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19 Ways to Freshen Up Smelly Bathroom

Want to keep things fresh in the bathroom? We’ve got you covered with these incredible bathroom hacks!

The list below covers essentially every corner of your bathroom. I’ve never loved maintaining a bathroom, and I’m not sure anyone has ever felt that way.

hacks for your bathroom

You think you’ve tackled one smell, but somehow another has surfaced. It’s a never-ending cycle.

Hopefully, some of these tricks will help keep some smelliness at bay!

VIDEO: 19 Ways to Freshen Up Smelly Bathroom

1. Add Essential Oil to Toilet Paper

add essential oil to paper

An overlooked spot to start with–is your paper toilet roll!

Drop a few drops of this essential oil on the inner tube of your TP. Every time someone uses the roll, they’ll get hit with a hint of freshness!

The idea sounds like something insignificant, but don’t knock it until you try.

Feel free to re-apply as you go, depending on your preferences.

2. Deodorize Basin Drain

deodorize basin drain

A stinky sink is one of the worst smells. The bacteria from a dirty sink likes to hang out in the drain.

Thankfully, this is a pretty simple fix and generally done whenever you’re willing, but I like to do this at night.

Before bed, I just use a moderate amount of baking soda and rubbing alcohol down the drain. The following morning it should be odor free!

3. Eliminate Odors with Baking Soda

eliminate odor with baking soda

If at this point you didn’t know baking soda is a secret weapon when it comes to cleaning, welcome! In all seriousness, though, it’s a game-changer.

Grab a small jar, add baking soda, and attach a breathable lid. It will help deodorize your bathroom while killing any bacteria lurking from its ph balance.

So simple to use baking soda, but it’s an asset.

Check out these other baking soda cleaning hacks!

4. Get Rid of Stinky Towels

get rid of stinky towels

Are your towels not as fresh as they used to be? That could be a principal offender in a smelly bathroom.

Towels absorb water; that’s their sole purpose.

The thing about them, though, is if they don’t dry entirely, they become perfect breeding grounds for bacteria and mold to spawn. Yikes, right?

To deter your towels from becoming victims, wash them in hot water and during the second rinse cycle, add a cup of white vinegar. Your towels will come out fresh and clean.

5. Use Essential Oil in the Tank

use essential oil in tank

Another forgotten spot in the bathroom can be the water tank on your toilet.

Pull out your essential oils and add a few drops of your preferred oil into the water.

Feel free to play with the amount. I generally do two drops, maybe three, depending on the scent.

It’s a pretty inexpensive trick since it only takes a few drops used at a time.

6. Get Rid of Bathroom Rug Smell with Baking Soda

baking soda to get rid of bathroom rug smell

Don’t forget about your bathroom rug as an odor offender. Make sure to routinely clean your mat, especially if it doesn’t get a lot of sunshine (the sun is a natural disinfectant).

Even if you think it looks okay, give it some love. Sprinkle on this baking soda to help neutralize anything foul and let it sit overnight.

In the morning, vacuum up the baking soda, and the rug will be clean.

Or wash your carpet routinely in the wash.

7. Make Your Own Mason Jar Air Freshener

DIY Mason jar air freshner

Skeptical of commercial air fresheners? Grab a lidded jar of your liking, cotton balls, and that trusted essential oil of choice.

Place the cotton balls in the container and saturate them with the essential oil, and voilà! Home-made air freshener you can trust.

When not in use, put the lid on to preserve the scent for longer.

8. Add Plants

add plants

An absolute way to clean up the scary smells is to add a living plant.

If you don’t have the greenest thumb, research some low-maintenance ones! The natural moisture of the water from your showers should do the trick.

Look for ones that purify the air or have a naturally lovely scent.

9. Add Dish Soap to Toilet

add dish soap to toilet

A gentle soap like Dawn emits a pleasant fragrance after every toilet cleaning. Soaps like Dawn that are strong but not abrasive can help fight against any potential stains in the making.

Using the same soap while cleaning the toilet bowl will keep the freshness alive.

