• 10 Best Indoor Plants for Air Quality in 2022 (Master Gardener-Reviewed) 1
  • 10 Best Indoor Plants for Air Quality in 2022 (Master Gardener-Reviewed) 2
  • 10 Best Indoor Plants for Air Quality in 2022 (Master Gardener-Reviewed) 3
  • 10 Best Indoor Plants for Air Quality in 2022 (Master Gardener-Reviewed) 4
  • 10 Best Indoor Plants for Air Quality in 2022 (Master Gardener-Reviewed) 5

10 Best Indoor Plants for Air Quality in 2022 (Master Gardener-Reviewed)

If you're looking to add some liveliness to your living room, a plant can be just the thing you need. Not only are plants attractive and calming, but some of them even have air-cleaning benefits. They can filter out common household toxins like ammonia, carbon monoxide, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that are found in home furnishings, carpets, cleaning fluids, cosmetics, and more.

We’ve scoured the internet to find plants that are both nice to look at and effective air purifiers. Whether you're a new plant parent or a seasoned green thumb, you can't go wrong with a simple, sturdy snake plant like the one from Burpee. They're easy to care for and will release oxygen into the air. Browse more below and check out our buying guide reviewed by a master gardener and homestead blogger for tips on how to choose the right air-purifying plant for your home.

Featured in this article

Amy Jeanroy
mybest US Editors
  • Last updated: 08-21-2022
Table of Contents

How to Choose an Indoor Plant for Air Quality – Buying Guide

When deciding which plant is the right one for you, consider both its air purifying properties as well as how practical it will be for your home and your lifestyle.

Know Which Toxins Plants Can Remove

Know Which Toxins Plants Can Remove
The ability of plants to remove household toxins (specifically, volatile organic compounds) from the air was first studied in a 1989 NASA experiment. This study found that not only were different plants able (or unable) to absorb different toxins but that they also do so to different degrees.

Some plants are really good at cleaning just one toxin whereas others are good at absorbing several. If your primary concern when choosing a plant is how well it can clean the air, be sure to check which and how many toxins it’s most effective against.

Some of the most common (and most dangerous) indoor air pollutants include formaldehyde, which can be found in most pressed wood furniture pieces; carbon monoxide, which can come from gas-powered heat sources or from outdoors; and ammonia, which can come from commonly used cleaning products.

Be Sure That You Can Take Care of Your Plant Properly

Be Sure That You Can Take Care of Your Plant Properly

Some plants are hardier than others. For example, snake plants only need to be watered every two to six weeks, which is great for travelers. They tolerate most temperatures and like medium light, which means they can be placed almost anywhere in your home. Plus, they don’t need much air circulation.

On the other hand, English ivies can be quite finicky. They like humidity, but not overwatering. They're prone to spider mite infestations. And since they originated in northern Europe, they prefer cooler conditions. If you don’t give them just the right amount of water, light, and fertilizer, they could turn brown and drop leaves.

Long story short: if you’re out on business trips a lot, or if you know that you aren’t going to remember to water your plants, get something hardy.

Match Your Plants to the Size of Your Space

Match Your Plants to the Size of Your Space
In any given species of plant, a larger plant will be more effective at cleaning the air than a smaller one, although having several smaller ones will have the same effect as having one larger one. So if you’re low on the floor space necessary for a big plant, feel free to get several smaller ones to dot around your room.

As a point of reference for how many plants you want to aim to have, the NASA study recommends having one six to eight-inch plant per 100 square feet of space.

Ensure Your Plant Isn’t Poisonous if You Have Indoor Pets

Ensure Your Plant Isn’t Poisonous if You Have Indoor Pets

Even though a plant may clean the air, that doesn’t necessarily make it totally benign, and in fact, many air-cleaning plants are toxic to pets and humans when ingested.

So if you have pets or young children, it’s vital that you check whether a plant is poisonous before you buy it. Even if you plan on keeping it in a hard-to-reach location, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

10 Best Indoor Plants for Air Quality

Keep in mind that while these plants can filter out certain compounds from the air to a degree, if you have sensitivities or a compromised immune system, you’ll still want to invest in a quality air purifier.

*Please note that these products were chosen after extensive research by mybest writers. The choices are not necessarily affiliated with or recommended by Amy Jeanroy. For more on our selection process, check out our content policy.

