Nobody wants funky odors in their home. Even worse is the possibility that a living space smells bad, and you don't even know it. Because the truth is that sometimes, it doesn't matter how much you clean your house; strange smells just show up. So we've put together these simple hacks revealing how unwanted scents sneak in and what to do about it. From your kitchen to the bedroom, you - and your guests - will love how your place smells in no time.
Trashcans are some of the worst offenders when it comes to unpleasant odors. Of course, you could and should clean and sanitize your trashcan regularly, but there's also something quick and easy you can do in between cleanings. You can add dryer sheets to your trash can to help keep it smelling fresh. It only takes a second, but it'll ensure that there aren't any foul odors coming from your kitchen.
Just drop a couple in before you put in a new bag, and they should help capture some of the odors that'd normally leak out and spread through your home.
Couches can be a great place for odors and stains to hide. After all, we usually only vacuum them or wipe them down. However, there is a much better way to clean your couch, and all you need is some baking soda. Just spread a bit around and let it sit there for a couple of minutes. It should pull out all of your couch's odors and get rid of stains.
Just remember to vacuum all of the baking soda up after it's sat there for a couple of minutes. This is probably the best way to clean your couches other than shampooing them.
Wax burners are already a great tool to help keep foul odors away. But did you know that you can actually boost the scent by adding something like Gain Fireworks or Downy Unstoppables? Just add some laundry scent booster to the top of your wax burner, and the scent should be carried throughout your home. If you're looking for something with fewer chemicals, you can add some essential oils instead.
Just pour some water on the top of your wax burner and add a couple of drops of essential oils. The smell should start to spread throughout your home shortly after.
Get ready because this next hack is genius. You can add essential oils to the inside of the toilet paper rolls in your bathroom. Not only will this generally make your bathroom smell better, but it will release fragrance every time someone pulls on the roll. Just pick whatever scent you like best and add a few drops to the inside of the roll, and you should be good to go.
Just remember to add it to the inside of the roll and not the toilet paper itself. Wiping with essential oils might not be the best idea, depending on what you're using.
Garbage disposals are a real time-saver, but they're also prone to harboring bad smells, even when they're not clogged up. You could use a chemical cleaner, but we've got a hack that's cheaper, healthier, and smells better. Instead of spending money on a product, try using lemon peels. Just cut a few lemons, peel them, and stick them down your garbage disposal. They should get rid of any foul odors that were hiding down there.
Not only will your garbage disposal smell like lemons when you're done, but it'll also be a bit cleaner when it comes to bacteria, as they don't like citrus or lemons.
Love having a nice smelling home but worried about all of those chemicals used in most store-bought air fresheners? Why not make and use your own air fresheners? It's super simple, and to be fair, "make" might be a bit generous. All you need to do is take some essential oils and put a couple of drops on your home's air filters whenever you get ready to change them.
This will ensure that the scent travels throughout your home without your or your family being exposed to any harsh chemicals. It also lasts quite a while compared to air fresheners that you spray.
This one is really simple, but it's also really effective. Sometimes when you store away your linens, they can still contain a bit of moisture, which leads to that distinct linen closet smell. However, you can easily combat this by adding a dryer sheet to your linen closet. It'll help soak up some of the moisture in the air and keep your linens smelling fresh no matter how long they're in there.
You'll also be met with a pleasant scent every time you go to open up your linen closet, which is probably the best part about this simple and effective hack. Well, that and the absence of moisture means there's no chance for mold to grow.
Kitchen cabinets are often neglected when it comes time to clean. This means your kitchen cabinets could be contributing to questionable odors, and you don't even realize it. But don't worry; we've got just the trick. Every once in a while, wipe your cabinets off with a mix of water and lemon juice. Or, you can use vinegar and baking soda - but we still recommend wiping a layer of lemon juice or even lemon oil after. Here's why.
Not only does the lemon make things smell better immediately, but it will also proactively tackle any bad smells before they develop into real problems down the line.