10. Mop the Bathroom with Essential Oils

mop bathroom with essentail oils

Don’t like harsh floor cleaners or looking for a more personal way to clean your home? Try making your own floor cleaner.

A natural way to clean your bathroom floor while mopping is a mixture of water, witch hazel, and your favorite essential oil.

Feel free to play around with the ratios as long as it doesn’t overpower you. I recommend using a lavender, eucalyptus, or lemon, personally.

Make sure that these oils are pet friendly if you have one! Especially if that furry friend likes hanging out in your bathroom.

Want to get a deeper clean? Try these easy cleaning hacks.

11. Use Matches to Get Rid of Bad Odors

use matches for bad odor

I feel like anyone from our parents’ generation has taught someone this trick. When there’s an immediate foul stink (we’ve all experienced it), simply light a match.

The chemical reaction in the lighting of a match reacts with the odor in the air and creates a way less offensive smell. The quickest reliever on this list, for sure!

12. Soak Toilet Brush in Your Favorite Cleaner

soak toilet brush with favorite cleaner

The darkest corner of the bathroom is undoubtedly where the toilet tools sit. Let’s not even talk about how gross those can be!

A great way to combat one item’s filth, specifically your toilet brush, is to let it soak in your favorite cleaner while not in use. That way, after completing a job, it’s immediately cleaned.

13. Deep Clean the Bathroom

deep clean bathroom

A daunting thought, yes, but with a proper routine, your bathroom will be naturally fresher for longer!

The grout in your bathroom not getting cleaned regularly can harbor mold, bacteria, and more unidentifiable gross.

If you’re looking for guidance, check out the cleaning tab of the blog. There are a lot of resources waiting for you!

Get cleaning with less effort with these lazy girl cleaning hacks!

14. Use Scented Candles

scented candles

A tried and true classic. Candles, from their smoke, do kill odor-causing bacteria. 

A scented candle like this one is the perfect answer for your stink woes–it kills odor while emitting a nicer scent.

15. Use Baby Oil for Faucet

baby oil for faucet

Something to literally make your bathroom shine is using baby oil on your faucets and sink basin. Use as needed while cleaning.

Bonus, it’s nice and gentle smelling while the water’s running.

Looking for more creative ways to clean? These bizarre bathroom cleaning tips will help.

16. Add Essential Oil to the Bins

add essential oils to bins

The trash can be a real stink!

Add some essential oil to the bottom of the bin before adding a new bag when swapping next. It’ll help mask the scent of anything unsavory.

17. Use Mouthwash in the Toilet Tank

use mouthwash in toilet tank

I would never have guessed it before trying, but this mouthwash is for more than just cleaning out your mouth!

Mouthwash in the tank can help your bathroom smell super fresh. Just grab your chosen wash and add a ¼ cup to the back of your toilet.

18. Sanitize Toilet Brush with Baking Soda

sanitize toilet brush with baking soda

Baking soda to the rescue again! Here is an alternative, more natural hack to the other way to clean your toilet brush listed above.

To deodorize your toilet brush grab your baking soda and rubbing alcohol.

Pour alcohol into the basin of the brush holster (it’ll be a different amount, depending on the size of the holder).

Add two Tbsp of baking soda to the vat.

The combination will absorb any odor (baking soda’s job) while also killing bacteria (alcohol’s job).

Replace as the solution becomes weaker or as you see fit.

19. Give Your Toilet a Deep Clean

give toilet deep clean

Last but certainly, not least and the main smelly offender in the bathroom–the toilet. We all know this is an essential job that needs done regularly.

Gross, I know, but the more it’s done, the less gross it’ll be. This advice is a little longer to help maybe inspire your plan of action.

I like to spray the actual inside of the toilet bowl, so the cleaner really has time to work its way inside.

Go on with the other cleaning and come back later.

Leaving it to sit will help break down whatever may be hiding faster and means you spend less time cleaning.

Then I work from top to bottom with a dry paper towel and the same with a wet towel with cleaner.

After everything is clean, I go back into the bowl with my toilet brush and swipe away whatever debris is left. Most of the time, that’s it; no muscle required whatsoever!

Looking for more ways to make your home smell amazing? Try these smell hacks.