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How to keep odors out of your clothes

Sometimes even after washing, clothes smell bad. If you want to know how to keep odors out of clothes just washed, try these easy before, during, and after laundry tips to ensure fresh clothes.

Wash dirty laundry soon

“Dirty” can turn into “dirtier and smelly” over time, especially when wet and piled in the dark, a hideaway for mold and bacteria. If you can’t wash clothes soon or air them out, pre-treat before laundering. Or pile them up in the laundry machine and get down to it!

Pre-treat super dirty and sweaty clothes

For clothes that accumulate stains or strong odors—like activewear or your favorite cooking clothes—give them a pre-treat soak in detergent and water before washing.

Use an odor shield

To make sure clean fabrics smell good well after the wash, add Downy Fresh Protect Active Fresh™ Scent Beads or Downy Fresh Protect April Fresh™ Scent Beads to your wash cycle. Think of it as deodorant for clothes: As you move about, it neutralizes bad odors and provides an all-day fresh scent for wherever your day takes you.

Dry your laundry right away

Did you know that clean, wet fabrics can eventually turn smelly? Mold and mildew love dark, damp places, so don’t leave your wet laundry in the washer for too long. Also be sure that your laundry is actually dry before you leave the laundry room. If it’s still damp to the touch, toss it back in the dryer.

Prevent a dirty machine and dirty-smelling clothes

Residue left behind from dirt, detergents, and hard water minerals can make your clothes smell musty! Check out our top tips for maintaining laundry appliances to ensure fresh and clean clothes load after load. Or simply use Tide® Washing Machine Cleaner once a month.

Did you know?

Downy helps protect your clothes from 50 mph spinning in your washing machine.

Downy helps protect your clothes from 60 times the G Force of a space rocket launch.

Downy helps protect your clothes from a dryer hot enough to cook ribs.