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Selecting The Best Car Air Freshener For Your Ride

The scent of a new car is pleasant but unfortunately doesn’t last for long. Odors from smoking, trash, and dirt can easily affect how your car’s interior smells. If you’re really looking to keep the odors out, nothing can be more useful than the best car air freshener. Even if you keep your car clean, you might not be able to get rid of the odors. These handy products can improve the scent of your vehicle, creating a more welcoming and comforting feeling.

They have the sweet fragrance that can overpower plenty of bad odors quickly while providing a fresh smelling sanctuary for you to enjoy your car journey. However, it is imperative that you choose a good air freshener. Not many have the capability of eliminating foul smells. You need to perform your research and check out the different types to determine which one suits your own preference. So, without further ado, look at this guide below to choose the best car air freshener:

Images Product Name Quality Price Our Rating Our Reviews
DollarScent Premium Luxury Car Air FreshenerB$$4.3 stars Read more
Moso Natural Air Purifying BagA$$$4.5 stars Read more
Ozium Smoke & Odors Eliminator GelA+$ 4.6 starsRead more
Meguiar’s G16402 Whole Car Air RefresherB$$4.4 stars Read more
FRiEQ Car Air FreshenerA$$$4.5 stars Read more

**Below, you’ll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

Types Of Car Air Freshener

Aerosol Cans

Aerosol Cans - Car Air Freshener


The aerosol can style of air fresheners are similar to their sticky gel counterparts. The only difference between the two is that aerosol cans have a metal or plastic that holds the sweet-smelling fragrant in gel form. These cans have a top section that features adjustable holes. You can twist the can clockwise or counterclockwise to adjust the rate at which the fragrance is released at a time.

Generally, these products last longer than sticky gels, but they aren’t that effective at removing strong smells. Nevertheless, if you need a quick for unpleasant odors, aerosol cans are a good choice. A single spray can spread a pleasant odor throughout the entire interior. However, since the scent goes away quickly, you will need to re-spray often.

The best part of all: you can easily top-off aerosol cans if the sticky gel expires. You can even replace the lid of the can, making it reusable. Apart from your car, aerosol cans also prove to be useful in offices, homes, or any other place.


Plug-in Car Air Freshener


Plug-in air fresheners are the common choice for most car-enthusiasts and vehicle owners. These fresheners are made using an oil-based compound and are packaged in a reusable plastic. These air fresheners are typically designed for being plugged into the power outlet of the dashboard. Once it is activated and the oil-based compound starts heating up, you will notice the fragrance spreading around the entire cabin.

These products can easily defeat strong odors by filling the interior with a beautiful and fresh-smelling fragrance. The only catch with using plug-in air fresheners is that you cannot place it on other areas. It can only be installed on the power outlet of the car, which then emits a soft glow while making your car smell nice and fresh.

Vent Sticks

vent sticks air freshener

As the name implies, these air fresheners are clipped onto the air vents of your car. They are incredibly efficient for use and have the capability of lasting you long, as it only released the fragrance when you turn on the air from the vents. If you switch on your AC, it’s even better. The cold air mixed with the distinct scent tends to stay in your car for way longer. Subsequently, you can don’t have to worry about re-spraying often. Vent sticks also prove to be more cost-effective than aerosol cans and hanging cardboard air fresheners.


Spray air fresheners

Spray air fresheners are probably the easiest, quickest, and most-hassle free products to use for spreading a nice and fresh scent throughout your entire vehicle. These products have a liquid-gaseous compound present in a pressurized can, which you can spray whenever you notice an odor. These fresheners don’t last too long. This means, you will have to re-spray after regular intervals, especially if you are hoping to block powerful odors from smoking, stale food, etc. Spray air fresheners come in a variety of flavors.

Sticky Gel

Sticky Gel air freshener


These air fresheners consist of a thick gel that holds the fragrant oil. It can easily stick to any surface within your vehicle, minus the need for using adhesive. Therefore, they prove to be incredibly easy to use. As you don’t have to attach it to the air vent or any other propulsive surface to make it work, sticky gel products aren’t that effective at eliminating strong odors in the car. However, you do get to leverage longevity, as the fragrant oil can last way longer than cardboard, aerosol, and paper products.


Cardboard car air fresheners

This low-cost solution for keeping the interior smelling fresh is incredibly powerful. It can easily spread fragrance to the cabin while eliminating bad odors. These products are hung on the rearview mirror and are made from special scented cardboard, hence why they are so inexpensive. While they are quite long-lasting, they aren’t the most effective at controlling unpleasant smells. However, if you don’t have enough money, and you need to get rid of bad odor – it’s definitely a good option.

Oil Wick

Oil Wick car air fresheners


This type of air freshener requires the insertion of a wick into the bottle. Once you push the wick to the plastic top, you can place it on your car’s air vents. These products are available in multi and single-scented variants but emit a fragrance that stays for a long amount of time. It doesn’t fade away easily and offers a lot of longevity. Oil wick air fresheners work best for RVs and large vehicles, especially if you are planning to travel over long distances.

How To Select An Air Freshener For Your Car

How To Select An Air Freshener For Your Car

The best car air freshener you choose depends on your needs. For instance, if you own a compact car, it might be a good option to opt for a lightly scented vent stick. If you own a large sedan, you may feel better capability with an aerosol or oil wick type air freshener. Luxury car owners might find reveal great interest in auto plug-in air fresheners to add to the car’s ambiance.

