Objective: The objective of this study is to systematically review the literature regarding the impact of mouthrinses on oral malodor and present evidence for the treatment effects of mouthrinses on oral malodor. Material and methods: PubMed-MEDLINE, the Cochrane-CENTRAL and EMBASE were searched through February 10, 2012 to identify appropriate studies. Volatile sulphur compound measurements, organoleptic measurements and tongue coating were selected as outcome variables. Search results: The independent screenings of 333 unique titles and paper abstracts revealed 12 publications (12 experiments) that met the eligibility criteria. Means and standard deviations were extracted. The results were separated into short-term (<3 weeks) and longer-term (≥3 weeks) studies. Conclusion: In this review, nearly all mouthwashes with active ingredients had beneficial effects in reducing oral malodor in both short- and longer-term studies. The most compelling evidence was provided for chlorhexidine mouthwashes, and those that contained a combination of cetyl pyridinum chloride and zinc provided the best evidence profile on oral malodor. Little data with respect to tongue coating were available, and none of the studies showed a beneficial effect for this parameter.