How to De-Stink Your Gi Using Baking Soda

deodorize gi cover

Gi’s, also known as kimono’s, are clothes most martial artists wear when training. They are used in many types of combat training like Judo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Karate, to name a few. They’re made to be tough enough to withstand frequent tugging and pulling.

If you’ve been practicing karate or jiu-jitsu for a time, you’re familiar with the stinking, sweaty sensation that follows a workout. If you don’t wash your gis right away, it can have a terrible odor that seems to persist even after a wash. Just to be clear, you should wash gis immediately after every training!

I’ve been washing and deodorizing my gis with laundry detergent for a long time, but I’ve never been happy with the results. I’ve even tried different brands and scents, but it just won’t smell the way I want it to.

So I did a little research, and I came across a method to wash gis in a magazine and decided to try it out. It works wonders and leaves my gi smelling fresh for longer than only using detergent when washing.

All you need to do is add baking soda to your wash load and let it soak for at least an hour before turning the washer on. The baking soda will neutralize the odor of your gi and will kill most bacteria that cause stinkiness.

In this article, I’ll show you step-by-step how to de-stink your gi with baking soda.

Let’s start.

What You’ll Need:

Baking Soda

Laundry detergent

Washing machine

Optional: Laundry basin

deodorize gi what you need


1. Fill your washing machine halfway with water and add 1/2-1 cup of baking soda to the mix. 

pour baking soda in washer

2. Turn your gi and gi pants inside out.

turn gi inside out

3. Let the gi soak in the baking soda and water solution for at least 1 hour. 

soak gi

4. Put detergent in the washer and turn it on gentle setting. Launder like usual.

5. Hang-dry the gi afterward. Avoid direct sunlight.

air dry gi

Tip: You can soak your gi in a laundry basin before throwing it in the washer if you prefer.

5 Gi Care Tips

  1. Use cold water to wash your gis. 
  2. Separate white gis from colored gis when washing.
  3. Use gentle wash setting on your washing machine.
  4. Don’t use bleach or detergent with bleach, and avoid using fabric softeners.
  5. Line or hang dry your BJJ kimono to extend its life and reduce shrinkage but do not hang it under direct sunlight. If you must use the dryer, use the lowest heat setting or just use the spin dryer on the low setting. Using high heat to dry your gi can shrink and weaken the fabric.

Should I Wash My Gi Belt?

Absolutely. Dirty belts are breeding grounds for germs. 

Some bacteria like staph can survive for up to a month on dirty clothing.

So, please wash your stinky belts.

How About Washing Gis with Vinegar?

You can also use vinegar in place of baking soda. Vinegar is also a natural deodorizer. Just use 1 cup of vinegar instead of baking soda.

Should you use baking soda and vinegar together?

No. Baking soda and vinegar will neutralize each other. So pick one and use that to soak and wash your gi.


There you go. That’s how you use baking soda to deodorize your gi. Simple, easy, cheap, and best of all, it works!

Are you looking for more ways to use baking soda around the house? See my article on how to remove stains from your walls with baking soda.

Thanks for reading! Osu!

-Baking Soda Guy