Do you feel that no matter how many times you wash through your sweaty workout clothes, using fancy technology such as antimicrobial, ultraviolet protection and sweat-wicking fibres they still don’t seem to smell fresh and you feel the need to put them in the bin! Well here are few cleaning solutions that will stop you for having to bin those favorites activewear.
First things first
Try to avoid leaving sweaty clothes in your gym bag, crumpled up in your laundry basket or on the bathroom floor. Leaving sweaty items stashed somewhere can become a breeding ground for bacteria (and even mould) if they are left too long. Bacteria build-up is one of the main causes of smelly workout gear!
To soak or not to soak
By Soaking your workout clothes in a solution of vinegar and water can help kill bacteria and sweaty odours. It can also help break down any build-up from detergents, deodorant and skin cells. If you are going to soak your clothes then best not to leave longer than 30 minutes to an hour, to avoid causing any damage. Once they’ve had a soak, pop them in the wash as normal.
Setting your washing machine
Check the labels for specific washing information before you start! Lots of workout fabrics are best washed in cold water, as it helps to maintain their shape. Hot water might seem like the right idea to kill off bacteria, but it may be damaging to the fibres.
Detergents and softeners
There are specialty laundry products for sportswear, but you can use any standard laundry powder or detergent. Use the recommended amount of laundry powder for your load (or even a little less) so it rinses out properly.
Don’t use fabric softener on your activewear. At all. Softeners can actually lock in odours in the fabric. Most softeners work by coating fibres, which might stop those fancy moisture wicking fabrics from doing their job properly.
After the wash
Best solution for trying your active clothes is in the fresh air and sunny weather. Sunshine makes it hard for bacteria to grow, so your clothes shouldn’t take on any strange odours. To prevent you having to through any activewear out due to the faded colour then hang everything inside out.
Top tips for washing activewear:
· Turn your workout clothes inside out before stuffing them into the machine.
· Wash really sweaty clothes as soon as you can to stop the smell getting trapped in the fibres.
· Hand wash sports bras or use a lingerie bag for washing them in the machine (you can buy the bags at most bra shops).
· Don’t wash your activewear with clothing that has zips, velcro or any other item that might catch on the fabric and damage it.
· Don’t use the clothes dryer (even if you’re in a hurry) and skip the iron as well. It’s not good for workout clothes, and can even burn them!
Okay, so it might take a little effort to keep your activewear smelling fresh, but if you love all your workout wardrobe as much as I do then you would do anything to save it from having to be put in the bin!