3 Houseplants That Thrive on Steam and Will Make a Bathroom Smell Amazing

These plants will instantly refresh your bathroom with their vibrant greenery

Modern bathroom with large windows and hanging plants
(Image credit: Getty Images)

I like to start the year as I mean to go on, and prioritizing calm is one of the things on my list for 2024. Houseplants are known to create a relaxing and zen environment so I want to incorporate them into my home more, and one space that can certainly benefit from their relaxing qualities is the bathroom.

Over the past year, spa bathrooms have been a hot topic, and one of the more affordable ways of achieving this zen effect is through plants. The bathroom provides a unique space for foliage as it's typically the most humid room in the home, providing the perfect conditions for certain varieties, but you'll need to know which types will thrive best. 

Taking advantage of this steamy spot by decorating with plants is a great way of giving your bathroom a simple upgrade, and of course, plants with a subtle fragrance will especially help with creating a spa-like feel. Here, we discover the three best houseplants for the bathroom recommended by experts. 

1. Pathos

pathos houseplant

(Image credit: Getty Images)

It can be difficult to know how to choose a houseplant for your modern bathroom, especially if you aren't familiar with the variety. With so many amazing houseplant options for beginners, you're spoilt for choice. However, when it comes to the bathroom, not all plants can take the heat.

'For bathrooms, we recommend one of the pothos varieties mainly because of their tolerance to high humidity,' says Rebecca Sterling, easyplant’s resident plant expert. Originally from tropical climates the pathos plant fares well in the steamy environment of a bathroom. 'They absorb and thrive in the moisture, and it's recognized for its air-purifying qualities, contributing to the air quality in your bathroom too,' Rebecca says,

But it's not just humid heat that the pathos plant can deal with. 'They're very adaptable to low light,' Rebecca adds. 'So, even if your bathroom has a small window with limited light, these plants will still grow and flourish in these conditions.' This makes them a super hardy plant, perfect for adding a bit of greenery to your space even in the darkest and dimmest of bathrooms.

2. Anthurium

Anthurium plant

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This striking plant rose to fame last year after being featured heavily in the fashion collection of Jonathan Anderson at Loewe. The anthurium is simply unlike any other plant around. It adds a contemporary twist and a striking focal point to any space it adorns and, while it might not be an obvious choice, it makes one of the best houseplants for a bathroom.

Like the Pathos, Anthuriums have their origins in the tropics, making them ideal for hot steamy environments like the bathroom. 'Any plants similar to pothos or Anthurium with origins in the tropics will thrive in steamy, humid conditions, meaning you can take as many long hot showers as you’d like without the fear of hurting your plant baby,' explains Rebecca. 

3. Snake plant

snake plant

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Lighting is a key consideration in small bathrooms, and while there are ways to add warm light, it cannot replace natural light. Many apartments have bathrooms without windows, which would be a big no-no for many plants, but the snake plant overcomes this shortfall with ease. 

'Typically, bathrooms have limited natural lighting which makes Snake Plants another great bathroom choice since they’re super adaptable to low-lit environments,' says Rebecca. 'Even if your bathroom has a small window with reserved lighting, Snake Plants will grow and flourish in these conditions.' 

If you're looking to add some life to your bathroom, check out these three plants for their aesthetic and practical benefits. They're guaranteed to thrive off the steam and introduce an element of calm to your bathroom.

Amy McArdle
News writer

Amy recently completed an MA in Magazine Journalism at City, University of London, with experience writing for Women’s lifestyle publications across arts, culture, and beauty. She has a particular love for the minimalist aesthetic mixed with mid-century furniture, especially combining unique vintage finds with more modern pieces. Her previous work in luxury jewellery has given her a keen eye for beautiful things and clever design, that plays into her love of interiors. As a result, Amy will often be heard justifying homeware purchases as 'an investment', wise words to live by.