Question: My workout gear REEKS! How can I eliminate these pesky odors?
We don’t mean to sound like a commercial, but have you found that no matter how often you’ve washed your workout attire, it still just doesn’t seem clean?
We know the story. You just keep catching a whiff of something that’s not quite so fresh when you put on your favorite shirt. Fear not! We’re here to offer some domestic assistance! It may require a little more effort than the rest of your laundry, but it will be well worth it to avoid that dreaded odor that reminds you of a high school locker room.
Here are our 5 tips to de-funk your exercise gear!
1. Don’t leave your clothes in a pile
It may sound intuitive, but if you set your clothes out to air dry, they will come clean much easier. When you leave them crumpled in a pile, they stay wet – which allows all the bacteria to grow, the smell to intensify, and possibly even lead to molding! If you can’t wash your clothes immediately after taking them off, then laying them out to dry can greatly reduce the amount of bacterial growth.
2. Flip ‘em inside out
Take the extra few seconds to turn your clothes inside-out for the best results in the laundry. By doing this, the parts of your clothes that are in closest contact with your body have better access to the detergent and wash. More surface contact equals less chance for ripe-smelling gear.
3. Avoid fabric softener
Fabric softeners can actually clog the fibers in performance clothing. This will actually prevent water and detergent from being able to do their job!
4. Detergent – less is more
You might think that tossing in a bit more of your favorite detergent will help you get that funk out, but you’d be mistaken. Adding more detergent can lead to a build-up of soap scum, which those nasty bacteria might just eat up and stick around for. Instead, try about half the regular amount of detergent and see if that passes your sniff test.
5. Try vinegar or baking soda
Common white vinegar and baking soda work wonders on the most stubborn odors. A 1-part vinegar to 4-part water soak for 30 minutes can break up the toughest oils in your clothes and leave them squeaky clean. And if that’s not enough, try adding a cup of baking soda to the rinse cycle to permanently banish those putrid smells.
And hey — don’t make it more complicated than it needs to be!
We know there are lots of clothes-laundering fads, and tons of products that promise that extra deep clean, but with a few simple preventative steps before the wash and unlearning a few previously held thoughts about soap and fabric softener, you might be surprised that eliminating the pesky odors on your workout clothes might just be easier than you think!