Sweat may be one of the most natural smells in nature, but it is not so pleasant when your bed has body odor. If you or one of your family members are affected by sweating at night, keeping your bed linens clean and fresh needs extra attention. With these tips on how to get sweat smell out of sheets, you can easily turn stinky bedding into fresh smelling again.
Tips to remove sweat smell from your sheets
When your bedsheets smell like sweat, you need solutions that but stop the odors. Therefore, most laundry scenting techniques such as using fabric softeners or dryer sheets won’t work because they just cover, but don’t remove foul smells. Luckily, there are many natural ingredients, commercial products and tricks to try so your sheets will be fresh and clean again.
Soak them in vinegar
Vinegar is a natural antibacterial agent. It can fight off the bacteria responsible for sweat smell. As soon as possible after the sweating incident happened, pour some vinegar into a sink filled with scorching water and let it soak for a few hours then give them a normal wash. The vinegar will not only remove the sweat smell but also softens your sheets, making them feel new again.
Use baking soda
Baking soda is another natural agent that eliminates sweaty odors. Mix two cups of baking soda with a bucket of lukewarm water, let your sheets soak overnight then machine wash them. If the smell is persistent, try applying a paste to the affected areas by mixing baking soda with a little warm water.
Deodorize your sheets with lemon juice
In addition to vinegar and baking soda, lemon is another natural ingredient to treat foul-smelling sheets. Just mix half a cup of lemon juice with a gallon of water and let them soak for a few hours before washing. The citric acid content will tackle even the strongest odors.
OxiClean is a strong oxygen-based powder that removes stains and odors efficiently. It is chlorine-free so can be used both on white and colored laundry items too.
- America's Nr.1 versatile stainfighter brand based on units sold
- great for sweaty clothes, bedding, musty towels and smelly household stains
- works with all washing machines
To treat stains and smells, mix a scoop of OxiClean per gallon of water and soak the affected sheets in the solution for at least 3-6 hours. Finally wash them as usual, adding one scoop of the powder to the drum besides your normal detergent and you will have clean and odorless sheets.
Add borax to your wash load
Borax is a naturally occurring mineral known as sodium borate. It is a fantastic eco-friendly household cleaner that can kill bacteria and fungi and like this, it helps get rid of smells. Moreover, this alkaline solution removes acidic stains and makes your sheets whiter too.
- multi-purpose household cleaner
- natural salt compound that was discovered to have both the water-softening properties of soap and the deodorizing properties of baking powder
- can be used for a variety of things from rust remover to refrigerator deodorizer
To enjoy the fantastic benefits of Borax, just add half cup of it to each wash load that will boost the cleaning power of your normal laundry detergent. For strong smells or tougher stains, pre-soak your laundry for about half an hour in a 1/2 cup of borax/gallon of warm water solution.
Air them out
If your sheets smell musty, airing them is the quickest and easiest way to refresh them. Hang them up outside in the sun if it’s a nice day.
The UV rays will help kill the odor-causing bacteria while the fresh air will take away the bad smells. However, note that this method works the best on natural fibers but can damage synthetic fabrics.
Steam iron your sheets
Steaming has a similar effect as airing your sheets in the sun but it is more efficient, doesn’t depend on the weather and available for those too who don’t have any outdoor area.
On top of making your linens wrinkle-free and good-looking, hot steam sanitizes linens and removes bad smells in a natural way; bacteria can’t survive high temperatures. Steam iron your sheets before putting them away so they will stay fresher for longer.
Get a linen spray
- effortless, fine mist and a fragrance load that'll ensure your favorite scent stays where you spray
- spray into the air for a quick refresher or use on your bedsheets, pillows, couches - anywhere in the home that needs a bit of a boost
- amber glass bottle contains a 7.75 fl oz blend of body-safe fine fragrance oils and water
Whenever you feel that your bedding needs quick refreshment because you were sweating last night and didn’t have to change your sheets, a few sprays of a pleasantly smelling mist will do wonders. Consider choosing a scent that has calming properties such as lavender or a romantic aroma like sandalwood or patchouli if you want to set the mood.
Tips to prevent your sheets from smelling like sweat
Now you know some easy ways to remove the funky odor from your sheets, but actually there is a lot you can do to prevent your sheets from smelling as discussed below.
Wash your sheets after every use
Regular laundry is the best way to keep your sheets smelling fresh; generally, you need to change your bedding every week, but you may need to wash your sheets more often if you tend to sweat a lot at night.
During summer when the weather is hot or when you experience sweating due to illness or unpleasant dreams, change your sheets every day to prevent foul odors.
Ensure proper air circulation
Sleeping in hot air can stimulate perspiration, so ensure that there is sufficient air circulation in your room. This will help to stay cool while you sleep and you can avoid not only sweating off during the night but also prevents those unpleasant morning smell in the bedroom we all hate. To improve airflow, open the windows regularly or use fans if there is no window in your bedroom.
Switch to cotton sheets
If you’re using polyester sheet sets, toss them out. Polyester is a synthetic material that is not breathable, keeps the warm air trapped and therefore causes people to sweat more at night.
- 400 thread count sheets; strong fabric, don’t fade, wrinkle or pill, even after many machine washes
- hotel quality comfort; carefully handcrafted and firmly stitched to perfection
- chemical-free and oeko certified, smart pick for healthy sleep
Choose a quality sheet made from cotton that is naturally breathable. It will help you stay cool, moreover the soft-to-the-touch material provides a generally better sleep experience.
Take a shower before going to bed
No matter how tired you are, never go to bed without taking a shower. If you are clean and remove dirt and excess oils from your body you reduce the risk of stinky bedding and smelly mattress. Also, showering is a ritual for the body and mind; it helps you feel relaxed and makes easier to fall asleep.
Don’t forget that the temperature matters during evening showers. A cold or too hot water might stimulate the body; a lukewarm shower is just right.
Related post: How to make your pillows fresh without washing
Change your diet
Certain foods tend to make you sweat more and affect your body odor. Eating healthy and staying hydrated will go a long way toward preventing night sweats.
Cutting out processed foods and refined sugars, reducing your alcohol and caffeine intake, avoiding spicy and strongly smelling food such as garlic and curry, and eating more fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains instead will positively affect what you smell like and even if you sweat at night because of a nightmare or hot weather, the odor won’t be that strong.
Try a natural deodorant or antiperspirant
Most of us apply deodorant to prevent bad body odor, but usually in the morning only. However, if you belong to those who suffer from night sweating, you should consider applying it in the evening too. Choose a product that contains antiperspirant (aluminum-based compound) that helps reduce sweating by blocking your sweat ducts.
- clinical antiperspirant brand for excessive sweating
- fragrance-free roll-on deodorant with 12% Aluminum Chloride
- with up to 72 hours of protection against odor and perspiration
Despite the rumors about antiperspirants, in general, they are safe for most people and regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) meaning such ingredients are subject to strict policies and procedures.
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