How To Clean Your Boxing Gloves

Petchmorakot Petchyindee Academy in his fight stance at the gym in Thailand

Keeping your boxing gloves clean will not only extend the life of those gloves, but it will also make you a more favorable sparring partner. After all, nobody wants to get clobbered in the face with sweat-soaked padding that smells like a wet dog.

Moreover, you don’t want to be the person at the gym with musky gloves doused in a few splashes of cologne. There are, in fact, better ways to keep your gloves smelling fresh.

With that said, here’s how to clean your boxing gloves so they remain clean and odor-free.

Use Odor Absorbers

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You may have heard of people using essential oils to clean their gloves, but these oils only mask odors. Instead, use odor absorbers to keep your gloves clean.

You can find a few products online that are made for boxing gloves – or even use the absorbers made for sneakers – but baking soda, charcoal packs, or cedar chips will do the job.

Pour the baking soda, charcoal packs, or cedar chips into a pair of long socks, and then tie the ends of the socks so nothing spills out. Place one sock in each boxing glove when you’re not using them.

For maximum affect, change the contents of the socks every month.

Put Your Boxing Gloves In A Well-Lit Area

Eduard Folayang spars with a teammate

Another way to ensure that your gloves stay fresh is to keep them out of your dark and dank gym bag. With your sweat-soaked gloves in your bag, bacteria is almost guaranteed to breed.

So, when you’re not traveling to and from the gym, put your boxing gloves in a well-lit area.

If you’ve ever taken a training vacation in Thailand, you may have noticed that trainers lay all their Muay Thai equipment in the scorching afternoon sun a few times per week. This helps kill bacteria that causes bad smells in the gloves.

Clean Boxing Gloves Regularly

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We’re not talking about running your gloves through the washing machine. In that case, they’d become so wet that they would start to stink way worse than before.

Instead, we mean wiping your gloves down after every training session to keep them fresh and odorless.

You can keep a pack of baby wipes or alcohol wipes in your gym bag as part of your must-have training gear, and use them to rub down the inside and outside of your gloves after training.

This cleaning won’t penetrate deep inside your gloves, but it’ll help clean the surface before bacteria makes its way to the padding.

Keep Boxing Gloves Dry

Rodtang Jitmuangnon fights Tagir Khalilov at ONE: FISTS OF FURY

Just like darkness can make your gloves smell musty, moisture can make your gloves smell bad.

After training, don’t stick them into a plastic bag. Rather, hang up your gloves to dry. If it’s the winter, leave your gloves near the radiator or hot-air vent until they’re dry. In the summer, put them out in the sun.

Since keeping your gloves dry will help reduce odors, you don’t want to freeze your gloves. It may help kill some bacteria, but others will remain dormant until you thaw them out – and any left-behind moisture that was frozen in the padding will still be there.

Read more: Mastering The Muay Thai Stance For Beginners

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