Vodka: Is There Anything It Can’t Do?

My absolute favorite shirt is, to put it lightly, delicate. It’s paper-thin silk, hand painted leopard print, with tiny glass buttons. Sometimes I feel like a particularly strong wind could rip a hole through it. “Dry clean only” is not a suggestion—it’s a command.

But what is it with that dry cleaning smell? When my shirt comes back, it brings with it a weird, salty, chemical odor that lingers for days. I couldn’t figure out what to do to get rid of it, so, duh, I Googled “how to get weird dry cleaning smell out of silk.”

The answer was in my freezer. One part vodka, one part water, mixed in a spray bottle: give the item a little spritz, let it hang, and voila! The vodka is a natural deodorizer and neutralizes all those weird chemical smells.

Now go put on your favourite shirt and make yourself a vodka soda.

text by Haley Mlotek
photography by Katie Merchant

8 thoughts on “Vodka: Is There Anything It Can’t Do?

  1. Thanks for the tip, that’s really interesting! I bet that mix could also be used for sweat smell since vodka is strong enough to kill bacteria? Might have to give it a try (and make myself a drink while doing so).

  2. People who work with costumes in theatres (like me) have been doing this for ages! It’s not quite as powerful as dry cleaning for things that are really sweaty, but it can cut down on how often you need to take something to the cleaners for sure! And somehow the clothes don’t smell like vodka when they dry.

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