9 DIY Money-Saving Air Fresheners

Forget expensive and chemical air fresheners and make you own! Try your hand at these homemade air fresheners using household ingredients from coffee beans to lemon juice. 

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin
3-minute read

Coffee Beans

Here’s an ingenious idea for an elegant looking decoration that also smells wonderful! Place coffee beans in votive holders or small bowls, then add tea light candles. They’ll cast a pretty glow and make your home smell like coffee! Use vanilla-scented tea lights if you love the smell French vanilla coffee as much as we do!

Distilled Water, Rubbing Alcohol, and Essential Oil

Make your own natural room freshener! In a spray bottle, combine one cup of distilled water, one cup of rubbing alcohol, and a few drops of your favorite essential oil (lemon, lavender, and peppermint would be good choices here). Shake well before each use. It’s cheaper than Febreeze and works just as well!

Water and Baking Soda

Here’s an easy spray that will completely neutralize household odors for mere pennies. Fill a two-cup spray bottle with water and add two tablespoons of baking soda. Shake before spritzing. You can also add your favorite essential oil for a fresh scent!


To get rid of that overwhelming paint odor after you’ve redone a room, place a bowl or two of onion slices in the room. They will absorb the smell of the paint.


Did you know that a bowl of sliced apples will remove the smell of cigarette smoke in an enclosed space? The next time you have a smoky party, cut up some apples and leave them around the house before you go to bed.

Baking Soda and Essential Oil

Put a half cup of baking soda in a jar and then take your favorite essential oil and put about 10 drops into the baking soda. Mix well. Next, find a cute piece of fabric from your scraps collection and cut it into a circle slightly larger than the top of the jar. Finally, place the fabric on top of the jar and tie a ribbon around the fabric and jar to secure it. Now you have an adorable air freshener that brightens any room!

Lemon Juice

Avoid all the chemicals in store-bought air freshener sprays with this homemade version made with lemon juice. Lemons are natural deodorizers and will give your home a pleasing scent, while keeping the air safe for children, pets, and plants. Combine one teaspoon of baking soda with two teaspoons of lemon juice in a spray bottle. Add two cups of hot water and shake the mixture until the baking soda dissolves. Let cool. Spray as needed when things get stinky!


If you love the aroma of vanilla, make an air freshener using vanilla’s enticing scent. Just take a small jar and place several cotton balls inside. Squeeze a few drops of vanilla extract onto the cotton balls. Before putting the cover on the jar, use a nail to puncture a few holes into it and voilà! You’ve got your very own vanilla air freshener!


Do you have a plug-in air freshener? You may be able to refill it without buying costly refills that contain toxic chemicals. Instead, use essential oil, which comes in a variety of scents and can be found online or in health-food stores. Remove the wick from the bulb, fill with half water and half essential oil, give it a shake, and put the wick back in. Then plug in for a pleasing scent!

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Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

About the Author

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin

Bruce Lubin and Jeanne Bossolina-Lubin are the proud parents of three boys and more than a dozen books. After saving thousands per year using everyday tips and simple lifehacks, they started their own business in the hopes of sharing their knowledge with others. They have been known to go into their friends' refrigerators to turn their eggs upside down so that they last longer.