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Essential oils are catching on as a natural way to spruce up your home. However, many people are unaware of the full array of uses for essential oils in the household.
In this article, we’ll cover some of those uses that you may not have heard of, and give you some tips on which essential oils are the best to use.
What are essential oils?
Essential oils are the result of distilling large amounts of herbs, spices, or other plant-based materials. There are dozens of essential oils commercially available and they all emit strong aromas that can be used in multiple ways.
When buying oils, it’s important to check the labels to make sure you are buying 100% pure essential oils. Many companies dilute their oils in a carrier oil such as olive oil, coconut oil, or almond oil. While this isn’t inherently bad, it does probably mean you’re getting less for your dollar due to being diluted.
Aside from smelling nice, essential oils are often used for aromatherapy and other medicinal uses. However, be aware that they are not intended as a treatment for any medical condition.
Similarly, some oils might cause an allergic reaction in some individuals. So, be careful when spraying them in the air or using them on your skin if you think you might be allergic to a certain oil.
Which oils are best for use around the home?
There are dozens or even hundreds of essential oils that have various scents and uses. However, some are more pleasant and suitable for the home than others.
The main essentials that serve a number of uses around the home are:
There are various kits available online that include some or all of the oils listed above, or you can buy them individually from retailers.
Household uses for essential oils
There are many uses for essential oils around the home. They include:
Used as an air freshener with an oil diffuser. These diffusers humidify the air while diffusing the oil into the room, resulting in a pleasant aroma.
Mixed with water or alcohol to make a fabric spray. You can find several formulas for creating a fabric spray. However, the easiest way to quickly freshen up the sofa or carpet is to mix 10% oil to 90% water or ethanol and put the mixture into a spray bottle.
As a natural cleaning product. Lemon, lime, lavender, and peppermint all make great additions to a homemade cleaning solution. Diluted with water and vinegar, many essential oils can be used to freshen up a countertop or scrub a sink.
Spruce up your clean laundry/linen. You can put a couple of drops of lavender onto a damp washcloth and put this in your dryer with your clothes to give them a nice fragrance. This works particularly well if you use unscented laundry detergent. However, be sure not to go overboard--essential oils are strong and some can cause skin irritation.
Refrigerator deodorant. The best way to get rid of the smell of a refrigerator is to give it a thorough cleaning. But afterward, help keep it smelling clean longer by putting several drops of lemongrass into a small bowl with baking soda. Stir the baking soda on occasion to release the lemongrass fragrance.
Searching for the ideal home is an exciting adventure, but it can also be fraught with setbacks, delays, and disappointments. With a little preparation, however, you can avoid many of the potential pitfalls that could happen along the way.
One of the secrets of successful house hunters is to adopt a positive attitude, but temper it with a dose of realism.
Flexibility is also important, but it pays to be steadfast about your absolute requirements, also known as your "must have" list.
To help ensure a successful house hunting experience, here are a few of the key attitudes and qualities that are worth taking inventory of and cultivating.
Persistence: Although it does happen, it's unlikely that the house of your dreams is going to show up at the beginning of your search. As seasoned house hunters know, it's not unusual to have to look at dozens of houses for sale before finding just the right one. But even when you've reached that turning point, there still may be obstacles, hurdles, and challenges to deal with. The perfect example is a bidding war. What if you're all ready to make an offer on the ideal house, but it turns out that one or more other buyers have their sights set on that same house? That can not only be stressful, but it can stretch your housing budget to its outer limits (and beyond)! On one hand, you have to be willing to walk away from a property that would leave you "house poor", but on the other hand, you may want to consider pursuing a real estate deal that's on the high end of your budget, but financially doable. Working with a knowledgeable real estate agent who's a skilled negotiator can help give you an edge when you're confronted with a so-called "bidding war."
Optimism: If you view house hunting as a process which will eventually produce your desired outcome, then you'll be a lot more motivated to go the distance, rather than lower your standards or give up entirely. A positive attitude will help you overcome setbacks, identify workable solutions, and recognize opportunities when they present themselves.
Organization: Whether you prefer the idiom "The devil is in the details" or "God is in the details," the lesson is still the same: Small details can have a big impact. Staying goal-oriented and organized can help propel you forward and avoid frustrations. Knowing your credit score, establishing a realistic housing budget, and scheduling meetings with mortgage lenders will help you stay on course, be prepared, and steer clear of unnecessary delays. It also helps to take notes, create lists, and follow a daily or weekly action plan.
Buying a house is an important priority which can affect the quality of your life in many ways. By staying organized, focused, and positive about your search, your chances of success will be enhanced many times over.
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The trim is one of the trickiest parts of a home to be properly painted or stained. There’s many steps that must be taken for the trim to be painted well including:
- Nailheads must be set below the surface of the wood
- Holes need to be filled and sanded
- Damaged wood must be repaired and replaced
- Old paint and varnish must be removed
The work that needs to be completed on both the walls and the trim should be done before you begin painting and staining. There’s no rule as to when you should paint the trim -before or after the walls are painted- the only thing that matters is that the prep work should be done before the painting step begins.
When you’re stripping the surface, wear protective glasses along with a dust mask. The chemicals that you’re using can contain toxic fumes. The room needs to be ventilated properly as well. Wear gloves to keep the chemicals off of your hands. You’ll also protect your hands from splinters.
As an additional precaution, when you’re painting, you’ll want to test for lead. Many homes may have lead paint in them, especially those that were built prior to 1978. You can remove lead paint yourself if you take the right precautionary steps, but in some cases, you may need a professional to do the job.
Get The Trim Ready For Painting
Once the trim has been scraped down, you’ll want to wash the surface of the trim with a mild household cleaner. Then, rinse it with water or a water and vinegar mixture and let the trim dry. Scrape any remaining loose paint from the trim.
Sand The Trim
Use a small flat sander to sand the walls or woodwork. For more contoured surfaces, try to use a flexible sanding block. These flexible sanders work great for more curved surfaces.
Have A Strategy
If you’re a less experienced painter, it will be easier if you paint the trim first. This will make it much smoother to prepare the details and paint all of the details. Once you paint the trim, mask it off with painters tape. This will prevent any splattering from occurring while you’re painting of the walls.
Tips For Painting The Trim
Once you complete all of the prep work for painting the trim, use a primer. Next, topcoat the trim using some kind of a latex or enamel. Remember that glossy surfaces accentuate the woodwork in a home, making it stand out from the walls. Moldings, doors and windows require a higher sheen than a wall since there’s more contact on these surfaces.
Painting trim can be challenging, but when you do it safely and in the right order, your painting job will go much more smoothly.