How To Get Cigarette Smell Out of Clothes Effectively?

women closing nose because of cigarette smell

Have you been spending time with that “smoker friend” of yours? Are you afraid of the cigarette smell sticking to your clothes and wondering how to get cigarette smell out of clothes? 

The stinky smell is unpleasant and can quickly stink your clothes. All the toxic chemicals from cigarette smoke accumulate on your fabric into the pores, making a permanent residence there. Therefore, it’s vital to remove the smell and indirectly toxic elements sitting there.

We’ve shared two ways of removing the cigarette smell from clothes. One way is without washing the clothes, and the other is by washing the clothes.

Cleaning Overview

Working Time: 60 minutes

Total Time: 12 to 18 Hours

Skills Required: Beginner

Estimated Cost: USD 10-40

What Will You Need


  1. Baking Soda
  2. Isopropyl Alcohol
  3. Purified white vinegar
  4. Laundry detergent
  5. Clothes refresher
  6. Freshner spray


  1. Plastic bag or sealable bin
  2. Steam Iron / Hand-held steamer

How to Get Cigarette Smell Out of Clothes Without Washing?

If you’ve been exposed to cigarette smell for a short period such as for a few hours or on a night out, this will be the best technique for you.

Air Your Clothes

This method is one of the simplest ways to make your clothes smell free without washing them. Hang your clothes in a well-ventilated area for a few hours or days. Decide the time based on the intensity of the smell. Let the smoky smell fade away, eventually. 

No worries if you don’t have an outside area. Try hanging the clothes in a room having lots of lush green plants. The green friends will absorb the filthy odor. You can also speed up the process by using a fan for fast air circulation. 

Even if this step doesn’t remove the entire smoke, it will weaken the intensity of the smell and remove it entirely after a wash.

air dry white clothes

Use Baking Soda

Baking soda is reputed to eradicate odors. Here are the steps to use baking soda to remove the smoke smell from your clothes.

  1. Place your stinky clothes in a large plastic or garbage bag.
  2. Insert 1/2 cup of baking soda into the bag.
  3. Rigorously shake the bag for 2 to 4 minutes so the baking soda covers your clothes.
  4. Keep the bag overnight for the baking soda to remove the smell from the textile.
  5. Next morning remove the clothes from the plastic/garbage bag and dust off the baking soda.
  6. Hopefully, the clothes won’t have the smoke smell now.
Baking soda powder in a cup

Use Steam

Use this process only if the care label from the clothes manufacturer recommends using steam for cleaning.

  1. Keep your steam iron ready by filling it with distilled water.
  2. Iron your clothes to remove the filthy odor.
  3. A solution of 3 parts distilled water and 1 part isopropyl alcohol will also remove the smell.

You can also use a hand-held steamer to remove the bad smell, provided the care label allows you to use steam on your clothes for cleaning.

women steaming clothes

Use Fabric Fresheners

Use this method when you are in a hurry and don’t have time to wait till you wash the clothes. 

Fabric fresheners are available in the form of sprays that can help you to rid of the stink. In addition, it will add a fresh fragrance to your clothing.

You can easily procure a fabric freshener from local grocery shops or create a freshener spray for yourself at home. Get a spray bottle and fill it with vinegar and water in equal proportions. Add a few drops (at least 20 to 30) of essential oil of a particular scent if you like.

Spray your clothes with these sprays and say bye-bye to the stinkiness quickly.

spraying fabric fresher on clothes

How to Get Rid of Cigarette Smells on Clothing By Washing?

If you’re exposed to cigarette smell for a longer duration of time or the smell only partially leaves the clothes with the above methods, try washing your clothes as per the following directions.

Soak Clothes in Baking Soda and Water Solution

  1. Fill your sink with warm water. (refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for the temperature limits)
  2. Add a cup of baking soda.
  3. Dump your smelly clothes into the sink.
  4. Let them soak for a night.
  5. In the morning, you will notice the smell has completely gone.
washing clothes in sink with baking soda

Wash with White Vinegar

  1. with warm water. 
  2. Add a cup of vinegar.
  3. Dump your stinking clothes in it. 
  4. Let them soak for an hour, and wash them as per the clothing instructions.
  5. Add 3-4 drops of essential oils with the scent of lemon, lavender, or orange to add fragrance.

Related: Will Vinegar Bleach Black Clothes

washing clothes in sink with white vinegar

Wash in Hot Water

Hot water rids off many contaminants and removes dirt effortlessly if washed with it. Follow the directions given by the manufacturer’s cloth washing instructions before using hot water. Let them soak in hot water after adding your regular laundry detergent.

Then run the regular washing cycle on your clothes.

hand wash clothes in hot water
  • How long does cigarette smell last on clothes?

    A cigarette smell may last for over 72 hours after your latest smoke.


Your clothes may suck up the toxic elements from cigarette smoke and start reeking with that awful smell. You may not be able to put on those clothes unless you wash your clothes or at least get rid of that stink.

There are various ways to get cigarette smell out of clothes, either by washing or without washing. It also depends on how strong the stink is. Based on the stink intensity, you can implement one or more of the simplest methods mentioned above.

Related: How to Get Vape Juice Stain Out of Clothes