6 things people with nice-smelling entryways never do

The bad-smelling habits to nip in the bud for an entryway that always welcomes you and guests

entryway with mirror, console table and wooden chairs
(Image credit: Future PLC)

A lovely scent on entering someone else's home is something we really notice as guests, so what's their secret? While it certainly doesn't need to smell as perfumed as a hotel lobby, we recommend paying attention to the scent at the entrance to your home.

There are various tricks that make for a nice-smelling entryway, and you may find one or two that you would like to adopt at home, from adding some essential oils to your cleaning routine or choosing a signature scent and using an oil burner.

On the flip side, there are also a number of bad-smelling habits to avoid.

Things people with nice-smelling entryways never do

Here are some of the things people with nice-smelling entryways never do.

White entryway ideas for apartments with wood furniture and floor

(Image credit: Alexander James)

1. Forget to let fresh air in

Airing out the entryway and adjoining rooms regularly is the best way to instantly make a more pleasant environment for you and your guests. Even on cooler days when the heating is on and it feels counterintuitive, invite in some fresh air for a brief period to help keep the space feeling and smelling pleasant. 

Leaving a window slightly ajar in warmer weather will keep air flowing and prevent cooking, laundry or pet smells from feeling overpowering. The air inside our homes can sometimes be more polluted than the air outside, which is where air purifiers come in.

2. Keep shoes out in the open

A hallway shoe storage idea with blue cabinet and checkered floor

(Image credit: James Balston)

It's a no-brainer, but keeping shoes covered in some smart hallway shoe storage is a simple way to elevate the space visually, while preventing unpleasant odors from greeting you as you walk through the door. Baskets for everyday shoes are useful but if space allows, consider wall-mounted shoe storage solutions, a stylish shoe storage bench, available at Anthropologie, or creating space in a nearby closet by adding a shoe rack.

3. Go without fresh flowers or foliage

Entryway ideas with round table

(Image credit: Mark Bolton)

Be it houseplants that infuse a subtle scent into the home or a vase of freshly cut flowers, those with lovely-smelling entrances never fail to include some foliage, bringing the outside in and increasing the sense of well-being and a connection with nature.

Some fresh blooms resting on a console table make the space feel cared for and doesn't have to be expensive to maintain, for instance, you could look into growing the best cutting garden flowers in your backyard so you can cut flowers fresh whenever you need them.

4. Let damp items linger

large country entryway with coat hooks and shoe shelf

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Muddy and damp boots, trainers, umbrellas, and jackets are the number-one culprit for musty odors in the entry during the autumn and winter months, and when moisture transfers onto carpets it only makes the problem worse. 

For a nice-smelling home, ensure wet items are given space to air out, place shoes on newspaper and place balls of newspaper inside any that are totally soaked through. Investing in one of the best dehumidifiers will prevent damp and mold issues, helping to lower moisture levels.

5. Neglect cleaning routines

People with nice-smelling entryways won't neglect to take the essential step of mopping hardwood floors and vacuuming carpets regularly. Cleaning an entryway consistently helps keep them free of dust, pet hair, mud, and dirt constantly coming in on shoes. 

By mopping with a few drops of essential oils, such as peppermint oil, at Amazon, you can leave behind a fresh scent that has the added benefit of deterring spiders and mice.

6. Allow clutter to build

'People with nice-smelling homes will also be following some entryway decluttering rules that make it easier to keep things clean,' says Chiana Dickson, Homes & Gardens' junior writer. 'Surfaces cluttered with too many decorative objects (not to mention mail, keys, sunglasses, and so on) will catch dust, pet hair, and generally make it much more challenging to clean properly.' 

Chiana recommends viewing your entry like a guest or a prospective buyer. 'What stands out as messy and what could be stored away?' she asks.

Chiana Dickson
Chiana Dickson

Chiana has been at Homes & Gardens for a year, having started her journey in interior journalism as part of the graduate program. She spends most of her time producing content for the Solved section of the website, helping readers get the most out of their homes through clever decluttering, cleaning, and tidying tips – many of which she tests and reviews herself in her home in Lancaster to ensure they will consistently deliver for her readers.


How can I make my entryway smell better?

'Line your drawers with scented drawer liners or paper infused with
essential oils,' suggests Janille Mangat, cleaning specialist at VMAP. 'Lavender, cedarwood, and rosemary are popular choices. You can also make your scented drawer liners by applying a few drops of essential oil to plain paper or fabric liners. Replace them when the scent starts to fade.'

It's important to deodorize by cleaning, airing out, and decluttering the entryway – then comes the more fun part of finding natural and uplifting ways to infuse a subtle scent to welcome you home. 

These can, of course, be changed with the seasons, so consider purchasing some of the best home fragrance with seasonal scents to complement your decor.

Millie Hurst
Section Editor

Millie Hurst is a freelance lifestyle writer with over six years of experience in digital journalism. Having previously worked as Solved Section Editor at Homes & Gardens and Senior SEO Editor at News UK in London and New York, Millie has written for an array of homes brands including Livingetc and Real Homes and was formerly Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home. She has written and edited countless features on home organization, decluttering and interior design and always hopes to inspire readers with new ways to enjoy their homes. She lives in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, and loves to weave nature-inspired decor and nods to time spent in Italy into her own home.