Synthetic stink, some folks have it bad, some not at all

DogBones11

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Synthetic stink. Some guys have it bad. Some don't have it at all. Why?

I don't have stink. Maybe I'm lucky? Maybe because I'm very clean, shower daily 1x-2x no matter what, scrub with a shower puff, use foot powder, etc. I prefer mostly synthetics for daily wear.

I know guys who wear UA type undershirts at work (same as me) but they stink every single day. I can smell them when they walk by, I can't imagine living like that.

Is it personal hygiene? Is it natural bacteria on the skin? Can you do anything to stink less, like use a different type of soap or body wash or scrub harder? Some guys have poor hygiene and don't seem to care too much. Is it a lifestyle thing that takes a while to clean up? Is it the food you eat, like garlic or alcohol oozing out your pores?

Is it laundry technique? You know that moldy stink when you leave wet clothes sitting in the washer too long? Is it front loader mold smell? Could using Lysol laundry disinfectant help? Does using liquid fabric softner make it worse?

Thoughts?
 
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5MilesBack

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If I wore them only one day and showered every day, my synthetics wouldn't stink either. But wear them for a few days straight chasing elk without any showering and they're going to stink. I can easily go a week with my merino and my wife says she can't even smell me when I get home.
 

whaack

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I'd love to know the answer to this too. I too am VERY clean. 1-2x showers a day. My wife tells me that I can work out and still not stink, yet with some synthetic shirts I can put one on and in 10 minutes there is an oder. Drives me nuts. I assume i has to do with certain materials in synthetic shirts.
 
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DogBones11

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I'd love to know the answer to this too. I too am VERY clean. 1-2x showers a day. My wife tells me that I can work out and still not stink, yet with some synthetic shirts I can put one on and in 10 minutes there is an oder. Drives me nuts. I assume i has to do with certain materials in synthetic shirts.
See and that's what I mean. How is it possible for a clean shirt on a clean body to stink after 10 minutes? I don't believe it's that simple. I suspect the shirt has bacteria or mold or something in it that's not getting washed out.

Sure some fabrics are going to stink less than others after days of sweaty use, like socks. But foot stink is largely determined by nasty foot hygiene, fungus, toe jam, dead skin, and bacteria, all of which gets nasty in the liners of your boots/shoes and stays there. See, does it all come back to hygiene?
 
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DogBones11

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If it's bacteria on the clothing items, then it seems very clear to me that some people's laundry techniques don't get rid of those bacteria as well as other people's techniques.
 
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DogBones11

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Maybe you stinky guys should try a bacteria sanitizer like this?
50882121843_035d03e0e0.jpg

Introducing Lysol Laundry Sanitizer​

When it comes to certain laundry loads such as children's clothes or sportswear, you want your detergent to eliminate bacteria that can cause illnesses and create lingering bad smells. But detergents alone don't actually kill all bacteria. Introducing Lysol Laundry Sanitizer, a bleach-free additive specially designed to kill 99.9%* of bacteria left behind while remaining gentle on most fabrics.

When are Bacteria Encountered?​

Our clothes are in constant contact with bacteria throughout our day-to-day activities, for example through contact with contaminated surfaces, people and our own bodies. Bacteria can also spread from one fabric to another in the laundry basket, from the washing-machine drum to the next load, and even from our hands when handling wet clothes which have just been washed.

How Do Bacteria Cause Odors?​

Sweat itself does not have an odor, but when we sweat the bacteria living on our skin break down the sweat molecules causing unpleasant smells. We can mask these odors with fabric conditioners, but when the fragrancing technology of such products wears off, the bacteria can still remain and continue to produce bacterial malodors. To combat these lingering smells, odors must be eliminated at the source by killing the odor-causing bacteria.
 

Rob5589

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I guess I am lucky, I just don't produce a ton of funk even after 8+ days of no shower and wearing synthetics. I like merino but can't wear it do to eczema generally. Merino socks are fine, just some minor irritation to my calves. Strange but true, my father never needed or used deodorant and never stunk.
 

Laelkhunter

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Nikwax makes "Basewash" which is designed for synthetics and base layers. You might not need it, but maybe print out the page of Nikwax Basewash and leave it where your stinky friends could find it.
 

whaack

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I hardly ever sweat. My all Cotten shirts smell clean after a day of wear. In fact most of the time they get hung back up to be worn again.

