As a cleaning industry professional, business owner or someone interested in hygiene, smell is important. Being able to control the odour of a room gives you the power to make a positive and, importantly, lasting impression.

How? Princeton researchers Janine Willis and Alexander Todorov found that we form lasting opinions in less than a second. When you combine this finding with a study by Kadohisa et al - which showed that odours can arouse certain memories and emotions - you can start to see why smell matters. 

Odour and cleanliness are intimately linked. Because of this, you need to know how to eliminate bad odours as part of a professional cleaning regimen. You can do this with the right odour neutraliser, as we’ll explain.


Why Can We Smell?


The primary reason for smell is to sense changes in the chemistry of our environment. Smells alert us to potentially dangerous situations and potentially positive ones. In fact, smell is regarded as our fastest sense.

The olfactory epithelium contains millions of neurons that can detect smells in milliseconds. These neurons send signals through 450 different protein receptors to the limbic system of the brain. Odour molecules then get processed immediately, which means smells are sensed before any visual, audio or haptic (touch) cues.


Based on what we now know about how quickly we form first impressions, the power of unpleasant odours and the way our olfactory senses work, you can see the science of smell is so important. Indeed, you can’t hope to evoke positive responses from people in public settings such offices or avoid negative associations with lack of hygiene in settings like hospitals without understanding the meaning of odour and, in turn, how to eliminate bad odours. 


Masking Odours vs Neutralising Odours

There are two ways to manage odours: masking and neutralising. The latter is more effective than the former. To keep your residents and customers safe, you should strive to eliminate odours, rather than mask them. Masking odours simply serves to paper over the cracks. It’s a temporary solution.


Pleasant Odours that Last

An odour masking spray might last for 10-30 minutes. That’s OK if you can control when people enter a room, but that’s not how things work in public settings. Moreover, there are plenty of places where odour masking sprays simply aren’t practical or useful.

Firstly, the level of cleanliness needs to be such that surfaces are not only sanitary but free from bad smells. Secondly, it’s not practical to continually fill the air with sprays that only mask smells for short periods of time. What’s more, sprays might cause complications for customers or residents. Therefore, you need a more sophisticated solution to the issue of odours in washrooms.

This is where an odour eliminator, aka an odour neutraliser, can be useful. As the name suggests, these products eliminate bad odours at their cause, rather than superficially masking them. This is why they’re often more accurately described as "odour neutralisers". For example, Diversey’s Good Sense range of products - in particular Good Sense Breakdown contains patented Odour Neutralising Technology (ONT) that tackles bad smells at a molecular level.

This formula encapsulates malodour molecules (i.e. those that create bad smells). So, by using products from the Good Sense range, you’re able to tackle problems at the root cause. This, in turn, creates a more hygienic, pleasant-smelling environment. Moreover, because ONT has a long-acting chemical action, it provides continuous odour-neutralising protection for hours rather than minutes.

Cleaning Solutions that Saturate the Problem

Essentially, you can think of the difference between a spray that masks smell and one that eliminates odours as the difference between using a cologne and taking a shower. A cologne sits on the skin and has the ability to give off a pleasant smell for a few minutes or hours. What it doesn’t do is wash away the cause of the bad smell; taking a shower will. Whether the end result is a pleasant smell or a neutral one, the fact remains that taking a shower removes the cause of while a cologne simply masks it temporarily.

The same is true when you use products from the Diversey Good Sense range. These products contain a patented chemical formula that dissolves bacteria and contains bad odours on a molecular level. It’s the equivalent of cleansing surfaces like someone taking a shower. You can tackle the problem and create lasting cleanliness and freshness, rather than masking it.

How to Eliminate Odours


The best way to eliminate bad odours is to use a two-step process. The Good Sense range from Diversey features five sprays with odour-neutralising qualities. However, before you give any room for a positive aroma, you need to tackle the root cause. For this, you can use the Good Sense surface cleaners.

These cleaners are pH-neutral and provide high-quality, streak-free finishes. What’s more, they contain the same Odour Neutralising Technology (ONT) as our sprays. This allows you to tackle the cause of bad smells on any hard surfaces. 


Smells that Create Lasting Impressions


Smells make a difference. It doesn’t matter if you’re in a care home, medical setting, or office, and it doesn't matter if you cater to hundreds or dozens of people: our perception of cleanliness is driven by our olfactory senses. If something doesn’t smell clean, it probably isn’t.

That’s why you need to have a robust cleaning routine that tackles dirt, bacteria and odours at the source. The Good Sense range from Diversey, with its Odour Neutralising Technology (ONT), strikes at the heart of bad odours.

When you combine these sprays and cleaners with other Diversey products, including Oxivir Plus, you create the perfect conditions to create positive first impressions that last.

Free Infographic

How to remove malodour in your building

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Infographic Odour Control in Commercial Settings