Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Wellness Wednesday

When I go to the grocery store, I occasionally go down the "chemicals" aisle, that is the aisle with cleaning and other products on it. It seems like the "air freshener" category can take up an entire aisle by itself. People like the idea of their homes being and smelling "fresh" and "clean." However, there are two problems with these air fresheners, problems that most shoppers aren't even aware of.

First, the air fresheners don't actually freshen, they just mask. With so many of our homes sealed up for climate control, we often don't have the old-fashioned option of opening our windows to bring in good clean air. Just because it smells good doesn't mean it's really fresh. If you have a problem with odors, the first thing you need to do is look to see if you can eliminate the source.

The other problem is that these products are made of dangerous chemicals. The EPA website points out that these products are generally made of four ingredients:  four basic ingredients in air fresheners: formaldehyde, petroleum distillates, p-dichlorobenzene, and aerosol propellants. I don't know about you, but these really don't seem like things we should be dispersing into our air and inhaling. 

If you're not able to open your windows to freshen your residence, try some more natural options. Put some essential oils (such as lemon or lavender) into a bottle with some water and spray it around your house. Try one of the reed-type diffusers (such as the one pictured) and use with some natural essential oil product made for diffusers. Burn a naturally-scented beeswax or soy candle. Or simmer some natural ingredients, such as rosemary, cinnamon sticks, or citrus, in a small pot of water on the stove. (Beware:  Never leave candles or simmering pots unattended.) All of these options are natural, great smelling, and chemical-free.

Have a healthy week!


Laura said...

Agreed, those air fresheners are anything but fresh. I am looking forward to melting down bees wax this year and making candle melts.

Rebecca said...

A surprisingly good option is a little custard cup of white vinegar. I put one on the kitchen counter and by the next morning all stuffy, greasy odors are gone.

Cherie said...

Rebecca, I once tried to freshen my house by heating white vinegar in my microwave. A visitor told me my house smelled like pickles! I never did that again - but I might try just putting it on the counter, maybe with some essential oil in it?

Cherie said...

Laura, haha! I wasn't sure what a candle melt was and had to look it up.

ain't for city gals said...

When I go down those aisles it actually makes me kind of sick now. I really never used an air freshener and when my sister used one when my husband was there he thought that was so strange. When our nephew was here he walked into our house and said "Now this is what an Arizona house should smell like"...I hoped it was a compliment...ha!

April Michelle said...

I dilute white vinegar with water and put it in a spray bottle. My house initially smells like vinegar, but once the vinegar dries it just smells clean. A friend didn't smell the vinegar when she walked in a day after I sprayed the house.