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How Important is Gear Hygiene to You?

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5 minutes ago, IPv6Freely said:

I wouldn’t expect the guys who think airing out their gear means unzipping their bag would hang out on a forum like this.

Unless they are okay with being “stink shamed”...

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When I was younger and still playing organized minor hockey a few years ago, admittedly I didn't have the best goalie gear hygiene in the world. I just played way too much and didn't care to think about that stuff when it came to my goalie equipment. Stupid, I know. But  since then I have taken more care of my gear off the ice. 

I wash all my base layers, socks, jersey, etc after every skate. Everything that touches my gear should be clean. 

As for the gear itself, I take the big things (pants, skates, gloves, C/A,knee pads) out to dry out in the open.  

I also spray them down with some Febreeze anti-bacterial spray, too. I've heard Febreeze in general isn't the best, so I went with the anti-bacterial version and haven't had any problems so far. Keep in mind though, my gear is all fairly new right now so they already smell pretty decent. So I'm sticking with the febreeze for now, at least in the shorter term. 

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21 minutes ago, creasecollector said:

When I was younger and still playing organized minor hockey a few years ago, admittedly I didn't have the best goalie gear hygiene in the world. I just played way too much and didn't care to think about that stuff when it came to my goalie equipment. Stupid, I know. But  since then I have taken more care of my gear off the ice.

It also helps that you're now responsible for paying for it. ;)

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I should start spraying mine, at least my gloves. The rest doesn't get all that stinky. No worries about the alcohol (using a 50/50 alcohol/water solution) drying out glove palms?

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1 hour ago, coopaloop1234 said:

It also helps that you're now responsible for paying for it. ;)

So true. While I did pay for some things my own when I was in high school, it definitely motivates me to take care of my gear more now that my current setup is payed for myself. Huge factor indeed.

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13 hours ago, IPv6Freely said:

No worries about the alcohol (using a 50/50 alcohol/water solution) drying out glove palms?

I've been using this for method for 4-5 years and haven't had an issue with dry internals. I used to add a little mineral oil because I was paranoid... but I got lazy and stopped adding it a few years ago and everything is fine. My Vaughan gloves are 3+ years old and are still soft inside. I think the key is to not use a too high concentration of alcohol. A good way to check is to spray it on your hands. If it dries them out at all add more water and/or a tiny bit of oil. 

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On 1/15/2018 at 10:38 AM, BadAngle41 said:

Hygiene is very important to me. (Still waiting to read the reply that says hygiene is overrated.) 

Ha! Just you wait... There's always someone with hot takes like, "Please, gear is meant to be worn!!" and "When did hockey players become so sensitive about smelling like sweat and hard work??" :eyeroll:

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3 hours ago, craig said:

I've been using this for method for 4-5 years and haven't had an issue with dry internals. I used to add a little mineral oil because I was paranoid... but I got lazy and stopped adding it a few years ago and everything is fine. My Vaughan gloves are 3+ years old and are still soft inside. I think the key is to not use a too high concentration of alcohol. A good way to check is to spray it on your hands. If it dries them out at all add more water and/or a tiny bit of oil. 

FWIW, I always use 2 parts water, 1 part alcohol. Might be a little less effective, but I've never had to worry about it drying out the palms.

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35 minutes ago, stackem30 said:

Ha! Just you wait... There's always someone with hot takes like, "Please, gear is meant to be worn!!" and "When did hockey players become so sensitive about smelling like sweat and hard work??" :eyeroll:

There’s sweat, and then there’s smelling like a cat litter box, piss, decaying organic matter and puke all mixed together. 

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24 minutes ago, bunnyman666 said:

There’s sweat, and then there’s smelling like a cat litter box, piss, decaying organic matter and puke all mixed together. 

That's called the Division Champions smell.

Speaking of which, I really need to give my gear a soak in the tub...

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1 hour ago, stackem30 said:

FWIW, I always use 2 parts water, 1 part alcohol. Might be a little less effective, but I've never had to worry about it drying out the palms.

Don't forget it all depends on the concentration of the alcohol as well. I've seen it sold in 50%, 70%, 90%... I usually just get the 50% stuff at the dollar store. That way when I get low I can just dump more in and I'm good to go. No measuring. Probably more cost effective to get a higher concentration and dilute though. 

One of the great things about using this solution is that mostly everything (if not everything) evaporates. Not to knock on febreeze and sport spray users. Those products can be effective at keeping gear smelling nice, and some even have anti bacterial properties.... but they also leave a lot of chemicals behind. 