My Sitka gear never stinks. Cheap synthetic shirts stink after a few minutes.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Team4LongGun

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Sounds like you all attended the same summer "brag" camp......Rob don't paint any more pictures of your calves bro-:ROFLMAO:
 

NebraskaStickHunter

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I must be on the other end of the spectrum because some of the synthetic ua shirts stink before I put them on. My wife tells me I stink but that is pretty bad when it doesn’t even touch my skin and transfers. I feel like it might have something to do with these he washers that use three cups of water.
 

zacattack

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If I’ve worked up a good sweat in it my UA stuff gets washed twice. I don’t know what it is but man their clothing gets funky. Other brands I own not so much.
 
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DogBones11

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If I’ve worked up a good sweat in it my UA stuff gets washed twice. I don’t know what it is but man their clothing gets funky. Other brands I own not so much.
I'm convinced it's your washing machine. Maybe a moldy seal like front loaders are known for. Maybe moldy crap built up inside the drum or center agitator. If you've ever disassembled a washer you know what I'm talking about.

Maybe it's your detergent.

I wear multiple UA shirts and recently got a hoodie for workouts. None of them have ANY stink at all. Zero. I only wash in cold water with Costco brand detergent.
 

Anglo-American

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Lolz

Fyi: fabric softeners contain V.O.C. which are cancer causing and interact with your hormonal system.

Avoid them.

Most people stink for two reasons:

They aren't clean on the outside or the inside.

Live like sh*t, stink like sh*t.

Pharmaceutical drugs often a factor to in people living, and stinking like sh*t.

Edit:. And yes, synthetic (plastic) clothes are worse for it.
 
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Stalker69

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I believe many can’t ( don’t ) smell them selves. Just like your breath, I work with a guy that says his breath never smells as he’s alway brushing, and mouth wash through the day. Believe me, he has bad breath at times, but he can’t tell. I just think you can’t smell your own funk until it gets to a certain level.
 

Hootsma

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If your synthetics smell shortly after you put them on, then it’s your laundering technique. My wife and I had the same problem and after a bit of research, figured out what works for us.

Never throw sweaty clothes into the hamper. I drape my sweaty clothes over the tub or on the floor and let them dry before they get balled up and thrown in the hamper.

Never use fabric softener on synthetics because it leaves a residue which can trap and hold the stuff that causes the funk. If you’re going to use regular laundry detergent, then use powdered for the same reason. It just washes away better.

Liquids are fine if they are specifically designed for sports/synthetic clothes, but follow the instructions and don’t put too much detergent in.

And lastly, I fill the fabric softener cup with vinegar. This kills any residual bacteria and aids in washing away the detergent.

Generally I don’t work up a stink very quickly. I tend to wear the same clothes for at least two days without issue, unless I worked up a good sweat. I’ve also run out of deodorant a time or two and not had much of an issue as long as I’m not sweating a lot. Certain foods and alcohol can definitely affect my stink/breath though.

I don’t care for merino. It doesn’t dry very fast, it’s not very durable and most importantly to me, it itches no matter how fine it is, more so when I sweat. For long backcountry trips (10 days typically), I found the polygiene Sitka base shirts and Exofficio sport boxer/briefs work well for me. Although the Exofficios tend to run large.
 

pk_

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I mean the real issue tho, is when you are on vacation, camping or hit the gym during lunch and those clothes get sweaty and then have to sit for a while. There is no saving them IME. I have soaked them in vinegar. Dried in the sun. Washed multiple times. It doesn’t matter as soon as they get a bit of moisture on them again they are stinky.

I will also say it seems to get worse with ‘mileage’. The newer the garment is the more forgiving it is. Not sure why that would be but it is my experience.

You can say it’s hygiene or laundering techniques(I agree the issue is allowing them to sit when they are sweaty, but that is the issue. Sometimes it is pretty unavoidable.). But the fact is my other clothes don’t have this problem and my body doesn’t stink, the garments do. Once they get the funk it’s over for them I put them in the trash and have since quit buying them, unless they are on clearance.

@Hootsma have you been able to save stinky garments? Or do you have to be diligent with your laundering from the get go?
 

Hootsma

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I’ve been able to save them once we switched our laundering technique. I have some really old UA shirts I was on the verge of tossing because of the stink and are now wearable again.
 
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