When clean laundry comes out smelling bad, you know something ain’t right. Most of the time, smelly laundry has little to do with the type of detergent you use and everything to do with a buildup of bacteria and mold in your washer and dryer.
Get to the root of the problem and find out what caused it, so you can find the right solution. Here are five reasons your clothes aren’t smelling good and the fresh fixes you can do to solve them:
#1: You’re using your laundry hamper as storage.
We’ve all been guilty of tossing dirty clothes in the hamper and leaving them there for too long. Out of sight, out of mind, right? But the moist, dark, and dirty environment is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, the major culprit that causes unpleasant odors.
Fresh Fix: If you can’t do all your laundry just yet, pick out the soiled clothes and wash those first.
#2: Leaving laundry duty for the late afternoon or night.
Doing laundry in the morning is the perfect time to do so because you can hang the clothes while the sun is out. If you can’t do morning laundry, do at least time washes for when you will be able to finish the task and synchronize your alarm with the laundry’s timer.
Fresh Fix: Once clothes are washed, immediately hang them to dry. Don’t leave them in the washing machine of basin for too long.
#3: You’re not segregating the laundry.
Different types of laundry need different washing time and care. You shouldn’t be washing your kitchen or cleaning rags with your clothes, or your sweaty gym pants with your baby’s onesies. Throwing them in the same wash load exposes them to cross-contamination.
Fresh Fix: Wash and treat laundry with smells and stains separately. Those may need an extra dose of heavy-duty cleaning. Soak them in a pre-wash solution (one sachet of surf powder) in order to kill any lingering bacteria and loosen dirt before washing them thoroughly.
#4: You’re drying your clothes in a dark damp place.
The sun is your best friend when it comes to getting fresh-smelling laundry. Clothes need good air circulation and natural sunlight in order to kill bacteria.
Fresh Fix: Of course, drying indoors can’t be helped, especially during the rainy season. If you don’t have a dedicated outdoor drying area, dry clothes with stubborn smells by a sunny window or space them out on a foldable air dryer in a bright, open room to aid in good air circulation. You can also use fabric conditioner, like Surf Fabric Conditioner.
#5: You’re not using the right fragrance for you.
It’s common to overlook the scent you choose when you buy fabric conditioner. It’s important to make sure you use the right fragrance for you. Some fabric conditioners have a smell that is too strong—when it mixes with sweat, it starts to smell bad. You can also opt for powder detergents with built-in fabric conditioner to save you time and help you make sure your clothes are clean and they smell exactly the way you want it.
Fresh Fix: For clothes that are not only clean but smell good as well, use a powder detergent with built-in fabric conditioner and a fragrance that’s fresh and not overpowering. Your clothes will smell oh so lovely!