5 Best Air-Purifying Plants for Your Home

Indoor House Plants

Adding air-purifying plants to your home naturally cleans the air and improves your health.

Are you worried about breathing in the harmful particles from your home? Homes are a source of air pollution too. There are plenty of things in the air that you don’t want to breathe in.[1]

Even when you try to keep a clean house, there are still dust particles, chemicals, and more in the air from daily activity. Some of these are potential carcinogens — cancer-causing chemicals.

Adding some air-purifying plants to your home helps naturally clean the air and improve your health. These plants have special abilities that help them do this. Not all houseplants are good at purifying the air, but luckily there is a wide range of choices available for you to choose from.

These plants are natural cleansers that rid the air of harmful toxins and pollutants. They won’t only benefit your health, but also improve the quality of life for those who live with you.

Is there science to support the idea that houseplants clean the air and reduce toxins? A study carried out by NASA researchers in 1989 found that some indoor plants can low indoor air pollutants.[2] This includes some nasty components in the air, like formaldehyde, benzene, and xylene.

Plus, having these plants in your home is a way to bring nature indoors and improve your mental health too. Who doesn’t feel calmer when they look at nature’s art?

Let’s explore five of the best air purifying indoor plants you can add to your living quarters and how they can enhance the beauty of your home and your health.[3]

Spider Plant

Spider Plant

Spider plants not only remove chemicals from the air, but they’re also one of the easiest plants to grow and maintain. They’re a good choice if you don’t have a green thumb but would still like to clean the air and brighten your home.

Spider plants also produce flowery shoots that turn into spiderettes, tiny spider plants.[4] Don’t be upset if the tips of the leaves start to brown. This may happen if there’s too much fluoride in the water you’re watering them with, but isn’t harmful to the plant.

Rubber Plants (ficus Elastica)

Rubber Plants (ficus Elastica)

Rubber plants are another plant that NASA identified as an air purifier that can improve the quality of the air you breathe.[5] Plus, rubber plants are easy to care for and maintain. The leaves are deep green with a waxy appearance, while the stems may be red or yellowish-red.

Place them in a spot that gets indirect sunlight and they’ll add beauty to your home while they cleanse the air you breathe.[5] If you place a rubber plant outside, it can grow to a height of 50 feet.

Gerbera Daisies

Gerbera Daisy

This bright and cheery plant is a mood lifter, but it’s also capable of lowering the concentration of nasty chemicals like trichloroethylene and benzene from their air. Benzene is one of the most powerful carcinogens and also suppresses the bone marrow, the portion of your bone that produces blood cells.

Another perk of gerbera daisies: they can increase the oxygen content of the air you breathe.[5] So, breathe a little easier and enjoy the beauty of gerbera daisies in your home.

Flamingo Lily

The Flamingo Lily

The flamingo lily is a lesser-known plant with bright pink flowers that also purifies the air. It’s ideal for anyone who has problems keeping houseplants alive, since it thrives in dry soil and doesn’t need a lot of attention. It will do well in an area that’s bright but not in direct sunlight. Beyond their beauty, you can enjoy the fact that the flamingo lily removes formaldehyde from the air.[6]

Weeping Fig

Weeping Fig

According to NASA, weeping figs remove xylene and formaldehyde from the air.[1] Xylene is closely related to benzene and is another chemical you don’t want in your home. You can grow weeping figs indoors as well as outdoors in big pots.

But it will do the most for air quality if you keep it in your home. The soil should be loose with steady moisture and no extreme roots or drainage. It generates its own fertilizer, so it doesn’t need much additional help growing nicely.

The Bottom Line

There is a downside to the air-purifying characteristics of some plants. You need a lot of them to significantly improve the quality of your indoor air. According to NASA, you would need around ten plants per square foot of space. But when you consider the other health benefits of having beautiful greenery and flowers in your area, such as the mental health effects, it’s easy to see why you should still invest in some.

Your best bet is to choose a variety of air-purifying plants, since each is more efficient at removing certain chemicals in the air. Therefore, choosing a number of types helps you cover your bases.[7]


  1. Hgtv.com. (2021, June 25). Retrieved from “hgtv.com/design/remodel/interior-remodel/10-best-plants-for-cleaning-indoor-air-pictures”.
  2. Countryliving.com. (2021, June 25). Retrieved from “countryliving.com/uk/wellbeing/a668/houseplants-to-purify-house-air/”.
  3. Bhg.com.au. (2021, June 25). Retrieved from “bhg.com.au/best-air-cleaning-plants”.
  4. Greatist.com. (2021, June 25). Retrieved from “greatist.com/connect/houseplants-that-clean-air”.
  5. Iamgreenified.medium.com. (2021, June 25). Retrieved from “iamgreenified.medium.com/12-nasa-recommended-air-purifying-plants-that-you-must-have-in-your-house-8797645054b9”.
  6. Purewow.com. (2021, June 25). Retrieved from “purewow.com/home/best-air-purifying-house-plants”.
  7. Architecturaldigest.com. (2021, June 25). Retrieved from “architecturaldigest.com/gallery/best-air-purifying-plants”.

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