How to Get Rid of a Sweat Smell in a Suit Jacket

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Things You'll Need

  • Baking soda

  • Water

  • Small scrub brush

  • Large container

  • Gentle laundry detergent

  • Clean towels

  • Body soap

Perspiration has no odor on its own. However, body odor can occur when perspiration comes in contact with bacteria on the skin. Nerves, high temperatures and physical exertion can all lead to sweating, so it makes sense that your best suit may have an occasional sweaty odor. While most suits cannot be thrown in the washing machine with a cup of vinegar to get rid of the odor, there are remedies you can try at home, which vary depending on what kind of fabric makes up the suit.

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Step 1

Read the suit's care tag to see whether you can use traditional laundering products on it. If it says dry clean only, use only mild cleaners with little or no water. Send the suit to the dry cleaner before attempting at-home treatments, if you're uneasy about it.

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Step 2

Mix baking soda with several teaspoons of hot water, just enough to make a paste. You should be able to spread the paste on your suit.

Step 3

Wet the suit with hot water if the care tag indicates it's hand wash only, and the fabric can be soaked in hot water. Dry clean only suits should not be wet. Turn the suit inside out. Lightly spread the paste on the suit's armpits and any areas with a sweat stain or odor. Let the baking soda sit for one to two days before blotting the suit clean with a cloth.

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Step 4

Fill a large container with cold water and and 1/4 cup of baking soda for a washable or hand wash only suit with a particularly strong odor. Soak the suit in the solution for several hours. Hand wash the suit as normal, with a gentle detergent. Dry as indicated on the care tag.

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Step 5

Minimize the occurrence of future odors and stains. Discoloration on your clothing's underarms may indicate a reaction between your antiperspirant and body chemicals. Switch antiperspirants and see if the odor goes away.

Step 6

Wash your armpits once to twice a day with antibacterial soap -- stains indicate bacteria in the sweat, which is normal, but some people have more bacteria than others. Allow your armpits to dry completely after applying liquid or gel antiperspirant before putting on your suit.

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