Hilary Duff explains how to use scent to boost your mood at home – it's more nuanced than we expected

The Lizzie McGuire actress sat down with H&G to discuss how we can use scent to feel happier at home

hilary duff for below 60 in a green kitchen
(Image credit: Below60)

Over the past year, design trends like 'dopamine decor' have emphasized the need for joy and play in our homes. While the impact of color or pattern on our happiness levels is well-documented, there is another mood-boosting element of interior design that is often overlooked: scent.

As the founder of an all-natural home fragrance brand, the actress turned scent-maven Hilary Duff knows a thing or two about how smells can impact our moods. Hilary joined Homes & Gardens to talk about her luxury diffuser range Below 60° and her favorite ways to use fragrance in her home. It all comes down to individual taste.

'I think it helps to pair scent with the vibe you're looking for,' Hilary told Homes & Gardens exclusively. 'You have to figure out what works for you. You have to be in tune with what you like and what you don't like, and you have to try new things.' 

Hilary Duff

(Image credit: GettyImages)

Whether it is using one of your favorite candles or an essential oil diffuser, choosing scents that you love for your home matters. 

'I set the mood a lot with essential oils but also, if I wake up and feel a certain way, I like to choose a scent to accentuate that. For me, I love vanilla in my bedroom. It just makes me wake up easily. I feel cozy, and it feels warm. I don't want to jolt awake, and vanilla helps give me that slow start.'

For every mood, there is a way to make your home smell nice. Hilary says, 'If I've already had my coffee and maybe I'm in my bathroom getting ready, then I want something like if citrus were a feeling from Below 60°. It feels a lot more energized. It's a grapefruit-forward, bright citrus blend.,

Hilary continues, 'If you're looking to wind down, you want warmer, more natural scents. For me, when I'm having a daytime party, I want brighter florals. If I have a night party, I'm hanging with my girlfriends or our neighbors or something like that. I won't like something headier and moodier.' From romantic scents to calming scents, there's a home fragrance for every mood.

Furthermore, for Hilary, it's not just about overwhelming the home with as many tricks to make your home smell nice as possible. She says, 'I think less is more. There's a big movement towards stripping down your lifestyle and figuring out what is essential to you.'

She continues, 'For me, that's having my home and my space dialed to where I can just leave the outside world and be in there with myself or with my family. A space where I feel like it's 100 percent a representation of my life and representation of who we are, how we live, what we like, what we stand for, and what we enjoy so and then that is like also sharing it with other people that come over.' An artfully chosen signature scent can help create this atmosphere of peace.

When we take scent as an element of interior design, the possibilities for creating homes that we love expand infinitely. Take it from Hilary Duff.

Sophie Edwards
News Editor

I am a London-based News Editor at Homes & Gardens. My interests lie at the intersection of design and popular culture with a particular focus on trends and celebrity homes. Before joining Future, I worked as a Content Writer and Communications Lead for Fig Linens and Home, a luxury linens and home interiors brand based in Fairfield County, CT. I have a BA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College in New York and an MSc from the Oxford University Department of Anthropology.