How To Get Campfire Smell Out Of Clothes: What Really Works?

how to get campfire smell out of clothes


One of the best parts of camping is enjoying a warm, beautiful campfire at the end of a long day.

Unfortunately, a campfire can leave you and your belongings smelling awful.

That’s why we put together this guide on how to get campfire smell out of clothes!

We’ll walk you through everything you need to know to get your clothes smelling fresh, clean, and wonderful once again.

Use The Direct Sunlight Method

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

One of the simplest and easiest ways to get the campfire smell out of clothes is to use the direct sunlight method.

What is the direct sunlight method you ask? It’s simple!

It’s using the ultraviolet power of the sun and fresh air to destroy the campfire particles in your clothes, leaving them smelling great once more.

To do this is simple – leave your clothes up on a clothesline, or if you’re still camping, dangling from a tree or other object.

Leave them out all day, making sure they are adequately unfolded and can let the air and breeze pass through.

At the end of the day, your clothes should be smelling much better.

It’s important to note, however, the downside of this method – it takes all day! Additionally, if you’re camping and it starts to rain, your clothes will get soaking wet.

If your clothes still smell after using the direct sunlight trick, try some of the additional methods below.

Use White Vinegar

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

White vinegar is a common household item with a variety of powerful uses. Did you know that it can be used as a deodorizer? It’s true!

Put white vinegar and water in a spray bottle, spray your smelly clothes generously, and then let them air out on a clothesline.

Check on them in a few hours – if they’re still smelling like campfire, try respraying them, or making the concentration stronger.

Add Baking Soda To The Vinegar

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

Baking soda is another common household item that has deodorizing properties.

For added power, you can mix baking soda and white vinegar to create a deodorizing paste.

Once this has been created, spread it all over your clothes, and let this mixture sit overnight.

In the morning, the baking soda paste should be completely dry, and the smell will be gone entirely.

Make sure you read the directions of your clothing afterward though – you will have to get rid of the baking soda paste completely!

Try Using Lemon Juice

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

Did you know that you can use lemon juice to get rid of campfire smells and other odors? It’s true!

Take a bottle of pure lemon juice (or real lemons!), mix it with water, and then spray it all over your clothing.

Hang your clothing up, and let it air dry.

Check-in after a few hours and see if the smell has dissipated. If not, respray it, and then let it sit.

Continue until the campfire smell is completely gone.

Spray Your Clothes With Alcohol

Did you know that alcohol is a potent disinfectant?

If you have some vodka on hand, try mixing it in a spray bottle with water and spraying your smelly campfire clothes.

The alcohol will destroy the smell – however, you need to make sure you don’t overdo it.

Otherwise, you’ll end up with clothes that smell like vodka!

Ventilate Your Tent Or RV

ventilate your rv to get campfire smell out

If you’re still at the campsite, you must let fresh air get into your tent or RV.

This will help drive out all of the residual campfire smoke smell, leaving your dwellings and items smelling fresh.

If you’re in a tent, position the front and rear openings in the position the breeze is blowing.

This will create a nice cross-wind, and help aerate your belongings.

If you’re in an RV, open up all of the windows and doors.

You can also use the aforementioned vinegar or lemon juice spray to help speed up the process, but make sure it is not too strong. Otherwise, everything will smell!

Don’t Use Aerosol Sprays To Mask The Smell

fragrancers to overpower campfire smell

It can be very tempting to overpower the campfire smell if you do not like it, using a fragrance like cologne or perfume.

This is not recommended because these products aren’t deodorizers.

Instead, it will just mix together and create an awful smelling campfire-perfume combination.

Instead, follow the other recommendations on this list, and be patient. Eventually, the campfire smell in your clothes will go away!

Use An Enzyme Cleaner

Absolutely Clean Amazing Laundry detergent liquid Stain and Odor Remover, Naturally Based Formula (USA Made)
If you’re back home from your camping adventure and your favorite clothes still have that distinct campfire smell, you can try using an enzyme cleaner.

