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Hands Holding Pine Cones

Did you know that cleaning product and personal care product companies are not required to disclose what’s in their products’ fragrances? The term “fragrance” or “perfume” on a product’s label can refer to a mixture of different chemicals. Unless companies voluntarily disclose what's inside their fragrances, there's no way for you to know what you're sniffing, putting on your skin, or using around your family.

At Seventh Generation, we take pride in clearly listing our ingredients on our product labels — and that includes fragrance ingredients. You can tell other manufacturers to do the same by joining our campaign for ingredient disclosure.

This winter, avoid hidden fragrance ingredients by only using products that list their ingredients on the label and making your own scents using a few of our favorite seasonal recipes from our Generation Good community members:

Peppermint Bark Wax Tarts

Make your own affordable wax tarts using essential oils and wax flakes. We chose soy wax for a plant-based option that's easy to work with.

You'll need:

  • 3 oz. soy wax flakes
  • 45 drops peppermint essential oil 
  • 25 drops vanilla extract
  • Empty wax tart clamshell or silicone ice cube tray

Use a food scale to measure out 3oz. of wax. Melt the wax in a double boiler. (If you don't have one, you can make one easily: Fill a small pot with 2-3 inches of water and bring it to a boil. Reduce it to a simmer, then put the wax in the glass bowl and set the bowl over the top of the pot.)

Once the wax is melted, stir in the essential oil and vanilla extract. Carefully pour the wax mixture into the clamshell or ice cube tray and allow it to cool. Store the wax tarts in the freezer until you're ready to use them in your wax warmer.  Remember, never leave a wax warmer unattended.

Cinnamon Pinecones

"I absolutely love the smell of cinnamon in my home during the Fall and Winter months. So cinnamon pinecones are a must!" -April T.

Scented pinecones are an easy and inexpensive DIY project. Set them in a bowl or basket for an air freshener that doubles as decor.

  • 10-12 large pinecones
  • 40 drops cinnamon essential oil
  • Gallon zip-top bag

Heat the oven to 200°F. Rinse the pinecones in the sink, then lay them on a cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes (this helps dry them out and open the cones).

Once the pinecones are cool, put them in the zip-top bag. Sprinkle the cones with 40 drops of essential oil, shake the bag, and seal for 1 week.

Fresh-Cut Pine Reed Diffuser

A homemade reed diffuser lets you customize your essential oil blend, and can be made with items you already have on hand — like an upcycled glass jar and twigs from your backyard.

  • 15 drops pine essential oil
  • 10 drops spruce essential oil
  • 5 drops orange essential oil
  • 1 tsp. rubbing alcohol or vodka
  • 4oz. glass jar with a narrow neck (like a spice jar)
  • 3-4 thin sticks or twigs (roughly twice the height of the jar)
  • Water

Peel the twigs with a paring knife. Add the essential oils and rubbing alcohol to the jar, then put the twigs into the jar and fill to the top with water. The twigs will wick up the oil and water and diffuse the scent into the air.

Tip: If you want to use a larger or smaller jar, simply adjust the amount of essential oil. We used 30 drops per 4oz. of water.

Cranberry Simmer Pot

"On the stove top, I like to fill a pot with water and then add in whatever fresh scent I want - cut lemons, cinnamon, basil, lavender...." -Sean F.

We learned this trick from our moms growing up, and we hear it's a favorite among Generation Good community members too: Keep a pot of citrus rinds, seasonal spices, and water on the stove all winter long. Not only does it smell festive, it adds moisture to dry winter air and is a great way to use up citrus that's been forgotten in the fridge.

You’ll need:

  • 1 cup cranberries
  • Peel from 1 orange
  • 2-3 branches rosemary
  • 4-5 cinnamon sticks

Fill a large saucepan or crock pot with water. Add the ingredients and bring to a low simmer. Top off with more water as needed. 

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