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Handy Dandy Guide To Reed Diffusers



Handy Dandy Guide To Reed Diffusers

by Chelsea Quinn (Supermom of 4 that really puts products to the test !)

   Reed diffusers have grown in popularity in record time. Reed diffusers are a great home fragrancing method and are much safer than candles as they are completely flameless. This makes them a great alternative to those of us that work in a cubicle all day and cannot burn candles or don't want to worry about whether or not we remembered to blow them out or if we will start our curtains on fire.



   Reed diffusers consist of a glass container filled with a specially blended scented oil. You insert rattan reed sticks into the oil and that's it ! Very simple stuff here ! The oil is a blend of fragrance or essential oils combined with a base that "carries" the oil up the reeds. Rattan reeds are inserted into the oil and the oil travels up to the top of the reeds via channels. These channels are like small little tubes that run the entire length of the reed. Each reed stick has about 20 of these channels in them. Through natural means, (evaporation) the oil travels up to the tops of the reeds  where it is naturally dispersed into the air leaving your home or office filled with scent.  



   Use your imagination when it comes to the glass container. A glass bottle, a beautiful vase or heck..even an old drinking glass would work just fine. I have even found that some manufacturers sell the refill oils in PET plastic bottles. Plastic bottles made out of PET material are safe to use.  You can insert your reeds right into the plastic bottle the oil comes in ! Ask your manufacturer if they use PET plastic as other types of plastics will not hold up long-term to the fragrance oils or materials in the reed diffuser bases and can eat right through the plastic. Suppliers such as utilize PET plastic bottles that are safe to use as a container.  



   When purchasing reed diffuser kits (or refill oils) you want to be sure to ask your supplier about the ingredients in their base. Many will not disclose the specific ingredients, but will let you know if it contains alcohol, solvents such as dipropylene glycol (often referred to as DPG) or other harsh chemical solvents. As reed diffuser oils are not meant to be used on the skin, manufacturers do not have to (by law) disclose ingredients to the public and many have spent loads of time and money developing thier bases and don't want anyone to duplicate thier creations.  



   Alcohol is highly flammable and causes the fragrance oils to evaporate too quickly. When this happens, you have to purchase more. Frequent replacement means more cash out of your pocket. Avoid bases containing alcohol for these reasons. Dipropylene glycol, or DPG is a solvent used to "thin out" fragrances. Some fragrance oils are thick (especially vanillas !) and many manufacturers add DPG to make the fragrance thinner so that it wicks up the reeds more easily. However, DPG itself is a little too thick to properly wick up the reeds so in my opinion, it really is not an effective method to get optimal performance from your diffuser.   



   Several suppliers carry an environmentally friendly base made out of sustainable materials. The base is not completely natural as fragrance oils themselves are synthetic- but it does not contain alcohol, DPG or other chemical solvents. The Diffusery and carry such bases.  


   I hope this handy guide has helped you to understand reed diffusers and how to select quality ones in a market quickly becoming full of options. If in doubt, talk to your supplier about thier products or visit some of the reputable merchants I have listed in this guide.




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