If you’ve ever lit a scented candle to quickly freshen up your home, you’re not alone. Candles are a multibillion-dollar industry that’s estimated to reach $9.9 billion globally by 2028.
Unfortunately for those of us with a growing collection, however, scented candles may not necessarily be the best for our health. Many release potentially harmful chemicals and particles into your home, which can be a concern if you have health problems, don’t have proper ventilation, or burn candles for too long. So before you light another pumpkin-spiced candle, consider these eco-friendlier alternatives that will help your home smell good without reducing its air quality.
If you’re perhaps not ready to ditch candles altogether, consider making a switch to 100 percent beeswax versions. They’re made from one ingredient—you guessed it, beeswax—and are all-natural, nontoxic, and eco-friendly, so they won’t contribute to air pollution. This does mean that they don’t contain any artificial scents, but they still give off a natural, subtly sweet aroma.
You could also consider melting naturally scented wax in an electric wax warmer. These devices are generally safer for both you and the environment since you’re not dealing with an open flame or artificial and chemically enhanced scents. Drop a piece or two into the warmer, then simply plug it into an outlet in any room in your home.
Essential oils are a versatile and powerful way to freshen the air in your home. Different oils can also have varying effects on your physical and mental health; for instance, lavender can improve sleep quality and mood. You can add a few drops to a diffuser, or you can create your own room spray by combining the essential oil with distilled water and witch hazel in a glass spray bottle. Just be sure to invest in high-quality oils made with the best ingredients, and always diffuse them in a well-ventilated room away from any children and pets.
While you may associate potpourri with your grandmother’s house, it’s actually a wonderful way to scent your home naturally. You can purchase a premade blend or make your own with items like dried citrus, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and so much more. Whatever route you choose, adding a handful or two of the mixture to different bowls throughout your home will give you a delightful aroma to enjoy all day long.
These natural and sustainable alternatives are great ways to refresh your living spaces while also creating a healthier home environment.