Monday, March 28, 2011

Fragrancing Your Home

I am convinced that I was born with acutely heightened senses. Things hurt my ears more than anyone else I know, I enjoy tastes like they are a symphony in my mouth (anybody see Ratatouille?), smell affects my judgment and enjoyment of things (or not) almost to a fault, and because of that (my sensitivity to smells), I want to keep my home smelling fresh and inviting. Because this is a constant mission of mine, I have several scent sources that I rely on. Besides the obvious candle, Here are my favorites:

This is a plug-in mini wax burner. It stays close to the wall and out of the way, lets off a little light, and is perfect for a small room like a bathroom or laundry room. Pros: fills the room with fragrance, acts as a night light, is easy to empty/refill because the top saucer is removable, doesn't take up counter space, and the melt lasts a really long time! Cons: It does take awhile to heat up and get going (maybe 45 minutes), so for drop in company, this doesn't do much.
Next up is a wooden block diffuser. If you like fragrance oils, but don't like the wooden sticks look or are afraid that it will get knocked over and spilled, here is your solution: This works exactly the same way, but you use the entire lid as your "wick". Because it's such a large surface area, this can easily become overwhelming in a small room, or even a bedroom. Perfect for living areas or basements though! Pros: no spilling, lasts a long time (maybe 6 weeks) Cons: is strong, so you must use it in a well-ventilated area.
This is the classic plug in oil warmer. I like this for rooms like a mudroom or laundry room where it's nice to have a continual member on your offense battling against unpleasant odors like dirty shoes, clothes, or pets. Pros: easy, and adds a continual light fragrance to the air Cons: doesn't look very pretty when it gets low, uses electricity.
Febreze Set and Refresh: super easy, super effective for very small spaces. It doesn't require any electricity, you don't have to keep adjusting it, it blends in well with a spa like bathroom atmosphere, and lasts about a month. Pro: cheap, does the job in small areas where unit can be close to the nose Cons: not super strong, hard to see when it's getting low.
This may be an old-fashioned method of fragrancing, but I love a good lamp ring and oil. All you do is place a few drops of your oil into the ring, carefully place it on a cool light bulb, and turn on the lamp! It is usually a very quick fix (i.e. drop in company) if you have odors you want to get rid of fast. When you turn off the lamp, the smell fades quickly too. You can change scents easily and often if you wish. Pros: easy, quick, instant fragrance Cons: a little pricey for the oils, but they last FOREVER, bugs can get caught in the ring and die (gross).
Above is one of my very favorite clean, calming scents: Lavender Chamomile from B&BW

So how do you fragrance your home? Do you have some favorite scents for Spring to share with us?