How I Keep My Workout Clothes Fresh and Odor-Free: Laundry Hacks for Active Lifestyles
You cannot convince me that no one has a problem keeping their workout clothes fresh and odor-free. Even as an avid gym-goer, I have always struggled to keep my workout clothes fresh and odor-free. It is an ordeal to face the laundry after I come home from a long day at work.
Sometimes when I know my work schedule is hectic, I drop off my workout clothes at the wash and fold services near my workplace. But when I can manage it, I apply these hacks to make the laundry process more manageable.
It may not be visible, but sweat stains and oil stains are common problems with workout clothes. That’s why I pre-treat my clothes before washing them. I usually use things that I can find in my kitchen, such as white vinegar, lemon juice, or baking soda.
Wash workout clothes immediately.
Ideally, we have to wash our workout clothes after exercising, but given my work schedule, I have to set them aside until later. However, the longer your gym clothes have to wait, the more time bacteria can multiply and produce unpleasant odors. If you are like me, hang dry your workout clothes. Do not dump them in your gym bag or laundry hamper.
Use the right laundry detergent.
I do not use regular laundry detergent for my workout clothes, I use a detergent specifically designed for athletic clothes. These detergents have formulas that can break down sweat and bacteria. I do not have to worry about my clothes smelling musty after an intense workout.
If you rely on laundry pickup and delivery services, you may ask if they use specific detergents for workout clothes.
Wash only in cold water.
Another hack I learned is to wash my workout clothes with cold water. Some might have advised you to use hot water to help kill any bacteria or germs on your workout clothes, but this is damaging your workout clothes’ fabrics. Only use cold water; it is gentle on its fabric and helps retain their shape and color.
Do not use fabric softeners.
Besides avoiding hot water, fabric softener is one on the list too. Fabric softeners may make clothes feel soft and fluffy, but it also leaves residue that traps bacteria and causes musty odors. Instead of fabric softeners, I add a cup of white vinegar to the load to soften clothes and remove any lingering smells.
Air dry clothes.
Lastly, I always air dry my workout clothes. The heat from the dryer shrinks and damages the fabric quality of workout clothes. I always hang my clothes on a drying rack and ensure my laundry room is well-ventilated to ensure it dries thoroughly.
These laundry hacks have helped me keep my workout clothes fresh and odor-free. It only takes a little extra effort to maintain the comfort and confidence during workouts. Moreover, it is a good idea to have multiple sets of workout clothes, so you can rotate them and give each set a chance to air out between uses and help prolong the life of your clothes.