Life today is very different from life even just a century ago. With the onslaught of the digital age, humanity spends a significant amount of time indoors, especially in developed countries with ready access to technology and all of the lifestyle advantages that come with it.
While technology is wonderful and staying indoors is a blessing when you live in climates where the weather from season to season can be severe, it also means that making sure your indoor air quality is healthy is paramount. Air purification is just as important now because indoor air pollution affects the health of 2.6 billion people.
However, did you know that your penchant for house plants could help you do just that? Even NASA agrees! A study back in 1989 shared how certain indoor plants can help you purify the air indoors, ridding it of nasty toxins like formaldehyde.
Granted, according to newer studies, the rate of plants providing an oxygen boost to your home may take a while to do, but that doesn’t mean it can’t still be beneficial. Besides, when you combine air purifying qualities with the beauty and sense of calm that indoor plants and greenery bring to a room, is there really any downside? We think not!
Keep reading as we outline 15 of the best plants for oxygen-boosting magic in every room of the house. 🌾🌾🌾
Top Air Purifying Indoor Plants
1. English Ivy
English Ivy is an easy-to-care-for vining plant that requires at least four hours of solid sunlight in a day. It also needs a lot of water to stay hydrated. In return, English Ivy has been known to remove airborne fecal particles from its surroundings, making it a perfect air purifying plant candidate for the bathroom. Not only that, but English Ivy may also diminish the growth of mold in the bathroom, too! This plant is just as effective at absorbing carbon monoxide, so you can place it just about anywhere in your home.
Photo by Bybobbyscott
2. Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is sturdy and resilient succulent and doesn’t require much other than sunlight. It is one of those plants that like full sun and heat. The beautiful cactus looks picturesque anywhere in the house, and not only provides you with lovely aloe vera gel but also cleans and purifies the surrounding air. Given enough time, it removes all traces of benzene and formaldehyde from the area. During the winter, the Aloe Vera can tolerate exposed 40°F, so to an extent it is one of the best plants for dry climates.
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3. Bamboo Palm
The Bamboo Palm is a beautiful houseplant that enhances the look of any indoor space, be it the living room, the guest room, or the rec room! Even better, its arching leaves not only look stunning but also purify the air in its surroundings. They fight off common toxins like formaldehyde and help make your indoor air rich with life-giving oxygen. Keep in mind that a Bamboo Palm requires regular watering during its growing season.
4. Broad Lady Palm
Broad Lady Palms can be a bit of an investment as plants go, especially if you’re buying a fully-grown one. Depending on your budget, you may be better off buying a smaller one instead.
Not many people know that the Broad Lady Palm is one of the most resilient plants. This house plant can even withstand temperatures as low as 15°F, making it one of the best indoor plants for cold weather.
However, its biggest benefit is that it can suck out the ammonia from its surroundings––an ingredient found in various household cleaning products––which not many plants can do. They’re also ideal for bathrooms as they love a humid environment. By placing a Broad Lady Palm indoors, it will leave behind clean and oxygen-rich air for you to breathe in and enjoy!
5. Chinese Evergreen
Chinese Evergreens are gorgeous plants that need only a couple of luxuries in life. One, they need a nice, humid room. Two, they need a location away from direct sunlight.
When placed indoors, Chinese Evergreens can purify the air from benzene and formaldehyde, both of which can be found in everyday household items like cosmetics and detergents. Both of these qualities make it an ideal plant for air purifying use in a bathroom. Because it is very low maintenance, it is also one of the best plants for beginners.
Photo by Nichole
6. Barberton Daisy
The Barberton Daisy (AKA Gerbera Daisy) is another plant known to purify the air in its immediate surroundings, removing traces of toxins such as benzene and formaldehyde. Both of these toxins can linger in the air from the everyday use of household materials like synthetic fibers and paints. They are also excellent at producing oxygen, minimizing headaches caused by excess carbon dioxide. This air purifying indoor plant produces the most oxygen at night, so it's a good plant in the bedroom.
However, Barberton Daisies require a lot of natural sunlight, along with a well-draining, moist soil to grow in. Not only do these plants help to purify the air, but they look good doing it, blooming with bright flowers in varying shades of orange, yellows, reds, and pinks.
