6 Ways To Make Your Home Smell Good

There are so many things that can make a home smell bad that I break out in a nervous sweat just thinking about it. Dustbins, cat litter, smoke, food smells, bathroom smells – it’s basically a war zone in here. Luckily I’m borderline obsessive about having a good-smelling spot, so here are my favourite home fragrance tips.

1. Open the doors and windows

It should be obvious, but apparently it’s not the case with everyone. I despise walking into a home that smells stale and/or musty, and everything else that’s been hanging around in there. I grew up in a home where the adults smoked inside, yet our house never smelt bad because the doors and windows were always open. Whatever your reasoning is for keeping everything shut tight, rethink them and see if you can find an alternate solution because honestly, nothing beats fresh air.

2. An air purifier

Air purifiers are promoted for all kinds of benefits including reducing pollen and dust in the air, but I honestly can’t tell if it does that – I purely have mine because it makes my entire living area smell good. You use it with water and a squirt of concentrated solution – I use either the Kitz or Perfect Aire brands and I prefer the fresher, cleaner smells like Apple and Green Tea.

An added bonus is that it makes a soothing swishy sound which is the perfect white noise. Just check when you buy the actual purifier as a lot of them have LED lights in different colours which I didn’t like. I eventually found one with no lights – it boils down to personal preference, naturally.

I’m not 100% sure if it’s the same as mine but there’s a very similar one by Crystal Aire here for R476.

Leaf Air Purifier

3. An electric burner

Few things are more soothing than having essential oils waft through your house all day, but keeping tealight candles alive for more than three hours at a time is a full time job. I gave up years ago and started using electric burners – I have one upstairs and one downstairs and they’re amazing. I use wax melts in them, which are solid pieces of scented wax that are placed in the bowl instead of water/crystals and oil. Since there’s no fire hazard like with a candle I even leave it on if I go out for a couple of hours – it’s pretty amazing to unlock your door and walk into a heavenly-smelling apartment.

My mom brought me a big box of the most amazing papaya-scented wax melts from Elumé, but they’re not available in SA so I’m savouring them (see it here though). I sometimes use wax melts from Kringle Candles, Village Candles or Yankee Candles (get them online here) but most of the time I prefer to use pure aromatherapy soy wax melts (get those here). I figure that because I burn them for long periods, the purer the stuff I’m breathing in, the better.

Electric burner for R250 here.

SOiL Electric Burner

4. Candles

Oh how I love a good candle. I need no occasion to burn candles, and I seldom burn only one at a time. I like Yankee Candles (Fluffy Towels and Pinks Sands are two of my favourites, but I have a LOT of favourites), Village Candles (although my last two were a bit disappointing so I’m not sure if I’ll buy them again), SOiL candles, and I most recently bought myself the most glorious Charlotte Rhys candle (it’s over here, I chose No 17).

Aside from fragrancing my space, I find burning candles very soothing and relaxing, and I’ve noticed guests always pick up on this too. My candle habit is pretty expensive so I recently made my first batch of soy candles and it went ok – I’ll definitely do it again now that I’ve got the trial run out of the way. I followed Tori’s tutorial, which you can find over here.

Charlotte Rhys No 17 Candle

5. Linen spray

It’s been years since I’ve had aerosol room spray in my home. I doubt that it’s particularly good for us, and last time I checked it just made everything smell like the loo. Instead I spritz linen spray onto curtains, bedding and even scatter cushions when I feel the urge. I love Mercer & Reid, which is an Australian brand my family mules back and forth for me on visits, and I also like a couple of variants from Rain Africa – Savannah is by far my favourite (get it here). I’ve also used their burner oil in my electric burner -it’s equally great, by the way.

6. Essential oils

On loose mats, on a cloth when you wipe down counters, to top up melts in the electric burner. All day, everyday.

If you have a good home fragrance tip, please share it with us in the comments!

C x

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  1. Nov 25, 2015 / 11:30 AM

    I love Savanna from RAIN too!

    I have recently found another brand called Liberty Candles, they are so reasonable. I bought them from a random gift store called Sensations in JHB. The Jasmine one is amazing!

    Also, the linen spray from TBS is pretty amazing, the Jasmine and White Frangipani is to die for! They have an Oil in that scent too.

    I also have a humidifier with an oil section, which works pretty well!

    • Chantelle Bester
      Nov 25, 2015 / 11:50 AM

      Ah, thank you for the recommendations! I’m definitely getting a humidifier with an oil section come winter, my old one broke anyway 🙂

  2. Bianca
    Nov 25, 2015 / 1:17 PM

    I love the idea of an electric burner! I use my candle one pretty frequently and I often forget about the candle and then next thing you know you’re basically burning metal. I have those automatic air freshners from Ambi Pur in our living area set to intervals of 36 minutes – works pretty well to freshen my home whilst I’m not there during the day.

  3. Feb 25, 2020 / 3:07 PM

    I read a tip years ago on Pinterest – to drop a couple of drops of essential oil on the inside of the cardboard roll of your toilet roll.

    I’ve used this ever since! It leaves your bathroom smelling fresh and lovely, without anyone every knowing where the smell is coming from!

    • Chantelle Bester
      Feb 26, 2020 / 10:54 AM

      I’ve forgotten about that one! I’m going to start doing it again, thanks xx

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