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Best Car Air Fresheners In 2023

Need to get rid of a funk, or just want to bring a new vibe to your car’s interior? No stress. Here’s some of the best car air fresheners on the market. 

Let’s be real, even if you’re a detailing guru, cleaning out the interior of your car isn’t a fun job by any stretch of the imagination. It’s kinda like cleaning your room as a kid, except now, there isn’t a parent badgering you to make sure it gets done. And hey, I’m not one to point fingers, but some of you out there could still use the prod. You know who you are…

Anyway, with lingering clutter comes lingering smells, and that’s no fun for either you or your passengers. Heck, even if your car is spotless on the inside, it might still have a certain whiff to it. Maybe you own a dog, or maybe your car’s done one too many sweaty commutes home from the gym. Plus, if you’ve got an old, leaky ‘modern classic’, you might find it smells a bit damp too. If so, I feel your pain…

Whatever the case may be, there’s plenty of reasons why you might feel it’s time to invest in a car air freshener. But there are so many types and scents out there – where do you begin?!

Well, luckily, I’ve done the leg work for you. Of course, scent is subjective, but I’d like to think I’m able to discern good smells from bad – or at least know which brands (some well-known, and some a little more niche) are worth a go. Here’s a selection of some of the best car air fresheners on the market that you can buy today…

Best Car Air Fresheners

Little Trees

If someone says the phrase ‘car air freshener’, chances are you’ll picture a colored pine tree hanging from the rearview mirror. These Little Trees, or Magic Trees as they’re sometimes known over here in the UK, are without doubt the most well-known collection of car air fresheners. Quite the accolade, I know.

As you can imagine, there’s a huge number of variations to choose from. So to get an idea about which ones might be worth your money, and which you should stay away from, check out the video above.

Price: from $2.88 at Walmart. Buy Little Trees here.

Jelly Belly

A competitor in the mirror dangler market is Jelly Belly. Better known for its confectionary (remember those Beanboozled challenges on YouTube?), this American company produces air fresheners designed to replicate the smell of each type of jelly bean in its roster. Well, not the forfeit flavors, I should point out.

As such, you don’t have quite as much choice as you would with Little Trees, but there’s still a decent array of scents to pick from. If you’ve got a sweet tooth, this might be the one for you.

Price: from $3.00 at Autozone. Buy Jelly Belly car air fresheners here.

A Carfume air freshener

Carfume

If you prefer a slightly more minimalist aesthetic, these Carfume air fresheners look pretty neat. A 2019 start-up, Carfume still only offers a handful of different scents.

These include ‘One Million’, which features “a leathery whitewood and cinnamon blend with rose, mandarin and peppermint”, while ‘Black Opal’ is “an intoxicating opium floral mix, with notes of Coffee, Vanilla, Musk and Patchouli.”

Pretty hipster, if you ask me. Which is probably why they’re a fair chunk more expensive than the two brands mentioned previously.

Price: from £9.40 on Amazon. Buy Carfume air fresheners here.

A selection of Yankee Candle air fresheners

Yankee Candle

Ok, it might give off “Live, Laugh, Love” vibes, but there’s probably a good reason why Yankee Candle is so well-known in the scents industry.

These little jars of aroma should last you around 4 weeks, and there’s a selection of seven to choose from. Not a fan of that design? Then perhaps you could give their air vent attachments a go.

Price: from $5.44 at Walmart. Buy Yankee Candle car air fresheners here.

A Febreze Car air freshener in its packaging.

Febreze

If you’re the sort of person that gets distracted by a droopy dangler, fear not, as you don’t necessarily have to hang something from your interior mirror to keep your car smelling fresh.

Domestic cleaning company Febreze produces this, a car air freshener that attaches to your air vent with five stages of adjustable scent strength. You’ll need to keep topping it up, but refills should last you about 70 days.

Price: from $5.72 at Walmart. Buy Febreze car air fresheners here.

A Saitoworks air freshener propped up against a tire.

Saitoworks

What about if you want an air freshener that leans into your passion for cars? Well, Saitoworks is a lifestyle brand that caters for everyone with a love of modified Japanese cars, or even broader Japanese culture.

There’s a plethora of mirror-hanging air fresheners for you to cast your eyes over, with all sorts of cool cartoon-y designs and fruity scents. In fact, they even do sprays too.

RRP: $7.50 / £6.00. Buy Saitoworks air fresheners here.

Meguiars

Another spray-based car air freshener is that of Meguiars. Renowned for their detailing and cleaning products, you’d expect Meguiars to take stuff like this seriously, and they haven’t disappointed.

The Meguiars Air Re-Fresher is an aerosol which, when used in conjunction with your car’s AC recirculation, claims to *permanently* eradicate odors after just one use! Crikey.

RRP: $8.99. Buy Meguiar’s car air fresheners here.

Autoglym Autofresh being applied to a car's interior.

Autoglym

Autoglym Autofresh is a spray-based air freshener too, designed to seep into and deodorize all the fabrics in your car’s carpets and upholstery.

The company suggests its effects are ‘long-lasting’ when used ‘sparingly’, which is helpfully vague. Still, a detailing brand as well-recognized as Autoglym should be reliable in this instance, so I reckon it’s worth a pop.

RRP: £10.49. Not available in the US. Buy Autoglym Autofresh here.

Stjärnagloss

You might not have heard of Stjärngloss before. However, this automotive detailing company produces some lovely scents that we’ve been lucky enough to try first-hand (these are Matt’s favorite air fresheners in the whole world).

The Stekare spray features real 24-karat gold flakes, and should last six months, even with daily use. Alternatively, the Skönhet spray is sprinkled with real flakes of silver. A bit OTT? Absolutely, but the results are great.

RRP: $25.00 / £20.00. Buy Stjarnagloss Gold Air here.

How to buy the best air freshener

Well, honestly, since this is largely down to personal taste, it’ll take some trial and error before you find your favorite scent. However, there are some less subjective criteria to think about too. Firstly, do you want something that clips into place on an air vent, or would you rather dangle it from your mirror? Do you want a spray that you can manually administer and top-up, or do you want a diffuser that over time needs replenishing?

Decisions, decisions…

How I picked the products

While I haven’t extensively tested every single one of the brands above, these are recommendations based on Fast Car’s experience and expertise in automotive circles.

The post Best Car Air Fresheners In 2023 appeared first on Fast Car.

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