Nothing is worse than seeing the white of your gi slowly turn to grey. Or have it gone all at once. Either way, in case you were wondering if there’s a way to prevent this from happening – the answer is yes. We have carefully selected the best tips and tricks for you to maintain a crispy white gi. And don’t worry if you think your gi is too far gone: these tips also work for getting it back on track!

1. Pre-soak with vinegar

One of the secrets to maintaing a white gi, is not the wash itself. It’s the pre-soak. Go ahead and soak your gi in a tub of warm water. Add to this a cup of traditional white vinegar (you can find this at the supermarket) and let it sit for a few hours or overnight.

Vinegar also does a great job of removing nasty smells from your gear, so feel free to add your rashguard, spats and sports underwear to the pre-soak as you go. Don’t worry about the scent of vinegar – this won’t linger in your gi.

2. Baking soda is your best friend

Baking soda is another star at locking in the white of your fabric, without being too harsh of a substance. Another plus: it is cheap. That being said, put your pre-soaked gi in the laundry machine. Add a few spoons of baking soda to your laundry detergent and you’re done.

3. Lemony fresh

Another easy and all-natural option: lemon juice. You can add 1/2 cup of lemon juice to either the overnight-soak or the actual wash cycle.

4. Give hydrogen peroxide a go

Don’t get too scared by the name, your dentist gives you the same goody to rinse your mouth with! Raid the medicine cabinet for hydrogen peroxide, or find it at your local pharmacy or drugstore. Add 1/2 cup to your laundry and be amazed by the results.

5. Say no to chlorine-based bleach

Talking about chemicals, this is one to stay away from. Chlorine-based bleach might do a great job of whitening, but it’s a harsh chemical. Using it regularly will destroy the fibers of your gi and most likely will decrease its lifespan.

6. Bring in the big guns

In case you still need a little extra help, but don’t want to use chlorine-based bleach, try an oxygen based bleach. They are often sold as stain-removers, but their powers extend to bleaching your entire laundry as well. For the full effect, make sure to follow the instructions on the package.

7. Ditch the fabric softener

Perhaps you didn’t know, but fabric softener is doing your gi more harm than good. In the process of washing, fabric softener causes a residue to stick onto the fibers, causing dirt to attach. This can make your gi less white. If you still want to have your gi smelling fresh, try adding a few drops of essential oils for that extra touch.

8. Face the sun

Ever notice your hair being more light in summer? That’s right, the sun does that for you! Hang up your washed gi in the sun and watch the subtle bleach effect. Note: your coloured gi might lose its colour, so let that one dry inside.

Have a go and try it out for yourself! 




Rose is a black belt at Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy Amsterdam (Checkmat). Besides being one of the co-founders of Ladies Only BJJ, she is a junior doctor MD and holds a MsC degree in Sports Sciences.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *