12 Genius Ways To Make Your Dorm Room Smell Amazing | How To Make Your Dorm Room Smell Good

This post shows you ways to make your dorm room smell good.

Your first dorm room. It’s very exciting! You’re all on your own, and you probably have a roommate you don’t know and the whole world is in your hands.

Let’s get to the facts though – dorm rooms are small. Even if you’re lucky, and you attend a college that has bigger dorm rooms, it’s still a relatively small space to actually live in.

With any small space, it’s easy for smells to linger. Even if you’re relatively clean, pay special attention to keeping the air fresh and clean – and smelling good – in your college dorm.

Here’s 12 genius ways to make your dorm room smell amazing!

How To Make Your Dorm Room Smell Good

1. Essential Oil Diffuser

This was my favorite way to add some light scent to my dorm room, while not overpowering with some kind of room spray or perfume.

I liked to keep my essential oil diffuser on my desk, and especially liked using it when I studied or worked on my blog.

Here’s the one I have, it’s fantastic!

2. Wash Bedding Regularly

This is a big one. Think about it – you spend 8-10 (hopefully) hours a night in your bed, and you should treat the bedding that way! Wash it at least once a week, no one wants to have gross smelly bedding.

Here’s my favorite laundry detergent, fabric softener, and hamper.

3. Scented Trash Bags

I used scented trash bags in my first dorm room, and I think it helped keep any garbage odors down considerably.

What I really like about scented trash bags is they don’t smell super strong. Instead, I like to think of them as just neutralizing odors in dorm rooms.

Here’s the ones I used, and a garbage can I recommend if your dorm doesn’t come with one.

4. Take Out Garbage 2 Times/Week

Hand in hand with scented trash bags, take out your garbage! This is the place where bad odors in your dorm room would start, and taking out your garbage regularly is crucial.

Make sure you pay special attention to this tip if you throw any food in your garbage!

5. Clean Out Fridge

Stick to a cleaning schedule, and make sure cleaning out your fridge is a big part of it!

Use labels to date your food. This helps remind yourself when food is expiring, helping to keep smells down, and to save you some more money!

Using a red, yellow, green dot system for how quickly food needs to be eaten can help a lot. Red = needs to be eaten very soon (cheese, yogurt, produce.) Yellow = don’t let it sit (apples, other fruits.) Green = fine for a long period of time.

Related: 14 Things to Clean In Your Dorm Room Immediately

6. Febreze Fabric Spray

Throw pillows, the couch, ottomans, etc. Anything that can’t be thrown in the washer regularly, benefits from a spray of febreze fabric spray.

7. Fan and Dryer Sheets

I never thought of this trick until I saw my boyfriend using it to keep his dorm room smelling fresh.

Place some good smelling dryer sheets on the back of your fan, in between the spokes in the fan shell, so then dorm room air is pushed through the dryer sheets before going through the fan.

This really kept his dorm room smelling fresh, and it’s always a great idea to keep air circulating in a small space.


Obviously candles aren’t allowed in dorm rooms, but candle warmer lamps are an amazing alternative! These lamps hover over the candle so it heats the wax and diffuses the smell with no open flame involved! These are my favorite because I have the worst habit of forgetting to blow out candles before I leave the house.

These are allowed in most dorms, but check with your RA just in case!


Wall plugs are the best! All you have to do is plug it into a wall outlet and your dorm room will smell delicious at all times. You can go for a fresher scent, like clean laundry, or a cozy scent, like cashmere woods.


This idea is super easy and not time consuming at all, but it can make a huge difference in your dorm room. Try wiping your surfaces, like your desks and dressers, with a Clorox wipe once a week!


If you brought a rug to your dorm room, you’re going to need some carpet deodorizer. This is a powder that you just sprinkle over your carpet to absorb the oils and moisture, then vacuum it up, taking the smell with you. They also have spray deodorizers, which aren’t as effective but will still do the trick.


Wax melters are similar to candle warming lamps! This is a great alternative to open flame candles. And you can find them in a bunch of cute designs so it can double as room decor! 

Again, these are usually allowed in dorms, but double-check to be sure! 


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