15 Simple Ways to Make Your Bathroom Smell Great

A clean bathroom with a white tub, a blue rug & a drawer

Credit: Freepik

We all know that feeling—you walk into the bathroom and immediately get hit with an unpleasant smell that ruins the experience. Well, it's no surprise that the bathroom is one of the dirtiest places in the house.

But fear not! Making a bathroom smell good is not complex, and I’m here to help you get there.

As someone who has been improving homes for over six years, I’ve learned quite a few ways to deal with this situation.

In this blog, I’ll share my favourite 15 ways in which you can make your bathroom smell good. Let's dive in!

➡️ Table Of Contents
  1. Clean It Regularly

  2. Try Scented Soaps

  3. Use Naphthalene Balls

  4. Make Sure To Ventilate

  5. Add Dettol To The Toilet Tank

  6. Add Plants

  7. Regularly Wash Your Towels

  8. Use Scented Sachets

  9. Use Baking Soda

  10. Create A Potpourri

  11. Light Up Scented Candles

  12. Use Natural Air Freshener

  13. Take Out The Trash

  14. Light Up Incense Sticks Or Cones

  15. Get A Diffuser

1. Clean It Regularly

A woman in yellow gloves cleaning a toilet

Credit: Freepik

This may sound very obvious, but cleaning your bathroom regularly can be a game-changer.

Many people wait for their bathroom to become really dirty or start to smell before they clean it, but that's not the right approach.

According to NBC News, you should clean your bathroom once every week.

This is because dirt, bacteria, and fungus can quickly accumulate on surfaces such as the toilet, sink, and floor, leading to unpleasant odours and health issues.

Regular bathroom cleaning not only prevents the buildup of dirt, fungus, and harmful bacteria that can lead to health issues but also helps maintain the bathroom's overall appearance.

Additionally, regular cleaning allows you to identify and fix minor maintenance issues before they become larger and more expensive to repair.

Here are the areas you should clean weekly to keep your bathroom smelling fresh: toilet, sink and countertop, shower, bathtub, mirrors, floor, grout and tile, shelves and Exhaust fan.

2. Try Scented Soaps

Two scented soaps along with orange peices beautifully decorated in a wooden tray

Credit: Freepik

For a long time, I used regular soaps that I could find at the nearby shops until a shopkeeper suggested scented soaps to me. Ever since then, I have never gone back to using regular soaps.

Scented soaps can be a great addition to your bathroom routine as they release a pleasant smell whenever used, which can help you get rid of unpleasant bathroom odours.

What’s cool about these soaps is that the scents stay strong even after you’ve used the soap multiple times.

These soaps come in various scents, such as lavender, orange, sandalwood, rose, and more, making it easy to find a bar you like.

However, please note that some scented soaps may contain synthetic fragrances that can cause irritation and rashes if you have sensitive skin.

Therefore, it is essential to carefully read the ingredient list before purchasing a scented soap and opt for one that contains natural fragrances instead. 

3. Use Naphthalene Balls

Naphthalene balls coming out of a bottle on a blue surface

Credit: istockphoto

You must have used naphthalene balls, aka mothballs, at least once to keep insects and moths away from your clothes.

While these balls are great at keeping moths and insects away from your wardrobe or storage areas, they can also be used to get rid of bad odours in the bathroom.

Naphthalene balls have a strong odour, which can neutralize other foul smells in the bathroom.

These balls also have a slow rate of evaporation, which means they can last a long time before needing to be replaced.

Some good places to keep naphthalene balls in your bathroom include the sink drain, the floor drain, the inside of cabinets and drawers, the toilet tank, and the dustbin.

Using mothballs can also help keep insects and bugs, such as spiders, lizards, and cockroaches, out of your bathroom.

Just make sure you keep them out of reach of children and pets, as they can be harmful if ingested.

