We've long since found a replacement for the ozone-depleting propellants originally used in aluminum aerosol cans, but they're still not as eco-friendly or recyclable as plastic containers. The folks at Method, though, have managed to make a pressurized container from plastic.

If you've ever purchased a bottle of pop you know that handling pressurization isn't an issue for some plastic containers. However, the strong PET plastic used for soda and water bottles is actually very porous on the microscopic level, and over time the carbon dioxide that creates the pressure slowly seeps out. That's a huge problem for a product like an air freshener that needs to be atomized when dispensed to be truly effective, but also keep working for at least a year after purchase.

But instead of trying to hunt down yet another alternative to aluminum, the designers and engineers at Method developed a solution to the slow leak problem of PET plastic. Traditional aerosol cans mix the product and propellant together when sprayed, and as they empty they get less and less effective at pumping it out. Method's bottle features an expanding air tight chamber at the bottom filled with pressurized air that continually pushes the product up and out. It also means the bottle will be completely filled with air freshener, not diluted with propellant.

It's a clever improvement to the traditional aerosol can, not only because it's more eco-friendly, but because it also allows the product to be visible if a manufacturer so chooses. The consumer doesn't have to guess when the product is running out. And it's an innovation you won't have to wait for years of testing and refinement to get your hands on, Method's line of air fresheners are available from Target right now for just five bucks a can. Smells like a bargain, and also fresh lavender. [Method via Design Milk]

Photos via Design Milk