How to Take Smell out of Clothes Without Washing

A lot of people say that the way to take the smell out of clothes is by washing them. However, there are other ways in which you can take the smell out of clothes without having to wash them. This article will tell you all about these different methods and how they work.

If you have clothes that smell musty and you’re looking for a way to get rid of the odor without having to wash them, read on. We will share some natural remedies for getting rid of the unpleasant scent. 

First, try putting your clothes in a dryer with a couple of tennis balls. The bouncing from the balls will help scrub away any dirt or bacteria that might be contributing to the bad smell. If this doesn’t work, then you can use vinegar in place of detergent when washing them next time around.

Vinegar is an excellent natural cleaner that works well even if mixed with water alone! This article shares other ways to remove smells from clothing without washing them too! 

how to wash clothes without detergent
zero waste eco-friendly cleaning concept. wooden brushes, lemon, baking soda, vinegar

What Causes the Smells in Clothes?

There are a number of reasons for foul smells in clothing. Clothes’ fibers absorb strong scents such as cigarettes and cooking, which can cause them to acquire odors. If you stored your clothing incorrectly, the odors could easily enter the fibers.

Clothing that is damp can also act as a breeding ground for mold. Mold spores may grow within the fibers of wet clothing and then produce an unpleasant odor when they grow, accumulating in the drawer where they are kept.

Clothes that are kept in a closet may accumulate mustiness.

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How to Take Smell out of Clothes Without Washing

Leave them hanging on Sun

One of the most popular, yet expensive, ways to take the smell out of your clothes is by sun-drying them. You might want to try this if you’re in a position where you have no other options for taking the smell out of your clothes without having to wash them.

Sun-drying will not only take away any musty odor, but it will also dry out any wet clothes.

Use Baking Soda

Get a container and fill it with baking soda.

Place your clothes inside the container and allow the baking soda to do its job for 20 – 30 minutes

The baking soda will not only take away the bad smell but also leave a fresh scent that will last long after you have used it.

You may also mix baking soda with water to make a thick paste that you may apply directly to particularly musty areas. After it has dried and hardened, brush it off.

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Get smell out of clothes with white vinegar

White vinegar is a natural odor remover and stain remover, and it removes odors without washing.

You can also spray your clothing with a half-and-half combination of white vinegar and water.

You can test whether the fabric is harmed by vinegar by turning your garment inside out and spraying a tiny inconspicuous location. Spray your clothing when it’s ready.

Spray with lemon juice

Lemon juice is an excellent natural deodorizer that you can use to get the smell out of your clothes.

Spray around your armpits and groins, for example, with a spray bottle of water, and add a few drops of lemon juice to it. Let it air dry.

Use essential oils

There is a way in which you can use essential oils to remove odors from your clothes. You can put the clothes in a container and add a few drops of essential oil to it, letting it soak for 20-30 minutes. The smell will be absorbed by the clothes and they will have a faint smell of the essential oil.

Alternatively, mix a few drops of oil with water in a spray bottle and then spritz your clothing liberally. Essential oils are extremely powerful and will overpower any unpleasant odors.

Alcohol and Water to remove odor

The alcohol and water mixture is a simple way to remove the smell from your clothes. The odor-destroying agent in this mixture will easily absorb any foul smells. You can make this solution at home by filling up two shot glasses with alcohol and then adding water to it.  To remove unpleasant odors from your clothing, spray the stinky region.

RELATED: How to Keep Clothes from Smelling Musty in Closet

Use a refreshing fabric spray.

How to Take Smell out of Clothes Without Washing

For very bad smells, you can place the clothing in a plastic bag and freeze them to strip off any odors. Leave it there for 5-10 hours before removing them. If the smell is still present after that time, then try leaving them for overnight hours and see what happens.

Use Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds can absorb odors and eliminate bad smells of the clothes. I

Place used coffee grounds in a bowl.

