how to remove sweat from clothes.

Posted by smol on



Does the smell of sweat linger in your gym clothing? Even after it’s been washed? 

Even if you wear a great anti-perspirant and even if you’re washing with a quality laundry capsules, you’re not alone if you answered yes. 

And it’s because sweat clings really well to clothing.

a sticky problem.

Unfortunately for our laundry, sweat and body odour is really sticky and will easily fix itself into fabrics. A hot wash can remove it BUT lots of clothing, particularly gym wear, can’t be washed at high temperatures and in our efforts to look after the planet and save money we’re all washing on cooler cycles nowadays. Problem.

Luckily there are some very effective ways to get rid of sweat stains and smells from our clothing and we’re listing them out later on. But first, you’ll want to take note of 3 simple sweat savers.

Here’s how to get rid of sweat smells in your clothes from smelling of sweat.

sweat savers.

3 bastions in the battle against body odour:

home and dry. 

When you get home - take off any sweaty clothing and if you’re not washing it straight away… leave it to dry. Odour-causing bacteria LOVE the damp so if you’re throwing your clothes into a laundry basket to smoulder… well they are going to have a field day. Hanging up your sweaty shirts lets them dry and prevents bacterial growth which means - less odour!

don’t overdose. 

Whenever you wash any clothing make sure you aren’t using TOO MUCH detergent or fabric softener.  Too much product in your wash water can leave behind residue on your laundry and that can trap smells in a fabric. It’s why we love our pre-measured laundry capsules because you’ll not be overdosing in relation to your volume of wash water.

inside out.

Washing your clothing inside out is an easy way to maximise the power of your wash. Any odour-causing bacteria are usually built up on the inside of clothes, washing them inside out helps achieve a more thorough clean.

stand up to smells and stains.

So, you’re following the 3 sweat savers above BUT some clothing is still stained or smelling. It’s not unusual. 

Our first port of call is to use our smol stain gel. It’s bleach-free, so colours stay safe and it’s tested on 20 real life stains by real life customers in real life situations. But if you’ve not got any to hand, check out our top 5 hacks for sweat stain removal:*

hack 1. lemon juice.

Lemons are a naturally acidic ingredient which makes them great at neutralising nasty niffs.

  • Juice 3 lemons and mix with 2 litres of warm water
  • Cool the solution.
  • Soak your clothes in the mixture for 30 mins before rising clean. 
  • Dry your items.

hack 2. aspirin and cream of tartar.

Cream of tartar (potassium bitartrate) is another natural acid and aspirin contains salicylic acid, both of these will help to remove staining and smells.
  • Mix 3 aspirins in a cup of warm water
  • Add 1 tablespoon of cream of tartar.
  • Use an old dishbrush head or old toothbrush to scrub the solution into the affected area
  • Leave it to sit for at least 20 minutes.
  • Wash and dry the clothing as usual with smol capsules. 

 hack 3. bicarbonate of soda. 

Bicarb is a great natural deodoriser and can neutraliseand odour molecules.
  • Make a paste of bicarbonate of soda and warm water (aim for a porridge consistency).
  • Rub the paste into the affected areas with an old dishbrush head or old toothbrush.
  • Leave for at least 15 mins (or overnight If the area is very soiled).
  • Wash as normal with your smol capsule.

hack 4. get salty.

Salt is naturally antibacterial so can get rid of the bacteria that are causing the smell.
  • Pour half a cup of salt into a large bowl, then half fill the bowl with warm water. 
  • Stir to dissolve the salt.
  • Soak the clothing in the mixture, before washing as normal with your smol.

hack 5. white vinegar.

Vinegar is a good stain remover—especially when it comes to acidic sweat stains. The acid in vinegar reacts with the weaker acid in the stain, causing it to break up and dissolve.
  • Mix 1 cup of distilled white vinegar with 2 litres of cold water. 
  • Soak the affected clothing for 20 minutes
  • Wash as normal with your smol. The vinegar smell should completely disappear.
Between our 3 sweat savers, our stain gel and our 5 sweat stain hacks, we reckon we’ve got you covered. 
And don’t forget our revolutionary anti-plastic anti-perspirant as your first line of defence in the battle against perspiration. Victory can certainly be yours.



*before trying any new stain removal method we recommend patch testing the technique on your garment first and always follow clothing care label instructions.

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