How Do Reed Diffusers Work?

The holiday season is a time to be spent with family and friends, relaxing and enjoying each other’s company. With holiday tidings comes a certain amount of stress, however, especially if you find yourself doing most of the holiday planning for your family. In fact, a poll conducted by the American Psychological Association (APA) shows that 44% of women have higher stress levels than normal during the holidays and only 27% felt they were able to relax.

Whether you’re feeling the strain of the upcoming holiday season or simply dealing with the stress of daily life, aromatherapy could be the solution you’ve been looking for.

Aromatherapy is a holistic healing therapy that has been utilized for thousands of years by ancient cultures in China, Greece, Egypt, and other parts of the world to enhance aspects of both emotional and physical health. It is a practice that utilizes natural plant extracts to promote health, happiness, and wellbeing, providing numerous benefits for your body, mind, and spirit.

There are a number of different ways to engage in aromatherapy, but one of the simplest and most effective methods is to use a reed diffuser. In this article, we’ll delve deeper into the subject of aromatherapy and explore how you can experience it for yourself using a LAFCO reed diffuser.

What is a Reed Diffuser?

Reed diffusers consist of little more than a vessel used to contain liquid or essential oil fragrance and the reeds that absorb the oil and diffuse its scent. A reed diffuser is one of the simplest and most practical ways to utilize aromatherapy at home and, because it doesn’t require the use of any heat or flame, it is completely safe for homes with pets and children. Plus, you can use just about any scent you like to add a lovely air of natural fragrance to the room of your choice.

How Do They Work?

A reed diffuser relies on natural reeds to disperse the fragrance. Each reed contains roughly twenty tiny channels, called capillaries, that run the entire length of the reed. Much like miniature straws, these capillaries absorb the fragrance oil and transport it to the very top of the reed where it is naturally dispersed in the air through evaporation. As the oil evaporates, the fragrance is emitted.

Simply fill the diffuser vessel with essential oil fragrance and add natural reeds. We suggest starting with 6 to 8 reeds for a regular sized room.  For larger rooms, or if you want more fragrance add more reeds. Conversely, for smaller rooms, or if you find there is too much fragrance, remove reeds. As the reeds absorb the essential oil, the fragrance is dispersed naturally into the air. Under the right conditions, a LAFCO reed diffuser contains 445ml of fragrance and will last 9 months or more. For a more intense scent, you can carefully flip the reeds every few months.

You can extend the life of your reed diffuser by refilling the container with the same fragrance, but it is not recommended that you use the same reeds for a different fragrance.

The Benefits of Reed Diffusers

Aromatherapy is defined by the Natural Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA) as the therapeutic application or the medicinal use of aromatic substances (like essential oils) for holistic healing. It is an all-natural form of alternative medicine thought to work by stimulating the scent receptors in the nose which then activates the central nervous system, triggering the part of the brain that controls your emotions. This is why certain fragrances might make you feel more relaxed while others fill you with a natural boost of energy.

Reed diffusers are one of the most practical methods of aromatherapy because they are easy to use and can last for months on end. Here are some of the benefits of reed diffusers:

  • Reed diffusers disperse fragrance constantly until all of the oil is absorbed and has evaporated from the reeds.
  • A LAFCO reed diffuser can last for 9 or more months.
  • Reed diffusers are perfect for use in bathrooms, guest rooms, and closets where you want to enjoy a pleasant fragrance but can’t leave a candle burning.
  • A reed diffuser can be reused as many times as you like as long as you rinse it well and replace the reeds between fragrances.
  • Reed diffusers can do more than add fragrance to a room – they can become an element of design or aesthetic, depending where you use them

Now that you have a better idea what a reed diffuser is and how it works, you may be wondering what kind of fragrance to use. Read on to learn about choosing the best fragrance oils for your reed diffuser.

Choosing the Right Oils for Your Reed Diffuser

Essential oils are natural oils extracted from the various parts of different plants. They are called “essential” oils because they capture the plant’s essence, including its scent. This is why essential oils are ideal for use in aromatherapy, particularly with a reed diffuser.  As well the use of essential oils as a primary ingredient in our diffuser fragrances ensures delivery of a natural and true scent.

