Our Holiday Weekend in Pictures ~
Dragonfly Dreams

Making Herbal Oils and Cleaners


I've had the supplies for this project sitting on my craft shelf for some time now. With the school year at an end, and the bustle of the holiday weekend behind me, I figured it was finally time to try it out! I've always been intrigued by the idea of herbal oils and homemade cleaners ... I've read plenty about them, and taken copious notes. I've grown my own herbs, and dried them. I've envisioned container possibilities and labeling methods ... But I was surprised at how easy it was to do once I got down to doing it! (Isn't that true with most projects?)

Below you see my supplies ...


I found the little glass jars for .99 cents at the craft store; there were plenty of styles and sizes to choose from. The base oils (sweet almond) and essential oils I found at my local supermarket (in the health food section) for 50% off! A lot of mainstream grocers now carry oils, but you can be sure to find them at your local natural markets. Make sure to check expiration dates, or ask store staff about turnover time. You wouldn't want to purchase old oils. The little floral stickers I had on hand.

The project was as simple as this ~ I filled each glass bottle with the base oil and then added a few drops of essential oil for fragrance. Lastly, I added a color-coordinating sticker to denote the blend inside. As you can see in the top photo, I made up Orange-Geranium (brightening and comforting), Lavender (calming) and Lemon (renewing). Depending on my mood, or the time of day, I could pour a little oil in my bedtime bath or smooth some on my skin after a morning shower. Even just a few dabs on the pulse points would be a nice touch. I plan to store my oils in the fridge ... how refreshing would that feel on a hot summer's day?

Literally, this little project took me 15 minutes to complete, if that. These oils would make nice gifts - or party favors!

Next on my list, were some herbal homemade cleaners. These, too, were lickety split to whip up ...


In the foreground are my two favorite books for this subject area: Better Basics for the Home by Annie Berthold-Bond and Natural Beauty for All Seasons by Janice Cox. Lots of great recipes and advice in both of these books. Also pictured some ingredients (oils, tea and vinegar) and plastic spray bottles I picked up at the craft store for $1 each.

I made up the following blends, the first three from Better Basics:

Vinegar Deodorizer "Vinegar is an effective disinfectant."

  • 1/4 cup white distilled vinegar
  • 2 cups water

Combine the ingredients in a spray bottle, shake and spray along the inside rim of the toilet. Leave on for 15 minutes or so before scrubbing with a toilet brush.

Tea Tree Deodorizer "Tea tree oil kills bacteria, and the strong smell of the oil will dissipate in a few days."

  • 2 teaspoons tea tree oil (I used a bit less)
  • 2 cups water

Combine the ingredients in a spray bottle, shake and spray along inside rim of the toilet. Leave on for 30 minutes or so before scrubbing with a toilet brush.

Lightly Lavender "Use this spray in the bathroom as a final rinse on the vanity countertop or after cleaning the toilet. It has a lovely scent, and lavender is highly antiseptic."

  • 1 teaspoon essential oil of lavender
  • 2 cups water

Combine the ingredients in a spray bottle, shake to blend, then spray. There's no need to wipe off.

And this last recipe comes from Natural Beauty for All Seasons:

Fruit-Tea Freshener "The fruit teas make wonderful skin refreshers. For a quick pick-me-up on hot summer days, store the freshener in the refrigerator."

  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 fruit tea bags of your choice (I used Red Zinger)
  • 1 tablespoon witch hazel (optional)

Pour the boiling water over the tea bags in a ceramic, heat-resistant bowl. Allow the tea bags to steep for several hours, or until the mixture has cooled completely.

Add witch hazel to the infusion. You may want to strain the solution if you see bits of tea at the bottom of the container. Do this by pouring the liquid through a paper coffee filter.

Bottle the fruit-tea freshener and enjoy. Use a clean cotton ball to apply or use a spray bottle to splash on your skin.

(I didn't happen to have witch hazel on hand, so Bill is going to pick some up for me on his way home.)

This project was also ridiculously easy and quick. And now I have a fridge full of cool scented oils and a basket-ful of natural cleaners at my disposal ...


And on that note, I'm off to try them out! :)

Have a great week, everyone!