Decades ago, cat litter options came in one form: very fragrant in order to mask the scent of waste. In recent years, cat litter manufacturers have changed up formulas to appeal to households and pet owners who put their cat’s health first, care about the environment, and don’t want that overpowering smell.
These days, you’ll find cat litter made out of different materials (like clay, wood, and wheat). Many are now biodegradable and can be flushed down the toilet with no harm to the planet or your septic tank. And, if that’s not enough to sway you, unscented cat litter has come a long way and can eliminate odors through a special combination of materials and ingredients.
Our Top Unscented Litter Picks
All featured products are chosen at the discretion of the Great Pet Care editorial team and do not reflect a direct endorsement by the author. However, Great Pet Care may make a small affiliate commission if you click through and make a purchase.
- Best Overall: World’s Best Original Series Clumping Unscented Corn Cat Litter
- Best Lightweight Unscented Cat Litter: Purina Tidy Cats Lightweight Free & Clean Unscented Clumping Litter
- Best Non-Clumping: PrettyLitter Non-Clumping Unscented Litter
- Best Natural: Swheat Scoop Unscented Scoopable Multi-Cat Litter
- Best Unscented Cat Litter for Kittens: Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat Kitten Attract Clumping Multi-Cat Clay Cat Litter
- Best Eco-Friendlyr: Kitty Poo Club Clay Litter Box and Litter
- Best Non-Tracking: OKOCAT Natural Wood Clumping Litter
What is Unscented Cat Litter?
As you may have guessed, the biggest benefit of unscented cat litter is that there is virtually no distinct smell, which is pleasant to the household, including your feline who has a sensitive nose.
Depending on the cat, a very fragrant litter box might actually deter them from wanting to use it, and in many cases (speaking from personal experience), cat litter with strong fragrances only magnifies the funk. What you ultimately want is an unscented kitty litter that eliminates odors, rather than merely trying to cover them with a stronger smell so you don’t notice the waste odor that’s still there…because, let’s face it, you almost always do.
As far as drawbacks go, you do get what you pay for. We’ve found that the most expensive cat litters do the job of masking odors really well while continuing to be unscented. But one thing to note: “unscented” typically means that the smell you’ll smell is fresh or natural, rather than scented with an artificial fragrance. Unscented cat litter itself might still have a smell, but it takes the form of whatever material it’s made out of. For instance, a wood-based cat litter will smell like wood.
How We Ranked Our Top Unscented Cat Litter Picks
Author’s Note: As a kid who grew up with cats (and cat litter boxes). Now, as a cat mom for over a decade, I’ve run through the gamut of kitty litter. I used my previous experience having tested many different kinds — clumping, non-clumping, pellets, clay, etc. — to help build this list of the best unscented litter for cats. I’ve also thoughtfully reviewed cat litter for Great Pet Care and other publishers while also researching and reading buyers’ honest reviews and speaking to other cat parents.
In addition to this personal experience, we also took the following factors into consideration:
Effectiveness. Scent aside, you also want to make sure the unscented cat litter you’re using actually gets the job done with minimal mess, dust, tracking, etc. We made sure to take note of this as we compiled the list.
Environmental impact. Now more than ever, pet parents are looking for litter that is sustainable and environmentally friendly, so we called out these specifics in our selections whenever possible.
Customer reviews. From speaking personally to other pet parents to reading through online ratings and reviews, we utilized the opinions of everyday experts.
Price. Finally, we compared costs and noted unscented kitty litters that were a little pricier, allowing you to weigh your options and choose the one that works best for your family and your budget.
7 Best Unscented Cat Litters of 2023
Let’s get into our top choices for the best unscented cat litter out there today.
Overall Best Unscented Cat Litter
As a cat mom who’s tried several different types of cat litter — both scented and unscented — I cannot stress enough how much I love this litter. Made by World’s Best, it actually does live up to its name. This unscented, chemical-free cat litter does a great job of controlling odor from both urine and poop, and doesn’t give off a strong fragrance in an attempt to mask the funk. Plus, it clumps tightly so there’s less mess at cleanup.
- Made of whole-kernel corn with no chemicals or artificial perfumes
- Environmentally friendly, consisting of 100% natural materials
- Can be flushed down the toilet and is safe for septics
- Not the most budget-friendly option, but truly worth it
- Marketed as 99% dust-free but will produce some dust, though minimal
Best Lightweight Unscented Cat Litter
Free of fragrances and dyes, this lightweight unscented cat litter from Tidy Cat is a top choice because it’s easy to pour, carry, and store. Don’t let the lighter weight fool you. You’ll get as much surface litter as you need without the hassle. It still clumps for easy cleanup, and an ammonia blocker helps prevent odor as best as it can.
- Weighs about half as much as other clumping litters
- Made of natural clay and mineral product, with activated charcoal to help absorb odor
- Customers said it controls odor better than other non-lightweight Tidy Cats varieties
- Stored in a sturdy bag within a box, which can make pouring a challenge
- May produce some dust
Best Non-Clumping Unscented Cat Litter
Made of gel crystals, PrettyLitter absorbs urine rather than clumping like other cat litter. Simply flush the poop away after scooping it out. You leave the rest of the litter in, which means you don’t have to swap or replace as often. Because it’s made of gel, this non-clumping unscented cat litter has proven to show less dust and tracking around the litter box area. And we know what you’re wondering: Where does the urine go? When the cat pees, PrettyLitter crystals trap it in and the liquid evaporates out.
