There are few fragrances as fresh and pleasant as oranges, so the delicious citrus fruit is an excellent choice for a DIY room deodorizer. Choose from several different ways to make room deodorizers from oranges, including boiling orange peels for their scent, preparing an orange-infused room spray and adding dried orange peels to potpourri. All the methods are great ways to make use of a byproduct that would otherwise go to waste, with the bonus of creating room deodorizers from all-natural ingredients. Further, these deodorizers can easily incorporate other scents, like herbs, spices, and essential oils, for a custom blend.
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Boil Orange Peels for Scent
Cooking orange peels for the smell is an easy way to create a room deodorizer. Simply add orange peels or whole orange slices to water, bring it to a boil on the stove top and turn the heat down to a simmer. As they simmer, the oranges will release their scent in the steam, which should permeate the whole kitchen and beyond. Along with cooking orange peels for their smell, you can add a variety of other scented ingredients, including:
- Cinnamon sticks, whole cloves or star anise
- Sprigs of rosemary, mint or thyme
- Bay leaves
- Sprigs of pine needles
- Other citrus, such as lemon, lime and grapefruit
- Fresh lemongrass or ginger
- Vanilla, peppermint or almond extract
- Essential oils, such as lavender, peppermint or tea tree
Keep your eye on the stove as you boil orange peels for their scent to make sure the water stays at a gentle simmer and the pan doesn't boil dry. Top it with more water as needed. Alternatively, use a slow cooker with the lid partially open or a small bowl of water with orange peels set on a mug or candle warmer. After you have finished cooking orange peels for their smell, get more life out of the room deodorizer by saving the liquid and added ingredients in a jar in the refrigerator. The next time you want to cook orange peels, simply pour it all back into the saucepan and reheat. Also, freeze your orange peels after eating oranges and you will have more ready.
Make an Orange Peel Air-Freshener Spray
Transform old orange peels into an air-freshener spray that you can spray into the air when a room needs to be deodorized. You can also spray this on couch cushions, linens, rugs and any other soft furnishings that smell a little musty. Test an inconspicuous spot first.
Fill a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid with the peels from two to four oranges and approximately 4 cups of rubbing alcohol or cheap vodka. Make sure the peels are fully submerged in the alcohol and let the jar sit undisturbed in a cool, dark place for one to two weeks. Add one part orange-infused alcohol to one part distilled water in a spray bottle, optionally with 10 to 20 drops of essential oils as well. Discard the leftover orange peels.
Other Orange Peel Deodorizer Ideas
There are several other ways to use orange peels as room deodorizer. You could dry strips of orange peel in the sun, a dehydrator or the lowest setting on the oven for several hours and then add the fragrant strips to store-bought potpourri. An easy way to add a subtle hint of orange scent to a room is to cut the fruit in half, scoop out and eat the fruit and fill the remaining bowl-shaped peel with coarse sea salt. Add essential oils, dried herbs or spices to the salt for a more complex fragrance along with the deodorizing effect of the salt.
Stud a whole fresh orange with cloves to make a pomander – an old-fashioned winter craft that also works as a natural air freshener. You could get creative and carve a design into the peel with a knife or zester and tie the pomander with ribbon to hang as a decoration or place the pomander in a small bowl as a decorative room deodorizer.