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Odour neutralisation, neutralising unpleasant odours

Bad odours are incredibly annoying. Hence, odour neutralisation is gaining popularity. After all, an unpleasant odour immediately makes us feel worse. There are various methods to remedy odour nuisance. They all work slightly differently. In this blog, we clearly explain how the different variants of an odour neutraliser work. We also cover what makes odour neutralising with a device different.


The human sense of smell

To understand how odour neutralisation works, it is important to understand how we humans smell. In our nose, there are more than 400 types of odour receptors. This enables us to distinguish between many different odours. A smell is therefore nothing more than a chemical molecule that is light enough to float in the air and to which human smell receptors bind. Some odours consist of only 1 molecule, others of a combination of several molecules. These receptors then send a signal to our brains. These then possibly recognise the smell.


Odour neutralisation


Why is odour neutralisation so difficult?

However, how people perceive smell is largely not dependent on the molecules, but also on our memories and experiences. In general, people respond more strongly to organic odours. Indeed, these odours were often related to things that affect our survival, such as mould or fresh fruit. However, specific smells are mostly related to past experiences. This also explains why different people interpret the same smell differently. Certain smells some may associate with tasty peppermint candies and others with an industrial detergent. This makes odour neutralisation tricky. After all, you want it to smell pleasant to everyone. Emotions also vary from person to person. For example, some people find detergent smelling very nice because it reminds them of spring cleaning. Others associate it with the care home and therefore dislike it. So an odour neutraliser needs to be of many types.

So the relationship between smell and memories is a lot stronger than with sight and hearing, for example. After all, when different people look at the same building, they all see the same thing! This can be explained by the place where our brain processes smells. This happens near the “emotion centre” deep in the brain. Indeed, smell is the first sense that evolved. The connections between what we smell and our emotions and memories are strong. So odour neutralisation helps to remove unpleasant emotions. In this way, a machine can remedy odour problems.


Different methods of odour neutralisation

Odour neutralisation comes in roughly two ways. With methods to mask the smell and to remove the smell. In fact, the best odour neutraliser does both. The most effective way, of course, is by simply removing the source of the odour. Yet there are plenty of situations where this does not work. A care home dealing with incontinence odours is a good example. Even in a gym dealing with body odours, it is not so easy to remove the source of them. Odour neutralisation then offers a solution. One option is then to mask the odour. Here, you then spread a different smell with the aim of neutralising the foul odour. This does not just mean that a fine odour mixes with the bad one and thus improves the overall ambience. The unpleasant smell is also actually neutralised. This is due to two effects. Firstly, the brain thus interprets combinations of fragrances. By adding a fine fragrance, you change the original combination and interpretation of the smell. In addition, some fragrances block the signals from your nose to your brain. So in this way, the foul smell is actually blocked and your brain reacts less to it.


What neutralises odour?

There are still drawbacks to masking odours. For instance, you don’t remove the smell, you only make us smell it less. With a continuous source of an unpleasant odour, this is no longer enough in the long run. Hence, more and more people choose to remedy odour nuisance with a machine. A good odour neutraliser does not mask the odour, but actually removes it. This is done through chemical reactions. The machine disperses molecules in the air that react with the unpleasant odour. This changes the odour molecule into a substance that does not smell. This way, you actually get rid of the foul odour and don’t have to worry about it coming back. Odour neutralisation at the molecular level is called this.


Odour neutralisation and diffusion?

In many cases, you want to remove a bad smell and then replace it with a pleasant aroma. This sounds contradictory, Surely if you break down odours it is not possible to also spread odours? You would think that the device would then also break down its own odours. Fortunately, with good odour neutralisation, this is indeed possible. This has to do with the molecules used to neutralise odours. This is because the pleasant aromas emitted by an odour neutraliser are made in such a way that they do not react with the neutralisation molecules. In this way, the device thus removes all foul odours from the air while simultaneously diffusing a fine fragrance. The best of both worlds, then!


So which odour neutraliser should I have?

Currently, the Superscent is one of the best odour neutralisers on the market. It has a hefty capacity of more than 550 square metres. It works by breaking down foul odours at the molecular level. It also diffuses odours of your choice through cold mist technology. In doing so, it uses a mist to bring fragrance into the room. This way, it spreads better and you do longer with the essential oil. The Superscent also has the option to effectively remedy odour nuisance caused by smoking. So it is at home in all markets! Operation via the app is easy and versatile. So you can create the perfect odour neutraliser for your situation.


Need advice or more information?

Are you done with bad odours and want to deploy odour neutralisation? Or would you like to know more about odour neutralisation? Then visit our product page or call us on +31 020 646 4028 for personal advice!