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Tips for getting the restaurant stench out of your clothes.


Maybe you notice it, perhaps you don’t–but your friends sure do. You smell like the restaurant you work at. Here are the best ways to get food odor out of your clothes.

No one likes to take work home with them, especially when it’s the lingering smell of the bar mat, or worse, last night’s fish fry special.

Knowing how to get that stench out of your clothes is essential, especially if you get to wear your regular clothes on the clock.

Regardless, you don’t want your clothes or a uniform to make your home stink like fryer oil.

So here are some odor-eliminating methods to help you fight that restaurant stink!


How to get that stink out of your clothes.

The good old outdoors

The most cost-effective way to freshen up your clothes is to hang them outside in the sun for a while before washing. Fresh air can do wonders at removing odors from your clothes. This is an excellent option if your garments don’t smell too strong. If they’re super stinky–you’ll want to stick to any of the following methods.

Presoak your clothes

The presoak method takes both forethought and patience, but your future self will thank you before your next shift. Add your work clothes to a bucket of hot water with two cups of baking soda. Let them soak for a couple of hours before running a regular load. Add vinegar to the baking soda water mixture for extra smelly materials.

Drown your garments in Vodka

Just kidding, don’t drown them–just spray them with vodka, then let it dry. According to Coast Linen Restaurant Laundry Services, vodka binds to odor molecules that then evaporate as the vodka dries out on the clothes. The most crucial step is to enjoy a martini while you’re waiting.

Ammonia Wash

Ammonia is an excellent additive to your regular laundry load–it fights grease and oil, the main contributors to stinky clothes. Add half a cup or so of ammonia to your everyday laundry with detergent, and it will help brighten your clothes, remove stains, and combat that kitchen stench.

When you need the big guns: Borax

Borax can be dangerous. Its alkalinity can cause burns and irritation–so use it sparingly and with extreme caution. Because of its alkaline nature and the chemistry at work, borax helps make your laundry detergent work better. Dilute a tablespoon of borax per gallon of warm water and soak your garments for at least 30 minutes before dumping the whole thing into the washing machine and running your load. DON’T FORGET TO BE CAREFUL!

You spend good money on looking professional on the job, so keeping the smells at bay is a great way to extend the lifespan of your clothes. Make sure to perform any of these tricks before a stage or working interview too! It will breathe new life into your aprons or work attire.

Ashley McNally

Ashley McNally likes to cook, loves to bake, and is always dreaming of her next meal. With over 13 years of experience working in various roles within a restaurant — McNally has made a home in hospitality.

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