Smelly workout clothes? We've got you covered.

By: The Cleancult Team

June 27, 2017

If you go to the gym on a regular basis, or twice a week, or once a month or even if have only been once in your life you know that your workout clothes can retain a certain...smelly smell. Even after you have washed them, when you start working out you may notice an odd smell, especially when using moisture wicking clothes. The reason why this happens is the nature of how moisture wicking fabrics work. There are lots of tiny pores (much smaller than with natural fabrics like cotton or wool) where sweat and odor-causing bacteria get trapped, and throwing your exercise gear in with a regular load just doesn’t get all of it out.

Follow these easy tips to get rid of that bothersome smell and to maintain your clothes smelling fresh and awesome. So stop worrying about that smell. We’ve got you covered!


How to get rid of the smell!

  1. Add a booster to the wash
    • 1/2-1 cup of baking or washing soda can help you get rid of unwanted smells.
  2. Soak in vinegar
    • Sort your smelly exercise clothes by color, put them in a big container, like your sink, fill with enough lukewarm water to barely cover the clothes and add 1-2 cups of plain white vinegar. Let sit overnight and then machine wash.
  3. Clean your washer
    • Make sure that your washer is clean and that there is no mold growing in there! The mold and mildew smell may stick to your clothes and leave them with an unwanted smell. (This one is especially important if you have a front-load washing machine, since mold grows easier in this type of washer).


How to prevent the smell!

  1. Don’t throw sweaty clothes in the hamper!
    • Either hang them up to dry before throwing them in the hamper or wash them right away.
  2. Pretreat your clothes
    • If your shirts tend to get smelly around the armpits, once you take them off turn them inside out and spray those areas with a mix of 1:1:1 water/rubbing alcohol/vinegar.
  3. Never use fabric softener
    • Fabric softener blocks the “pores” of the fabric even more, reducing the moisture wicking capabilities and keeping the smelly bacteria in there. Wash your clothes only with laundry detergent.
  4. Always air dry
    • Your dryer will only set in the smells that didn’t come out in your wash. Hang your shirts and pants in hangers and wait for the breeze to dry them for you!

If you follow these tips, you will smell awesome. Even after working out. Now go to the gym or simply go outside, and enjoy your worry-free, fresh-smelling workout.