Honey, does this stink? My search for antimicrobial clothing

by Humor

Body odor is a rather personal subject, so while it is not my intention to offend, consider this a warning up front – I stink. You see, when my sweat meter is pumping, or if I am several days between showers and laundry facilities when traveling, my stink factor soars. Even my wife has been known to experience wooziness when approaching within several feet of me after a hard workout. So, naturally, I was both thrilled and slightly apprehensive at the prospect of testing antimicrobial clothing that claims to magically nuke offensive smells through a variety of processes: silver impregnation, free oxygen, and chemical concoctions.

I was thrilled because now, theoretically, I would be able to go weeks between clothes washing without triggering adverse olfactory responses from fellow travelers and friends. Not having to hover over a hotel or B&B sink washing my shirt, pants and undies every night would be divine! The downside to this miracle, and hence my trepidation, was that if my clothing no longer stunk, yet there was still a foul odor in the air, all fingers would point directly at me.

Still, I have to admit the thought of outfitting myself in a complete travel wardrobe of non-stink clothing was attractive. So, in the interest of product testing, I shopped. As I pawed through the travel catalogs, I discovered I could essentially outfit myself from head to toe in anti-microbial socks, undies, T-shirts, pants and more. I discovered a number of companies even manufactured sport bras with antimicrobial finishes, though I declined to mention this to my wife for the same reasons a husband knows to keep his mouth shut concerning matters of weight gain or age.

My testing began with the arrival of a travel shirt made from a fabric impregnated with zeolites. Not to be confused with any one of a number of historic religious cultures you may have read about in travel literature and history books, of course. Zeolites are microscopic mineral structures that release free oxygen, which is the arch-enemy of all bacteria that cause foul odor. Although wearing a garment that would, essentially, become a microbial battleground had me feeling a tad nervous, I toed the line and bravely began to travel and, of course, sweat. Then I did the unthinkable: Yes, after a multi-day trip with plenty of sweating toward the end, I tossed my still-damp shirt into the hamper and closed the lid!

Two days later I returned to the hamper and opened the lid. I was expecting to encounter a smell that would remind me of the four-hour stint I spent enjoying solitary confinement in a high-school quarterback’s locker (I probably did something to deserve that). However, instead of a nasty, odiferous crumpled rag, I was greeted with an odor-free shirt that I could wear again without washing. Even my wife was impressed, though she reminded me that I, on the other hand, could use a shower.

Round two of my tests began with the arrival of select silver-impregnated garments. Upon unpacking the boxes, I could see that just wearing the socks held great promise. After all, the accompanying literature proclaimed that silver would not only eliminate foot odor, it would also rejuvenate tired feet. How? Apparently, silver reacts with the body’s natural electrical field, offering, the literature boasted, benefits similar to acupuncture. Even more thrilling to me, though, was the discovery my body generated an electrical field which, I imagine, will come in very handy during the next power outage in California.

But the fringe benefits don’t stop there, and yes, I know what you are thinking. Frankly, I immediately wondered the same thing. If socks with silver in them reacted with my body’s electrical field, imagine what underwear with silver in them would do. Eliminating odor would be a mere fringe benefit compared to walking around with a silly grin on my face all day.

Advertisement

Alas, after several weeks of testing various pieces of antimicrobial clothing (the end of which had my wife threatening to run me through a car wash while lashed to the front of her CRV), I felt no electrical lift to either my feet or my nether regions … not even a passing tingle. As for smell, while my undies and socks certainly did not have that fresh-as-a-daisy aroma, they were also surprisingly not malodorous. I know this because I had to sniff my own undergarments (my wife offered no help at all). Being a professional tester of travel gear can be hell.

On the upside, packing along antimicrobial clothing has meant I can now go a few days between washes and less time spent over a sink scrubbing undies and socks. It also means I am able to pack fewer clothes, and in the world of packing and travel, less is always more. Sadly, though, we’re back to me, and I still stink. At least that’s what my wife’s wrinkled nose just indicated while having to sit next to me on the train after 36 hours of travel.

anti-microbial clothing pinterest

Travel Insurance We Use

Global Rescue Ad - travel insurance for when it matters most

Travel Writing Awards

Winners of a silver medal for travel writing excellence.
 NATJA Awards Silver Seal Small

Plus honorable mention for travel writing excellence and for best travel blog.
 NATJA Awards Honorable Mention Small

TRAVEL INSPIRATION

Penguins are always so cute! Here on the back wall of the narrow Richard Gamble Memorial Park, you find this mama and her baby watching you. Step off the N street car from downtown San Francisco in Cole Valley and you are suddenly in a different, neighborly world with great restaurants and coffee houses. Try it some time! And go visit the penquins in the park too. @visitcalifornia @onlyinsf.⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ ⁣ #streetart #streetartphotography #Penguins #urbanwalls #SFstreetart #urbanart #muralsdaily ⁣ #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #ig_masterpiece #flashesofdelight #travelog #urbex #streetshared #aov #weekly_feature #createexploretakeover #shotzdelight #mkexplore #gearednomad #california #streetsofsf #igerssf #onlyinsf #sonyimages #sonyalpha #sonyalphasclub #thecreative #travelon ...