RELATED: 8 Natural Ways To Make Your Home Smell Good

4. Make Sure To Ventilate

A bathroom with two vents, two sinks, a mirror & a bathtub

Credit: Freepik

Another way to prevent odours from building up in your bathroom is to ventilate it properly.

When we shower or bath, moisture builds up in the air, which creates a damp and humid atmosphere.

Without proper ventilation, moisture can remain in our bathrooms, leading to the growth of mould, mildew, and bacteria, which in turn causes bad smells.

One of the simplest ways to ventilate the bathroom is by using an exhaust fan. Just turn this fan on after every shower or bath & it will remove any excess moisture from the air.

Another way to ventilate the bathroom is to open windows (if you have any) and doors after a shower or bath. This will allow fresh air to enter the space and quickly remove moisture.

I suggest you go with the first option as it is better and works quickly than the other.

5. Add Dettol To The Toilet Tank

A bottle of dettol placed on a black table

Credit: Alamy

The toilet is the biggest culprit of foul smells in the bathroom & we all know it.

Adding a bit of Dettol to the toilet tank can be an excellent idea to eliminate the bad smells from the toilet.

Dettol's antibacterial properties can help kill germs and bacteria, preventing them from multiplying and causing foul smells.

As you flush the toilet, the diluted Dettol solution will circulate through the bowl, effectively sanitizing and freshening your toilet with each use.

However, while adding Dettol to your toilet tank can help keep your bathroom smelling good, it shouldn't replace regular cleaning practices.

It's still essential to clean the toilet bowl, seat, and exterior surfaces regularly to remove dirt, grime, and bacteria.

6. Add Plants

Flowers in a vase placed on a bathroom sink

Credit: Freepik

Adding plants to the bathroom is my favourite method of getting rid of unpleasant bathroom odours, and it is due to the many benefits I get from it.

Here are three excellent benefits of plants in the bathroom apart from improving the air quality-

  • Get natural fragrance- Certain plants, such as lavender, jasmine, and eucalyptus, emit sweet fragrances that can fill your bathroom with pleasant smells.

  • Add a touch of beauty- Installing plants in your bathroom can add a touch of natural beauty, making it feel more inviting & also visually pleasing.

  • Regulate humidity level- Bathrooms often have high humidity levels due to activities like showering and bathing. Plants can help regulate humidity levels by releasing moisture into the air through a process called transpiration.

I think these benefits might be enough to convince you to get a small plant for your bathroom.

If you are wondering which fragrance-producing plants are best for the bathroom, here are some suggestions: jasmine, gardenia, lavender, eucalyptus, rosemary, and scented geranium.

Related: 10 Best Kitchen Plants To Enhance Your Space

7. Regularly Wash Your Towels

A pile of washed towels alongside few white roses

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A survey conducted by Showerstoyou revealed that 33% of UK residents wash their towels every three months, 38% wash them once a month, and only 24% wash them weekly.

So, if you are also not washing your towels weekly, you must take it seriously.

Towels absorb moisture each time we use them, and unfortunately, this moisture becomes a breeding ground for bacteria and mildew, which leads to unpleasant smells.

However, by washing your towels frequently, you can prevent the buildup of bacteria and prevent unpleasant smells from taking over your bathroom.

Clean towels also contribute to overall comfort and well-being. After all, who doesn’t love to wrap themselves in a soft, fresh towel after a bath or shower?

The Cleaning Institute recommends washing your towels every 3 to 5 normal uses for best results.

8. Use Scented Sachets

A packet of scented sachets alongisde few flowers and a compass

Credit: Fresh Scents

Scented sachets are tiny bags or pouches containing dried flowers, herbs, spices, essential oils, and other fragrant materials that release a pleasant fragrance into the air.

The best thing about these sachets is that they are affordable and long-lasting, often lasting several weeks or even months.

These sachets come in various scents, such as lavender, rose, pomegranate, orange, and more, so you can easily find one that suits you.

You can place these sachets on your cabinets, shelves, windows, and baskets or hang them on your door, hooks, towel rack, or anywhere else in the bathroom.