An enzyme cleaner, like Absolutely Clean Laundry Stain & Odor Remover, will quickly and easily get your clothes smelling fresh.

We highly recommend using an enzyme cleaner to get campfire smell, and other unwanted odors, out of your clothing.

If All Else Fails, Go To A Drycleaner

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

Sometimes there may be instances where these home remedies do not work.

Perhaps the material that smells like smoke is too delicate, or it has merely “soaked up” too much of the campfire smell.

If this has happened and you’re desperate to get your clothing smelling normal again, feel free to take your things to a dry cleaner.

They will know what to do and will be able to get your clothes smelling nice again.

Of course, it’s nice to believe there’s a simple home remedy out there for everything, but sometimes you need to call in the professionals!

How Can I Get The Campfire Smell Out Of My Sleeping Bag?

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

Fortunately, most of the tips and tricks on this list will also help get the campfire smell out of your sleeping bag.

However, we urge you to read the directions on the label before doing anything.

Chances are, you can do everything on this list except, but you may not want to do the lemon juice trick, or make your sleeping bag smell like vinegar.

If you are going to clean your sleeping bag, make sure you have the time, sunlight, and space to let it air dry!

What Else Can I Use The Baking Soda For?

Baking soda is usually not on most people’s list of camping necessities, but it really should be!

It’s an extremely versatile material – it can be used as toothpaste, it can be used as a deodorant, to relieve insect bites or even as shampoo.

For more ideas, check out this guide on baking soda uses.

You should always bring a baggy of baking soda with you when you are camping!

How Can I Get The Campfire Smell Out Of My Dog’s Fur?

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

You took your beautiful dog camping with you, and now he smells like smoke! Oh no!

Fortunately, there are a couple of things you can do to get the campfire smell out of your dog’s fur.

The first is to use the vinegar and water spray technique listed earlier in this article.

The second is to bath your dog in gentle soap or use a specialty dog shampoo to remove the odors.

In reality, we recommend bathing your dog every time you camp anyways since you should be making sure he doesn’t have any ticks or thorns in his fur.

Can I Get The Campfire Smell Out Without Washing My Clothes?

Yes, you can get the campfire smell out of your fabrics without washing your clothes.

You can use the recommendations on this site – the vinegar and baking soda method, the lemon spray method, and some of the other ones will definitely help remove the smoky wood smell.

That being said, it’s important to keep in mind that you can remove these unwanted smells much more quickly by washing your clothes.

It makes sense, right? A hard, deliberate wash with laundry detergent is obviously going to work more quickly than using a bit of vinegar or lemon juice.

That being said, you’re free to do whatever method you prefer!

How Can I Get The Campfire Smell Out Of My Down Jacket?

how to get campfire smell out of down jacket

If your down jacket smells like campfire smoke, you may be upset!

Fortunately, it is not too difficult to get the smell out of your down jacket. You are going to want to gently wipe down your down jacket with vinegar and water.

Additionally, if you are already at home, you can use the air-dry setting on your dryer to help speed up the process.

Do I Have To Get The Campfire Smell Out Of My Clothes?

how to get campfire smell out of clothes

No, of course, you do not have to get the campfire smell out of your clothes.

In fact, many people enjoy the smell – it gives them fond memories of growing up, roasting marshmallows, and camping out underneath the stars!

If you can wait until you get back home, eventually the smell will go away on its own – either by air drying or with a proper laundry wash.

The easiest thing to do, of course, is to do nothing – if you do not mind the “campfire smell,” let it be.


We hope you’ve enjoyed reading this guide on how to get campfire smell out of clothes.

Hopefully, now you know exactly what you need to do to get those clothes smelling fresh and clean.

Please leave a comment below if you know of any other tips and tricks to get campfire smells out of your clothes without washing them.

Have a wonderful time camping and enjoying your campfire!