Do you remember leisure suits and double knit polyester pants? Todays hiking clothes for next to skin wear are normally polyester.
Polyester for hiking took over from polypropylene . The British Army used polypro base layers on Her Majesty’s forces in the Falkland War. Since it was a plastic, it melted often compounding the soldiers’ injuries.
Polypro did not fall out of favor with hikers due to melting. It was, to use the British colloquialism, the PONG factor. Polypro was The Pro at retaining body odors. It seems that after a while they could not be laundered fresh as a mountain breeze. They’d stink soon as you put them on.
So polyester, still a form of plastic as it happens, took over. Polyester does not retain odors nearly as badly. But, make no mistake, after many wearings during sweaty hikes, it to will lose it’s ability to come clean and fresh smelling
There are, of course, quite expensive athletic wash products with enzymes and such to combat this olfactory scourge on our sensibilities. I spent an inordinate amount of time on internet research and it was learned the common man or woman’s polyester anti-pong recommended stategey to be:
Wash early and often, in the hottest water the care label allows. SHOUT and other pretreatments are generally okay and can be rubbed in with the fingertips, but don’t allow pretreatments to stay on the garment longer than five minutes, according to the instructions on the container, or unspecified disaster with result.
We’ve tried various techniques to get rid of the stink including soaking in a bleach solution. Once over the line, it’s hard to retrieve. My favorite strategy is to buy cheap poly garments to begin with. No $40 shirts for me. When they stink irrevocably, replace them with new, cheap hiking clothes. Sooo, my blue shirt got to stinky and now I have a new red one--$5 at Marshell's.
|Looks great with my orange hat, don't ya think?|