Just make sure that these sachets stay out of reach of animals and toddlers because if swallowed, they can lead to sachet poisoning.

One fantastic hack: If you have scented sachets that have lost their fragrance over time, there's a simple hack to refresh them.

Just open the sachet, add a few drops of your favourite essential oil to the filling, and seal it back up. This will refresh the scent and make the sachet smell as good as new!

9. Use Baking Soda

A spoon containing baking soda above a glass container filled with baking soda

Credit: istockphoto

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is one of the best cleaning agents for your bathroom & it's due to several reasons.

Baking soda acts as a natural odour neutralizer, which means it absorbs unpleasant smells from your bathroom rather than covering them up with fragrances.

One of the main advantages of using baking soda in the bathroom is its safety & versatility.

Unlike chemical air fresheners that may contain harsh ingredients, baking soda is non-toxic, environment-friendly, inexpensive and safe to use around children or pets.

Using baking soda in your bathroom is as easy as pie.

Just sprinkle it directly on surfaces where bad smells gather, such as bathroom mats, floors, toilets, sinks, or drains, and let it sit for 15-30 minutes to absorb the odour.

Then scrub the surfaces with a sponge or brush as needed & then rinse the area thoroughly with water. This will remove all the unpleasant odours and give your bathroom a fresh smell.

Another way to use baking soda in the bathroom is as a deodorizer. Place an open container of baking soda anywhere in the bathroom, such as on the shelf, behind the toilet, near the dustbin, or anywhere else, and it will absorb all the foul odours.

10. Create A Potpourri

A glass jar filled with dry flowers alongside a cup containing teaA glass jar filled with dry flowers alongside a cup containing tea

Credit: istockphoto

If you don't know what potpourri is, it is just a fancy name for a blend of dried flowers, herbs, spices, and other materials in a bowl that releases natural fragrances in the air.

Here are three reasons why a potpourri can be a great addition to your bathroom-

  • Easy To Make- Creating a potpourri is easy as you can find all the required materials in your home or nearby shops.

  • Long Lasting- Unlike sprays & candles that fade quickly, a potpourri natural fragrance can last for several weeks or months.

  • Enhance Decorate Appeal- A potpourri bowl in the bathroom can increase its decorative appeal, make your guests ask questions about it, and, obviously, make you feel good.

To create your own potpourri, gather some dried flowers, herbs, and spices of your choice. If you are using fresh flowers or herbs, dry them before mixing.

Next, mix equal parts of your chosen ingredients in a large bowl, add a few drops of essential oil to enhance the fragrance, and it's ready! Now place the bowl in your bathroom and let the potpourri do its magic!

11. Light Up Scented Candles

Scented candle placed on a concrete surface

Credit: Nicobar

Another excellent way to remove bad smells from the bathroom is by using scented candles.

As the name suggests, scented candles release pleasant fragrances when burned, and their scent lasts for a long time, even after the candle goes out.

Like scented soaps and sachets, these candles also come in various scents, such as lavender, vanilla, blueberry, rose, and more, so you can easily find one you like.

These candles can quickly eliminate unwanted odours in your bathroom, making it smell fresh and pleasant. All you have to do is light them up!

Apart from freshening up your bathroom, scented candles can also help create a relaxing and cosy atmosphere. This can improve your mood when you shower, put on makeup, or just go through your daily grooming routine.

However, I do not recommend using scented candles too frequently, as too frequent use can cause headaches, breath shortness, and coughing.

12. Use Natural Air Freshener

Two wooden spray bottles placed on a blue surface

Credit: Freepik

One of my clients used synthetic air fresheners in her bathroom whenever it smelled terrible. As a result, she often had headaches and breathing problems when she entered her bathroom.

That’s why it’s not recommended to use synthetic air fresheners in your house.

