Aromatherapy is a versatile therapy. It can be used to boost physical wellbeing, nurture mind and emotions, and to fragrance, clean and protect your home. Essential oils deter insects and pests, disinfect surfaces, deodorise and perfume fabrics, and create mood-enhancing room scents.

Aromatherapy Can Protect Your Home From Unwanted Visitors

In summer, prevent flies and wasps from invading your home by burning eucalyptus globulus oil. Wasps detest the scent of this oil and will avoid it if it burned by an open window. If you burn the oil by an open window, make sure the candle is protected from too much breeze. Alternatively, buy strips of long ribbon and drop eucalyptus oil along the length at 5cm intervals. Hang the ribbons up by the window to catch the scent of eucalyptus into the breeze.

Spiders, ants and mice despise peppermint oil. Burn peppermint oil, or use the ribbon method, by open doors and windows. You can also grow mint by your back door to help prevent ants exploring past the threshold. Deter spiders and mice from the dark corners and crevices of your home by pouring 30 drops of peppermint oil onto cotton wool pads, and placing these on the floor in the corners of your home.

Banish the annoying buzz of mosquitos by burning citronella oil or lighting citronella candles. If you are particularly prone to bites, add a couple drops each citronella and lavender oils to unscented moisturiser and massage over your body to make yourself smell unpleasant to biting insects.

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Fragrant Housework

A good way to use up essential oils that have passed their “use by” date is for housework. Even after oils have passed their shelf life for use on your skin, their antibacterial, antiviral and antiseptic properties are still active. Rather than pouring them down the sink, use them to clean, fragrance and help disinfect your house.

Get a warm damp cleaning cloth and pour on 30 drops of an antibacterial oil like tea tree, then wipe over your kitchen or bathroom work surfaces. Use the same method with lemon oil to get rid of lingering cooking odours from your kitchen.

Shake nā€™ Vac

Deodorise, clean and fragrance your carpet while you vacuum. Get a glass jar and fill it with 300g bicarbonate of soda. Now pour in 100 drops essential oil of your choice, such as geranium and lemon, or palmarosa and lime. Shake well and leave for a couple of hours. Then sprinkle the bicarbonate soda (not the whole contents of the jar, this should last a few weeks) over your carpet and leave for an hour. Vacuum your carpet and fragrance it at the same time.

Perfumed Linen

Fragrance your bed linen with oils that will help to relax and comfort you as you sleep. Put six to eight drops of sweet orange or mandarin oils into the powder drawer of your washing machine. The linen will pick up the scent as they are washed.

Mood-enhancing Fragrances

One of the most popular uses for essential oils is burning them, allowing the oils to release beautiful fragrances into the air. Burning vanilla oil makes your home seem, well, homey. Burning rosemary provides a stimulating environment, while burning chamomile brings relaxation. To fragrance a room you only need four to five drops essential oil in the water four your oil burner.

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Experiment with different oils for different moods and create the atmosphere you wish ā€“ relaxing, inspiring or romantic.