How To Get Garlic Smell off Hands?


Reading Time: 5 minutes

Adding flavor to your dishes is no challenge – simply sauté some garlic or onion and you’ll be well on your way! With practice comes proficiency when it comes to cutting, mincing, and slicing. Nonetheless, the aroma of raw garlic can linger on your hands even after all that hard work in the kitchen. Luckily there are solutions available so that you can savor creating scrumptious meals without any odorous aftermath!

It’s an unmistakably strong smell that sticks with you for hours. Even after washing your hands with soap and water, the pungent scent of garlic remains stubbornly in place.

Why? Well, it contains various sulfur compounds that get released when you slice and chop garlic. While these compounds contribute to the great flavor garlic infuses in foods and yield health benefits, they hang around the skin. The smell goes away after the skin metabolizes the compounds.

The garlic aroma may dissipate on its own after up to 48 hours, but if you’re looking for a speedy solution, below are some great tips that’ll help get rid of the smell quickly.

Masking Garlic Smell

1. Rub Your Hands on Stainless Steel Utensil

This method is highly recommended. First, turn on the tap with the cold water running and get a stainless steel spoon (any stainless steel equipment will work). Rub the spoon thoroughly under the cold running water on your palm and fingers. Continue vigorously rubbing for 60-120 seconds before checking if the smell is gone. If not all of it is gone, you should spend some extra minutes rubbing the steel spoon on your hands.

Not in possession of stainless steel utensils? No problem! You can still take advantage of the magical odor-eliminating power that stainless steel offers by rubbing your hands against a faucet or sink. Or, if you’re feeling extra fancy, invest in some stainless steel soap and work it under cold water. But why does this material effectively remove garlic smells?

The sulfur molecules released when cutting, chopping, or mincing garlic cloves on your hand bind to the stainless steel, ridding you of the intense garlic smell.

2. Squeeze Lemon on Your Hands

When life gives you lemons, use them to mask the garlic scent on your hands. But before you do, make sure you don’t have preexisting cuts on your hands since the citric acid in the lemon juice will sting.

To cleanse your hands from sulfur compounds, take a lemon and cut it in half. Extract the juice into your palm, then thoroughly massage every part of your hands with it – including under the nails and between fingers. Not only will this method neutralize unwanted odors on your skin, but also leave you with a pleasant scent! Although combining salt and citrus can be effective as well, bear in mind that such mixture may irritate those who have sensitive skin during winter months.

3. Use Coffee Beans

Are you an avid coffee-lover? If so, we have good news for you! To reap the exfoliating benefits of coffee and experience soft skin that smells delicious without garlic odor – just scoop a spoonful of ground or several whole beans into your hands. Gently massage them over all areas in need before rinsing off with water if using grounds. Enjoy softer, fragrant skin right away!

4. Rub Toothpaste

Do you want a speedy and simple way to get rid of the garlic odor from your hands? All you need is some toothpaste – spearmint or mint for best results – then put in a pea-sized amount on each palm. Rub them together for around one minute before cleaning with lots of soap and water. If it’s not your thing to reek like toothpaste, try utilizing mouth wash instead!

5. Baking Soda

If you want to say goodbye to the pesky garlic odor on your hands, then here’s a simple solution for you! Mix together 5 grams of salt and 10 grams of baking soda with 1 tablespoon of water in a small bowl until it forms into an effective paste. Gently massage the mixture onto your palms before washing it off with cool water for maximum effectiveness.

Note: you shouldn’t use this method to remove the garlic smell from your hands if your skin is sore or you dry your hands, as the mixture will sting.

6. Spray Cologne or Perfume on Your Hands

Although using cologne or perfume to mask the garlic smell isn’t always practical, it is effective for those who need a quick fix. First, spray the back of your hand with cologne or perfume and rub it onto the back of the other hand. Afterward, rub your hands together and spread the fragrance to your fingers and palm.

Do not use this method if you aren’t done handling or preparing food.

7. Vinegar

It has a strong smell, like garlic. But if you don’t mind the smell of vinegar, it’s an effective method. The garlic smell should dissipate if you dab vinegar onto your hands using paper towels.

8. Salt

Absolutely, salt can be the perfect remedy for garlic-scented hands! As a natural deodorizer, it is ideal in removing potent odors like garlic. This is because salt has an absorbent quality that neutralizes sulfur compounds created when chopping or mincing this ingredient, thus eliminating any lingering scent from your skin.

How to Avoid the Smell

The easiest way to prevent a garlic smell on your hands is not to touch garlic with your bare hands. Below are some ways you can do this.

1. Wear Gloves

Don’t touch garlic with bare skin. Although gloves might be a nuisance and feel like you have an extra layer of skin when you peel garlic or slice onions, they are great at keeping your hands free of garlic odor. Choose nitrile or thin latex gloves for this, as they’ll allow you to continue prepping for food and cooking with ease.

Alternatively, you can use disposable food-grade gloves available at department stores, supermarkets, and food stores.

Don’t use thick gloves as they can make garlic handling a pain

2. Crush Garlic With A Garlic Press

To avoid touch garlic cloves, you can use a garlic press. A garlic press is good for mincing or crushing garlic and can be bought from any grocery store.

Though it’s a good tool to use to avoid getting a garlic smell on your hands, bear in mind that it might spend most of its time in storage.

Also, instead of a garlic press, you can use a food processor.

3. Shake the Garlic Bulb in A Jar

Peeling garlic is one of the steps that gets garlic odor under your fingernails. You can avoid this step by getting creative ways to peel garlic cloves. A great way is to put the bulb in a glass jar, close it tightly and shake the cloves for 3 minutes. After all the cloves are peeled, pour the cloves into a bowl and use a fork to remove individual cloves.

When you first start shaking the jar, the bulb will separate into individual cloves, and then the thin papery skin on the cloves will start to peel off.

4. Oil

Rubbing oil on your hands before handling raw garlic helps prevents sulfur compounds responsible for the garlic smell from sticking to your skin. After cutting garlic, you should wash your hands with water and soap.


And there you have it, specific methods you can use to get rid of the garlic smell on your hands. Choose any that fits your style.





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