10 Ways to Remove Durian Smell ‘Coz Some People Might Think It’s a Gas Leak

Durian: either you love the smell or you hate it. There is no in-between.

And for both sides of the coin, each side is pretty extreme: lovers (especially Singaporeans and Malaysians) think they smell like heaven while haters think they smell like…fart.

However, even for people who love the fruit, the scent of durian can sometimes be overpowering and hard to be rid of, even after the fruits has been makan-ed and thrown away a long time ago.


It sticks to your car, your fingers and your breath, not unlike the smell of cigarettes (though admittedly, cigarette smells do stick as well but not that strong).

Fret not, here are some ways you can get rid of durian scent if you find that it is something revolting, or you have friend who hate the smell of durians.

If you have always wondered why the smell of durians is something that has the ability to stay on everything and everything that comes into contact with it, here’s the reason why.

According to researchers, the reason why durians have such a strong smell is due to sulphur compounds contained in the fruit which incidentally explains why they emit such a pungent odour.

You can watch this video to know more about its smell:

Ok, so, moving on.

Washing hands with durian husk
For this method, all you have to do is to use the empty durian shells that are lying around after you have opened and consumed the fruits. According to research, a compound called 5-HMF found in durian shells act as a deodorizer which neutralises the smell of durians. Ironically, isn’t it? The shells remove the smell.

If you think Dettol is only used for disinfecting wounds, you’re wrong. Try washing your hands with Dettol and wipe any surfaces that might have come into contact with durians. Not only will there be no more durian smell, and as a bonus, you will smell nice and fresh.

Pandan leaves
Pandan leaves are an ingredient found in many dishes that we have in Singapore and one reason for its popularity is due to the aroma it imparts when used in cooking. Try putting pandan leaves in a room the next time you eat durians as the strong smell of pandan leaves can mask the smell of durian. In fact, if you think about it, pandan leaves work wonders to remove any smell.Just ask any taxi driver.

Durian stem

This method has been shared widely by many netizens who swear by its effectiveness and although nobody knows the reason why it works, perhaps you can try it the next time you have durians in the car. Just put it near the air-con and it’ll remove the smell in the room or car. Maybe it works the same way as the shell?


Bamboo Charcoal
Bamboo charcoal has long been used as a deodorizer that can remove smells from household items such as closets or shoes. Another use for it is to place it in the refrigerator to remove the smell of durians that you may have left in the refrigerator. To be fair, bamboo charcoal absorb all odours, so it’s useful if you have a person who smells like durian, too.

The simplest way for you to get rid of the durian smell found in your car would be to open all windows in your car when transporting durians and spray some air freshener afterwards to mask and remove any smell that the durian may have left behind. Wind can eventually remove the smell, though it might take longer.

Washing your hands with cucumbers are said to be a cost-effective and simple remedy to get rid of that lingering stench of durians from your hands.

Durian Seed
Using the durian seed to wash your hands after eating durians is also a way that many netizens have reported to have used and seen results. The reason why it works is probably similar to the reason why washing you hands with durian husks are said to be effective.

Drinking citrus flavoured drinks or washing your hands with any citrus scented soaps will help remove the smell and aftertaste of durians as the citrus compounds are able to overpower the smell of durians.

Baking Soda
Another common household item said to help in removing the smell of durians is baking soda. Placing small amounts of baking soda in a container in areas where there are durians can help remove the smell as it acts as a deodorising agent. After all, we all know baking soda as a miracle thingy, right?

Featured Image: Torjrtrx / Shutterstock.com