We stopped using commercial car air fresheners because of my daughter’s car sickness. The strong scents of the fragrance oils exacerbate her nausea. We actually made our first air freshener to help calm her motion sickness. Through trial, error, and a whole bunch of vomit, I finally found a combination of oils to soothe her queasiness.
Don’t get me wrong. I love the clean, natural scents of pure essential oils. I’m a lavender and rosemary fiend, even. But during the holidays, I see scented candles and car scents like apple pie, cotton candy, fresh linen when I am out shopping and I miss being able to pop one in the car for a month or so. All the little themed accessories are part of the holiday magic.
You Can Make Your Car Smell Like Candy Corn With Essential Oils!
I wanted a fun scent for Halloween so I searched online for the “cleanest candy smelling fragrance oils.” I’d noticed that more and more products designed for people looking to reduce toxins in their homes were showing up on store shelves. The air freshener aisle in the grocery store even has a few “natural” sprays and oils on it now. So I thought that maybe I could find a synthetic fragrance oil that wouldn’t give me a headache and make my child feel nauseated.
Imagine my surprise when a bunch of essential oil blends popped up in my search results. I’ve been crafting with, diffusing, and using essential oils for over years and it never occurred to me that they could be blended to smell like candy! I found essential oil recipes for a bunch of common candies and novelty fragrances. Mind blown. When I think of essential oils, I think of plants, flowers, and fruits. You know, stuff that grows in the ground.
So of course we had to try some of them.
Candy Corn is Halloween in a sugary nutshell.
And our new car air freshener is perfect for October. As with all of my crafts, it’s also extremely easy to make so don’t pay any mind to how long the directions are!
What you need for your homemade car candy corn air freshener:
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of Water Absorbing Crystals
- 10 oz of distilled water
- 6-10 drops of Clear liquid dish soap or Dr Bronner’s Unscented Baby Soap
- 1 teaspoon Wild Orange Essential Oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Frankincense Essential Oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon Essential Oil
- A 16 oz mason jar, preferably one with smooth sides
- 3 small glass or porcelain containers for mixing each color
- Red food coloring or liquid soap dye
- Yellow food coloring or liquid soap dye
- 3 plastic spoons or popsicle sticks for stirring
If you do not use or want to use natural essential oils, you can find candy corn scented fragrance oil and use it in place of the essential oils.
Notes about the materials:
Normally I use a 4 oz mason jar for my homemade car air fresheners. But with this project I used a large jar so I could see the different colors better. This jar is large enough to be a part of your table decor or tiered tray display. For a 4 oz jar, you would use 1/4 of a teaspoon of the water crystals in each jar.
Side note: I don’t think this blend smells as much like candy as the blend using tangerine essential oil, stress away, and orange essential oil. I was out of stress away! But I do like how this smells. For more candy scented oil recipes check out my DIY Health, Beauty and Wellness board. I hoard oil blend pins like I hoard craft supplies.
About the water absorbing crystals used in this DIY car air freshener
The water absorbing crystals, also known as watersorb (aka the stuff inside diapers!), grow up to 400x when it absorbs water. So a little bit goes a long way. Do not use too much or you will have a big slushy, though non-toxic, mess to clean up.
I found these crystals in my craft supply
mess stash. I bought a pound of the crystals over six years ago and just realized that I haven’t published any air freshener tutorials using it. Guys, I’ve made a lot of air fresheners with this package, my daughter has used some for slime, and I still have enough to make at least a thousand more car air fresheners! As you can see from my other DIY car freshener tutorials, I like to mix up my materials.
Have you ever seen “smelly jelly” air fresheners for sale at crafts shows, on Etsy, or online? Crafters and candle makers call this type of air freshener “smelly jelly.” (Fun fact: 15 years ago, before I had kids I made candles. (Then I had two babies and decided that candles and babies were not a good combination.) This homemade air freshener is actually a candy corn “smelly jelly.”
How to make the homemade candy corn smelly jelly:
First gather your materials.
Put approximately 2 drops of the liquid soap in each. It will help bind and hold the essential oils.
Next, squeeze two drops of yellow food coloring into one small jar. In the second small jar, mix 2 drops of yellow food coloring and one drop of red food coloring. The third jar will remain un-colored.
After the dye, I added the essential oils. The easiest way is to mix all of the oils in one small container then divide it into 3 equal parts and add to each jar. Or you can do it the hard way, like I did, to get the scent to be at the strength that you prefer. Using a 2:1:1 ratio (2 parts orange, 1 part cinnamon, 1 part frankincense), and a dropper, I counted out drops until the smell was where I wanted it.
Now you will add 1/2 tsp of the water absorbing crystals into each jar. Remember, a little bit goes a long way.
Slowly fill each jar with about 2 ounces of water. If using 4 oz mason jars like I did, you will fill each one half way full.
Stir each jar with a different spoon so you don’t mix the colors.
Give the crystals at least 15 minutes to absorb the water. Afterwards, add a little bit more water to each jar. You want the crystals to be full but not spilling out of the jars. It will look like jelly or like slushy jelly. (I added about a tablespoonful of water to each.)
Allow the crystals another 15 to 30 minutes of time to absorb the water.
Finally, you put it all together.
Slowly pour in the yellow gel. Then, using your yellow jar spoon or stick, push down any gel that sticks to the side of the jar. Gently twirl and shake the jar to even out the layer of yellow smelly jelly.
Next pour in your orange mixture. Make sure the layer is nice and even and the sides of the jar are clean.
Finally, pour in your white jelly.
If you plan to use the air freshener at a later time or give it as a gift, then use a regular mouth jar lid and seal your air freshener.
But, if you plan to use it right away, then use a frog lid, mesh/sprouting lid, daisy cut lid, or a regular lid with holes poked into it with a hammer and a nail so that the scent can be released as the water in the gel evaporates.
You have your own DIY Car Air Freshener for Halloween!
So easy and made without the synthetic, toxic, fragrances used in commercial air fresheners! It’s adorable too! What do you think? Did you know that you could make candy scents with essential oils?
Do you like to make air fresheners? I have a bunch of diy air freshener tutorials.