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I’m not much of a DIY cleaner person (though I would like to be!) but I do make my own room spray and have for years. This is the thing I use to defunk my teen’s laundry hamper, but it’s great for general freshening purposes, too.
The best thing about it is that it requires just three ingredients and about a minute to make.
Ingredients Needed for DIY Room Spray
There are a lot of recipes out there for DIY room spray using different ingredients, but the one I have always made uses just three things:
- water (ideally distilled, but tap or filtered water works, too)
- rubbing alcohol
- essential oil
Some recipes call for using spirits like vodka or grain alcohol, but rubbing alcohol is a lot cheaper and I think it works just as well. If you happen to have a supply of vodka on hand you’re willing to use in your room spray, that’s totally fine, too.
Why Use Alcohol in Room Spray?
The purpose of using alcohol in your DIY room spray recipe is first, as a preservative that prevents mold or bacteria from growing in your spray.
Along with the water it helps dilute and mix in the essential oils so that the whole batch smells good.
And it helps the essential oil disperse in the air when you use your room spray.
Using Witch Hazel in Room Sprays
Some recipes for DIY room spray call for witch hazel, which is an astringent often used in homemade beauty treatments or remedies for skin ailments like sunburn and rashes.
Witch hazel helps the essential oils mix in with the water the same way alcohol does. If you have witch hazel on hand you can use that in place of the alcohol. There is no need to use both in your room spray.
DIY Room Spray Recipe
With all that out of the way, here’s the room spray recipe that I use:
- 1 cup water (again, distilled is best but filtered will work)
- 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol or witch hazel
- 20-30 drops of essential oil(s) of your choice
Combine all in measuring cup, then add to a spray bottle (I use an old one from when I bought room spray, but any small plastic spray bottle will work).
Using Room Spray
To use your room spray, give the bottle a little shake before you spray just to make sure the essential oils are still well combined. This may not be strictly necessary but it takes me years to go through this much spray so I always give it a little shake just in case.
Spray on fabric such as the couch, carpets, curtains, your kid’s hamper. You get the idea. You want to spray from about a foot away and just spray a light mist.
Essential Oil Combinations
I like to use rosemary because I like the smell and it’s supposed to be calming and helpful for focus, which I think we could all use. Frankincense or cedar would be nice to mix with rosemary since they all have a woodsy aroma.
If you want to add some antiseptic properties to your spray, consider lemongrass, eucalyptus, orange or peppermint.
Of course lavender is a classic for calming, and lemon is a great option if you like the “clean” scent of traditional cleaning products.
This version is a mix of rosemary, cedar and vanilla. I really like it!
Check out this post for more ways to use essential oils in the home.