The fridge can be a real chore to clean. And while you should clean your fridge regularly, there is a way to help keep it smelling nice in between cleanings. Just cut a couple of lemons in half and place them inside little bowls filled with baking soda. This should keep your fridge smelling like citrus, which is to say they'll keep it smelling nice until you have time to get in there and clean it.
Lemons also have anti-bacterial attributes, so they even help on that front while they're in there. Just remember to change out the lemons before they start to go bad.
Ever wish you could add a bit more vegetation to your bathroom or shower so it would feel more spa-like? Well, it's actually much easier to pull off than you might think. You can buy eucalyptus bunches and hang them from your shower head to give your bathroom a much more natural feel. There are also odor - and health - benefits to adding eucalyptus to your shower, as they release good-smelling oils every time it gets steamy.
Not only do Eucalyptus oils smell great, but they also help with things like nasal congestion. Just be sure to change bunches whenever the leaves start to get old.
It's not that hard to make your own air fresheners, and the best part is that they are all-natural. All you need are a couple of simple, yummy-smelling ingredients. Your best bet is a mix of fruits and herbs. There are a couple of different methods out there, but basically, you just have to boil your ingredients together in a pot and then transfer them into a glass jar.
Your house will start smelling good the moment the mix starts to boil. And once transferred to jars, this idea also makes for great decoration pieces. It's a home maintenance win-win if there ever was one.
You might think that if you wash your sheets regularly, then that's all you need to do when it comes to bedding. However, you're neglecting your mattress if this is all you do. Over time, a mattress can soak up a lot of sweat and other stuff (yes, even if you have a mattress protector). That's why you should clean it from time to time with a mixture of baking soda and water.
If a stain is not too bad, or if there are no stains, you can just sprinkle some baking soda over your mattress and then vacuum it away the same as you would a couch.
We all love our pets, but they're usually not the most pleasant-smelling things about our homes. This is especially true when it comes to their beds. However, there's a really easy way to clean their beds, and it only takes a couple of minutes. Just sprinkle some baking soda on their beds, then use the vacuum to suck it up. It's safe for your furry friends, and it'll eliminate any foul odors.
It's basically the same principle as when you use baking soda to clean a bed or couch. For whatever reason, it just pulls out the odor and leaves it cleaner.
Sometimes unpleasant odors can start emanating from our showers and tubs. This is because the drain is not as cleared off as it should be, and debris gets stuck down there. Luckily, there's a simple fix. Just pour some baking soda down the drain and wash it away with apple cider vinegar. Combining the two makes for a natural drain cleaner that will clear out all the debris.
And don't worry if you see some foam or suds rise to the top of the drain; that's just the cleaner doing what it's supposed to be doing and getting rid of dirt.
If you've ever turned on your air conditioning or heater for the first time in a while and been met with a weird smell, you're not alone. However, it doesn't have to be that way, and you can use essential oils to freshen up any vents. Add a couple of drops to a clothespin, attach it to a vent, and you should be met with a pleasant smell whenever you turn on the AC or heat.
Also, remember to change your furnace filters before winter and then every month after that, as they can accumulate a lot of dirt and debris. Not doing so can lead to undesirable smells coming out of the vents.
Using a detergent in your bathroom can be a great way to help cut down on undesirable odors there. Some places recommend that you pour a bit of liquid clothing detergent into your toilet tank. And while this is certainly going to make your bathroom smell a whole lot better, another option is just to pour a bit of detergent onto cotton balls and spread those around your bathroom.
It's guaranteed not to harm your toilet, and you still get all the benefits of using detergent in your bathroom. But if you feel confident about your toilet's ability to handle some laundry detergent, we'd put it in the tank.
When it comes to cheap smell-good hacks for your home, nothing beats a little baking soda. You can use it just about anywhere to remove odors. If you sprinkle some baking soda on your carpets and let it sit for around 15 minutes, it'll pull all the odors out of your carpet. After 15 minutes, vacuum it away as you normally would, and you're good to go.
This should also work for things like rugs or just about any type of carpet if you have any that you've noticed have started to develop a bit of a funk lately.
