Why some clothes make us smell worse | Karmina
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Why some clothes make us smell worse

Did you know that the fabric choice of your clothes can affect how you smell, especially with sweat?

We all use deodorants to fight off bad smells, but the type of clothes we wear also plays a big part in how much we smell. So, what fabrics make us smell the worst, and why do we get body odour in the first place?

Let’s explore how sweat, different fabrics, and deodorants play a role in our everyday smell.

Why do we get body odour?

Body odour isn’t just about sweating. It’s actually about how the sweat from our bodies mixes with the bacteria on our skin. Even though sweat mostly doesn’t smell, it starts to once it meets the bacteria on our skin. What we eat, our health and our genes can all change how this mix smells.

Which fabrics smell the worst and why?

Synthetic fabrics like polyester, nylon, and acrylic often end up smelling the worst because they trap sweat and don’t let your skin breathe. This trapped sweat creates a perfect environment for bacteria to grow, which is what causes bad smells. Unlike natural fabrics, which allow sweat to evaporate and reduce odour, synthetics keep the moisture and odour close to your body. Additionally, these synthetic materials are good at holding onto smells, so even after you wash them, the bad odour can stick around, making them smell worse over time. To get rid of these smells, you might think about washing them with hotter water and more soap. But, doing this can kill the bacteria and break down the sweat and oils. However, you’ve got to be careful to follow the washing instructions on your clothes to avoid damaging them. Not all synthetic fabrics can handle hot water. Plus, using more heat and detergent isn’t great for the environment—it means more pollution, more water, and more energy. So, when you’re trying to clean synthetic clothes that smell, remember you’re also using more resources. Always check the care label to make sure you’re not harming your clothes or the planet.

What to do?

  1. If you choose to wear synthetic clothes, consider layering them over natural fabric garments to reduce direct contact with your skin, helping to manage sweat and minimize odour.
  2. The next step is choosing natural fabrics like cotton, linen, or wool. These materials are more breathable than synthetics, which helps minimize sweat and odour accumulation.
  3. Select the appropriate fabric for your activity: opt for moisture-wicking materials for activities that cause a lot of sweating. These fabrics, often synthetic, are engineered to pull sweat from the body and help reduce odour.
  4. Wash clothes after each use, especially after sweating or being active, to remove bacteria and odours that can linger in fabrics.
  5. Follow washing instructions to prevent damage and ensure cleanliness. Sometimes, adding a cup of vinegar to the wash can help neutralize odours without harming the fabric.

poliesterTo sum it up, the type of fabric your clothes are made of can affect how much you smell, especially when you sweat. Clothes made from synthetic materials like polyester can make you smell worse because they trap sweat and don’t let your skin breathe, letting bacteria that cause odour grow. Natural fabrics like cotton, linen, or wool are better because they let sweat evaporate and keep you smelling fresher.

If you’re going to be sweating a lot, wearing clothes made from materials that wick away moisture can help keep the smell down, even if they’re synthetic. It’s also important to wash your clothes after wearing them, especially if you’ve been active, to get rid of any sweat and bacteria. Make sure to follow the washing instructions to avoid damaging your clothes and to wash in a way that’s better for the environment.

Choosing natural fabrics for everyday wear and the right kind of clothes for exercise can help you stay fresh and smell better. Plus, it’s a choice that’s also better for the planet.





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