8 Ways to Make Your House Smell Like the Holidays

The aromas of cinnamon, pine, and peppermint are an instant indication that the holiday season has arrived. You can’t help but get into the spirit when your olfactory sense is tickled by the scent of gingerbread and Christmas trees. There are a few tried-and-true tricks that will make your whole house smell like holiday happiness. Pick your favorite and get its magic working before your friends and family arrive.

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  1. Use Fresh Greenery


    Nothing beats the smell of fresh cut pine. In fact, the scent may be the most appealing thing about a live Christmas tree. Use fresh greenery wherever you can, whether it’s in wreaths, garlands, sprays, or arrangements. The smell will permeate the room and immediately put you in the seasonal mood.


  2. Make Pomanders


    Clove-studded fruits like oranges and apples have been used to mask odors for centuries. Making pomanders is a simple craft project even the kids can enjoy. After decorating your fruit, roll them in a mixture of cinnamon, nutmeg, and sandalwood oil to let them cure, and they should last for years.


  3. Scent Your Pinecones


    Cinnamon-scented pinecones are in nearly every store during the holidays, but you can DIY them very easily. Wash and dry your pinecones after collecting them. Then spritz them with a solution of water mixed with essential oils like cinnamon, apple, or orange. Seal them in a plastic bag for 24 hours, then remove and let them air-dry.


  4. Make Scented Fire Starters


    Get the house warm and smelling great with homemade scented fire starters. Making these is just like baking cupcakes, only easier—and they'll make your fire-starting chores easier too. For a full tutorial, visit Hello Natural.  

    Related: The Right Way to Start a Fire


  5. Simmer Smells on the Stove


    If you can boil water, you can make your house smell like Christmas. Get a pot of water simmering on the stove and add aromatics like cinnamon stick, pine, orange peel, or cloves. Check Rachel Schultz's site for a full recipe. Before you know it, the whole place will be bathed with the warm, spicy scents of the season.

    Related: Clearing the Air—10 Natural Ways to Remedy Household Odors


  6. Mull Some Wine


    Mulled wine brings holiday cheer to friends and family, and has the side benefit of bringing the bright smell of Christmas to your house. Whether you use a quick-boil method or a slow Crock-Pot simmer, pick your favorite recipe and infuse the entire day with happy spirits and homey scents.


  7. DIY Some Peppermint Spray


    The sweet and spicy smell of peppermint is an instant mood lifter. Make your own homemade peppermint spray by adding about 20 drops of peppermint essential oil to 8 ounces of distilled water, then pour it into a spray bottle. Spritz the air, furniture, and draperies for a candy-cane fresh scent.


  8. Make a Liquid Candle


    Create a custom scented candle with a mason jar, lantern wick, and any oil that burns—even the olive oil that’s in your kitchen cabinet. Add your favorite aromatics, like vanilla bean, cinnamon, clove, pinecones, or oranges. More cost-effective than a wax candle, it will both look decorative and smell delicious.

    Related: 10 Easy DIY Candles for a Festive Season


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