Here are some of the most popular essential oils that can be found in LAFCO’s diffuser fragrances:

  1. Lavender – With its subtly floral scent, lavender is one of the most soothing essential oil fragrances, known to promote relaxation and sleep while also relieving headaches. This fragrance can be found in our Chamomile Lavender Reed Diffuser.
  2. Cilantro – This essential oil has a sweet, herbal aroma that freshens the air and blends well with other essential oils to support emotional balance and relaxation. This fragrance can be found in our Cilantro Orange Reed Diffuser.
  3. Orange – With its identifiable citrus scent, orange essential oil has been shown to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression with its sweet, uplifting aroma. This fragrance can also be found in our Cilantro Orange Reed Diffuser.
  4. Chamomile – A key component in sleepy time teas, chamomile is a natural sedative that has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, calming overactive minds and promoting sleep. This fragrance can also be found in our Chamomile Lavender Reed Diffuser.
  5. Sage – This herby essential oil stimulates and clarifies the mind while also enhancing memory and uplifting the mood by easing negative thoughts and emotions. This fragrance can be found in our Vetiver Sage Reed Diffuser.
  6. Grapefruit – An uplifting aroma, grapefruit essential oil stimulates the mind with a natural boost of energy while also helping to reduce anxiety and balance emotions. This fragrance can be found in our White Grapefruit Diffuser.
  7. Mint – Both spearmint and peppermint have an energizing scent which combats mental fatigue. Inhaling mint essential oil is also a natural remedy for headaches, cold, and congestion. This fragrance can be found in our Mint Tisane Reed Diffuser.
  8. Vetiver – This oil has a sharp, earthy scent that has been shown to calm the nerves and boost overall mood in addition to improving alertness and cognitive function. This fragrance can also be found in our Vetiver Sage Reed Diffuser.
  9. Rosemary – An herby fragrance with a woody aroma, rosemary essential oil boosts concentration and memory while also relieving short-term stress and anxiety. This fragrance can be found in our Rosemary Eucalyptus Reed Diffuser.
  10. Lilac – Beautifully fragrant, lilac essential oil has an uplifting effect on the spirits, relieving anxiety and balancing the emotions for an improved mood and general state of mind. This fragrance can be found in our French Lilac Reed Diffuser.

Whether you’re looking for a specific fragrance or more of a feeling, LAFCO New York offers a wide variety of options in reed diffusers and fragrance refills. View the full collection on our website.

Tips for Using Your Reed Diffuser

Once you’ve chosen the perfect fragrance for your reed diffuser, all you have to do is decide where to place it. Much like scented candles, large diffusers work best for larger rooms (like your living room or bedroom) and small diffusers for smaller spaces (like bathrooms), so choose the location accordingly.

You may also want to place a coaster under your reed diffuser to prevent any oil from dripping on the surface below. Here are some additional tips for making the most of your reed diffuser:

  • Always use natural reeds in your reed diffuser instead of bamboo sticks. Bamboo contains nodes that prevent the fragrance oil from traveling up the length of the stick, making them less effective at wicking the fragrance.
  • Adjust the intensity of the fragrance by adding more reeds to the diffuser – the more reeds you use, the more fragrance will be emitted into the air.
  • If your fragrance starts to fade earlier than expected, try flipping the reeds over to expose the most saturated end to the air – you can also try swirling the diffuser to strengthen the scent.
  • Once your reed diffuser is empty, you can refill it to extend its life – after about 9 months, however, the reeds will have become fully saturated and my not emit as much fragrance.
  • Reed diffusers work best in areas where there is natural air circulation – a high-traffic area like your entry hall is the perfect place to put one.
  • Never mix your fragrance oil with water in an attempt to make it last longer – water and oil don’t mix, so you’ll just end up with warped reeds that don’t diffuse the scent as well.

Aromatherapy may be the key to reducing your stress and anxiety, particularly as the holiday season kicks into gear. To find the perfect fragrance to use in your personal LAFCO reed diffuser, use the LAFCO Fragrance Finder.

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