Synthetic air fresheners contain high levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as benzene, formaldehyde, and acetaldehyde, which can cause irritation to the eyes, nose, and throat, leading to headaches and nausea.

Therefore, if you frequently use synthetic air fresheners in your bathroom or any other area of your home, you should be aware of the potential harm they can cause.

Natural air fresheners are way friendlier than synthetic ones & they also give your bathroom a fresh, clean smell without any weird side effects.

So, the next time you consider purchasing an air freshener for your bathroom, opt for a natural one.

13. Take Out The Trash

A dustbin in a bathroom containing trash

Credit: istockphoto

Dustbins are another hot spot in your bathroom for unwanted smells to assemble.

Over time, your bathroom dustbin can get filled with items such as used tissues, cotton, empty containers, sanitary products, and discarded packaging.

These items begin to smell quickly, mainly due to the bathroom's warm & humid environment.

Regularly emptying your dustbin can prevent these odours from building up in your bathroom.

Keeping the dustbin empty also helps to keep pests out of your bathroom, as the waste in your dustbin can attract flies, ants, or mice and contribute to the odour problem.

One helpful tip is to sprinkle baking soda at the bottom of your dustbin before inserting the garbage bag. This can help keep your dustbin smelling fresher for a longer period.

14. Light Up Incense Sticks Or Cones

Incense stick in a open box placed on a wooden table along with other stuff

Credit: Phool

Lighting incense sticks or cones is a traditional and budget-friendly way to remove bad smells from the bathroom.

Similar to scented soaps, candles & sachets, these incense sticks & cones also come in various scents such as lavender, lemongrass, orange & many more, allowing you to choose the right fit.

To use them, find a spot away from flammable materials such as towels or shower curtains. Then, light the incense sticks or cones and leave them in the bathroom for a few minutes.

After a few minutes, the smoke from the sticks or cones will help to remove any foul odours and leave a pleasant scent behind.

To avoid the hassle of cleaning the ashes afterwards, use an incense stick or cone holder and ensure that the bathroom is well-ventilated to prevent the buildup of excessive smoke.

15. Get A Diffuser

A diffuser placed on a wooden table

Credit: Freepik

The last way you can make your bathroom smell fresh is to invest in a diffuser.

A diffuser is an object that disperses essential oils into the air, filling the room with natural scents. It can effectively eliminate all the unpleasant smells from your bathroom.

Using a diffuser is also quite simple. You only need to add water and a few drops of your favourite essential oil, and it will disperse a fragrant mist into the air.

Nowadays, diffusers have become quite popular, and you may have noticed people using them in their homes on social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram.

The reason why diffusers have gained so much popularity is worth reading, so here are some amazing benefits of using diffusers-

  • Improve Air Quality: Certain essential oils, such as peppermint, lemon, and eucalyptus, have antibacterial properties that can help purify the air.

  • Aromatherapy Benefits: Many essential oils used in diffusers have aromatherapeutic properties that can positively impact your mood. For example, lavender oil is known for its calming effects, while citrus oils can help uplift and energize.

  • Safe and Convenient: Unlike candles or incense, which require an open flame and constant supervision, diffusers are safe to use as there is no need for fire.


Keeping your bathroom smelling fresh and pleasant doesn't have to be complicated.

By following these fifteen simple tips, you can transform your bathroom into a welcoming and inviting space that you'll love spending time in.

From cleaning the bathroom regularly to getting a diffuser, there are plenty of ways to make your bathroom smell good.

So, go ahead and try out these hacks to get rid of bad odours from the bathroom!

Which of these easy ways are you most excited to try first?

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About the author

Mohammad Yasir is currently serving as the Assistant Editor at HeavenlyFindz. He holds a master's degree in Interior Design from Amity University, Delhi and has over 6 years of experience in DIYs, renovation, eco-friendly decoration, and decor tips and hacks. He is an expert in making spaces beautiful. In his leisure time, he enjoys reading, gardening, playing football, cooking, and spending quality time with his family.
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