Even the tidiest of homes face challenges from household materials omitting VOCs (volatile organic compounds). New furniture, carpeting, even your drapes can produce these unwanted toxic vapors. If you are tempted to “freshen your air” try opening a window, not using a spray mist. Store bought air fresheners like FeBreeze are just as dangerous (if not more so) than the VOCs you are trying to reduce.

So how can you greatly reduce your impact to VOCs and improve the quality of air in your home? DIY, of course!

Develop a Green Thumb.

During photosynthesis plants continually take in carbon dioxide and produce beautiful, clean oxygen. Instant filtration! Read up on which plants are best for filtering air in your baby’s room, kitchen, and more.

Herbs Filter too.

Basil, thyme, oregano, sage….no, I’m not making a pasta sauce. These are just some of the herbs that help to clean air and offer wonderful aromatic properties. Warning: they might make you crave a trip to Little Italy.


I’ve got to be honest, I haven’t thought much of potpourri since I saw a small bowl on my grandmother’s coffee table back in the 80s; it always seemed to me that it lived in a time long lost. But let’s give it a comeback – and let’s create our own blends!

According to The Naturally Clean Home, there is no end to the different types of potpourri you can make. You just need a fixative, which captures the aromatic oils from flowers, spices, and herbs when blended together. Common fixatives include: orrisroot (dried, ground rhizome of an iris plant), frankincense, cinnamon sticks, patchouli, pinecombs or milkweed will also do the trick.

The base of potpourri is made of dried aromatic herbs and plants, and may include flowers, stems and leaves. Spices such as cloves, ginger, and nutmeg are also included, as are fragrant herbal essential oils.

Try this spicy potpourri this fall and clear the air in your home. Just simmer all ingredients in a pan of hot water on the stove, drain and cool. Then add to a sachet or set out in a dish or bowl

Orange Delight Potpourri:

  • 2 cups orange peel, cut into small strips
  • 1 cup dried apples
  • 1/2 cup each whole cloves, cinnamon chips, and calamus root
  • 10 drops sweet orange essential oil