If there's one thing we've learned about getting rid of odors in our home, it's that vinegar is often our best friend. So here's our next protip: keep a spray bottle (sold at your local dollar store) filled with white distilled vinegar and water in your bathroom. You don't even have to wait until something gets stinky to use it - just spray down your shower tiles, bathtub, and showerhead every few days.
After you shower, do a little spraying. It'll easily become a part of your routine and will keep away potential stinky odors. You can thank us later.
This one probably applies a bit more to summer, but it's really simple and can work wonders. You can tape some dryer sheets onto just about any fan you use, and it'll help keep your room smelling fresh. Of course, if you're using something like a Dyson fan, this isn't going to work, but it should work for just about any bladed fan, whether it's a box fan or not.
It might seem simple, but it works, and it works especially well in the summer when funky odors tend to turn up more than they would in the winter or fall.
You can really use a DIY lemon-scented cleaner anywhere, but they work especially well for toilet brush holders, and not many people ever consider using them there. The internet is filled with different explainers on how to make your own, but most of them involve mixing lemon juice, water, and a bit of natural dishwashing soap together to make a cleaner. You can then put that into a spray bottle.
Use the spray bottle to clean down your toilet brush holder, and it'll leave your bathroom smelling lemony-fresh for surprisingly long. It'll also get rid of any dirty bacteria.
There's nothing better than the smell of coffee radiating throughout the house. And it turns out that it's actually really easy to make your own coffee-scented candles at home. Just take a vanilla-scented tea light and place it in a cup or bowl filled with coffee beans. Next, just light the candle, and the warmth should heat up the coffee beans enough to make your home smell like fresh vanilla coffee.
Of course, you don't have to use a vanilla-scented tea light and can instead just use a regular candle, but the vanilla works really well with the coffee beans.
Most basements usually contain a distinct smell, which is no coincidence. They can be great places for mold to hang out and grow. However, there is a way to get rid of the mold and leave your basement smelling just as great as the rest of your home. It takes a bit of work, but it's worth it, as mold won't have anywhere to hide after you finish cleaning.
All you need to do is spray the walls with bleach and pour some baking soda on the ground along the edges of the wall. This will ensure that any mold spores in your basement are wiped out.
Prefer your air fresheners from a spray bottle but don't like spending money on them? Well, then, this hack is for you. All you need is a spray bottle and some Gain beads. Drop a couple of the Gain beads inside your spray bottle and fill it with warm water. Then, shake it and let it sit for around 10 minutes. After everything is combined, you're left with what is basically Febreze.
You can spray it around your home or own your cushions; it doesn't really matter. This is a great little tip for when you happen to run out of Febreze and don't feel like running to the store and spending money.
Potpourris are a great way to freshen up the smell in your home, but it turns out that they also work quite well when used in your closet. You can make them using essential oils or other types of natural ingredients, and all you need to do is put them in a small bag and hang it in your closet with your clothes. It'll leave you with a pleasant scent every time you open your closet door.
You can also use tea bags, but this, of course, will leave you with more of a tea smell, which maybe not everyone would prefer. You can find plenty of directions for potpourris online.
Washers can be a common source of unpleasant odors. And while you can just use hot water every time you wash your clothes, it's really not necessary, and it wastes a lot of energy. Instead, you can simply use some baking soda and vinegar every now and then to give your washer a good cleaning. Just pour the two into your washer and run a hot cycle. This should get rid of any odor and bacteria that might've been causing it.
And this won't have any effect on the way your next load of laundry smells, just in case you were worried about that aspect of this little hack.
Plug-in air fresheners can be great, but they're kind of expensive as far as air fresheners go, and they're also a bit wasteful. You're meant to just throw them away, plastic and all, after they run out of air freshener. However, few people know that they're quite easy to reuse. All you need is some Fabuloso or something similar, and you can refill and reuse your plug-ins.
This saves you from constantly buying new air fresheners, and it also helps cut down on waste, as you can just reuse your plug-ins until they break or stop working.
Getting rid of odors in your freezer can be a serious chore. It usually requires that you leave the door open long enough for everything to melt a bit or turn off your freezer completely. Luckily, there's a pretty simple hack that helps easily get rid of freezer odors. Just put some baking soda onto a paper towel and then place the towel inside your freezer. Let it sit there for around 12 hours.
