How Do You Get the Smoke Smell Out of Clothes?

Updated: Jun. 23, 2023

Try these tips and no one will ever know you just spent the weekend in the woods.

It’s camping season in the Upper Midwest, and that means spending some quality time around campfires. But as lovely as they are in the moment, you don’t always want the smell to follow you. So what’s the best way to get the smoke out of your clothes? We’ve rounded up several options below.

Air Out Your Clothes

Hanging your clothes outside to air out is a great way to remove the smell. Depending on how long you sat near the smoke, it might not fully get the scent out, but it’s an important first step. Washing will be more successful if the garment swayed in the open air awhile.

Add Baking Soda to the Laundry

Long hailed as a “miracle product,” it seems like there’s nothing baking soda can’t do. Add baking soda to your smoky laundry load, then run as usual. If the smell persists, try soaking the clothes in a baking soda and water mixture overnight before washing again.

Spray with White Vinegar

White vinegar is another “miracle” cleaning product, with countless uses all over your home. Try adding 1/2 cup of white vinegar to your load to combat the smoke odor.

Wash Them in Hot Water

Hot water is a great fix for most cleaning needs. Double check your clothing’s wash tags first in case it’s a material that can’t handle heat. If you aren’t sure what the symbols on that tag mean, don’t worry — we have a guide for you here.

Put Your Clothes in the Freezer

Freezing your clothes kills odor causing bacteria. If you don’t have enough laundry for a full load yet, try sticking your smoke-scented items in the freezer. Pack them in a freezer bag first so they don’t come in contact with your food.

Fabric Scent Spray

If there’s a particular odor-fighting spray you like, try that on the campfire smoke smell in your clothing. We recommend going light on the spray to start since some people are sensitive to strong smells.