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How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes: All You Need Are These 5 Super Easy Tricks!

There are so many things to love about camping – from being part of nature and the great outdoors, getting a chance to spending quality time with friends and loved ones, to having the chance to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and the daily grind.

But there are also some things I wish I could do without when it comes to camping, like unexpected bad weather or a particularly loud group of campers in the next door.

The one thing I dislike the most about camping, however, is the campfire smell that tends to linger in my clothes during and after a camping trip. You know what I’m talking about – because I’m sure no one wants to smell like a burning building or an ashtray.

Fortunately, I’ve discovered a few simple tricks on how to get campfire smell out of clothes using materials you can easily find in your home. Read on to find out more!

How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes: All You Need Are These 5 Super Easy Tricks

What You Will Need

For Method 1 – The Dryer Sheet Method

Dryer sheets (must be clean and unused)
Plastic bag big enough to fit all your smelly clothes
Rubber band or a piece of string to secure the plastic bag

For Method 2 – The Vodka Method

Spray bottle or any container with a spritzer (you can reuse an old cologne or body spray bottle)
Warm water

For Method 3 – The Charcoal and Baking Soda Combo
Activated charcoal
Baking soda
Old nylon leggings
A cabinet, drawer, or any container you can seal shut

For Method 4 – The Vinegar Vapor Method
At least 4 cups of vinegar
A bath tub filled with scalding hot water
Lothes hangers

For Method 5 – The Lemon Spritz Method
Spray bottle or any container with a spritzer (you can reuse an old cologne or body spray bottle)
Warm water
Lemon juice

How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes

Method 1: How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes Using Dryer Sheets

The dryer sheet method of getting campfire smell out of your clothes is the most ideal because you just need to bring a couple of these sheets with you and you can use them to remove the smell of your clothes wherever you are. Here’s how:

You will need to remove the smelly clothes and place them on a flat surface.
Rub the dryer sheet on the pieces of clothing repeatedly, making sure you cover the entire surface of each.

Pro Tip: Use the Plastic Bag trick!

Don’t want to waste your time rubbing dryer sheets on your clothing? Here’s a trick that takes a bit more time but considerably less effort:

Place the campfire-smelling clothing in a plastic bag along with 3 to 4 dryer sheets.
Secure and seal the plastic bag with an elastic band or a string.
After seven days, the smell would’ve been removed from the clothing!

Method 2: How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes Using Vodka


In a spray bottle, mix equal parts of vodka and warm water. Don’t forget to shake the bottle once it’s secure so the two liquids can mix.
You must generously spray the inside of the smelly clothes with the mixture. It’s better to spray more than not spray enough of the liquid!
Leave the clothes to dry under the sun for a few hours to allow the vodka to evaporate, along with the campfire smoke smell. Who knew vodka was more than just a great ingredient for a cocktail?

Method 3: How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes Using Activated Charcoal and Baking Soda

Mix equal parts of activated charcoal and baking soda and place inside a pair of old nylon leggings. Don’t worry if some of the baking soda spills out – you can vacuum this afterward.
You must then place the mixture either in a cabinet, drawer, or any container with a lid.
Place the foul-smelling clothes in the container. You have to make sure that the container is tightly closed.
You may take out the clothes after a week to find that the odor has been removed.
Method 4: How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes Using Vinegar
Hang your smoke-smelling clothes on the rod of the shower curtain or anywhere near the bathtub.
You need to close the drain on your bathtub for this to work. Llet the water run at the hottest possible temperature andallow your bathtub to fill up with the hot water.
Pour 4-5 cups of vinegar into the bathtub
Leave the bathroom and don’t forget to close the door behind you. The vinegar vapor steaming out of the bathtub and upwards towards your clothes will remove the unwanted odors on your clothes.
After 20 to 30 minutes, come back into the bathroom to retrieve your now fresh-smelling clothes!

Method 5: How to Get Campfire Smell Out of Clothes Using Lemons

Similar to the vodka spritzer, in a spray bottle, you need to mix eight parts of warm water with one part freshly squeezed lemon juice. Shake the bottle and allow the lemon juice and the water to mix.
Generously spray the inside and outside of your foul-smelling clothing with the mixture.
You will need to leave the clothes to dry under the sun for four hours for the mixture to work

Some Final Things to Remember

1.) As much as possible, leave your foul-smelling clothes to dry under the sun after cleaning. The heat of the sun will help remove the stench of smoke from your clothes.

2.) You can use these methods not just for removing the smell of campfire smoke in clothes, but also other unwanted odors like cigarette smoke. You can even use these tricks to remove the moldy smell from vintage clothing.

3.) Don’t be discouraged if your first attempt at any of these tricks doesn’t remove the smell of smoke completely. Depending on how intense the odor is, you might have to do these methods a couple of times over for it to fully work.​

Quick Tip For You

They always say prevention is better than a cure. In this case, if you want to minimize having clothes that smell like a bonfire, there are certain fabrics and pieces of clothing that are more resistant to the smell of smoke.

Because of the unique material it’s made of, most cold-resistant clothing not only keep you warm and properly insulated in the coldest of nights at camp, they also repeal campfire smell, so wear these on top of your regular clothes in front of a campfire.


Isn’t it a relief to know there are simple and cost-effective ways to remove the smell of smoke on your clothes?

Now I never let the pesky stench of campfire smoke on clothes keep me or my family from enjoying a wonderful time bonding in front of a campfire, toasting marshmallows and sharing laughs and stories. And you shouldn’t either!

So keep these simple tricks in mind for the next time you go camping. Knowing these methods can save you money that you would’ve spent on expensive dry cleaning. Let’s face it – it’s also a good reason to always have a bottle of vodka at home.

Was this post helpful for you? Did some of the tricks I shared surprise you? Or perhaps you’ve actually tried some of these tricks – let us know in the comments section how they worked for you!

And finally, please don’t hesitate to share this article with your friends and family who might find this useful. Happy camping!

Rita Myers

I’m Rita Myers, and camping is one of my utmost passions. Growing up near the base of a mountain, hiking and camping have been in my system since I was just a little girl. My love for camping and hiking stayed with me well into adulthood. Now, as a mother of two boys and a wife, I keep my passion alive by bringing my family outdoors. Of course, my family isn’t always up to it, so I write these articles and tips in the hope that you and your family can enjoy the great outdoors like I do!

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