It should absorb all of the odor and save you from having to spend your evening completely cleaning out your freezer. Although, you still might want to consider cleaning it out sooner rather than later.
Ovens can be difficult to clean, and sadly, there's really no way around it. However, you can make sure that you're using something completely safe and effective the next time you're tasked with cleaning the oven. This little mixture consists of lemon juice, vinegar, and some water. Just mix all of those ingredients together, and you have a cleaner that will get rid of debris and leave your oven smelling better than new.
You can even spread it around a bit before you start scrubbing to help lift some of those stubborn bits of food left in there, though you still might have to scrub a bit.
Car odors are a bit easier to snuff out than odors in your home, as you don't usually have to check as many places. However, that isn't to say that you shouldn't want your car smelling its best all of the time. Luckily, it's really easy to make your own air fresheners for your car, and they don't have to hang from the mirror or stick out from the air conditioning vents.
You can buy some simple party gift bags from wherever you can find them and fill them with Downy Unstopables. Then, just place your bags underneath your car seats, and you have great-smelling, hidden air fresheners.
Dressers and drawers don't typically have bad odors in them, but it is always nice to open up a drawer and be greeted with a great smell. It's also super easy. All you need is some essential oil and some cloth. Just put a couple of dabs of oil onto the cloth and then drop one in each of your drawers. This will leave you with a fresh scent every time you reach down for some clothes.
Just be sure to use it in drawers where you store things like socks in, as you might not always want your shirts and stuff to smell like essential oils.
If you use scented fabric softener, then you probably like your clothes smelling good when they come out of the washer. However, that scent doesn't usually last very long, and before you know it, your clothes just smell like clothes a couple of days later. Luckily, you can create your own fabric freshener using a spray bottle. Just mix together essential oils, water, and a bit of vodka, and then pour all of that into a spray bottle.
And don't worry; you won't even smell the vodka. You can also use rubbing alcohol if you like, though. Just make sure that you lightly spray clothes and linens. Think of the mixture sort of like a light perfume. The same type they might use in clothing stores to make sure everything stays smelling fresh.
Even your cleaners need to be cleaned from time to time. If you've noticed some smells coming from your dishwasher, then this might mean that it's due for a cleaning cycle. All you need to do is scrub down all the small pieces that can come out and then put two bowls of vinegar in your dishwasher. Next, just run a regular cycle and let the vinegar do what it does best.
It should leave your dishwasher smelling fresh while also getting rid of any nasty bacteria that were causing the bad smell in the first place. Just remember that the only dishes that should be in there are the two bowls filled with vinegar.
You probably don't go up into your attic very often, but that doesn't mean that it shouldn't be cleaned. Attics are great places for mold to grow, and it's usually a good idea to clean them every now and then. To do so, just mix some water and distilled vinegar into a bottle. Next, simply spray that onto your attic's walls and roof. The combination should kill off any mold.
However, you're going to want to remember to wear a mask while you're up there, as mold can be pretty harmful, especially in an enclosed space like an attic.
Kitchen sinks are notorious for harboring bad odors and bacteria. And while there are plenty of drain cleaners out there, you simply may not feel like running to the store or using harsh chemicals in your kitchen. Instead, you can use a mixture of baking powder and vinegar. Just pour half a cup of baking powder into your drain and then pour in some vinegar. Next, pour in some boiling water and let it sit.
After that has sat for a couple of minutes, you can run some cold water to wash everything down. This magical mixture should work just as well, if not better, than store-bought drain cleaners.
There's nothing quite like the smells associated with the holidays. When we think of late December, we think of cinnamon, gingerbread, and maybe some rosemary or time. So, why not make your own potpourri over the holidays? You can add things like cranberries, orange peels, and cinnamon to give your home a nice holiday scent. And there are a ton of easy explainers out there on how to do so.
The best thing about potpourris is that the smell should travel and be recognizable throughout your home, no matter what size it is. It also helps cement those holiday memories.