Is toxic indoor air choking your airways and making your respiratory system vulnerable?
Considering buying an air purifier to combat this invisible “air pollution”?
If you are looking to ‘Purify indoor air naturally’, you are in the right place. In this blog, you will get 20 easy tips to make your indoor air toxin-free.
20 Natural Ways to Purify Your Indoor Air
Himalayan Salt Crystal Lamp
Himalayan pink salt works as a natural air purifier by drawing from the indoor air and neutralizing them.
Most of the salt crystal products squeeze water vapor out of the indoor air and reduce airborne bacteria, pathogens, and allergens in the process.
You should keep a Himalayan Pink Salt Lamp in your room, at your work desk to breathe toxin-free air. It adds a beautiful countryside effect to your home interiors.
The Himalayan salt lamp can naturally glow without disrupting your sleep quality. The lamps remain effective even when turned off because of their built-in salt crystal.
All candles have a soothing fragrance, right?
Only candles made from beeswax are natural and help purify your indoor air too!
If the aroma of scented candles mesmerizes you, select one with zero paraffin and contains no petroleum and VOCs.
Paraffin wax candles releases toxic chemicals like toluene, benzene, and soot into the indoor air. It is best to stay away from them.
Instead of these artificially fragranced candles, light beeswax candles daily and keep air pollution at bay.
Beeswax candles work as great ionizers to neutralize airborne contaminants and toxic elements.
Apart from improving indoor air quality, they burn slowly, so they need fewer replacements. High-quality and pure beeswax candles are scent or smoke-free.
Houseplants are the smartest solution to indoor air pollution challenges.
Even NASA recommends them!
People having respiratory conditions are most benefitted by keeping indoor plants. You have to take care of different lighting and water requirements of the houseplant varieties.
NASA’s findings suggest that houseplants can purify and revitalize the air within our home and office by eliminating potent VOCs like formaldehyde, ammonia, and benzene.
You should ideally keep a houseplant at 100 SqFt of your home to receive the maximum air-purifying effect.
The most effective toxin-removal houseplants are Broad-Leaf Palm and Lady Palm, which thrives in bright and filtered light. Peace Lily comes a close second, which prefers moderate lighting conditions.
The Golden Cane Palm, Bamboo Palm, or the Butterfly Palm, grow well in filtered, indirect light and can be kept anywhere your house. You should ideally place them in the recently painted or carpeted rooms.
Activated charcoal, popularly known as activated carbon, is a powerful indoor air purifying tool.
It’s loaded with high absorptive properties and has no odor.
Activated charcoal helps remove toxins from indoor air by absorbing it and helps you breathe fresh air.
Having proper ventilation in your house is crucial in keeping the air pollution at bay.
Instead of keeping your windows open for hours, we recommend you to install trickle vents to recycle and purify the stale indoor air.
Install exhaust fans in the kitchen and restrooms to remove bad smells and push airborne contaminants out of your home.
Most of us like a hot shower in winter, make sure you vent the excess moisture out as it can trigger mildew and mold growth.
You should make sure the kitchen is adequately ventilated with chimney or exhaust fan in place. Your cooking stove emits enough Nitrogen Dioxide to elevate indoor air pollution level multifold.
Looking for natural air fresheners?
Essentials oils can help.
You can diffuse essential oils or topically use it as suggested by doctors to eliminate fungi, bacteria, mold, and viruses. The ones popular with strong air-purifying properties are cinnamon, oregano, rosemary, grapefruit, clove, thyme, lemon, and tea-tree.
Recent studies from Webster State University have revealed that Thieves oil, a perfect antiseptic blend of raw essential oils like cinnamon, pine needle, eucalyptus, thyme, grapefruit, and lemon, has over 99.96% kill rate of airborne viruses and bacteria.
You can add a few drops of it to detergents and soaps to make it chemical-free and natural.
Want to your rooms to be germ-free? Put a few drops of Thieves oil to a large bowl with lukewarm water and let it sit for hours to treat indoor air naturally.
Keep Shoes Outside
Develop the practice of taking your shoes off while entering your home. The dirt carried by your shoe sole can have fungi, pesticides, pollen, feces, and harmful bacteria.
When you walk inside the house with your shoes on, you supposedly carry a host of deadly diseases.
Taking them off when you come inside will not only keep your floors clean and germ-free but indoor air toxin-free as well.
Keep Your Pets Well-Groomed
Pet dander – the microscopic skin flecks can leave its mark everywhere in a house with pets.
It can be the precursor of different chronic diseases like asthma and other acute respiratory syndromes.
Frequent exposure to it can worsen your already existing asthma.
Regular cleaning of your pets and brushing off their dead skin cells outdoors can make your home dander-free. You should also clean your furnishings or floors at regular intervals with a HEPA-based vacuum cleaner.
Keep the AC On
If your home is centrally air-conditioned, a whole-house air filtration process is already functioning to control the pollutants.
A powerful AC sucks air with extra moisture out of the indoor environment, cools, and pumps it back in. You need to change its filter regularly to ensure it keeps on trapping and filtering airborne particles effectively.
The more you replace it, its lifespan increases.
Before buying an AC, thoroughly research on the brand, compare with other brands with similar features, and read filter-change guidelines.
Go for Organic or Natural DIY Cleaners
Did you know that a majority of the store-bought floor and tile cleaners carry VOCs and other toxic chemicals?
Regular exposure to such toxicity can irritate your lung, windpipe, throat, eye, and nose.
