Unlike conventional white towels, colored towels’ laundering labels often have finicky instructions, such as not to use bleach or hot water. This can leave you wondering how to disinfect and deodorize them. When you climb out of the bathtub or step out of the shower, a tidy, non-funky-smelling towel is really a welcome commodity. Freshen and sanitize your coloured towels at label-suggested warm or cool water, and with no harsh chemicals, to get a “funk-free” clean.
Sodium Bicarbonate, aka Baking Soda
Baking soda can clean away bad smells from nearly anythingelse. Add a half-cup or so of baking soda to a clean load of towels along with gentle laundry detergent. Always use a modest number of gentle soap to clean towels to allow them to last longer, and skip the fabric softener to get much more absorbent fibers, advises that the Towels from Gus website. Baking soda is a natural, pH-balancing material that doesn’t just cover or mask a bad smell – it neutralizes it. Whether an offensive smell remains, don’t dry the towels, but instantly repeat the washing procedure once or twice.
Lemon Fresh and Germ Free
Lemon has disinfecting qualities, but also has minor bleaching qualities, so use it carefully to clean dark- or light-colored towels. Add about a half-cup of lemon juice along with your normal laundry soap to the clean water, and allow your machine agitate or mix for a couple of seconds before adding the towels. If you have a front-loading machine, then use a bathtub to presoak your towels at pre-mixed lemon water; then squeeze out much of the water before laundering as usual. Always pretest a towel — or less expensive matching facecloth — for color fastness, and launder like-colored items together to avoid a color-bleeding calamity.
Odor & Germs, Meet Vinegar
Like lemon juice, white vinegar contains minor bleaching qualities. Use it instead of lemon juice, and along with bleach-free laundry soap. If a musty odor remains, repeat the washing procedure. If a vinegar scent is evident, then run the load via an extra clear-water rinse cycle.
Avoid the Funk
To keep towels out of creating a funky or musty smell, hang them up to dry instantly after each use. In even a couple of hours, a damp, bunched towel is the perfect breeding ground for mold spores. Wash towels frequently, but do not store damp towels in the hamper until wash day; mold thrives in damp, dark places, such as hampers. Hang them over the edge of the hamper, bathtub or shower stall to dry prior to placing them inside. Along the same lines, make sure your laundered towels are fully dry before you bend and store them away. Sometimes, add 1/4 cup of vinegar, lemon juice or color-safe bleach to the wash water to help keep your towels odor- and germ-free.