0 0

Ready for Christmas? We are! Among our favorite Christmas Markets in Berlin is this one surrounding the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, with a nifty over-sized wood "pyramid." Another is the Red City Hall ("Rotes Rathaus") market near Alexanderplatz. There's a flyover by Santa a few times a night (sssh, his sled is on a wire), an ice skating rink, German comedians doing ice shows, as well as all the food and hot mulled wine you desire. Of course, hot mulled wine is standard fare at all markets. Traditional, normal-sized pyramids are made of wood and the heat from candles turn them, usually with a few little wooden figurines moving in a dance and maybe a few bells tinkling too. To learn which the are the best Christmas markets in Berlin, be sure to check out our story here - http://bit.ly/berlinchristmasmarkets @visit_berlin .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ #instapassport #thecreative #artofvisuals #aroundtheworldpix #ig_masterpiece #theprettycities #flashesofdelight #travelog #mytinyatlas #visualmobs #theglobewanderer #forahappymoment #exploringtheglobe #travelon #awesome_earthpix #ig_deutschland #diestadtberlin #berlinstagram #berlinstyle #ig_berlin #christmas #christmasdecorations #merrychristmas #christmastime #christmaslights #festive #christmasart #winter #visit_berlin #berlinpage ...

0 0

Passing in the night. The Bab Homar medina gate in Asilah Morocco is a busy place all day long since it offers pretty central access from markets to the old town. It's also a tourist magnet with its impressive structure. Oh, and cats love lingering on the steps too. Read more about Asilah in our story here: http://bit.ly/visit-asilah @loves_morocco @opendoorsmorocco.⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ #HITravelTales #Longexposure #Nightphotography #travelphotos #moroccan #tanger #marocaine #maroc #morocco #chefchaouen #asilah #Atlantic #longexpo # #travelpics #beachtown # #ic_longexpo #Medinagate #BabHomar #mohammedia #loves_Morocco #moroccotravel #travelmorocco #moroccotrip #sonyimages #sonyalpha #sonyalphasclub #longexpoelite #traveldiary #travelphoto ...

0 0

Hey! Get your phone outta my food! When the meal is so appealing, everybody has to get a pic for their personal IG page it seems. Here in Morocco we had chicken tagine and lentils and salads and so much good stuff everyone at the table started taking pictures rather than eating. Now put down the phones and let us eat please? @opendoorsmorocco @loves_Morocco .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ #instapassport #aroundtheworldpix #ig_masterpiece #flashesofdelight #travelog #mytinyatlas #liveauthentic #foodbeast #eeeeeats #eatfamous #feedfeed #dailyfoodfeed #onthetable #lifeandthyme #f52grams #tastingtable #loves_Morocco #moroccotravel #travelmorocco #moroccotrip #visitmorocco #iphoneography #iphoneonly #iphonesia #iphoneography #theglobewanderer #forahappymoment #tablesituation #tasteintravel ...

0 0

30 years ago, the week that was. Therese worked at the San Jose Mercury News as a reporter when the Loma Prieta Earthquake struck. Turned into several days of sleepless work for the news team -- and a Pulitzer Prize for the team too. The paper made up this poster and the entire team received one as a souvenir, and it still hangs on our HI Travel Tales office wall. @visitcalifornia @mercnews ⁣ •⁣ •⁣ •⁣ •⁣ •⁣ #newspaper #sanjose #earthquake #history #news #dtsj #culture #media ⁣ #siliconvalley #historical #historia #santaclara #historic #hayward ⁣ #downtownsanjose #SanJoseCA ...

0 0

Affiliate Advertising Disclaimer

Posts and pages on our website contain references to products and services from our affiliate advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links and/or purchase products from one of our affiliate advertisers. Purchasing from our affiliate network does not cost you any more than going direct and, helps keep the lights on in our office, for which we are eternally grateful. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Body odor is a rather personal subject, so while it is not my intention to offend, consider this a warning up front – I stink. You see, when my sweat meter is pumping, or if I am several days between showers and laundry facilities when traveling, my stink factor soars. Even my wife has been known to experience wooziness when approaching within several feet of me after a hard workout. So, naturally, I was both thrilled and slightly apprehensive at the prospect of testing antimicrobial clothing that claims to magically nuke offensive smells through a variety of processes: silver impregnation, free oxygen, and chemical concoctions.

