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How to Make Care Freshies

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Check out this post How to Make Care Freshies Yourself! If you've seen these highly scented and beautiful car air fresheners, you can see how to make these yourself! Great for gifts!

Car freshies double hearts

How to Make Care Freshies

We heard about Care Freshies a while back. These are cute air fresheners that take the scent of oil from the scented oil and sticks sets you see.

Just hang from your rear-view mirror or a window in the house, and it becomes an instant freshener and a suncatcher! The light catches these pretty beads and you have something so much better than those typical cardboard or candle shaped ones that you find at the store.

Car freshies finished

This DIY does take some time and patience, so stick with me on the How-To instructions. If you get through this post and are thinking it's not exactly what I want to do– way too much work– then you can head over and purchase these readily made!

My daughter Taylor is now selling these finished Care Freshies over at her TaylorMaydeCreations Facebook Page.

DIY Instructions for Care Freshies:

If you're ready to get started on these yourself, here you go! First, start with a good set of metal cookie cutters. I recommend metal since we need something sturdy for the beads.

cookie cutters

We used Valentine's themed cookie cutters, since this is the time of year we made them. Use any cookie cutters you prefer. Generic ones like flowers will work for any time of year. Just remember that smaller cookie cutters or X-large cookie cutters may not work as well. You will need to play around with the designs.

scented beads

Next, you will need to have Aroma Beads which have been soaked with Fragrance Oil.

The soaking part of this DIY is what takes the longest. 2-3 weeks prior to your project, you will need to add the Aroma Beads along with your Fragrance Oil to a clean mason jar. Close the lid tightly and turn the jar upside down often, each day. You can also shake the jar to speed up the process. (See Printable Instructions below). You can find fragrance oil in craft stores, and go with any scent you prefer!

After the beads are no longer sticky, they are ready to go in the cookie cutters and you can finish your project.

scented beads in hearts

Baking and Assembling Care Freshies:

In this picture we used our fully prepared aroma beads. We prepared a cookie sheet with parchment and set the cookie cutter down flat on the paper. Then, using a large nail with a good-sized nail head to keep it upright, poured the beads around it. The beads also help hold up the nail.

A clean nail worked well to keep a hole in the Care Freshie for the string. Don't forget this step– you can really mess up your finished project if you are trying to poke a hole into it after it is done. πŸ™‚

mica powder bowl

Adding Mica Powder for Color:

This is the fun part of this project! You don't want all the beads a bland color, so for this we used Mica Powder in different colors. You can find these packets on Amazon.

mica powder

Just mix in the Mica powder until the beads are coated. Shake a very small amount out, being careful not to add too much.

The Mica Powder can keep them from sticking if you add too much! If you're wondering what Mica powder is, you might have to think back to grade school. Mica is a non-toxic natural mineral. It's not ingestible, of course, but it's ideal for craft projects since it can add colorful, shiny finishes to soaps, clay, and many other types of art. Mica powders and flakes reflect light, which is one reason it's great for this project. Observe any safety precautions on the packaging (probably minimal). Do keep away from children and pets as it may be mistaken for something edible.

cookie cutters filled

Finishing Touches:

After they are done, all you do is pop out (carefully) and let cool. The nail may come out of the cookie cutter along with the freshie. Carefully back out the nail, using work gloves if needed.

Car freshies double love

Run a fun ribbon through the top to hang from your mirror in your car, or even around the house! If you want to make it even more special you could even use a custom lanyard for gift giving. You can buy sealable cookie bags to package these for gifts. They make great teacher or healthcare worker appreciation gifts, or something to tuck in a gift basket for Valentine's Day!

These turned out so adorable, we will be making more in the future. I am excited to try new colors and shapes, and of course see more at Taylor's online store. Click below for your printable instructions.

Print Below: How to Make Care Freshies

Yield: 5

DIY Care Freshies

Car freshies double love

These Care Freshies will keep your car smelling amazing! You can make these yourself in any cookie cutter form. We used Hearts for Valentine's Day!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Active Time 30 minutes 20 seconds
Additional Time 21 days 2 seconds
Total Time 21 days 50 minutes 22 seconds
Difficulty Medium


  • Aroma beads
  • Fragrance oil
  • Mica powder


  • Mason jar
  • Cookie cutter
  • Scale
  • Non stick pan
  • Large Nail


    Add 1oz of oil per 4oz aroma beads to mason jar.

    Seal tightly and shake to distribute the oil. They need to sit until oil is fully dissolved. This can take up to several weeks depending on the scent.

    Make sure to rotate the mason jar from the upright to upside down position throughout the day and shake it to distribute the oils. Once dry (they will not stick to the jar) they are ready to be used.

    To make:

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 5 to 8 minutes.

    Pick your cookie cutter of choice and set it on a piece of paper.

    Fill cookie cutter 3/4 the way full and then pour into a bowl. Add mica powder color of choice. Mix till covered.

    Too much mica powder can cause them not to stick. A little goes along way.

    Put a nail at the top to create a hole.

    Add colored beads back to the cookie cutter on a nonstick pan and bake. Let cool then punch out your freshie and decorate as desired!


This is not a children's activity or craft; beads may pose a chocking hazard to young children, and may be mistaken as candy.

Keep all items and finished car freshie out of reach of children!

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

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  1. Does the smell of the oils linger in your oven and get into the foods you bake? Would it be best to buy a used toaster oven?

    1. Hi Cynthia, we usually get our fragrance oils from Amazon but you can find them at craft stores. There should be a link in the post to the Amazon fragrance beads and oils. Hope this helps πŸ™‚

  2. Aww thank you so much for doing this demo for us all to see just how this is done I have been wanting to make these for well over a year now .❀️

  3. I just made my first batch of car freshies. I was only able to get one of the freshies out of the cookie cutters and I can’t get the nail out of that one! What am I doing wrong? It looks so simple watching the videos.

    1. Hi Sherry,
      Are you removing them as soon as they’re done? If you wait until they are cool they are harder to remove. If that’s not the problem let us know and we’ll see what we can do πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Sonia,
      We work with large batches so we really can’t give an answer on using a specific amount. You’ll need to do a batch and see – sorry we couldn’t have been more help. πŸ™‚

  4. Hi!!! So have you or is there a quicker way to makenthese like maybe a day or 2 at the most?
    I would like to make them for an event this sat.
    I have all supplies
    Thanke for the inspiration

    1. Hi Jimmie,
      Can’t say for sure but it does sound like they’re getting too hot. Ovens can sometimes run a little hot. I would suggest you make a small batch and experiment with your oven on lower temps. Since only some of them melted you may not have to lower too much more. Let us know πŸ™‚

  5. I know this is a silly question but I thought I’d ask… when you say:
    β€œ Fill cookie cutter 3/4 the way full and then pour into a bowl. Add mica powder color of choice. Mix till covered.β€œ

    How would I get the beads in the cookie cutter into a bowl? Is there a special way you do it?

    1. Hi Christina
      The easiest way to do it is put the cookie cutter on a small dish, fill it 3/4 of the way full then holding the cookie cutter down against the plate, pick the plate up and dump the beads into a bowl. Hope this helps πŸ™‚

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