The cold season is finally behind us and the "deconfinement" is slowly taking shape! It was necessary to stay at home to limit the risks of contamination, but this led us to live in an increasingly polluted indoor environment.
Heating, household cleaning products, air fresheners, the use of candles or incense, cooking residues, mold, and in some cases, smoking ... are all sources of pollution that have a negative impact on the air quality of your home. Indoors, the main pollutants can be 5 to 10 times more concentrated than outdoors ... some even say up to 100 times!
# 1 - Open the windows
The first and most important rule is to ventilate every day. If the outside temperature is too cold, ventilate room by room. Once a day, close the doors to each room and open the windows for 10 to 15 minutes. During confinement, do this at least two to three times a day.
# 2 - Be careful with the household cleaning products you use
As the return of sunny days rhymes with spring cleaning, be careful not to pollute the indoor air further. There are many cleaning products that contain molecules that are toxic to our health. The skin and lungs absorb these toxins, many of which are endocrine disruptors. (To understand what endocrine disruptors are, see the article: Make better choices for yourself!)
It is time to think differently when it comes to cleaning! Do your research! Many eco-friendly household cleaning products are available at TAU. For a nice touch of "clean smelling" freshness while you clean the house, add a few drops of lemon essential oil to the soap you use.
Lemon essential oil is known to have antiseptic and antibacterial properties. If you don't like the lemon scent, other options are available to you when it comes to cleaning time: Sylvester (scotch) pine, eucalyptus radiata or eucalyptus blue gum, fir, peppermint, melaleuca, grapefruit … And why not lavender, whose fragrance and soothing properties we all know. Dare to try new blends!
Tip to deodorize the kitchen and bathroom garbage bin:
Put a drop of lemon essential oil and a drop of lavender essential oil on a piece of cotton placed at the bottom of the bin.
Tip to naturally deodorize a room:
Baking soda is known to absorb odors. In a corner of the room or on a shelf, place a glass jar (ideally no more than two inches tall) filled with baking soda in which you will add a few drops of essential oils of your choice. Change the baking soda every two weeks.
# 3 - Clothes: laundry and drying
When it comes to laundry, you can easily replace fabric softeners by adding 60ml (¼ cup) of baking soda to the wash cycle ... soft and supple clothes guaranteed!
To replace softening sheets ... whose synthetic scents permeate for a long time in the house, your clothes and on your skin ... use wool or cotton drying balls. A drop or two of essential oils directly on the balls will add a delicate scent to your laundry. Lavender is the most used one, but it's up to you!
To eliminate wrinkling, it is recommended to use 3 balls per load. Very eco-friendly and effective, you can reuse them up to more than 500 times!
# 4 - Freshen up naturally and safely with essential oils
Essential oils are very concentrated extracts that should be used "drop by drop". They are safe if used correctly and this depends on:
1. The choice of oil and its chemical composition (aldehydes, phenols, ketones, etc.). For example, some essential oils are mild and do not pose a significant risk of toxicity even over a long period of use. Others can be irritating to the skin, eyes or respiratory tract, while some can be used internally for their therapeutic properties.
2. From the way to administer or apply them (oral, dermal, inhalation / diffusion).
3. Dosage, dilution and duration of use.
4. The quality of the oil. Do your research and ask which are the best brands.
For this article, let's focus on those that are gentle and whose properties are safe for cleaning the air. Of course, you must be careful in the presence of people with asthma, allergies or suffering from respiratory problems, and sometimes even refrain from diffusing essential oils in the room where these people are. However, in the vast majority of cases, if there are any reactions, they are minor and regress quickly after the exposure stops.
Use the cold diffusion method using a glass diffuser or mist / nebulizer type.
The goal is to infuse the air with infinitely small particles of the essential oils.
Two simple steps
1. Open the windows for 10-15 minutes, then close them.
2. Diffuse the essential oils in a room for 10 to 30 minutes maximum - or 5 to 10 minutes every two hours - or, depending on the diffuser selected, with an automatic two-minute “on / off” cycle without exceeding 30 minutes. There is no need to do this any longer. Essential oils should never be diffused continually without a break.
Among the safe essential oils, for a successful olfactory experience, the essential oils of citrus fruits like lemon, sweet orange, mandarin or grapefruit are always appreciated.
For an anti-stress effect, here are some essential oils with pleasant scents: lavender, petitgrain or the citrus essential oils mentioned above.
To bring you closer to the stimulating aromas of the forest: Scotch pine, black spruce, balsam fir or ocean pine.
And of course, those with intense aromas that purify the air and act on the respiratory tract: ravintsara and radiata or blue gum eucalyptus.
Some interesting synergistic suggestions:
• For a peaceful sleep: sweet orange (6 drops), mandarin (6 drops) and lavender (3 drops) or chamomile.
• To purify the air: lemon or grapefruit (10 drops) and ravintsara (6 drops) - or - balsam fir, sweet orange, lemon (in equal parts)
• For bathrooms and wardrobes: balsam fir (8 drops), peppermint (3 drops)
Now, it's your turn!
If you are not used to essential oils, start with the most popular ones: lemon, sweet orange, lavender, pine or fir and eucalyptus and practice mixing a few ... a few drops are enough!