Boogers are a natural part of life, but they can be pretty gross. They’re just dried pieces of nasal mucus, which helps trap the dirt, dust and microbes you inhale and prevent them from reaching your lungs. This mucus also explains why boogers are off-white, yellow or greenish—the color reflects the debris they block. While it’s tempting to pick your nose and flick out a booger, doing so could introduce germs on your unwashed finger into your body or onto other surfaces you touch later (like doorknobs) and make you sick.
In most cases, boogers that smell like garlic are not a sign of a serious problem, but you should consult your healthcare professional if they persist or you have any other concerns. You can minimize the odor by avoiding foods with strong odors, staying hydrated and practicing good nose hygiene. A saline rinse or saline spray can also help clear your nasal passages and remove any trapped bacteria or boogers that may be causing the odor.