I am dedicated to building a healthy home, and I am here to support you in doing the same with recipes, recommendations, and tips for success. 

Everything you find on Nigermany is oriented toward wholesome living for a long, happy, and healthy life. That’s what drives me to create these recipes and guides – readers like you. So if you enjoyed this article, check out some of my other tips and tricks. Let me help you find the best products, dishes, and strategies for building the life of your dreams. 

Hi, I'm Janiece

It all started with a midnight epiphany and the rest is history.

I've worn the hat of a dedicated corporate woman, a tenacious go-getter, and a passionate career climber. After welcoming my first bundle of joy into the world just three weeks into a global pandemic, I realized there were fragments of myself I had set aside while on my upward career trajectory. Somewhere over the years, I realized I stopped wholly caring for myself and my family in exchange for career success.

So, I made a choice – a choice to embrace whole living, nurturing every part of myself from the inside out.

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