Help! Skunk sprayed me in the garden! How to get rid of skunk smell from your clothes and home?

by Snezhana Besarabova

Skunk is famous for its extremely unpleasant and strong odor, with which it sprays when it’s in danger. Imagine your children playing outside, when suddenly the dog begins to bark because of a skunk crossing your garden, and spraying your little one with that awful liquid! Now your child is running and crying in the house, spreading the unbearable odor everywhere! Of course, there is no danger healthwise, but the problem is, you will not be able to remove the smell from the skunk spray for at least a month! Fortunately, a solution can be found for this rather complicated situation. Once you get to know the proper cleaning approach, it’ll be possible to neutralize the unwanted odor. Now we are going to tell you how to get rid of skunk smell from your body, clothes and home for just a day!

Why the skunk causes such a problem with its smell?

how to get rid of skunk smell when it enters the garden

The skunk is an animal with the size of a cat, that lives in Central and Southern America. When it feels scared, the skunk protects itself by spraying a liquid with a strong stench. If not cleaned immediately from your garden or home, its smell will linger for weeks on your clothes and furniture! The smell can even transfer onto your skin! The odor is an oily substance and it could be hard to removed it. Nevertheless, it can be neutralized with some detergent and other common home chemicals.

Approaches how to get rid of skunk smell on clothes

how to get rid of skunk smell from clothes with vinegar


The best substance that helps with the skunk odor is hydrogen peroxide. Since it’s a strong chemical, before its application to clothes and other fabrics, it should be diluted. But hydrogen peroxide water solution can’t be used for the clothes and materials alone. That’s why, a special combination of chemicals with a little amount of hydrogen peroxide has been invented. Here is the cleaning solution you need to get rid of skunk smell on clothes:

The cleaning solution:

  • 25 cups (6 L) water
  • 4 cups (1 L) hydrogen peroxide, 3% solution
  • 8 cups (2 L) distilled white vinegar
  • 0.5 cup (120 g) baking soda
  • 0.5 cup (120 ml) laundry detergent


  1. Mix the ingredients of the solution in a big bucket.
  2. Soak the clothes and fabrics for an hour.
  3. Use gloves to mix well the solution with the clothing inside, and make sure to spread it evenly.
  4. Wash the clothing again in a washing machine with laundry detergent and 0.5 cup of baking soda.
  5. Hang the clothes and the other fabrics outside to dry (using a dryer is not recommended).

Delicate fabric treatment: how to get rid of skunk smell

how to get rid of skunk smell from clothers with water with vinegar

When you have delicate dry-clean clothing, use vinegar instead of hydrogen peroxide, which is not so harsh, in the cleaning solution. The next approach we write about will answer the question that people often ask: “Does vinegar get rid of skunk smell?” Yes, it is probably the best substance when talking about how to get rid of skunk smell on clothes, which are delicate. Pour 4 cups (1 L) vinegar into 16 cups (4 L) water. Let the clothing soak for 3 hours. After that, rinse them in cold water and hang outside to dry. Leave them there until the unpleasant smell disappears.

Read also: Some superb methods of cleaning dirty grout on the floor tiles that really work!

How to get rid of skunk smell in house

how to get rid of skunk smell from home with hydrogen peroxide

If you already had encountered the animal with the awful stench, and your house smells like a skunk, take the following steps:

  1. Place a bowl with vinegar around the house. Take care to place them in the room corners and near the furniture that smells. It will take a few days for the vinegar to absorb the odors.
  2. Scrub all the tiles at home with chlorine bleach solution (follow the instructions on the container).
  3. Clean the wood surfaces with an ammonia solution (1 cups – 240 ml ammonia plus 4 cups – 1 L water). Use a rag or a sponge to scrub the wooden furniture, and, of course, gloves!
  4. Use a steam-cleaner to clean the carpets and the fabric curtains. You should buy or hire a steam-cleaning service.
  5. Open all the windows and use an air purifier.
  6. Buy a skunk repellent for your garden. This will stop the skunk from entering.

How to get rid of skunk smell in car?

how to get rid of skunk smell with a cloth or towel and vinegar

You may find yourself in a situation, when entering your garage, a scared skunk runs out spraying the car while running away. And on your way back home, you discover that the skunk’s stink has got inside the car. If this happens, follow the next steps:

  1. Mix 4 cups (1 L) vinegar with 4 cups (1 L) water, and a teaspoon of detergent.
  2. Spray the solution on interior car surfaces and scrub. Use brush, sponge and rags for the purpose.
  3. Wipe off the inner car surfaces with water. Use a cloth.
  4. Wipe off the exterior car surfaces, including the tires.
  5. Rinse the car exterior with a hose.
  6. Clean the upholstery with water and Murphy’s oil soap. Spray onto a cloth and dab the seats.
  7. Clean the fabric seats and the carpet, spraying with water and vinegar (1 part water + 1 part vinegar).
  8. After spraying the seats, let the solution sit for 3–4 minutes, and dab with a dry cloth.

how to get rid of skunk smell from home open the windows

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