The All-Natural Ingredient You Need To Remove Musty Odors From Laundry

Musty or mildewy-smelling clothing is an unfortunate reality for many of us. One of the most common causes is leaving wet clothes in the washing machine for too long, allowing bacteria and mold to grow. Another reason is storing damp or wet clothes in a closed space, creating a breeding ground for mildew. Using a damp or dirty washing machine can also transfer odors to laundry, which tends to be problematic for front-loading machines when the doors remain shut between loads. To avoid this problem, completing a washing cycle for the washing machine once a month is usually a good practice to help cut down on foul-smelling clothing. If you're still in need of a quick fix, though, natural sunlight is a great solution to help remove musty scents from your laundry.

Utilizing natural sunlight to deodorize your laundry is a simple remedy for any odorous clothing or linen issues. One of the best parts about it is that it's completely free! All you need to do is hang your smelly laundry in the sun for a few hours, and the antimicrobial UV rays will eliminate those odors from your laundry in no time. Sun drying your laundry is an excellent idea not only for its ability to resolve odor issues but also because it can cut down on your electric bill. Depending on how much you use it, your dryer can be one of the largest contributors to your cost of electricity.

Why sunlight works as a deodorizer

Natural sunlight has long been recognized as a powerful natural deodorizer for laundry and linens. Its effectiveness can be attributed to several key factors. Firstly, sunlight contains ultraviolet rays, which have antimicrobial properties. These rays can penetrate fabrics and kill odor-causing bacteria, fungi, and other microorganisms that may be present in the laundry. By eliminating these microorganisms, sunlight helps to remove the source of the unpleasant odors.

Secondly, sunlight acts as a natural bleach. The UV rays in sunlight can break down and oxidize certain compounds that contribute to odors, such as sweat, body oils, and organic stains. The oxidation process provided by the sun helps to lighten and remove these stains, leaving your clothes smelling as fresh as ever.

And, of course, drying laundry outdoors provides a natural source of ventilation and air circulation. When clothes are hung outside to dry in the sun, the gentle breeze and movement of air help to remove trapped odors and allow fresh air to circulate through the fabric fibers rather than hanging them to dry in your home. This natural airing-out process can eliminate musty or stale smells that may have developed during storage or washing.

How to dry with natural sunlight

To effectively utilize the deodorizing power, choose a day when the sun is shining brightly and there is a gentle breeze. This combination will help to maximize the deodorizing effects of sunlight and promote air circulation. Be mindful of weather conditions; if there is a chance of rain or high humidity, it's best to avoid hanging your laundry outside as this may exacerbate any mildew or must lingering in your clothing. Moisture in the air can counteract the deodorizing effects of sunlight and prevent your clothes from smelling fresh.

While sunlight is an excellent deodorizer and natural bleacher of stains, you'll want to make sure your laundry is clean and properly wrung out before hanging it outside. Investing in sturdy clothes hangers or clothespins that can securely hold your laundry to a line or rack without causing any damage is also a good idea.

Finally, find a suitable outdoor area where your clothes can be exposed to direct sunlight. Hang them on a clothesline or a drying rack, ensuring enough space between each item for proper air circulation. To ensure even drying and deodorizing, periodically flip and rotate your clothes while they are hanging outside. This will help all sides of the fabric receive sunlight and fresh air.