I was thrilled because now, theoretically, I would be able to go weeks between clothes washing without triggering adverse olfactory responses from fellow travelers and friends. Not having to hover over a hotel or B&B sink washing my shirt, pants and undies every night would be divine! The downside to this miracle, and hence my trepidation, was that if my clothing no longer stunk, yet there was still a foul odor in the air, all fingers would point directly at me.

Still, I have to admit the thought of outfitting myself in a complete travel wardrobe of non-stink clothing was attractive. So, in the interest of product testing, I shopped. As I pawed through the travel catalogs, I discovered I could essentially outfit myself from head to toe in anti-microbial socks, undies, T-shirts, pants and more. I discovered a number of companies even manufactured sport bras with antimicrobial finishes, though I declined to mention this to my wife for the same reasons a husband knows to keep his mouth shut concerning matters of weight gain or age.

My testing began with the arrival of a travel shirt made from a fabric impregnated with zeolites. Not to be confused with any one of a number of historic religious cultures you may have read about in travel literature and history books, of course. Zeolites are microscopic mineral structures that release free oxygen, which is the arch-enemy of all bacteria that cause foul odor. Although wearing a garment that would, essentially, become a microbial battleground had me feeling a tad nervous, I toed the line and bravely began to travel and, of course, sweat. Then I did the unthinkable: Yes, after a multi-day trip with plenty of sweating toward the end, I tossed my still-damp shirt into the hamper and closed the lid!

Two days later I returned to the hamper and opened the lid. I was expecting to encounter a smell that would remind me of the four-hour stint I spent enjoying solitary confinement in a high-school quarterback’s locker (I probably did something to deserve that). However, instead of a nasty, odiferous crumpled rag, I was greeted with an odor-free shirt that I could wear again without washing. Even my wife was impressed, though she reminded me that I, on the other hand, could use a shower.

Round two of my tests began with the arrival of select silver-impregnated garments. Upon unpacking the boxes, I could see that just wearing the socks held great promise. After all, the accompanying literature proclaimed that silver would not only eliminate foot odor, it would also rejuvenate tired feet. How? Apparently, silver reacts with the body’s natural electrical field, offering, the literature boasted, benefits similar to acupuncture. Even more thrilling to me, though, was the discovery my body generated an electrical field which, I imagine, will come in very handy during the next power outage in California.

But the fringe benefits don’t stop there, and yes, I know what you are thinking. Frankly, I immediately wondered the same thing. If socks with silver in them reacted with my body’s electrical field, imagine what underwear with silver in them would do. Eliminating odor would be a mere fringe benefit compared to walking around with a silly grin on my face all day.

Alas, after several weeks of testing various pieces of antimicrobial clothing (the end of which had my wife threatening to run me through a car wash while lashed to the front of her CRV), I felt no electrical lift to either my feet or my nether regions … not even a passing tingle. As for smell, while my undies and socks certainly did not have that fresh-as-a-daisy aroma, they were also surprisingly not malodorous. I know this because I had to sniff my own undergarments (my wife offered no help at all). Being a professional tester of travel gear can be hell.

On the upside, packing along antimicrobial clothing has meant I can now go a few days between washes and less time spent over a sink scrubbing undies and socks. It also means I am able to pack fewer clothes, and in the world of packing and travel, less is always more. Sadly, though, we’re back to me, and I still stink. At least that’s what my wife’s wrinkled nose just indicated while having to sit next to me on the train after 36 hours of travel.

anti-microbial clothing pinterest

Affiliate Advertising Disclaimer

Posts and pages on our website contain references to products and services from our affiliate advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links and/or purchase products from one of our affiliate advertisers. Purchasing from our affiliate network does not cost you any more than going direct and, helps keep the lights on in our office, for which we are eternally grateful. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Follow Me

Michael Hodgson

Co-Conspirator at HI Travel Tales
Winner of a 2018 Silver Medal from the North American Travel Journalists Association for travel writing excellence, Michael has authored more than 16 books and penned many hundreds of feature articles over the years. His bylines have appeared in Backpacker, Men's Journal, Men's Health, Outside, The San Jose Mercury News, Portland Oregonian and more. His travels have taken him to all seven continents. He is a member in good standing of the North American Travel Journalists Association and the Professional Travel Bloggers Association.
Follow Me