Why Can't You Smell Your Own House?

Everybody’s house smells in some way. There are the temporary smells of baking bread, fresh bouquets of flowers, or even dog farts. So why is it that you can smell other houses, but not your own? It has to do with sensory adaptation. That’s the scientific way to say you just get used to the smell of your own house. When you’re at home, the smell of your house is all around you. It never goes away. So, you become adapted to the way it smells. The thing with smell, though, is that you adapt to odors really quickly. After just a few breaths of a smell, you begin to acclimate to it. You start to experience that smell as being less intense, and eventually you take no note of it at all. It likely comes as no surprise that there's an entire industry devoted to making your house smell better. It might be a simple housekeeping issue, like a dishwasher that needs to be cleaned or mildewing towels in the bathroom. Then, if you still want to change the way your house smells, there are a million candles, incense sticks and oil diffusers that might do the trick.