How To Make Your Own DIY Reed Diffuser

diy diffuser

As I sit here typing…my diffuser is silently dispersing scented vapor into the air of my office. There is just something about diffusing essential oils into your environment that feels (and smells) good!

The problem is…not everyone can get their hands on a diffuser. It’s not like they sell them at Walmart and depending on the brand you buy, they can be pricey. Although I have seen them as low as $40, this little number is called “The Whisper” and it set me back almost $90.  It was a Christmas present to myself. :-)

diy diffuser

So how do you diffuse the magic of essential oils into your home if you don’t own one of these contraptions? How about making your own old fashioned reed diffuser?

The process is so simple you probably have everything you need right now in your kitchen and you don’t have to worry about an open flame, hot wax, chemicals or electrical cords!

How To Make Your Own Reed Diffuser

What you’ll need:

  • glass bottle or vase with a small neck opening (I used an empty red wine vinegar bottle)
  • diffuser reeds (or bamboo skewers, which is what I used)
  • carrier oil + essential oils -OR- scented reed diffuser oil
  • washi tape for decoration (optional)

Make sure your reeds or skewers stick out several inches from the top of the container for maximum scent.

Pour your choice of scented oil into the container until it is about 75% full, then stick the reeds or bamboo skewers inside. I went the essential oils route and added fractionated coconut oil to the bottle first, then 20 to 30 drops of both Lavender and Lemon (my favorite scent combo!) You could also use almond oil, jojoba oil, olive oil…or any other type of carrier oil you like.

After about an hour, flip the reeds over to saturate the top part of the reeds that stick out above the oil level. This helps to speed up the process of the oil soaking up from the bottom diffusing through the entire reed.

diy diffuser

After you have flipped the reeds/skewers and they have dried for a few minutes, you can decorate with little washi tape flags if you desire. I think they look so bright and fun with their little flags. :-)

diy diffuser

Place the finished reed diffuser somewhere in your home where it won’t be knocked over by children or pets. Within 24 hours you will begin to notice a lovely light fragrance beginning to perfume your room.

Rotate the ends of the reeds or skewers once a week to refresh and prolong the fragrance.

diy diffuser

Do you diffuse?

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    • Trish says

      Carrier oils such as almond, grapeseed, sunflower oils you can usually get at the grocery store or some health food stores

  1. Kim C says

    I actually got mine from Walmart for around $12. It came with the vase, the reeds and the oil. Target has them too.
    I’ve thought of getting another for the back of the house, but this would be way cheaper. What kind of oil did you use for the carrier oil?

    LOVE your blog by the way!


    I love this and just when I was thinking about creating a diffuser to use up the many little bottles of lovely oils that were my daughter’s.
    The only thing that I want to ask of you is to not give Walmart any recognition. There are many horror stories about their employee practices and also the origin of their products. I am on a very limited income (social security) but I make a practice of shopping locally or do without. Please do not take this comment as a negative because I LOVE your wonderful blog and look forward to receiving it. I have turned a few friends onto you and they also LOVE receiving your wisdom. Thank you so much.

  3. RL says

    Jillee – what do you mean by rotate? Do you take the washi tape off on flip them over or just move the bamboo sticks around?

  4. says

    I read on another site that bamboo wouldn’t work and you had to get the specific reeds so they pull the sent up the stick through ‘tubes’ inside the reed. Do the bamboo skewers work??

  5. Janet L. says

    Your blog is terrific!! I love reed diffusers and mine need to be helped. What is carrier oil? I have the rest of the ingredients ready to go, but for that one.

    • ashley says

      The oil she pictured in the tallest bottle called “fractionated coconut oil” by DoTerra. It is considered a carrier oil in that it is a pure oil that carries whatever essential oils you use. People use the oil to when they need to dilute an essential oil a little bit (especially since DoTerra’s oils are so pure that some of the stronger ones need to be matched with a carrier oil). They use carrier oils to help make just one drop of oil reach over a large part of the body. It is not the same as just regular coconut oil, even pure coconut oil that you would buy at a health food store, which would be solid in your diffuser, unless your house was quite warm (I believe around 75 degrees is when it becomes liquid). Hope that helps.

    • Trish says

      Carrier oils can be any light oil i.e. almond, grapeseed, jojoba as well as the fractionated coconut oil. Most of these you can find in your grocery store (market) or health food stores.

  6. Michael says

    If you “make your own DIY” thing, does that mean you get somebody else to do it?

    This message has been a public service message from your local Department of Redundancy Department’s Message Department.

    ;) ;) ;) ;) ;)

  7. Bernadette says

    Love your site and all the wonderful information you share!
    How long will these diffusers last (weeks/months)?

  8. says

    Oh far out Jillee you are so clever!!
    I just spent too much money on reed diffusers at a department store, never again.
    NOW I know what to do!! xx

  9. says

    A few days ago I stuck bamboo skewers into my essential oil – sniff, sniff – nothing! I’m missing the carrier oil! Love the washi tape decoration! Thank you for letting me know what I’m doing wrong.