“Mildew” is a word some use to refer to the early stages of mold. “Wet towel smell” is a common indicator of mildew, but never fear — it’s very common and very, very easy to get rid of.
Mold is both pH-sensitive and heat-sensitive. According to Ohio State University, most molds cannot survive above 140°F/60°C. Some websites report that application of typical 5% white vinegar kills 82% of mold species. The acid of vinegar’s pH purportedly disfigures the proteins in the mold’s biology, which leads to the death of the organism.
Therefore, the easiest way to eliminate the source of the smell is to target both vulnerabilities by using both heat and pH.
Brambleroots deodorizing recipe:
- Heat vinegar up to the hottest temperature you can safely stand (greater than 120°F/60°C is the target range, but do not force yourself to use this temperature if it’s too hot).
- Then soak your hair in it for 30 minutes (no baking soda). The musty smell goes away instantly, and it also does an excellent job of removing buildup, as well.
- Rinse with cold water to prevent your hair from feeling excessively dry.
Try not to use this recipe more than needed because it can be very drying for some individuals.