How to Strip Wash Your Jiu-Jitsu Gi and Get Rid of the Stink
If you practice jiu-jitsu, you know how important it is to keep your gi clean and fresh. A gi is the uniform that you wear when you roll on the mats with your training partners. It’s made of thick cotton fabric that absorbs sweat, dirt, bacteria, and sometimes blood. A gi that is not properly washed can develop a nasty odor that can make you and your teammates uncomfortable.
But sometimes, even a regular wash routine is not enough to get rid of the stink. That’s when you need to strip wash your gi. Strip washing is a method that removes the buildup of minerals and bacteria that cause odor and discoloration. It’s a bit more aggressive than a normal wash, so you don’t want to do it too often. But it can be very effective in restoring your gi to its original glory.
In this blog post, I’m going to show you how to strip wash your gi in four easy steps. I learned this technique when I used cloth diapers for my baby, and it works wonders for gis too. All you need are some basic household items and a few hours of your time. Let’s get started!
Step 1: Fill a tub with hot water
The first thing you need to do is fill a large tub or basin with hot water. The water should be as hot as you can handle without burning yourself. You can use your bathtub, a laundry sink, or a plastic container. Make sure the tub is big enough to fit your gi and have some room for stirring.
Step 2: Add the cleaning agents and surfactants
The next thing you need to do is add some cleaning agents and surfactants to the water. These are the ingredients that will help break down the minerals and bacteria in your gi. You can use any combination of the following:
- Baking soda: This is a natural deodorizer that neutralizes odors and softens water. Add about half a cup per gallon of water.
- Borax: This is a mineral salt that boosts cleaning power and removes stains. Add about a quarter cup per gallon of water.
- Washing soda: This is a chemical compound that dissolves grease and dirt and raises the pH of water. Add about a quarter cup per gallon of water.
- Calgon: This is a water softener that prevents mineral deposits and improves rinsing. Add about half a cup per gallon of water.
- Blue Dawn dish soap: This is a surfactant that reduces surface tension and lifts dirt and oil from fabrics. Add about one tablespoon per gallon of water.
Stir the water well until everything is dissolved.
Step 3: Soak and stir your gi
Now it’s time to soak your gi in the solution. Submerge your gi completely in the water and make sure it’s fully saturated. You may need to weigh it down with something heavy to keep it from floating.
Let your gi soak for about four to six hours, stirring it every 30 minutes or so. You will notice that the water will start to change color as the dirt and minerals are released from your gi. Don’t be alarmed by how dirty the water looks – that means it’s working!
Step 4: Rinse and dry your gi
After soaking your gi for several hours, it’s time to rinse and dry it. Drain the dirty water from the tub and rinse your gi thoroughly with clean water until no suds or residue remain. You can also run it through a rinse cycle in your washing machine if you prefer.
Then, hang your gi to dry in a well-ventilated area or tumble dry it on low heat if the label allows. Avoid using fabric softeners or dryer sheets as they can leave residues that can trap odors.
And voila! You have successfully strip washed your gi and made it smell fresh again. Enjoy rolling on the mats with confidence and pride!
Bonus: How to Strip Wash Other Workout Clothes
You may be wondering if you can use this method for other workout clothes that tend to hold on to sweat and odor. The answer is yes, you can! You can strip wash any clothing that is made of natural or synthetic fibers, such as cotton, polyester, nylon, spandex, etc. However, you should avoid strip washing delicate fabrics such as silk, wool, or leather.
You can use the same ingredients and steps as for your gi, but you may want to adjust the amounts depending on how much clothing you have. For example, if you have a small load of clothes, you can use a quarter cup of each cleaning agent instead of a half cup. And if you have a large load of clothes, you may need to use a full cup of each cleaning agent.
You can also strip wash other items that tend to get smelly over time, such as towels, sheets, pillows, rugs, or curtains. Just make sure they are colorfast and durable enough to handle the hot water and the high pH.
One thing to keep in mind is that strip washing is not a substitute for a good wash routine. You should only do it every six months or so, as it can be harsh on your fabrics and cause them to wear out faster. You should also always follow up with a normal wash cycle after strip washing to remove any residues and restore the pH balance of your fabrics.
Strip washing is a great way to refresh your clothes and get rid of the stink that normal washing can’t. It’s also easy and cheap to do with items that you probably already have at home. So give it a try and see the difference for yourself!
I hope this blog post was helpful for you. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below. And if you liked this post, please share it with your jiu-jitsu friends who might benefit from it too.
Watch the Process Here: