Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

5 Air-Purifying Plants to Freshen Up Your Room

If you’ve read any home and garden magazine or scoped Instagram, then you know that plants are what make your dorm or apartment feel and look like a home. Houseplants are not only a great way to decorate your space (and look ah-mazing on the ‘Gram), but they also have some incredibly beneficial qualities. They can brighten up the room, ward off colds and flu, and help you to get a better night’s sleep, but did you know that some can even purify the air? According to Costa Farms, houseplants take in excess carbon dioxide in the air and then produce “life-giving” oxygen to help you breath better. In a stuffy and cramped space like a dorm, a potted houseplant will definitely freshen up the air while adding a much-needed splash of color.

Here are some air-purifying plants that will be absolutely perfect for your dorm room or apartment. 

Peace Lily 

Peace lilies are super popular and attractive houseplants that have dark green leaves and white blossoms. They’re small but pack some major air-purifying abilities. A peace lily removes toxins such as ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene, according to Costa Farms. So, it will definitely keep your air clean and fresh. 

They’re easy to grow, and these plants will bloom for most of the summer. You can put them in a slightly shady or bright area of the room, depending on how much you want it to bloom. All you have to do is keep the soil moist and don’t overwater it. 

Shop now: $12, walmart.com

Snake Plant 

This is probably the easiest plant to grow and maintain, so it’s perfect for us on-the-go college students. Snake Plants are known as a great air-cleaning plant that removes traces of benzene and formaldehyde. It adjusts well to different levels of light, but they prefer to be in indirect sunlight. As well, the plant requires minimal watering. You most likely will only need to water the plant once a week or every two weeks. The vertical and striped leaves not only add height to a room but also gives a trendy and modern feel to it. If you can’t devote a ton of time to a plant, then I highly suggest you get a snake plant. 

Shop now: $30, thesill.com

Spider Plant

Perfect for beginners or forgetful plant owners, spider plants are great for removing harmful chemicals and pollutants from the air such as formaldehyde and xylene. Spider plants are a big fan of indirect sunlight and cool temperatures. They can live happily in a small pot, but you need a pot with proper drainage for the soil (reduces the risk for root rot). Once you have that, these plants are incredibly low maintenance and require little attention. 

Shop now: $35, bloomscape.com

Aloe Vera

The small, soft teethed plant is probably at the top of our list for a most useful, low-maintenance and multipurpose houseplant. As you may know, they can help heal a ton of skin-related issues such as sunburns, small cuts or dry skin. It’s also great for getting rid of formaldehyde in the air

Like most succulents, it can live for a long time with minimal care and in a variety of conditions. This one loves direct sunlight, so you should keep it near a window sill. You don’t want to overwater it, but you also don’t want to leave the soil completely dry so water it every couple of weeks. 

Shop now: $10, thesill.com

Bamboo Palm

Bamboo palms are the superstars of natural air purifiers because they can grow to be pretty tall (one to twenty feet) and filter more air. It’s mainly best at filtering formaldehyde, but also removes toxins such as trichloroethylene, carbon monoxide, xylene, and benzene. According to Costa Farms, it’s also a great insect repellent.

Unlike most succulents, this plant requires bright, but indirect sunlight. You can pretty much put it anywhere in your dorm or apartment. Bamboo plant’s do require more maintenance than the other plants mentioned here, as it will need to be water regularly. Because it can grow to be pretty tall, it also needs to be clipped frequently.

Shop now: $31, the sill.com

Not only will these plants make the air we breathe better, but they are guaranteed to look fantastic in your dorm room. What can be better? Right now, absolutely nothing! 

Carissa Dunlap is a Her Campus News X Social Intern for Summer 2018. She is a current Publishing major and Journalism minor at Emerson College (Class of 2020). When she isn't perusing the YA bookshelf at the bookstore, she can be found watching dog videos on Facebook, at her favorite coffee shops, or relaxing on the beach. Follow her on Instagram @dunlapcarissa or Twitter @Caridunlap.