Who doesn’t like the smell of freshly washed laundry? Imagine neatly folding your clean tees in a drawer, still smelling crisp, only to find that they don’t smell as good the next time you reach for one! Quite often, drawers can leave your clothes smelling stale and musty. Although it might seem impossible to get rid of the lingering scent, there are several ways you can successfully fight it.
Before you start attending to your drawers, think about your clothes. Make sure to wash them with the right detergent and a softener with odor-eliminating properties. Washing your clothes properly before folding them is one of the best ways to fight unpleasant scents. However, sometimes all that simply won’t be enough, and you’ll need to take some additional steps.
Here’s my list of simple hacks on how to keep your clothes smelling fresh in drawers.
1. Keep Your Drawers Clean
If you are tired of the familiar musty smell, it’s time to take action. Remove everything from your drawers and take a closer look inside. You might see traces of dust, dirt, and even mold. On the other hand, the culprit for the pungent smell might be something invisible to the human eye. Either way, it wouldn’t hurt to give your drawers a nice scrubbing.
You’ll need a soft cloth, some antibacterial spray, warm water, and a drop of essential oil of your preference. While cleaning the drawers with the cloth, you’ll be adding the aroma of the essential oil. Make sure your cloth is not too wet, because excess moisture can easily damage the drawers’ surface.
2. Make Use of Essential Oils
Essential oils can do a whole lot for your laundry. As I already mentioned, adding a few drops when thoroughly cleaning the drawers leaves them smelling great for a long time, but there’s so much more you can do. For example, add up to 30 drops of your favorite oil to your washer during the final rinse circle for a more permanent smell. You can even make a water solution with a few drops of oil and spray it directly on your dry clothing before folding it in.
3. Get Scented Drawer Liners
Drawer liners are generally practical and keep your drawers and your clothes in good shape, but did you know they can come in different aromas as well? These fragrant liners you may remember from your childhood are making a comeback, and for a good reason. They now come in different colors and patterns while keeping that old school vibe, and the best part is that any scent you choose will overpower the funky smell of damp drawers.
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Simply lay the liners on the sides and on the bottom of your drawers for a fresh laundry scent that will last for months. Many body care companies sell fragrant liners with the scent of their most popular products, so your clothes can smell like your favorite shower gel or body lotion, too.
4. Add Scented Pouches and Sachets
Sweet-scented pouches and sachets are extremely popular for a reason. You can use them anywhere and make your drawers, clothes, your car, or the entire room smell like heaven. Retailers offer a wide range of scents, from single-note fragrances to more complex aromas. They are easy to find, affordable, and any scent you choose is concentrated enough to last a very long time.
The best thing about them is that you can make your own scented pouch or sachet if you’re feeling extra creative. Use empty tea bags or drawstring bags, and let your imagination run wild. Stuff them with potpourri, dried herbs, or uncooked rice with a few added drops of your favorite fragrance oil. Tie them tightly with a ribbon, and place them in the corners of your drawers.
5. Repurpose Old Air Fresheners
Whether it’s a room or car freshener, it will work equally well in your drawers. You might think that old fresheners have lost all their scent, but moving them to a smaller space, like a drawer, will prove you wrong. Newly opened fresheners have an overpowering scent, so make sure you use an older one. Tuck one away nicely in the back of each drawer for best results.
6. Coffee Grounds
If you’re a coffee addict, you are going to love this trick. As well as being a perfect pick-me-up, coffee is an excellent odor neutralizer. The nitrogen in the grounds helps eliminate bad smells, but coffee grounds smell pretty good on their own, too. The strong scent is enough to overpower and absorb funky smells.
Fill a tea bag or an old pair of tightly-knit socks with coffee grounds, and simply place them in your drawers. You’ll find that the bad smell is gone within a few hours. Make sure you replace the grounds monthly because the scent fades with time.
7. A Bar Of Soap
This trick may sound too easy to be true, but it’s proven to work. Go for heavily scented soap bars or those small gift soaps that usually have a really strong smell. Place the bar in your drawer, but make sure to leave the wrapper on or wrap it in a thin cloth. By doing so, you protect your clothes from the soap’s oils and overpowering scent.
Over time, the scent will fade away, but you can still use the soap for washing and cleaning. Never let a soap bar go to waste!
8. Baking Soda
Maybe you don’t want your clothes to smell of anything other than your favorite softener or detergent. If you are looking to retain the freshness of your laundry without adding aromas, consider using baking soda. Open the box of baking soda and place it in the back of your drawer to keep it odor-free. Secure it in place to prevent spilling, as baking soda can damage materials such as wood.
9. Cat Litter
Cat litter is made from clay and is designed to absorb odors and kill bacteria. Whether you are a cat owner or not, kitty litter is an affordable and effective way to keep your drawers odor-free. You can go for unscented litter if you’d like to pass on perfume or a scented one that will give your laundry an extra kick.
Either way, fill a plastic container with the litter and place it in a drawer. Close it and poke a few holes in the lid to keep it from spilling. Replace the litter every month for best results.
Vinegar is a powerful deodorizer that you probably already have in your kitchen, and its odor-eliminating properties are well known. Add a tablespoon of white vinegar to your laundry conditioner to keep the bad smell away. Also, you can mix equal parts water and white vinegar and spray the solution on your clothes before folding them in your drawers.
Turn your clothes inside out to avoid discoloration, though. You can spray the insides of the drawers for even better results.
The Final Say
There are many ways to keep your laundry smelling fresh and clean. Most are inexpensive, simple, and easy to DIY. After washing your clothes thoroughly, give these tricks a try, and see what happens. The musty scent might be very persistent, but hopefully this handy guide will help you find the remedy that works best for you. You’ll see how easy it is to keep your clothes smelling fresh permanently.