How to Get Rid of a Sweat Smell

by Karen Curinga ; Updated September 28, 2017

Several options are available for helping control the sweat smell.

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Perspiring is good for your health. It is the process by which the body releases fluids through sweat glands and is the body's response to heat, exercise and stress. But the combination of perspiration and bacteria often results in a less than pleasant odor and can damage your clothes, leaving a yellowish underarm stain. Sometimes freshly washed garments still hold old sweat odor. Luckily, there are several options available that can minimize sweat odor on both body and clothes.

Hang your clothes in the sun. This easy and effective step exposes your clothes to the sunlight and fresh air, creating a crisp feel to the fabric and a naturally fresh smell to the garment.

Treat your clothing item with a pre-treat laundry enzyme cleaner before laundering. Enzymes break down and remove odors from fabric, leaving a clean smell.

Add 1 tbsp. of ammonia to 1/2 cup room temperature tap water. Pour the mixture over the sweat-stained area of the garment. Allow the fabric to sit for one hour before laundering as usual. Let the garment air-dry.

Add 2 cups of baking soda to your laundry detergent when washing the garment. This is safe to use on almost all fabric types.

Mix 1 cup of apple cider vinegar with a gallon of room temperature tap water. Place the garment in the mixture and let it stand overnight.

Rub the sweat-stained underarm area with undiluted rubbing alcohol. Let the garment sit for a couple of hours. Wash the garment using warm water and laundry detergent.

Mix 1 tbsp. of cream of tartar with three crushed, full-strength regular aspirin in a cup of warm tap water. Scrub the mixture into the sweat-stained area, using a toothbrush. Let the mixture sit in the fabric for 20 minutes. Rinse the garment with warm, running tap water until the paste is removed.

Mix equal parts of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide with room temperature tap water. Pour the mixture onto the sweat stain and allow it to sit for at least 30 minutes. Rinse the shirt in warm tap water and let it air-dry. This step is recommended for white garments only.

Wax your underarms routinely. Waxing works well in preventing excess sweating, since the sweat odor is typically caused by the growth of bacteria that feed off the sweat on the armpit hairs.

Add 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar and the juice of half a lime to your bath water to help control excessive sweating.

Tips

  • Wash your clothes often to keep odors at bay and to help keep the fabric in good condition.

Photo Credits

  • Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images