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Best Indoor Plants for Clean Air

Besides adding a lush and verdant aesthetic to your home, indoor plants can also improve air quality. In fact, according to a 1989 research study by NASA, certain indoor plants can actually reduce airborne toxins that are commonly found in building materials and cleaners such as formaldehyde and benzene, plus allergens like pet dander and mold. From the home decor experts at Fashion Furniture Rental, here are the best indoor plants for clean air:

Peace Lily

Native to southeastern Asia and tropical regions in the Americas, peace lilies aren’t just beautiful; they’re also excellent for soaking up pollutants. According to Jon VanZile, author of Houseplants for a Healthy Home, the best indoor plants for clean air are the varieties with large leaves like the peace lily, which he calls “a powerhouse for filtering the air.” The NASA research study also found that the peace lily can filter household pollutants like benzene, formaldehyde, xylene, and more. It can also absorb common allergens like mold, which is why VanZile recommends keeping a few plants in the bathroom.

A favorite plant for home decor, the always-blooming peace lily makes a beautiful statement piece when placed in the corner of a large room. It also prefers bright indirect light from a nearby window and thrives in soil that is evenly moist and well-drained. The plant experts at Southern Living also recommend dusting the foliage with a damp sponge or cloth and trimming any dead or yellowing leaves.


Rubber Plant

Originally from southeast Asia, the rubber plant has large, deep-green leaves, which give it an attractive appearance that compliments any type of wood furniture. Based on the NASA study, the rubber plant can also filter formaldehyde from the air, a common chemical irritant found in furniture and cleaning supplies.

To get the most out of its air purification benefits, VanZile recommends wiping the leaves with a damp cloth, which will keep the pores of the plant open and activated. These plants can grow up to 10 feet tall, making them a magnificent centerpiece for any room. Similar to other indoor houseplants, place them near windows with bright, indirect sunlight.

When it comes to keeping it alive and healthy, the rubber plant is relatively low maintenance. The soil should be kept moist, but without overwatering, so make sure it has sufficient drainage.


Boston Fern

With its bushy and lush foliage, it’s no surprise that this plant is one of the best for removing common air pollutants. It also boosts humidity, which can be helpful during the winter months.

For a touch of greenery in your home, place the Boston fern in a corner plant stand or on top of a bookcase, which gives it a high vantage point that will make the room seem bigger. Gardening Knowhow suggests a humid and cool climate for this fern to prosper: “For extra humidity care for a Boston fern, try setting your fern’s pot on a tray of pebbles filled will water.” They also recommend lightly misting the plant once or twice a week to ensure that the soil stays damp but not overwatered.


Snake Plant

Sometimes called mother-in-law’s tongue, the long, dark leaves of the snake plant emit fresh oxygenated air into the environment while also absorbing nitrogen oxide, a fossil fuel that makes up 6% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S.

A native of tropical West Africa, the snake plant is one of the hardiest indoor plants. From the editors of Dwell Magazine: “Lightly Water it every few weeks, making sure not to over-water (especially in winter)…” Snake plants also prefer indirect light, so keep them in a corner or against a wall near a sunny window.



Another plant that is easy to grow, the philodendron has big, leafy foliage that helps filter air pollutants of all kinds, from formaldehyde to mold. The large leaves also add a dramatic accent to any room.

For the climbing variety, keep the plant on top of a tall shelving unit; that way the leaves can hang beautifully over the edge. The non-climbing types are perfect for adding greenery to small surfaces like desks or coffee tables.

For these hearty tropical plants, a bright, dappled light that mimics a rainforest canopy works best. The soil should also remain moist by misting it daily during the growing season.


Areca Palm

This tall, leafy plant is perfect for bringing the tropics into your home while also acting as an air humidifier, which is especially helpful in winter. The 1989 NASA study also found that it was one of the best indoor plants for absorbing air pollutants like formaldehyde, a common household chemical.

When you place them in corners or against walls, these tall, toxin-filtering plants can add a tropical vibe to your home, especially when you care for them properly. The editors at Apartment Therapy advise keeping the plant in bright, indirect light and to avoid overwatering with well-draining potting soil and pots that have drainage holes.

When you include the best indoor plants for clean air, it can easily add a vibrant look to your home decor while also improving the overall air quality. Look out for more home decor tips from the Fashion Furniture Rental blog, your online source for the latest trends in interior design.
















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