How To Make Homemade Gel Air Fresheners

Homemade Gel Air Freshener

During the summer, I made air freshener with baking soda, essential oil and sidewalk chalk (to color baking soda). So, I thought it was time to try and make the gel air fresheners.  I’m on a mission to make everything homemade.  This was a fairly easy DIY to make. You only need a couple of ingredients and it’s quite inexpensive. I used lemon essential oil to scent the gel air freshener.  It has a wonderful lemony scent.


  • 1 box of Knox Unflavored Gelatin (1 oz)
  • 2 tablespoons of table salt
  • 2 cups of water (1 will be cold water)
  • food coloring (optional)
  • essential oil


Homemade Gel Air Freshener

Before you begin, prepare the glass jars or containers that you will use to hold your gel air fresheners.  Put in a couple of drops of food coloring, about 5 each, into the containers. This was a great tip that I picked up from DeandresCrafts. Then, I put in at least 20+ drops of essential oil…..I kind of lost count of drops after 20. I think I may have put about 30 drops into each container. You could just use a teaspoon or half teaspoon to measure out some essential oils.  That way, you won’t have to stand there shaking drops all day.  You may want to use less or more. Of course, the preference on drops for both scent and color will depend on the tint of color and the scent that you would like. (Update: You will definitely want to start off with at least 2 teaspoons of essential oils and add additional as needed. The gel air fresheners require a lot of essential oil to give off a nice scent.) I made an orange colored gel and a blue one.  I made the orange color gel by mixing equal parts of red and yellow food coloring.

Homemade Gel Air Freshener

Pour 1 cup of water into a pot.

Homemade Gel Air Freshener

Let water begin to boil and pour in all four envelope packets into pot.  Stir until it dissolves.

Then pour in salt. Stir until dissolved. Remove from burner.

Homemade Gel Air Freshener

Pour in the cup of cold water. Stir.

Homemade Gel Air Freshener

Pour gel mix into the containers.  You’ll notice that there will be a foam residue on the top.  You can stir the jars a little bit with a plastic fork, spoon, or knife.  You don’t have to do that much stirring. Don’t worry about the white foam on the top.  It will stay on the top for a while, but will eventually leave after it begins to gel.  Let the containers sit for 24 hours so that the gel will set.

Homemade Gel Air Freshener

You’ll notice that after 24 hours, the gel has set and the white foam residue has disappeared.  It has a wonderful lemony scent to it.

Homemade Gel Air Freshener

This is a pic of the orange colored gel.  They both have the lemony scent.  Love them.  Will update later on how long the scent lasts.  That way, I’ll know whether or not the next time I have to add more essential oil drops.

Have you tried making the gel air fresheners or any type of air fresheners, yet?  If not, you might also like the post that I did on Homemade Air Fresheners that are made with baking soda.

 Update:  4/14/2014

I made these gel air fresheners in January 2014.  When you make the gel air fresheners, you will want to start off adding at least 2 or 3 teaspoons of essential oil in order to have a nice scent.  Of course, this will depend the strength of  the essential oils. Some oils carry a stronger scent than others.  The Homemade Air Fresheners that I made in the summer seems to provide a stronger scent than the gels.  Of course, the gel air fresheners are so cute.  I will add more essential oils when making these the next time.


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  1. Dear sharon
    Why is my gelatine fluid not good and after one or two hours, that i put in the car it becomes watery.
    Best regards

  2. Pat in CO says:

    I’d like to know if I can put this in the container that goes in one of those industrial, battery powered air freshener. The fixture has a tiny fan that blows over the container of scented gel. I only could get Pacific Linen scent and I hate it. Plus it costs a fortune

  3. Hello mates, its fantastic article concerning educationand entirely defined, keep
    it up all the time.
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  4. Great article. I prefer to use natural and organic products. Thanks for sharing the amazing tips to make car perfume at home.

  5. hi there, I made these around 3 days ago. The have not set at all 🙁 only once i refrigerate it does it set, as soon as it comes back to room temperature, its all water and oil again. I have made 8 of these from one batch of recipe you’ve mentioned. Is there anyway to salvage these? can i add more gelatin? can i add agar agar and stir again? Please help 🙁

    • Hi Nidhi. So sorry to hear that they did not gel. I had no problem with the get setting. Did you make sure to add in the salt? Did you add in enough gelatin? The only problem that I encountered was not having added enough essential oil to get a strong scent. I have not tried agar agar, but if it may help to salvage what you have done, please try it. Please let me know if it works…

  6. Stephanie says:

    I was wondering if it would be possible to use a recipe like this and reuse an old container. Like the funnel shaped renuzit ones you buy at the store.

