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9 DIY Car Air Fresheners to Spruce Up Your Ride

9 DIY Car Air Fresheners to Spruce Up Your Ride

What is that smell?! We’ve all been there. Maybe you’ve got messy kids. Maybe you just completed a long road trip. Either way, your car smells bad. You could reach for conventional car air fresheners, but doing so traps you (and your passengers) in a small space with dangerous air pollutants. Save some money and your health with one of these DIY car air fresheners instead!

1. Potpourri Satchet – Use one of our 3 DIY Potpourri Formulas to create a fresh natural scent. Then, simply fill a sachet with the mixture and place it in your vehicle. Keep it in the glove box or seat back pocket for a mild scent, or hang it from your rearview mirror for something stronger.

2. Pomander Balls – Want to keep the holiday spirit alive all year long? Make a pomander ball with an orange and some cloves using this handy tutorial. Other fruit works well too!

3. Wool Felt Freshener – If you’re looking for a car air freshener that looks like the traditional pine tree (but doesn’t have all the toxic fragrance) try this tutorial from It combines felt and essential oils for a fresh, lasting scent.

4. Homemade Air Freshener Gel – Prefer the gel-style air fresheners? Most brands you find in the store are chock full of hormone-disrupting chemicals, but you can DIY a safe alternative with this recipe from Instructables.

5. Baking Soda – It works to keep refrigerator smells under control, so why can’t it help your car stay fresh? Look for brands that offer box-side vents and stick it under your seat or in a seat-back pocket. Don’t want to risk a spill? Try this mason jar tutorial from Jen and Joey Go Green.

6. Coffee Beans – Love the smell of coffee brewing in the morning? Stashing a porous sack of beans in your car will keep the scent alive all day!

7. Fabric Softener Sheets – If you’ve found a non-toxic brand of dryer sheets that you love, the laundry room isn’t the only place to put them to use. Put an open box under your car seat for lasting freshness!

8. Air Freshener PouchThis DIY is similar to the potpourri sachets mentioned earlier, but has great suggestions for using dried herbs or even incense cones.

9. Homemade Febreeze Spray – If you’re just looking for a once in a while car air freshener, you might want to mix up a batch of this homemade fabric freshener spray instead. Using three simple ingredients, you’ll always be prepared to conquer strange smells–in the car or the house!

What’s in that Car Air Freshener?
Detox Your Car in 10 Simple Steps

Read more: Crafts & Design, Green, Home, Life, , , , , ,

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Beth Buczynski

Beth is a freelance writer and editor living in the Rocky Mountain West. So far, Beth has lived in or near three major U.S. mountain ranges, and is passionate about protecting the important ecosystems they represent. Follow Beth on Twitter as @ecosphericblog or check out her blog.


+ add your own
8:48PM PDT on Aug 16, 2015

Great ideas.

10:38AM PDT on Aug 15, 2015

I scent a little wool disc with essential oils, works great!

2:43AM PDT on Jun 24, 2015

Car scents air freshener is what we should pay attention.

8:08PM PDT on May 12, 2015

Can't wait to try these out, thanks.

8:12AM PDT on May 1, 2015

Hello Everyone!

My friends and I have a new product that we believe your readers would be very interested in. It's called the Scented Door Strip. It's a biodegradable, environmentally friendly air freshener designed to fill the room with a pleasing aroma without the need for electricity, open flame, battery, or aerosol. We are very excited about introducing this great new product and hope you choose to share it with your readers. Thanks so much for your time!!

You and your readers can find out more information on our Kickstarter page:

3:24AM PST on Feb 21, 2015

That's great, but the one that interests me "Homemade Febreeze Spray" has the wrong link. It links to the fabric pouch one instead : /

2:11AM PDT on Oct 14, 2014

Thank you!

10:58AM PDT on Jul 16, 2014

Good ideas!

12:14AM PDT on Jul 12, 2014

I'm going to have to start looking for some of the ingredients I've never heard of and make some of these! My nose is pretending to smell them now (LOL)!!

5:12AM PDT on May 2, 2014

Try essential oils like rose, lavender or vanilla.

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