Image
1
Burpee Black Coral Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata) 1

Burpee

2
JM BAMBOO Peace Lily Plant (Spathiphyllum) 1

JM BAMBOO

3
Costa Farms Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) 1

Costa Farms

4
Hirt's Gardens Wintergreen Weeping Fig Tree (Ficus benjamina) 1

Hirt's Gardens

5
Hirt's Gardens Reverse Variegated Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum) 1

Hirt's Gardens

6
JM BAMBOO Aloe Vera (A. barbadensis) 1

JM BAMBOO

7
Hirt's Gardens Victorian Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans) 1

Hirt's Gardens

8
Costa Farms Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata) 1

Costa Farms

9
Costa Farms Red Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema commutatum) 1

Costa Farms

10
Josh's Frogs Clean Air Houseplant Multipack 1

Josh's Frogs

Name

Black Coral Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)

Peace Lily Plant (Spathiphyllum)

Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)

Wintergreen Weeping Fig Tree (Ficus benjamina)

Reverse Variegated Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

Aloe Vera (A. barbadensis)

Victorian Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans)

Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)

Red Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema commutatum)

Clean Air Houseplant Multipack

Features

A Low Maintenance VOC Cleaning Plant

Add Some Flowers to Your Space

A Plant You Can Easily Propagate

An Air Purifying Houseplant-Sized Tree

A Temperature-Resistant Plant for Pet Owners

Use This Plant as a Soothing Ointment

An Indoor Palm for Tropical Vibes

A Fern That Loves a Hanging Pot

Tall and Easy to Care For

A Variety Pack for Indecisive Plant Owners

Price$22.99$25.99$19.99$43.99$13.99$32.00$6.39$27.23$23.69$52.99
Toxins removedFormaldehyde, trichloroethylene, benzene, xylene, tolueneAmmonia, benzene, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, xyleneXylene, benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethyleneFormaldehyde, trichloroethylene, benzeneFormaldehyde, xylene, carbon monoxideFormaldehyde, benzeneFormaldehyde, trichloroethylene, benzeneFormaldehyde, xyleneFormeldahyde, benzeneVarious
CareMinimalMinimalMinimalModerateMinimalMinimalModerateIntensiveMinimalVarious
Pot size6 in.4.5 in.6 in.8 in.4 in.6 in.4 in.10 in.9.25 in.4.25 in.
Toxic to petsYesYesYesYesNoYesNoNoYesYes
Link
1

BurpeeBlack Coral Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata)

$22.99

Toxins removedFormaldehyde, trichloroethylene, benzene, xylene, toluene
CareMinimal
Pot size6 in.
Toxic to petsYes
2

JM BAMBOOPeace Lily Plant (Spathiphyllum)

2-pack

$25.99

Toxins removedAmmonia, benzene, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, xylene
CareMinimal
Pot size4.5 in.
Toxic to petsYes
3

Costa FarmsGolden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)

$19.99

Toxins removedXylene, benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene
CareMinimal
Pot size6 in.
Toxic to petsYes
4

Hirt's GardensWintergreen Weeping Fig Tree (Ficus benjamina)

$43.99

Toxins removedFormaldehyde, trichloroethylene, benzene
CareModerate
Pot size8 in.
Toxic to petsYes
5

Hirt's GardensReverse Variegated Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

$13.99

Toxins removedFormaldehyde, xylene, carbon monoxide
CareMinimal
Pot size4 in.
Toxic to petsNo
6

JM BAMBOOAloe Vera (A. barbadensis)

$32.00

Toxins removedFormaldehyde, benzene
CareMinimal
Pot size6 in.
Toxic to petsYes
7

Hirt's GardensVictorian Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans)

$6.39

Toxins removedFormaldehyde, trichloroethylene, benzene
CareModerate
Size4 in.
Toxic to petsNo
8

Costa FarmsBoston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)

$27.23

Toxins removedFormaldehyde, xylene
CareIntensive
Pot size10 in.
Toxic to petsNo
9

Costa FarmsRed Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema commutatum)

$23.69

Toxins RemovedFormeldahyde, benzene
CareMinimal
Pot size9.25 in.
Toxic to PetsYes
10

Josh's FrogsClean Air Houseplant Multipack

3-pack

$52.99

Toxins RemovedVarious
CareVarious
Pot size4.25 in.
Toxic to PetsYes

More Products to Cultivate Your Green Thumb

Fill your home with foliage and give your plant babies the best care. Check out some of our other favorite products for indoor plant lovers.

Buying Guide Reviewed by Master Gardener and Homestead Blogger Amy Jeanroy

Amy Jeanroy
Master Gardener, Homestead Blogger
Amy Jeanroy

This expert reviewed the contents of the buying guide for accuracy and provided factual corrections when necessary. They did not participate in the product selection process, nor are they affiliated with any of our choices unless explicitly stated so.

Author: Jacqueline Oshiro

  • Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more mybest recommendations! For questions or comments, leave us feedback via a Google Form on our Contact Us page.

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