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DIY reed diffuser

Certain aromas have powerful associations with the holidays. But many of the sugarplum-scented candles and gingerbread air fresheners available in stores contain artificial fragrances that can pose myriad health risks. Swap the store-bought options for all-natural scents using this simple technique. It requires only a handful of materials — no flame or electricity needed.


  • 1 8-oz. glass jar
  • ¼ cup carrier oil (such as sweet-almond, olive, or fractionated coconut oil)
  • 1 tbs. rubbing alcohol
  • 20–30 drops essential oils
  • 4–6 reed-diffuser sticks or bamboo skewers


  1. Pour your carrier oil, rubbing alcohol, and essential oils into the glass jar. Stir or shake to combine.
  2. If you’re using bamboo skewers, trim the pointy ends. Place the diffuser sticks in your jar.
  3. Turn the sticks over every few days to expose the ends that have been in the liquid to air. This will help refresh the scent.

Tip:  Mix the oils and alcohol in a jar with a lid or cork, and present it with a handful of reeds.

Essential Oil Blends for the Holidays

Give one of these holiday blends a try:

Cozy and Spicy Blend


  • 10 drops cinnamon
  • 10 drops sweet orange
  • 4 drops clove bud
Woodsy Blend


  • 10 drops frankincense
  • 10 drops cedarwood
  • 4 drops fir-needle
Pumpkin Pie Blend


  • 8 drops cardamom
  • 6 drops cinnamon
  • 4 drops clove bud
  • 2 drops nutmeg
Winter Herbs Blend


  • 8 drops rosemary
  • 6 drops sage
  • 4 drops thyme
  • 2 drops black pepper
Bright and Fresh Blend


  • 10 drops peppermint
  • 10 drops bergamot
  • 4 drops cypress
Photography: Terry Brennan
Kaelyn Riley

Kaelyn Riley is an Experience Life senior editor.

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