Place the shirt or garment item over the coffee and fold it in half. The fine grains of coffee should not come into touch with the shirt, since this may result in a stain. Allow them to soak up smells overnight.

Use Charcoal to Eliminate Bad Smells

How to Take Smell out of Clothes Without Washing

Charcoal is a natural odor absorber that you can use to get the smell out of your clothes. The fine grains may not come into contact with your shirt, as this may cause a stain.

Simply place it in a bowl and allow the garment to sit on top for overnight hours.

How do you deodorize clothes without washing them?

1. To deodorize clothes without washing them, place the clothing in the refrigerator to freeze at least overnight, and then it will be fresh and sweeter smelling than before. You can use popcorn or sawdust to absorb bad odors too while freezing the clothes at the same time: just pour some on an open container and put your smelly clothes inside for overnight hours.

How do you get a strong smell out of clothes?

Add a cup of white vinegar to your laundry. Vinegar is an excellent natural deodorizer that will get rid of the bad smells in your clothing.

Alternatively, you can add a cup of white vinegar to the final rinse cycle of your washing machine. Pour three cups of baking soda in the washing machine and mix it with whites or dark colors if available since baking soda is color-safe.

Can you spray febreeze on clothes?

“Yes, you can. Febreeze is designed to eliminate bad smells in fabrics by entraining them into the fabric pores and in the case of clothes, it would just ruin them.”

Is steaming clothes the same as dry cleaning?

Yes. Steam is the gentlest form of removing dirt from clothes, which makes it equivalent to dry cleaning.

Why do clothes still smell after washing?

It smells after clothes are washed because clothes sometimes retain the body odor or any other bad odor. If some colors come off with water, it is also likely that some colors will be retained on the clothes before they are washed – this is what causes them to hold body odors.

How does baking soda remove odors from clothes?

“Yes, Baking soda is a natural way to remove odors from clothing. Sprinkle your clothes liberally with baking soda before washing and watch the bad smell disappear.

-Add ½ cup of baking soda to the laundry when you’re about ready to do a load of clothes and let it soak in for 30 minutes before adding any detergent or other additives.

Can I spray air freshener on my clothes?

“Yes. But air fresheners are often used to mask odors and only create a temporary “fresh” smell to the air, but they will not give your clothing that same freshness. The chemicals in most air scents may discolor or damage fabrics, too.

Does dry cleaning remove body odor?

“Yes. Dry cleaning removes body odor from clothes by taking the fabrics to a dry cleaner and having them steamed or brushed. The fabrics are then soaked in a chemical that kills any bacteria on the fabric and any smells that come from it.”

Is it OK to wear clothes that smell like mildew?

No. The smell is likely to get worse if you continue wearing the clothes. Mildew thrives in moist climates and since people often wear damp clothes or warm them up, their sweat can cause mildew on clothing which then continues to spread all over your clothing.

Does dry cleaning actually wash your clothes?

“No, dry cleaning does not actually “wash” your clothes. Why? That is because its process removes the dirt and odors from fabrics by steaming or brushing, then soaking them in chemicals that kill bacteria and eliminate odors. It is an expensive process that many people do not want to go through.”

How to freshen clothes that have been in storage

If you’re looking to freshen clothes that have been in storage, try putting a dryer sheet on top of them or hanging them outside on a line.

While the dryer sheet works by releasing its own scent, hanging clothes out on a line allows them to be exposed to sunlight and fresh air. Sunlight naturally kills bacteria that can cause musty odors.

Soaking clothes in baking soda or vinegar water before washing will also help remove mildew odor, as do enzymatic products like Biz.

Final Thoughts

The goal of this post was to provide you with some ideas on how to get the smell out of your clothes without having to wash them. We hope that these suggestions have been helpful in assisting you with any unpleasant smells or odors. If not, let us know and we’ll be happy to work together more closely so that we can brainstorm a solution tailored to your specific needs!

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