Scent Secrets: Is Your Detergent Making Your Clothes Smell?

Scent Secrets Is Your Detergent Making Your Clothes Smell

Unless you can afford to have your clothing and all of your basics washed for you, you more than likely deal with some of the everyday laundry challenges many of us face. While it may seem like a somewhat simple task, perfecting the craft of laundering clothing to get that perfect scent takes the right products, and the right cycles. You use detergents to clean your clothing, fight stains, and keep your clothing looking bright, but what you may not know is most of the leading products on the market use artificial scents that could fail to get rid of odor, and fail to leave your laundry fresh. Read on, and find out what is causing that distinct odor even after your laundry has gone through a super wash cycle.
It’s All in the Ingredients and How Much You Use
Traditional laundry detergent that is manufactured by some of the leading companies in the industry may contain artificial scents that are meant to leave clothes fresh, but it also contains an alkyl-sulfate surfactant. This surfactant compound is used to breakdown water, oils, and dirt. Since it is derived from fatty acids, when anyone washing their laundry uses too much of the detergent, it can create a scum that will biodegrade extremely fast, and create their own rancid smell in the washer.
This scum can be found at the surface of the washer, and is a delicacy for mildew and bacteria to feed on. Ultimately, as the wash cycle continues, the residues found in the basket of the washer will transfer to your clothes and give them an inexplicable stench.

How to Prevent This from Happening
To prevent this smell from happening, you need to use the appropriate amount of detergent so that the scum does not accumulate and feed bacteria. By cutting off the food source, you should have no further problems. You will also need to disinfect your washer with a hot rinse cycle and bleach to kill the bacteria that may be calling the liner of your washer home.
If you have a heavy hand when it comes to pouring your detergent, just know that your washing machine will begin to harbor mold, mildew, and scum. If you don’t want to buy organic products for laundering, use what the natural products use to prevent this problem. By adding a few drops of lavender essential oil, you can help ward off the stink with the anti-mold properties in the oil, and still wear fresh-smelling clothing.

You might also be able to fight lingering smells with odor fighting fabrics. Companies like Underfit Men’s Undershirts make odor resistant and breathable men’s white undershirts. Other places sell workout clothes with mesh material which can help wick away sweat and keep your lingering smells down after washes.


Look for ways you can cut down on strange smells in the laundry room with these ideas. Being careful with detergent, washing and rinsing your machines, and looking for odor resistant fabrics can be a good start.


~ Brooke Chaplan ~


Thank you Brooke, another amazing guest post!

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