Odor-control additives block or prevent the growth of odor-causing microbes.
When we sweat, body oils and dirt create an ideal growth environment for odor-causing bacteria. Although sweat is odorless, these microbes can convert it into something quite smelly. Textiles with odor-control additives inhibit the growth of odor-causing microbes in your gear to prevent perma-stink.
However, odor-control additives aren’t only about smelling sweet. Although the most energy-intensive part of a garment’s life cycle is production, laundering is the second most impactful, so reducing the number of washes saves water and energy. Anti-odor treatment keeps your garment smelling fresh and prevents the buildup of persistent odors, which allows you to increase the number of wears between washes and to extend the overall lifetime of the garment.
While odor-control additives help prolong the life of clothing—and extending a garment’s life by about two years cuts its combined carbon, waste and water footprint by 82%—the technology still has a low environmental impact that we are actively working to reduce.
Where We Are
Patagonia currently uses the HeiQ® Pure odor-control additive on select styles (e.g., baselayers and other next-to-skin applications). HeiQ Pure is a silver-salt-based odor-control additive. While some silver-containing technologies can have adverse environmental impacts, we chose this technology because it is able to provide good performance with minimal environmental impact.
We are always evaluating and field-testing new anti-odor technologies to find the best-performing treatment, with the lowest environmental impact, that can still keep your shirt smelling fresher for longer.