7. Weeping Fig
A Weeping Fig is a beautiful plant. However, it does require a lot of care and upkeep––perhaps why it’s called a Weeping Fig! These plants require bright, indirect sunlight to maintain their health, and they don’t fare well under direct airflow. However, when given the right environment to thrive, Weeping Figs can help clean out its surrounding area, minimizing the amount of xylene, formaldehyde, toluene, and other harmful toxins present in the air. It certainly lives up to the reputation of an air purifying indoor plant.
8. Dragon Tree
The Dragon Tree, also called a Red-Edged Dracaena, is a beautiful plant with green leaves tipped with red. It can grow quite large, sometimes reaching up to 8 feet in height.
The Dragon Tree does require some sunlight to thrive, but not much else (bright indirect sunlight, to be precise). It can help fight off any and all xylene and trichloroethylene in its surroundings and can be placed in any sunny spot in the house. We recommend a large corner area!
Photo by Allireid
9. Snake Plant
The Snake Plant, also cheekily called Mother-In-Law’s tongue, is a gorgeous green plant, with long and thin leaves enhanced with yellow tips. Although it doesn’t require much care, it’s important to ensure that it’s not over-watered as its roots may be especially vulnerable to rot.
When cared for well, this plant is a powerful air purifier and oxygen booster, as it releases oxygen throughout the night. Those two factors alone make Snake plants an amazing option for purifying bedroom air and enriching its surroundings wherever you place one.
Photo by Hellojennna
A Chrysanthemum, also called pot mum, is a flowering plant with brightly colored blooms. Not only can they brighten up a dull room with their beauty, but the flowers also filter out the air and absorb all the toxins from it.
These toxins include ammonia, as well as benzene, both of which are released from things like plastics, glue, and detergents. However, Chrysanthemums are not solely indoor plants and require a lot of sunlight to thrive and grow.
11. Kentia Palm
Kentia Palm, also sometimes called the Thatch Palm, is a beautiful variant of the Palm Tree that purifies the air of chemicals and pollutants and produces quite a bit of oxygen.
With its big and long leaves, it makes a great focal point in any room. Kentia Palm plants are resilient and require bright, indirect light for growth. However, they can also tolerate partial shade, which means they can be placed anywhere in the house.
12. Spider Plant
Spider Plants are possibly one of the hardest plants to kill, making them an ideal choice for the novice gardener. They are low-maintenance plants and are easy to propagate in new pots using the stems and branches from the parent plant.
Spider Plants are known to purify the air from toxins such as xylene, which is a solvent chemical, as well as carbon monoxide. As an added benefit, Spider plants are pet-friendly!
Photo by Alinyaa
13. Kimberly Queen Fern
Although most ferns require a lot of upkeep, the Kimberly Queen Fern plant doesn’t. This plant not only has a unique name but a unique shape as well. Not to mention, it’s one of the most efficient indoor air purifiers. Kimberly Queen Ferns don’t require a lot of watering, at least when it’s not summer, and tend to thrive in brightly lit areas.
14. Pineapple Plant
Pineapple plants are a type of Bromeliad plant and offer an exotic, tropical touch to the rooms they grace. They have thick and heavy foliage, with large leaves in shades of lush green.
Pineapple plants require a warm and sunny environment to grow, and they don’t require a lot of water. Additionally, the large leaves work as filters and clear the air of toxins.
15. Flamingo Lily
The beautiful Flamingo Lily is a stunning addition to any indoor space. It adds a pop of color while also purifying the air in its surroundings.
Flamingo Lilies require bright, indirect light and a lot of water. Don’t worry though, we’ll tell you exactly how much to water and when inside our app. You won’t even need a water meter. Flamingo Lillies feel most at home in humid areas, which makes them great plants for purifying bathrooms.
This is just a shortlist of some of the best air purifying plants you can place indoors, whether it’s your home or office. Given time, each of these plants can help remove different toxins and chemicals from the air in the rooms they are placed in, and some can even help boost the oxygen content. 🌿🌿🌿