If you aren’t looking to spend lots of money, you can always opt for the classic hanging cardboard air fresheners. These are affordable and easy to use. They might wear out quickly, but keep giving off a scent after every short period. For long-term solutions, you have oil wick or sticky gel air fresheners, which can even be attached to the vents in a vehicle.

The sticky gel is usually the most preferred option for most car buyers, as these gels can attach to any surface in your car and give off a non-intrusive, pleasant scent.

Top 5 Car Air Fresheners Available In The Market

1. DollarScent Premium Luxury Car Air Freshener

The DollarScent Premium Luxury Car Air Freshener is a simple and easy way of keeping your car smelling good and pure year-round. It is perfect for those Uber/Taxi drivers, vehicle owners who are smokers, travel with kids, or have pets. The product has a masculine and classic electrifying scent that can give quite a relaxing and comfortable appeal when entering your ride. It has a cologne like an aroma that is edgy that creates an appeal to the opposite sex. Thanks to its eco-friendly and fashionable design, it is approved by many car-enthusiasts. Many claim it to be an accessory that will enhance your driving experience throughout all your senses.


  • One of the best cardboard air fresheners
  • Plenty of different flavors
  • ​Made in the U.S.A
  • ​Eco-Friendly and Fashionable
  • Excellent smell and scent that attracts


  • It may be a little too strong for some

2. Moso Natural Air Purifying Bag

The Moso Natural Air Purifying Bag is sealed inside a beautifully stitched linen bag. It has 200 grams of extremely porous and fragrant bamboo charcoal that emits a radiant and appealing scent throughout the entire vehicle. A metal grommet is embedded in the upper left corner, which makes it easier to hang at any place, which includes the dashboard, rear-ends of the front seat, or the rear-view mirror. The product doesn’t contain any kind of petroleum or formaldehyde that can be carcinogenic and result in numerous health problems. It is a non-toxic and completely chemical-free of deodorizing your environment, allowing your pets and family to breathe safely.


  • Maintain an odor-free, fresh, and dry environment
  • Non-Toxic and Chemical Free
  • ​Naturally, Absorbs harmful pollutants and allergens
  • ​Prevents bacteria, mold, mildew growth
  • Reusable for up to two years


  • May require rejuvenation more often for tougher smells

3. Ozium Smoke & Odors Eliminator Gel

Ozium Odor is an odor and smoke eliminator which comes in a gel-based form and has the capability of fully absorbing any kind of bad odor. It proves to be incredibly handy for smokers, as its fresh scent can easily get rid of that smell of nicotine. The product works well indoors to freshen entire bathrooms and rooms too.

Subsequently, it isn’t hard to determine why it’s such a good option for most. They work around the clock to maintain a good fragrance environment. The concentrated gel in the product makes it incredibly long-lasting. The compact size also makes it easy to hide under your vehicle seat, or in other small compartments like cup holders. Whether your car is littered with malodorous objects or spotless, Ozium will not disappoint, making it the best car air freshener on the market.


  • Can be placed in small places
  • Patented fragrance formula
  • ​Easily eliminates all types of odors
  • ​Twist top allows for scent level control
  • Ideal for use in vehicle, home, garage, office


  • May dry out in extremely cold weather

4. Meguiar’s G16402 Whole Car Air Refresher

Meguiar’s Whole Car Air Freshener is one of the best spray-based products in the marketplace for removing odors and bad scents from the interior of your vehicle. The product boasts a nozzle that is pressed for releasing a strong fragrance, which not only appeals to drivers but also gets rid of the junk or smoke-related smells. The scent from this product lasts for weeks, as it works at the molecular level for permanently removing foul smells. Unlike traditional odor removers, this product from Meguiar’s penetrates the complete interior of your car, truck or SUV. The mist moves through the ventilation system of your car, across the headliner and all hard to reach areas of your cabin.


  • Removes smells from cigarette smoke, work-out gear, and dirty pets
  • Aerosol mist eliminates odors instantly leaving a fresh scent
  • ​Can be sprayed whenever required, allowing for scent level control
  • ​Eliminates all types of odors on a molecular level
  • Cost-efficient as compared to other spray products


  • A little strong scent and fragrance

5. FRiEQ Car Air Freshener

The FRiEQ Car Air Freshener is an ionic air purifier that releases 4.8 million negative ions per cm3 for massive odor-fighting power. The product uses the technology of negative ions for improving the air quality and clearing the air of any bad odor. Its negative ions can destroy odor-causing particulates from the air. With a measurable and controllable quantity, you can get rid of the smoke smell and other stale odors. The product even neutralizers contaminants like viruses, bacteria, and mold by purifying the environment to help you breathe easier. It has a compact and attractive design with a blue LED light.


  • Strongest air purifier in the market
  • Products negative ions for eliminating odors
  • ​Destroys contaminants like bacteria, viruses, and mold
  • ​Attractive and compact design
  • Cheaply priced


  • No fragrance


Though all the 5 projects mentioned above can get the job done, the Ozium Smoke & Odors Eliminator Gel is our top pick. The product offers has the capability of getting rid of all bad odors, while spreading a nice, relaxing scent throughout the entire. Besides being the best car air freshener, it is also available for a reasonable price, which means you get great value for your money.

About George Bradley

George is an enthusiastic blogger and an auto mechanic expert whose mission is to provide the readers with the best tips, guides, and recent events in the automotive industry. He has been involved in researching on various topics that are essential to the car owners, especially when it comes to an understanding, maintaining and handling their vehicles.

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