Home remedy to remove armpit odour in clothes

Updated July 20, 2017

Nothing is quite as unbearable as the foul smell of perspiration or sweat on clothes. Though perspiration is good for health, it is extremely damaging to fabrics. Armpit odour is caused by bacteria, and once that bacteria is embedded into clothing it's very difficult remove with normal washing. The secret to getting rid of the smell is to kill the bacteria in the cloth fibres. Luckily there are several home remedies that can be used to kill the odour-causing bacteria.

Baking soda

Pre-soak the article of clothing in cool water and wring out well. Make a paste by mixing 1 part baking soda with 1 part water. Generously spread the baking soda paste onto the armpit area and let it sit for approximately 30 minutes. Wash and dry as normal. As an alternative, mix 240 ml (1 cup) of baking soda into everyday washing powder and run the clothing through the washer as usual.

White vinegar

White vinegar is acidic and helps to cut grease and body oils. Fill a basin with just enough cool water to cover the clothing and add 60 ml (¼ cup) of white vinegar. Let the clothing soak for 30 minutes before laundering as usual. Alternatively, add 120 ml (½ cup) of vinegar to the pre-rinse cycle of the washing machine and wash the stained clothing in the machine.

Hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide works by breaking down the oils in the fabric deposited by perspiration. Soak the clothing in a mixture of 1 part water and 1 part hydrogen peroxide. Allow it to soak for at least 30 minutes, then wash as usual.

Aspirin and cream of tartar

Crush 3 to 4 aspirin tablets into a fine powder. The aspirin should be free of any hard coating and colour. Add 18 ml (1 tbsp) of cream of tartar and approximately 60 ml (¼ cup) of lukewarm water. Stir into a thick paste and spread on the armpit area of the clothing. Use an old toothbrush to work the mixture into the fibres of the fabric. Let the clothing sit for 30 minutes, then launder as usual.

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About the Author

Based in Washington, Heather Swanson has been writing since 2011. She excels in areas of home decor, gardening, home maintenance and repair and travel. She holds a Bachelor of Science in education from Western Oregon University.