Cannabis, as we’re well aware, is a flower. One of the primary functions of flowers is to create terpenes, odoriferous chemicals designed by nature to attract pollinators and ward off predators. These pungent compounds can be one of the best and worst parts of enjoying cannabis. The rich smell of fresh, sticky weed can be as intoxicating as the perfume of a long-lost lover.
How to get rid of weed smell in your house after smoking
Unfortunately, weed smell can also be a dead giveaway that alerts others to your preferably private ritual. And while cannabis may be consumed for medicinal and adult-use purposes throughout the country, federal prohibition continues to govern public perception, which can still trend negative. If you want to be mindful of your neighbors or simply want your cannabis habits to stay under the radar, respect and privacy can be preserved with a few handy tricks to mask the smell of cannabis on your person or inside your home.
The classic approach: Sai baba, satya, nag champa, agarbatti incense
Nag Champa is an incense commonly burnt in ashrams. The scent is neither masculine or feminine and usually contains a mixture of the following ingredients:
- Champa flower
- Benzoin resinoid (Styrax tonkinensis)
- Henna (Lawsonia inermis)
- Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens)
- Indian sandalwood (Santalum album)
The classic aroma was transplanted in the west at the end of the hippie trail and has remained a welcome scent for practitioners of yoga, meditation, and cannabis consumption. This is more than a great way to get rid the smell of weed; the incense smoke can also pull double duty to visually mask the cannabis smoke if it’s still lingering.
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The hippie approach: Patchouli oil
This aromatic oil is a hippie hallmark and doubles as a great way to mask weed smell. Made from the small pink and white flowers of the patchouli plant, this oil is known for its pleasant, lasting scent and supposed antidepressant and aphrodisiac qualities. Certainly makes sense to me: enjoy a doobie, dab some patchouli behind the ears, smell nice, and make love, not war.
The homemaker approach: Febreeze
A household staple for many Americans living with gassy pets and gassier spouses or roommates, Febreeze is a trigger-action odor eliminator. This is not the end-all, be-all of cannabis smell reduction, but for a fresh scent in a pinch, it’s a solid option.
The toilet bowl approach: Matches with the bathroom fan on
One of the sneakier moves to avoid weed smell on the list, the toilet bowl is an act of desperation at its core. You can’t go outside but you can’t consume inside; it’s a risky move no matter how you slice it. But if you must, bring along stick matches (preferably) and flip the switch on the fan. The combusting sulfur and wood smoke of the stick matches should cover a hit or two and the fan should take care of the rest.
The smoke eliminator approach: Ozium
Ozium is a classic smoke eliminator that every cannabis enthusiast can use. It’s an air freshener with a vanilla and lemon-type scent that literally grabs smoke out of the air and punches it into another realm. While it won’t completely mask the scent, it’s a great base for all of the scents you’re about to throw into the atmosphere.
What It Smells Like in the Bag
Marijuana will smell differently depending on the strain. In general, marijuana in the bag will have a combination of a few scents, such as woody, earthy, musky, citrus, skunk, floral, and/or pine notes with one smell tending to dominate. Often times, marijuana is stored in small airtight containers that dampen the smell significantly. Stinkier marijuana strains include Cat Piss, Space Queen, and Super Skunk. Space Queen is said to smell similar to spoiled dairy, while Cat Piss and Super Skunk are aptly named for their stinkiness.
What the Plant Smells Like
The marijuana plant will vary in scent depending on how mature the plant is. Immature plants tend to smell less, and if stored appropriately, a scent may not even be detectable. More mature plants will have a stronger odor. The plant can smell earthy, floral, or woody and have notes of pine and skunk, depending on the strain. The weather can also influence scent with heat intensifying the odor, so you may notice the smell more on hot days.
What It Smells Like when Smoked
During the smoking process, marijuana will smell like the dominant notes in the strain. However, smoking adds some other layers to the odor, including the scents of fire, smoke, and a stronger skunk smell. Some strains have fruity scents, while others tend to be more earthy, musky, and herbaceous. The smell can be strong enough to stink up a room or even an entire house, depending on how much was smoked. If someone is smoking in a car, the scent can penetrate the upholstery and can be difficult to cover or get rid of.
Identifying the Smell
Just like anything, some people find the smell pleasant, while others cannot stand the scent that accompanies marijuana. Chances are if you’re smelling something vaguely reminiscent of a skunk mixed with herbs, floral, or citrus notes and without the telltale skunk smell of sulfur, it’s probably marijuana.