- Lasts longer than clumping litter because you only dispose of poop
- Colors indicate if your cat has a urinary tract infection, bladder stones, and more
- Lighter than other litters
- Subscription service offered via PrettyLitter website; can also purchase though other retailers
- Higher price point
Best Natural Unscented Cat Litter
This flushable, clumping litter is made of wheat, so it’s perfect for cats and kittens who have sensitivities to dust or fragrances. The natural unscented cat litter absorbs pee and creates clumps that are able to go down the toilet safely. Plus, it starches up urine and traps/fights odors without the use of dyes, harmful additives, or (of course) perfumes.
- Biodegradable litter is made from wheat
- Clumping and flushable
- Customers mentioned that it controls odor better than pellet litter
- Some reviews said that it can be a little dusty
Best Unscented Cat Litter for Kittens
Unlike the other litters mentioned above, this all-natural training litter was created specifically for kittens ages 8 weeks to 1 year. Made out of clay, it clumps while still being gentle to the paw pads of young kitties as they’re learning to use the litter box for the first time. In order to appeal to kittens, the unscented litter features an herbal attractant that helps draw them to the box.
- Contains a natural herbal attractant that’s safe for kittens
- Can work for households with multiple cats
- Compatible with automated litter boxes that sift
- Low dust, but not no dust
Best Eco-Friendly Unscented Cat Litter
If you aim to be zero-waste (or as zero-waste as possible), we love Kitty Poo Club because it’s a one-stop shop. Each box of clay litter (derived from sodium bentonite) ships directly to your door in its own recyclable litter box. You can also upgrade to get a standard cat litter box dome if your kitty likes a litter box cover. There are multiple bundles to choose from, allowing you to select the one that works best for you and your feline friend.
- Convenient subscription service ships right to your door
- Everything comes in its own recyclable box, which also doubles as a litter box, so no plastic litter box needed
- Multiple bundle options to suit your needs
- Some pet parents may not like the commitment of a subscription litter service (though there is a money-back guarantee)
- Depending on your situation, you may have to order more litter than comes within the standard shipment
Best Non-Tracking Unscented Cat Litter
Our Pick: OKOCAT Natural Wood Clumping Litter
This plant-based pellet litter still clumps, which is what we like about it. Easy to clean, it also controls odors because it’s made of wood fibers that naturally prevent enzymes from bonding with liquid and waste. This process keeps the ammonia and odor at bay.
- Clumps are flushable
- Made out of biodegradable upcycled wood
- Screened and “de-dusted” so there’s less mess
- Free of synthetic chemicals
- Even though this pellet litter is marketed as “unscented,” it does have a slight scent from the material it’s made of
Unscented Cat Litter Buyer’s Guide
Before you jump the gun and buy an unscented kitty litter your cat might not be pleased with, there are several factors to consider.
Age. Kittens who are just learning how to use the litter box typically prefer an unscented cat litter, and it can be really helpful to get one designed specifically for them. Because they may not know any better, kittens might try to eat litter, so a natural kitty litter that’s safe for their tummies is your best bet.
Health. If your cat has recently had surgery, you may want to consider a kitty litter that’s both natural and unscented because it’s more gentle and made without artificial fragrances and chemicals that can inflame wounds.
Dust-free and track-free. You may want to consider unscented, dust/track-free cat litter to help control the mess as well as the smell. However, while many kitty litters will claim to be “dust-free,” it’s important to know that any litter that clumps is not truly free of dust. You’ll still get some level of dust, especially as you reach the tail end of that litter batch. If you want a truly dust-free litter, go with pellets. Same goes for “track-free” litter. There’s truly no such thing, as cats may kick around their litter and it may come out of the box accidentally; however, many low-tracking litters can help keep mess to a minimum.
Litter box type. With automated litter boxes, you may be limited to the type of litter material you can use, so be sure to pay close attention to what your box can accommodate. For example, if you want to avoid the added fragrance and have a litter box that automatically sifts, you’ll need an unscented, clumping litter.
Tips for Using Unscented Cat Litter
If you’ve been using a scented litter but are looking to switch, there are a few things to keep in mind for the best results.
Cats are creatures of habit. Your kitty might not be jazzed about something new, so ease into it. Have two litter boxes available during the transition period. Let them make the choice, and if they start to use the new, unscented litter box, then that’s your cue to remove the fragrant litter.
Do your research. The products recommended here are our favorites, but be sure to read up on them and check reviews to pick the one that suits your needs the best. Not all cat litters are the same, and they each come with pros and cons depending on your specific cat and situation.
Always take cues from your cat. It’s important that your litter solution is one that your cat aligns with – otherwise what’s the point? You’ll know that your cat is not taking to new litter if they are having accidents outside of the litter box. In this case, you may have to try a few different kinds of unscented cat litter until you find the right fit — and that’s okay.