My regular readers will know that I’m an aromatherapist, so essential oils have always been my No. 1 go-to for home fragrance. However, over the years, I’ve experimented with various alternatives and I’d like to share some of those with you.
1. Fragranced Candles
Guess what! I’ve just launched the Heart Yoga online shop, selling Yogi Meditation Candles!
So I’ve got to start here!
I currently have 10 different fragrances in my new range and there is something to suit everyone’s tastes – from warm & woody to light & aromatic. And, of course, if meditation isn’t your thing, you can just use them to relax while doing your favourite pastime.
Each candle I’ve made is inspired by something close to my heart. Whether that be yoga, travel, nature or music, you will find all the details in the shop descriptions. Just click on the relevant candle and you’ll be taken straight to the details.
Heart Yoga’s candles are made from natural soy wax, using unbleached cotton wicks, and come in a convenient little travel tin for ease of portability. When you order, you will also receive a small coaster to place your candle on. The coaster displays the instructions to get the most out of your candle and its fragrance (there’s more to in than you think!), plus a simple meditation to reflect upon as you relax.
In time, we shall be offering a refill service, just return your tin & get your favourite candle for a lower price. Watch this space for further information.
Whilst talking about the new Heart Yoga Candles, I’d very much like to offer you a discount on your first purchase. Just sign up to our monthly Yogi News and we’ll send you the code. Click on the image below to get your code.
Of course, there are literally thousand’s of candles on the market to choose from, and you certainly don’t have to buy mine!
A brand of candles which I personally love is Pure Thoughts, created by Leanna. Her work-life ethic is inspirational and I recommend you give her products a try too.
2. Essential Oils & Aromatherapy Burners
Being a Tisserand Institute Holistic Aromatherapy graduate (since 1996), then Sales Agent for the Tisserand range of Aromatherapy products, I am naturally biased towards their brand.
Tisserand essential oils have remained one of my favourites to this day. When you are burning something as volatile as an essential oil in your home, it is crucial to know its origin, quality & safety. Tisserand gives you that peace of mind, so that the therapeutic benefits of essential oils can be enjoyed without fear of harm.
That said, using any form of heat on an essential oil does transform its chemical constitution, so essential oils must be used sparingly, and in especially low dilutions if using with infants.
In fact, there is no need to use the old-fashioned burner with a naked flame to fragrance your home nowadays. There are a huge range of electric vaporisers and diffusers available to choose from, which can be kept safely out of reach of little hands. I particularly like Absolute Aromas range and, if you’re looking for an alternative to Tisserand, these are my next favourite brand of essential oils. As a practitioner, I have used their oils with great success.
3. Reed Diffusers
Although not as mesmerising or meditative as a good old-fashioned candle, a reed diffuser is an effective way to fragrance your home. Whilst some are quite pricy, the life of a diffuser is often 6-12 months (depending on size & quality), so they are worth the investment.
Shop bought: Once you have opened the packaging and primed the reeds (flip both ends of the reeds in the fragrance oil a couple of times to saturate the reeds ready for effective use), your diffuser will be ready for use. If you like a strong smelling aroma, use all the reeds that come with the diffuser. However, if this is too pungent, just use fewer reeds for a more subtle way to perfume your space.
As with candles, there are so many to choose from, with a great variation in price too. One of my favourites is by Jo Malone which I received as a beautiful gift from my son. The downside of their diffusers is definitely the price – circa £67 a pop! The fact that you cannot buy refills or new reeds is also a little short-sighted of Jo Malone, in my humble opinion. Needless to say, I’ve kept my stylish bottle and made up my own fragrance to refill it with!
Home made (for 100 ml base oil – adjust essential oil quantities accordingly if you use more or less base oil): I would highly recommend using a blend of essential oils of your choice: say, Geranium, Lavender & May Chang for uplifting and relaxing or Rosemary, Lemon & Eucalyptus for clearing the air.
Once you have chosen your oils, you will need to place 50 drops of each essential oil (that’s 150 drops in total, so it’s not a cheap option) in your chosen glass bottle, with 50 ml oil (such as Baby Oil, which is a mineral oil and therefore less viscous than a vegetable oil) and 50 ml neat alcohol (such as vodka). This will ensure that the essential oils infuse and retain their fragrance, whilst being able to travel up the reeds & emit fragrance more efficiently.
4. Wax Melts
I’ve been using wax melts (also called wax tarts) to fragrance my home for some years now. I always used to buy the commercial variety from the likes of Yankee Candles – let’s face it, their range is vast! A dear friend recently asked me “what do I do with them?” which made me chuckle. But actually, if you’ve never come across them before, why would you know?
I now use them in my aromatherapy oil burners. I will place the wax melts or tarts in the bowl (where the water and blend of essential oils normally goes) and light the flame beneath them, as normal (see pic below).
I still find this an effective way to create aroma and ambience around the home and the wax melts I’ve recently started making myself (also pictured below) will soon to be added to the Heart Yoga Shop. They are the gift that keeps on giving – the aroma stays strong after numerous “melts”. In fact, I haven’t had to replace any yet, and they’ve been on the go for at least two months of regular use!
5. Room Sprays
I love a good room spray, but with so many air pollutants and toxins flying around, I’d rather make my own these days, so I know what’s in them.
As per the reed diffusers above, choose the essential oil blend to suit your requirements, pour them into your spray bottle, add equal parts water and vodka (for ease of blending, spraying & preserving fragrance) & shake the bottle well before each spray.
Whether in the form of jos sticks or incense cones, there’s stacks of choice online. Choose a fragrance to suit your mood & requirements.
From a yogi perspective, I love both the earthy scents of Nag Champa, musk or patchouli, or lighter aromas such as sandalwood, jasmine or lavender to create ambience during my yoga & meditation practice.
The fragrances take me right back to India and the heart of yoga.
7. Pot Pourri
It’s been years since I made one of these, preferring to use the above alternatives. But they are easy enough to do and often a cheaper alternative than some of the above options.
You can choose whatever you have in your garden. Flower heads that have gone over, such as rose or peony, need not be wasted. Bark, pine cones & herbs such as rosemary & lavender can be picked and dried. Or just look in your pantry for spices, such as cinnamon stick, star anise, cloves, dried fruit peel and so on.
Place the ingredients in a single layer on a baking tray & allow to air dry, either on a sunny windowsill or in the airing cupboard, for a couple of weeks. Then place the dried ingredients (trying not to crush them) in a storage jar (with lid), add a couple of drops of essential oil of your choice and cover again. Allow the essential oil to infuse with the dried ingredients and, if you can bear it, avoid opening the lid, for up to 6 weeks, turning the whole jar occasionally. Then your pot pourri, with its heavenly fragrance, will be ready to savour. Place it in a decorative bowl & enjoy!
8. Fresh Flowers
If you are lucky enough to have a garden or allotment with homegrown fresh flowers, then this is by far my most favourite way to fragrance the home. You can even save the flower heads and petals for making your own pot pourri (as above) once they’ve past their best.
I’d just like to point out that the above 8 ways to fragrance your home are based on my own opinion and in no way do I profit from mentioning the different options available.
Thanks for reading the Heart Yoga Blog. And until next time, happy home fragrancing!