It’s safer to make your own DIY home cleaners using natural ingredients like baking soda, citrus juice, essential oils, and vinegar. If you want to buy them – check the SAFE Label ones here.
Get a HEPA Air Purifier
These can effectively trap toxic airborne particles, purify the air, and release in the home environment.
If your child has a chronic cough, asthma, or other respiratory conditions, you should definitely install one. Check EPA’s guide to find out the right one for your home. Here are 7 tips to buy an air purifier.
Want an air purifier for smoke? Check out how you can choose the right one for cigarette smoke, wildfire or secondhand smoke here.
Check for mold in the damp areas of your home.
This deadly fungus releases a specific microorganism, known as mold spore, that can cause chronic allergies.
Mold thrives in wet and dark places with excess moisture like your laundry room, bathroom, or basement.
Instead of bleaching them away, take these 5 steps to eliminate mold with zero chemicals.
Air Your New Furniture
Air out your brand-new furniture.
Newly purchased furniture contain VOCs or volatile organic compound which can stay airborne for a long time.
Chemicals such as benzene and toluene are commonly found in paints, glues, fabrics, building and construction materials, and many more.
Be aware of this fact while buying an armchair or sofa, safeguard yourself from possible VOC exposure. It will taper off after getting released heavily for a few days.
Use your garage to store newly bought furniture at-least a week till its VOC effect dies down. When you bring the furniture inside, keep the windows open for a few months for better air circulation.
Use Cooking Oils with Higher Smoke Points
Cooking oils with higher smoke points are preferred to avoid the concentration of airborne contaminants.
Cooking oils generating fume in lower temperatures can fill your kitchen with smoke and lasting smell of burnt oil.
The smell floats through your house and triggers persistent cough, headaches, and other respiratory syndromes.
So which ones should you choose?
Extra virgin olive oil generates lower smoke compared to peanut, safflower, avocado, corn, sunflower, and canola oil.
If you like the olive oil taste, you can use the refined or lighter version of it. It has a smoke point of 486 degrees Fahrenheit higher than 410 degrees for extra virgin olive oil.
Get Bamboo Charcoal
Charcoal is gaining popularity for its increased use of purifying water and making beauty products for skin nourishment.
Charcoal has also been used for cleaning indoor air by removing toxins. Moso air purifying bags are linen made and filled with bamboo charcoal with high density.
Charcoals can absorb excess moisture from indoor air and prevent mildews or mold from spreading in your home.
Its porous structure helps it to trap viruses, bacteria, and other airborne particles and make your indoor air clean.
Energize your bamboo charcoal by putting the bag under direct sunlight once in every month. You can find different varieties of Moso bags in Amazon.
Ditch your Carpet
Do you want to give a touch of grandeur in your interior by placing a wall-to-wall carpet?
Reconsider your decision as it may release VOCs and toxins in the indoor air without your knowledge.
Chemicals used to manufacture carpets may emit volatile organic compounds such as formaldehyde in its off-gassing process.
VOCs are released in high percentage at the time of fitting the carpet on the floor. It will keep on releasing low levels of VOCs for many years.
Apart from that, carpets trap dirt, dander, and dust mites as well.
If carpets stimulate your aesthetic sense, go for plastic-lined carpets instead of linen ones as they make it harder of pollutants or strains to penetrate.
Prefer Low-VOC Paints
Paints keep emitting toxic gases for months after its application. It may appear to be completely dry and smell-free, yet the toxicity doesn’t fully go away.
These are volatile organic compounds or VOCs containing harmful chemicals like acetaldehyde or formaldehyde.
Go for “low-VOC” paints, waxes, varnishes, and other less-toxic chemicals.
Keep windows open to shunt out the smell and use exhaust fans to get rid of toxic gases.
Never leave the paint containers open as its strong smell may irritate your respiratory system.
Fix Leaks ASAP
Fix leaky pipes or water outlets to stop mold from spreading.
Rainy session with humidity can add excess moisture in the indoor air, which may trigger mildew and mold.
Dampness without mold is also harmful to your health as it increases the risk of coughing, wheezing, and aggravate asthma symptoms.
Get your building foundation, basement, backyard, bathroom, kitchen, and basement thoroughly inspected to catch leaky points and excess moisture.
If you find water logging or dripping in any of these areas, fix it immediately.
Kick Dust Mites Away
The accumulation of dust mites triggers dust allergies.
These tiny pests survive and thrive in excess moisture. They live in pillows, mattresses, bedding, stuffed toys, carpets, and upholstery and feed on our skin.
Try the below steps to fight and thwart dust mites:
- Use a dehumidifier to control humidity levels and keep it less than 50%
- Steam clean and vacuum your furniture.
- Replace linen carpets or padded rugs with plastic-lined ones or colorful straw mats.
- Use dust-mite-proof bed covers and wash them in hot water regularly.
Slay Second-hand Smoke
Smoke from tobacco products such as Cigar, Cigarette and others are one of the biggest contributors in making air impure in a home. Second-hand smoke is the amount of smoke inhaled by non-smokers.
You are affected by it, even if you don’t smoke.
The moment you come in contact with a smoker, you are affected.
Just have a dedicated place for smoking in your home. It could be the porch or the sit out area. Basically any area that’s well-ventilated.
“The Journey of a thousand miles begins with one step” – Lao Tzu.
You should follow the same principle in cleaning your home air.
Start slow, take baby steps to make your home clean and fresh.
SO, which one tip did you try? Let me know in the comments below.