My Mom Taught Me the Loveliest Way to Freshen Up a Room, and I Still Do It to This Day
For over a decade, my mom worked as a marketing director for a tea brand. During all those years, we discovered and tasted dozens of teas and herbs that we kept in our kitchen on a regular rotation. Because of their versatility, we often used some of the herbs my mom would bring home from work in various ways including baking, making agua fresca, and using them as the main ingredient for a natural simmer pot.
Because my mom also had the most useful and clever cleaning tips, she taught my sister and me to use certain ingredients to keep our home clean and refreshed. Here’s one tip in particular that really stuck with me:
How to Refresh a Room or Mattress with Herbs and Tea
Every time my mom would bring home loose lavender or chamomile flowers, she would mix two teaspoons of either herb to a half cup of baking soda in a plastic baggie, shake it vigorously to mix, and then sprinkle it all over the living room rug.
I was confused the first time I saw her do this, but once she began vacuuming the rug, I could smell the difference. This mixture emanated a clean and floral aroma that wasn’t overwhelming, but still pleasantly noticeable. The dried lavender mixture was more soothing, while the chamomile mixture was slightly earthy and a little sweet.
My mom’s herbal trick is something I still do today — especially in between deep cleanings when I want to refresh the rugs in my living room and bedroom. If I ever want to give this mixture a stronger fragrance profile, I add in a couple of drops of lavender or peppermint essential oils. I have also used this mixture on my mattress, letting it sit for a couple of hours before vacuuming it (this is one of my favorite practices before putting on fresh, clean sheets!).
Using tea and herbs to refresh my home is a routine practice between myself, my mom, and my sister. These herbs have somehow managed to thread a bond between the three of us, even through something as simple and commonplace as vacuuming a rug. Even though we all live in different cities, my mom’s cleaning hacks, tricks, and tips help us stay connected while taking care of our homes.
This post originally published on Apartment Therapy. Read it there: My Mom’s Trick to Instantly Freshen Up a Room Only Requires Two Ingredients