FORT MYERS, Fla. (Consumer Reports) - Febreze Air Effects claims it can do a lot. But when put to a true test, can it live up to the hype? WINK News and Consumer Reports set out to test the Febreze in the same fashion scene in countless commercials.
One such commercial features an old goat, a sweaty bodybuilder, and a day-old fish. Testers spray Febreze throughout the room, then bring in people with blindfolds and ask them what the room smells like.
"Like springtime," one person says.
"It smells like flowers," says another.
But Consumer Reports found very different results after conducting its own sniff test. A box of cat litter and sardines were left sitting in a room for several hours. After giving the odors time to build, testers sprayed the room with Febreze, then brought in their own blindfolded test subjects.
"It's very strong and unpleasant," said Nicole Sarrubbo.
"It smells like rotten fish with some floral notes," said Sara Brown.
"It smells a lot like a men's restroom at a truck stop," Matt fields said.
But a few people said Febreze helped. While it didn't completely mask the odors, it did seem to lessen the overall stench.
"It's not really a pleasant smell," David Lloyd told testers. "But it's not awful, either."
"Bottom line, although the spray concealed some of the odors, it didn't work as well as it did in the ad," Consumer Reports Tod Marks said. "And any effects were just temporary."
The best advice? Don't rely on an scented air spray to do what should be your job: clean up, and throw out the trash.