It doesn’t take that much time and effort to end up with residual smoke odors in your home: a party, a rude visitor, or a family member who smokes. Here are six tried-and-true methods for permanently removing them.
1: Clean Fabrics with Vinegar
If you’ve ever visited a smoky bar, you’ve still been reminded of your night out the next morning, when you could still smell smoke on your skin. It can be the same for your home’s fabrics, which will absorb any residual smoke from your rule-breaking visitors.
While it may not be necessary to remove all of the fabric from your home (moving a couch to the patio can be a pain!), do remove all of the fabric pieces from the smelly space. Pillows, bedding, sheets, and curtains all fall into this category. In case you have a big washing machine, you can do a cold wash cycle with 2 cups of vinegar added to the load.
Then, whatever you do, don’t dry them on high heat; according to my study, heat reactivates the smoke odor and even sets it into the fabric. Instead, use a low-heat or fluff cycle—or, if you have the ability to line dry them in the sun, that will be even more convenient.
You can need to enlist the support of your local dry cleaner for larger, bulkier products. Take all of the smelly things to the cleaners, and make sure to tell them you need help eliminating the smoke odor so they can work their skilled magic on the items.
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