How do you remove musty smells and stains from clothes?

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With humidity, lack of ventilation and ventilation, mold forms. And whether you are prone to allergic reactions or not, it is not very good for the airways. In addition, molds can sometimes settle on clothing, textiles, mattresses. And these musty stains and the bad odors that accompany them can prove to be tough. How do you clean mold stains, treat smelly clothing without damaging it and prevent fabrics from molding? Grandmother gives you all her explanations and some natural tips against fungi to avoid respiratory problems… and many puzzles!

Understanding the origin of odor and musty stains

If the smell is found everywhere on washed laundry, it can come from the washing machine. Maybe it’s time to clean the drum and maintain the filter, bowl and gaskets? Thorough cleaning of the washing machine will help combat unpleasant odors. Also remember to use less detergent and fabric softener if you use a lot: this clogs the machine! Also, leave the door and the detergent drawer open to let them dry. And of course after washing let the laundry dry completely. Folding it up and putting it away if it is still a bit damp is sure to leave odors behind. Drying in full sun would be ideal to prevent mold.

Also pay attention to the storage area: damp and poorly ventilated places (attic, cellar, closed cupboard in a damp room or one subject to water leaks, etc.) can leave a musty smell on the laundry. Regularly clean the cabinet or dressing room with vinegar after emptying them can help. As for the basement, do not put the clothes in a cardboard box that will absorb bad odors of humidity such as the musty smell. Invest in vacuum storage bags for clothes that you are not going to use for a long time.

vacuum storage bag
Credit: iStock

How to remove mold stains from clothes?

Often, Marseille soap or a water-bicarbonate paste is sufficient to remove musty stains, especially in the case of recent stains. For stubborn mold stains, there are other techniques without bleach or ammonia :

White vinegar of course!

To get rid of mild mildew stains from clothes, soak the stained area in water mixed with white vinegar. For more difficult stains, rub it directly with pure vinegar. If necessary, add fresh lemon juice to make your anti-mold stain remover more effective. Last tip: loosen the laundry with sodium bicarbonate and vinegar mechanically. This will work very well on a recent spot with little encrustation. Just sprinkle the baking soda, let it act for a few minutes then scrub with an old toothbrush. Then, rinse with vinegar water before putting in the machine.

Mix salt and lemon

The mixture of lemon juice and salt (table salt or coarse salt) is known to remove rust stains. However, it works overall to remove very tough stains, especially musty stains! Just mix them into a thick paste. Then rub the areas infested with mold and leave for a few minutes. Rub again and then rinse. If the stain is still there, repeat the same steps until it is completely gone.

mold and mildew stains on clothes
Credit: iStock

Remove musty stains on white

Here again, there is no need for bleach, which can damage the fibers of the laundry and pollute the planet. Replace it withhydrogen peroxide diluted to 3% or 10 volumes. Just spray it on the stain, leave to act and rub before machine washing. You can also apply it directly with a damp cloth to rub the stain. This will prevent mold from staining the fabric leaving a yellow halo.

Namely that hydrogen peroxide can be used on colored clothes too. Test in an inconspicuous corner first to make sure there is no discoloration.

Remove mold stains from leather

On a handbag, shoes or a leather jacket, sprinkle talcum powder on the damaged area. Then leave it on overnight before vacuuming up the talc. If necessary, then apply a little glycerine soap for leather to complete the cleaning.

And finally, for stains on very fragile moldy or synthetic clothing?

Vinegar or lemon juice are not necessarily very suitable! In this case, the best solution is to cool the milk. Then let the delicate garment soak in the milk for at least an hour. Then rinse well. If this is not enough, start over and wash in the washing machine normally.

How to eliminate the smell of mold?

bad smells washing machine
Credit: iStock

The best solution here is to eliminate the fungi that cause the odors. To do this, a hot wash (at a temperature of 60 ° C or more) is the most effective technique. This will allow the laundry to be disinfected. A vinegar water bath or spraying vinegar directly can also help before doing a cooler wash for laundry that cannot withstand high temperatures.

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