Citrus + Himalayan Salt Diffuser 4 Ways!

If you’ve gotten into essential oils lately (or even if you are new to them), you probably know about diffusers that you add water to, plug into the wall, and which release the oil in tiny steam droplets into the air (we like this one for that method). However, there are lots of other ways to diffuse oils as well, and one of the more organic (and prettier!) methods is to use coarse Himalayan salt (or coarse sea salt) and a hollowed out citrus rind with your oils to create a diffuser that looks as good as it smells!

The salt acts in two ways by being both a little home for your essential oils and their fragrance, and by actually soaking up bad odors in the room as well!  To prepare your rind, just cut your citrus in half and if your rind doesn’t have a flat bottom you can slice off a bit of the base to make it sit flat. Use a small knife to cut around the edge of the fruit between the flesh and the rind and then scoop out the middle with a spoon (these work really well!). Since each citrus has its own unique scent, here are four different combinations for grapefruit, lemon, lime, and orange:

Grapefruit + Rosemary:

Fill your grapefruit half with salt, add a few sprigs of chopped up rosemary, add 2-3 drops of rosemary essential oil and 2-3 drops of grapefruit essential oil, and stir to combine.

Lemon + Lavender:

Fill your lemon half with salt, add a small spoonful of dried lavender buds (optional), add 1-2 drops of lavender essential oil and 1-2 drops of lemon essential oil, and stir to combine.

Lime + Mint:

Fill your lime half with salt, add a few sprigs of chopped up mint leaves, add in 1-2 drops of bergamot mint essential oil and 1-2 drops of lime essential oil, and stir to combine.

Orange + Cinnamon:

Fill your orange half with salt, add a small spoonful of cloves (optional), along with 2-3 drops of cinnamon leaf essential oil and stir to combine.

Oh man, these smell SO good! I would say there’s definitely a range of drop amounts to use in your diffuser based on your preference for how strong you like a scent to be and how close you are to the diffuser. So one that’s meant to diffuse throughout a room should have more drops (we suggest a total of 6-8 drops max) and one sitting right next to you on your desk will probably need much fewer. Start with a smaller amount and add more if needed. You may also want to place your rind on a small plate or bowl in case leveling off the bottom cut through to where some juice may leak out a bit. The scent should last a few days and you can keep refreshing with new oils and stirring the salt until the rind starts to shrivel and shrink. Once your rind has lived a full life, you can ether transfer the salt to a new rind or to a small bowl to keep using the salt as a diffuser. Play around with different scents and find a combination that you love! xo. Laura

Credits // Author and Photography: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with ACS for Desktop actions.
  • I love playing with essential oils and coming up with new things to do with them.
    Thanks for these ideas

  • Interesting idea! I found 13oz grinder containers of coarse himalayan pink salt at the dollar tree for $1, so this would be a fun way to use it!

  • This is a great idea, especially when entertaining and traveling. Will be using this for myself and for college bound grandson in his dorm room. Thank you.

  • This is seriously such an amazing and adorable idea! I love this and cannot wait to give this a try. Thank you!

  • Hi. Do we place these diffusers over the tealight to warm the salt or it’s just to place around?

    • Hi Chamila! The scent is diffused from the salt, so you won’t need to warm them up.

  • If you have a lot (like a LOT… 3-4 boxes at least) of the coarse ice cream salt, could you use that instead? Or does it have to be the pink salt?

  • These are so pretty!
    Awesome idea! Thanks for sharing 🙂
    Debs @

  • What a beautiful idea, and the citrus bowls are so pretty! I definitely want to try this!

  • I am definitely making this! Does the salt draw liquid out of the pith? And could you maybe keep the husk as a dried out bowl and keep using it, or is mold inevitable?

    Thanks for the great idea!

  • What a cool way to use salt! I LOVE the citrus smell so I think this one would be a winner for me – also love cloves!

    Eva |

  • This is SUCH an amazing DIY! I’m going to make one immediately for my desk at work. Thank you for the idea!

    Christina | Girl, Do It

  • These sound like they smell so good!! I was using a water diffuser and then somebody mentioned to me that a lot of essential oils aren’t safe for cats, so I stopped using it just to be on the safe side. I’d love to see a post that helps explain which oils are good for furry friends and which ones are definitely off limits 🙂

      That’s the source that ouifresh sites on their faq for essential oil safety. This site has a ton of information on it on essential oil safety in general.

  • I love citrus fruits and the smell of citrus, so this sounds perfect! It’s a cute decoration too! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

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