Recently I bought a nice tote bag at an airport shop while travelling. As soon as I got it onto the plane, I realized it reeeeeeeeeeeeeeks of mothballs. How does one get rid of this smell; a smell that permeates everything it contacts? I tried Febreeze, I tried leaving it ouside overnight…still stinky. I’ve heard about putting it in the dryer with fabric softener sheets but haven’t tried that yet.
Help! I love this bag but I don’t want to smell like an actual bag lady when I use it.
Malodorous in Maui
Napthalene is the primary ingredient in most mothballs. Heat and water is the way to get rid of that smell. So what’s the best way to do that? I have a couple of ideas, one of which I tried with good results.
If the fabric of the bag can take it, I suggest using a hot iron with full steam on it. I used it on a skirt my grandma gave me that had been stored in a mothbally-closet, and it worked well. First, I sprayed the skirt with Febreeze and then I ironed it with steam. It got the smell right out.
My other thought is to toss the bag into a hot dryer with a damp towel and a dryer sheet. I think the damp towel will really help with getting the smell out, as well as the heat. Good luck!
Send your domestic questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.