If there’s one thing that irks many people, then it is the musty smell from a towel you want to use.
It gets worse when you keep your towels hung on a rack where there is poor air circulation.
And while the musty smell might get you all up and about looking for a solution, the cause of the smell will make you hate the towel — the musty smell is the odor of bacteria breeding!
Aha! Now that answers the question as to why you sometimes feel scratchy after you use your towel.
The bacterial that breeds in moist towels will irritate your skin immediately you use the towel to dry yourself.
Baffling, isn’t it?
We all love to assume that the towel is ever clean, but no.
Even though you bathe and assume you’re clean, your body still sheds a billion dead cells and some of them; no, most of them end up in your towel.
These pathogenic bacteria accumulate in the towel, and due to the dampness, they begin to breed.
Your towel will begin smelling, and infections caused by mold, E. coli, and other bacteria will begin plaguing your skin with weird infections.
You want to know how to keep the musty smell out of your towels and replace it with a sweet scent?
Well, let’s begin at the right stage;
What causes the musty smell in a towel?
There’s a lot of factors that go into making your towel funky smelling.
Though there are a few things that might be special to your case, like personal body odor, most times, the musty towel odor is caused by poor maintenance.
Here is what you might be doing wrong:
- Using fabric softener – Towels are special laundry, you don’t have to treat them the same way you treat your shirt or pants. They are layered, and the fabric is sewn in an intricate tapestry of fabric that gives enough room to trap dirt. When you use a fabric softener, the concentrate forms a waxy build up on the fabrics. This waxy buildup reduces absorbency and aids accumulation of dirt and breeding of bacteria thereby causing the funky smell.
- Under drying your towel – The mistake that most people do is to damp the towel on the bed, or on a rack where they don’t get to dry properly. When the towel fails to dry, it cause mildew and mold to grow. I can’t emphasize enough the dangers of mildew and other bacteria breeding in your towel.
- Using too much detergent – When you use more detergent than you should to wash your towels, you will not only spoil the fabric of the towel and make the spikes harder for your skin. But also, you will have a lot of chemical compounds buildup on the towel, and this will cause skin irritations.
- Not washing the towel frequently – Most people love reusing dirty towels. Sometimes you don’t even know it’s dirty because you think you’ve only used it once. But your case might be different. When you have a lot of body fluids on the towel, it’s nice to wash it after one use.
Also, if you never hang you towel on the line outside to dry, and simply keep it in your bathroom that might be damp, then you should wash it after one use.
The same goes for your gym towels, wash after one use!
Sometimes, it the condition under which you keep the towel that affects its health.
Tips to make your towels smelling fresh
Musty smelling towel is not something to be proud of, it makes you prone to akin infections.
Besides, when the towel smells, the whole house smells like mold.
Keep your towel smelling fresh with these tips;
- Use natural detergent – If you haven’t known, natural cleansers do a thorough job cleaning the clog of stubborn stains in the towel fabric. They remove all the waxy buildup and makes it easier for the towel to dry. Natural detergents also come in different mild fragrances that will swoon your towel in fresh scent.The good thing with natural cleansers is that they are rich in anti-bacterial properties and will dwarf the growth of bacteria and mold in your towel.
- Hang your towels to dry – The number one culprit to smelly towels is a damp environment. Don’t leave your towels in the bathroom to ‘dry’ if you can hang it on the line outside. The sunlight outside presents a very harsh environment for bacteria and mildew. Hanging your towels to dry outside is the easiest way to fight the mustiness and bad odor. If you must hang your towels on the inside rack, make sure there is enough air circulating between and through them so that the bacteria don’t breed in them. The problem with drying your towels outside is that they dry too hard that the fabric will feel rough on your skin. Don’t fret, you can solve this problem by tossing the dry towel in the dryer with tennis balls. The tennis balls will make the towels softer again.
- Use baking soda as the detergent – If your towel is still smelling funny even after washing it regularly, it is time to machine wash it with baking soda. Just run the normal cycle, but instead of using a detergent and a fabric softener, just use a half a cup of baking soda. The baking soda will infiltrate the fabric and wash out all the buildup that’s causing the unpleasant smell. However, this is something you don’t do every day, just once in a while is enough.
- Rinse with vinegar – When we tell you to stop using regular fabric softeners, we have a perfect substitute. Vinegar will do your towel a lot of good. Just run your regular machine wash cycle with hot water, then use a cup of vinegar as the natural fabric softener in the rinse cycle.
- Ensure your washing machine is clean – How often do you clean your washing machine? Well, a dirty washing machine could be the reason your towels hold so much dirt and smell so bad.
If you use chlorin bleach when washing your white clothes, then that’s enough to keep the machine clean.
However, if you don’t, do a wash cycle with four cups of vinegar on hot to clean the machine.
The easiest way to ensure the machine is clean is wash the white clothes with chlorine bleach first, then begin a wash cycle for the towels.
Well, you must ensure your towel is clean and smelling nice always.
You don’t want to put yourself at risk of skin infections by using damp towels, laden with colonies of bacteria.
After taking care of your smelly towel and you notice the smell that was there still persist, it would be prudent you buy an air purifier that works or a high speed desk fan to do its job of getting rid of the smell.