Air-Purifying Indoor Plants: How to Improve Air Quality in Your Living Space [Plus an All-Natural Air Purifier Alternative]

26 November 2020

Indoor foliage has become so trendy in recent times. Don’t believe it? Scroll through Instagram. All those potted ferns and succulents aren’t just nice to look at — they improve your health and air quality indoors, too.

Most people have myriads of greenery lining up their windowsills, but ardently encouraging this new-found habit is a series of ‘80s studies NASA released stating how indoor houseplants can purify the air.

Unfortunately, back then, it seems a little wishful thinking swept over everyone. Recent studies now say you need over 600 houseplants — in a 1,500-square-foot house — for the foliage to eliminate harmful airborne toxins indoors.

But you don’t have to create a jungle of indoor plants to enjoy their health benefits. A decent amount of foliage can improve air quality indoors — so why not add a handful of air-purifying plants inside your home?

Why Does Indoor Air Quality Matter? 

According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, the average life expectancy is 79 years — surprisingly, 69 of those years you’ll spend indoors. As an indoor species, shouldn’t we try to breathe the best air possible inside?

Causes of indoor air pollution include:

You most probably don’t see your upholstery or even drapes releasing harmful pathogens into the air, but if they’re made out of allergy-causing chemicals, they do.

Cleaning products, synthetic building materials, and the paint on your walls are some of the items in your home emitting high levels of VOCs or volatile organic compounds such as benzene, trichloroethylene, and formaldehyde.

  • Benzene — A chemical component of tobacco smoke and paint supplies.
  • Trichloroethylene — Used in spot removers, adhesives, and other household products.
  • Formaldehyde — Found in coating products, glues, drapes, and upholstery.

These harmful chemicals are found in low levels but often combine to produce a toxic chemical soup — and that doesn’t sound very appetizing.

So toxic is the “chemical soup” that, in some cases, it can make you feel sick — especially for hypersensitive people or when you fail to regularly open your doors and windows for proper airflow inside your home.

Symptoms of indoor air pollution include: 

What are the Health Benefits of Air-Purifying Plants?

While it would take a wall-to-wall jungle of foliage to battle harmful airborne pathogens in your living space, indoor plants can still enhance your quality of air.

Indoor plants often do the following: 

  • Boost attention capacity
  • Lower stress levels
  • Reduce allergic reactions such as coughing
  • Reduce throat, eyes, nose, and ears irritations

Air-purifying plants are responsible for reducing levels of carbon dioxide and increasing humidity inside your home. In short, they act as a natural air purifier — which prevents respiratory illnesses such as asthma and bronchitis.

Besides improving air quality, daily interactions with air-purifying plants can improve your moods and reduce stress. 

That doesn’t mean you have to pep-talk your potted succulents — unless you want to, of which we’d never judge. But what we mean is that watering, pruning, and repotting indoor plants can help a great deal.

Types of Air-Purifying Indoor Plants

If you have a green thumb and want to improve air quality in your living space, these air-purifying indoor plants are so easy to care for — and they require little commitment, too.

  1. Spider Plant

  • Scientific name: Chlorophytum comosum
  • Eliminates air pollutants: Xylene and Formaldehyde
  • Fancies bright, indirect sunlight

Compared to other air-purifying plants, spider plants are easy to grow and care for. If you’re ever forgetful or busy or simply a beginner, you’ll relish keeping them.

With the right amount of bright but indirect sunlight, spider plants will bring forth shoots with flowers — then afterwards more baby spider plants will appear.

You can opt to pot the baby spider plants separately into their pots or pot them while still attached to the mother plant. However, once they root, snip them off.

  1. Dracaena

  • Scientific name: Dracaena fragrans
  • Eliminates air pollutants: Xylene, Formaldehyde, Trichloroethylene, and Benzene
  • Boasts 40 different varieties

If you have a spacious home, keeping Dracaena plants is a bliss. They grow up to three feet tall and require large pots to thrive in. If possible, mist them with water instead of watering. These plants will thank you for it.

  1. Garden Mum

  • Scientific name: Chrysanthemum morifolium
  • Eliminates air pollutants: Xylene, Formaldehyde, Benzene, and Ammonia
  • Can also thrive outdoors

Garden Mum plants have beautiful blooms and are much-loved in garden stores, especially in the fall. Besides being perennial plants, they interact well with other plants — pinch off spent flowers, though, to keep them looking neat.

The best part? You can plant them outdoors, too — but in springtime when the danger of frost is reduced. Find a cool spot in your living space, with less than 10 hours of sunlight, to display these colourful plants.

  1. Peace Lily

  • Scientific name: Spathiphyllum
  • Eliminates air pollutants: Ammonia, Formaldehyde, Trichloroethylene, and Benzene
  • Grows well under a shade
  • Blooms fragrant flowers throughout summer

Compared to other air-purifying indoor plants, Peace Lily is smaller — making it ideal for smaller spaces. Avoid watering these plants, and remember to keep them under a shade.

Peace Lily plants flower throughout summer and are so easy to grow. But be careful of pollen and floral scents they give off, and ensure pets or children don’t ingest this plant. 

Are There Other Ways to Improve Air Quality Indoors?

Yes. VBreathe Tasman.

This portable, intelligent device is an all-natural air purifier and detoxifier — designed to protect your living space from the spread of harmful airborne pathogens such as mould, bacteria, and viruses lurking indoors.

We have pivoted to calling it the all-natural air purifier and detoxifier for several reasons:

  1. Unlike most air purifiers that rely on HEPA filters alone, VBreathe Tasman uses medical grade-HEPA filtration with our all-natural VActive Gel to cleanse living spaces.
  2. The medical-grade filtration in VBreathe Tasman uses anti-bacterial coating to trap and reduce harmful indoor microbes in the filter layer.
  3. Our VActive Gel is all-natural and food safe — child and pet safe, too — and contains a blend of Australian essential oils, which are expelled into the surrounding air to reduce airborne toxins.
  4. Smart sensors built into VBreathe Tasman can detect carbon monoxide, mould, smoke, and harmful ultrafine particles in the air.

Alone, air-purifying plants can take time to purify the air in the entire room. But having an all-natural air purifier and detoxifier such as VBreathe Tasman compliments indoor plants — and proper ventilation practices.

VBreathe Tasman is independently tested by leading Australian universities and laboratories. And follows guidelines of Australian and international health standards.

So, what we have here is the world’s most technologically advanced portable indoor air purifier and detoxifier.

VBreathe Tasman can also:

  • Deter mosquitoes
  • Help allergy sufferers
  • Remove odour indoors
  • Improve air circulation in living spaces

In Conclusion

Air-purifying indoor plants can impact your health, and not just for their visual beauty. But because they release oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide lurking in our homes — the opposite of what we do when we breathe.

Large scale studies have proven indoor houseplants can boost moods and reduce stress levels, and even improve productivity and concentration by up to 15% — making air-purifying plants perfect for your home and office.

But you can enjoy even more improved air quality when you display foliage and activate VBreathe Tasman in the same room, because, hey, an all-natural air purifier and detoxifier can stand apart from the rest — and for a good reason.

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VBreathe Tasman is an intelligent and portable indoor air purifier and detoxifier.

Our world-first patented combination of HEPA filtration and VActive natural gel technology radically improves indoor air quality by not only filtering heavy particles through the device, but also by dispersing VActive Gel into the air to reduce harmful indoor bacteria, viruses, microbes, mould and toxins.

Find out more