Ah, that new baby smell. Hold your baby close, press your face to his neck and just inhale…addictive, right?
But we all know what doesn’t smell so good: the diapers. And the spit-up. And it really stinks—excuse the pun—when you’re taking a visitor on a tour of your house and open the door to show off the adorably decorated nursery, only to have said visitor gag over the scent of icky baby poo.
Here are some tips for keeping baby’s room smelling (almost) as good as baby.
1. Every day is trash day
Strange truth: Part of the blissed-out state of being a new parent appears to be not being disgusted by your little one’s bodily fluids. That’s right—you think your baby’s poo don’t stink. You might spend close to 24 hours a day in the nursery and think it smells absolutely fine. But trust me—if you didn’t love your baby, you’d find that odor pretty terrible.
There are many special “baby trash cans” on the market that supposedly hide the scent of dirty diapers. Buy them if you’d like, but better yet—take out the trash daily, if not more often. Or just carry those stinky ones straight into the garage. Hard to do when you’ve got a breastfed newborn who goes through a dozen dirty diapers in a day—I fully get that! But certainly a task worth doing before those nosy visitors get the complete tour…
2. Neutralize, don’t deodorize
You know what happens when you spray one of those air fresheners that smells like the perfume elderly women wear in your baby’s room? You get a baby poo/elderly perfume smelly combo. Ick. A better option—and one that doesn’t involve harsh chemicals or pollutants—is to neutralize instead. A neutralizer naturally diffuses the foul odors in the air and leaves a gentle essence in its place. I’ve had great success with Babyganics Aroma Therapy spray in cucumber. The air freshener I use throughout the house, in every room, is Citrus Magic‘s tropic citrus blend, which is also 100% natural.
3. Essential oils are essential
Not into aromatherapy? It’s time to change that. After all, the right aroma can soothe a frantically crying baby and ease him into a much-needed sleep. Added bonus: it will cover up some of those unpleasant smells that might be stressing you out. Zum Wee Mist in Lullaby Lavendar is, like all Zum/Indigio Wild products, delicious and natural and amazing. But you don’t need a “special for baby” essential oil product. Get a nice-sized bottle of Vitacost brand Pure Lavender Oil and keep your nursery—and entire house—stocked for months!
4. Air, air everywhere
Baby, it might be cold outside (or too hot) but never underestimate what a breath of fresh air can do. Open the windows for about 10-15 minutes once a day for optimal air flow. While the outside air is mixing with the air inside your baby’s room, use that opportunity to offer baby a change of scenery. Do tummy time in the family room and let baby’s eyes track the cat’s paws as she prances about the room, or bundle up your little one for a brisk walk outdoors. Your baby will benefit from this little adventure—and when you return to home sweet home, the room will feel cleaner, lighter and refreshed.
Jorie Mark is the Creative Director of Vitacost.com and mother to three children, ages 2 to 9.