    • Hi Stephanie. I would like to say yes, however, I have not tried it in a container shaped liked the Renuzit ones. Of course, it is definitely worth a try. Please remember when making this gel air freshener that you will need to use quite a bit of oil to get a nice strong scent.

  7. love the idea! I have a whole bunch of scentsy bars and wanted to turn them into a gel to take them to work. Do you think if I melt a scentsy cube and use the same amount as you did for the oil it would work? Or could I get a odorless oil and combine it with the scentsy wax? If odorless oils exist lol. Thanks!

    • Hi Esther! I am not quite sure on the use of the scentsy cubes. I think you should try it and see if it works. Of course, you must come back and let me know if it works. You could be on to something new….

  8. Ayub khan says:


    I tried making gel air refreshners .But i used Agar agar instead of gelatine. the result is the essential oil gets separated from the gel .is there any way to mingle the gel and the oil?

  9. Hello, I have made the jelled air fresheners the other day. They came out so cute and colorful and they smell nice when you put your nose up to them. But they don’t seem to smell at a distance to fragrance a room. i don’t know what went wrong. I was disappointed when I didn’t smell them in the room.

    • Hi Linda. Sorry to hear that the air fresheners did not scent the room for you. I made these in January and meant to come back and update how they worked out for me. First, unlike the baking soda air fresheners, I realized that the gel air fresheners require much more essential oils. It is best to start off with 2 teaspoons and work your way up to the desired strong scent. Next time I make these, I will start off with a higher amount of essential oils. Also, you would want to try an essential oil that has a very strong scent. I continue to love making my homemade items and sometimes they require a little tweaking. Thank you for letting my know how it turned out….

  10. Love this idea!!!! I made one yesterday, but noticed after I had made it that I used warming oil instead of essential oil, so I will see how it goes. So far, I can smell it in two rooms (kitchen and living room).

    • Hi Shamika! It seems like it’s working great if you can smell it in two rooms. Let me know how they turn out after a little time has passed….

    • I thought the essential oils were the right kind of oil to use. What is the difference between the two oils ? I used the essential oils and the jelled fresheners are not filling my rooms with fragrance. I don’t what happened.

  11. wow! what a great idea. who knew! #SITSBlogging
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  12. Fabulous idea! Sharing 🙂 I’d love to know how long it lasts! Rhondda #SITSBlogging
    Rhondda Mol recently posted…Crochet Tip of the Week – Alternate Ways to Work into the Starting ChainMy Profile

  13. Hi, i’m used to making them but I always wanted to know how people make the moulds…. or how they make it and then remove it from the container when its finished. any idea?

    • Hi Josie! The gel air fresheners that I made are to actually stay in the container until it starts to deteriorate. You would not take them out after the gel sets in the glass container.

  14. You’ve been featured today over at the Foodies & Crafties Soiree Link Party!!
    Stephanie Pass recently posted…Foodies & Crafties Soirée – Blog Hop & Link Party #10My Profile

  15. You make it look so easy! So glad you shared this at the Foodies & Crafties Soiree!
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  16. VERY COOL! I love this idea! A yummy smelling house is so cozy and welcoming. Creating scent that is natural and cost effective is perfect! Thanks for linking to the Weekend re-Treat Link Party! xo, S.
    Shannon – AKA Design recently posted…Nothing is Impossible | Free PrintableMy Profile

  17. Sharon, you are so clever! I’m stopping in from Let’s Get Real today. I used to use the gel air fresheners all the time, but then started to worry about what was actually in them with animals and children in the house. These come out looking quite beautiful and I bet they were pretty fun to make.
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  18. I love this idea! I hate all the chemicals store bought air fresheners put in my home. I’m pinning this to definitely make later! Thanks!
    Candace recently posted…DIY Fairy Tale NecklaceMy Profile

  19. uuu, this is such a great idea. Do you think it would work with a candle inside too?

  20. Looks really easy to make. I need to give these a try and place them in the bathrooms.
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