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1 hour ago, bunnyman666 said:

There’s sweat, and then there’s smelling like a cat litter box, piss, decaying organic matter and puke all mixed together. 

Hey man, don't tell me, tell the idiot I just made up and wrote dialogue for...

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I take my gear hygiene very seriously.  I hate smelly slimy gear.   I take many steps to ensure my gear is sanitary.

  • First and foremost, the cleaner you are when you play, the less shit will be transferred to your gear.  I try to shower before my games when there is time and I do not apply deodorant afterwards.  If I can't shower I always at the very least wash my face and hands before I start suiting up.
  • To add to that, the less skin contact with your gear the better.  I wear socks, Under Armor Heat Gear compression pants and long sleeve shirts.  I do not wear any of my street clothes when I play, underwear included.  I also wear sweat bands at my wrists in order to soak up any sweat that may run down my arms, preventing it from getting into my gloves.
  • After games all of my undergarments are washed, jersey included.
  • All gear is unpacked and hung up to dry, including insoles and blade guards removed from skates, and has 2 fans blowing on it and a dehumidifier nearby as well.  I close the door to that room and let everything dry out over night.  The next morning everything is sprayed down with GSBB member HandyAndy's gear destink spray(freshsportsspray@gmail.com).  Its an essential oil mixture that gets mixed with distilled water and it works great.  I used to do the water/alcohol mixture but I find this works better.  I let this stuff air dry.
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I’m with you there. I always get weird looks when I say I shower before games. I feel way less hot during the game, too. Nothing in my hair either to keep hair product from rinsing down my neck from the sweat.

Totally agree that the less skin contact the better. That’s why the only thing that ever acquires a smell at all are my gloves. More skin coverage the cooler you’ll be on the ice too, so there’s that aspect also.

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9 hours ago, SaveByRichter35 said:

I take my gear hygiene very seriously.  I hate smelly slimy gear.   I take many steps to ensure my gear is sanitary.

  • I also wear sweat bands at my wrists in order to soak up any sweat that may run down my arms, preventing it from getting into my gloves.

That's not a bad idea. How well does it work? I always assumed gloves get particularly bad for two main reasons:

-They're cavernous and dark / insides take longer to dry = bacteria heaven.

-A lot of sweat from your arms/underarms streams down and collects in the gloves

Wristbands sound like they would help with the second part. It's either that, or I start standing like this every time the puck isn't in my zone:

DQY-dgdXcAASKxe.thumb.jpg.5a45860ad037faf4bbd50d9beff0f307.jpg

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1 hour ago, stackem30 said:

I also wear sweat bands at my wrists in order to soak up any sweat that may run down my arms, preventing it from getting into my gloves.

I second this. Gloves still get wet but it defiantly makes a huge difference. 

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11 hours ago, SaveByRichter35 said:

I take my gear hygiene very seriously.  I hate smelly slimy gear.   I take many steps to ensure my gear is sanitary.

  • First and foremost, the cleaner you are when you play, the less shit will be transferred to your gear.  I try to shower before my games when there is time and I do not apply deodorant afterwards.  If I can't shower I always at the very least wash my face and hands before I start suiting up.
  • To add to that, the less skin contact with your gear the better.  I wear socks, Under Armor Heat Gear compression pants and long sleeve shirts.  I do not wear any of my street clothes when I play, underwear included.  I also wear sweat bands at my wrists in order to soak up any sweat that may run down my arms, preventing it from getting into my gloves.
  • After games all of my undergarments are washed, jersey included.
  • All gear is unpacked and hung up to dry, including insoles and blade guards removed from skates, and has 2 fans blowing on it and a dehumidifier nearby as well.  I close the door to that room and let everything dry out over night.  The next morning everything is sprayed down with GSBB member HandyAndy's gear destink spray(freshsportsspray@gmail.com).  Its an essential oil mixture that gets mixed with distilled water and it works great.  I used to do the water/alcohol mixture but I find this works better.  I let this stuff air dry.

Love, love, love, Andy's Destink spray.  Not cheap but it really works.

-steve

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What are most of you wearing for your base layers?  Under Armour?  I have UA leggings and a loose gear shirt... but am thinking of moving to a long sleeve shirt after reading more on this thread

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11 hours ago, SaveByRichter35 said:

I also wear sweat bands at my wrists in order to soak up any sweat that may run down my arms, preventing it from getting into my gloves.

Third on this.  The other thing I started doing with my older set was every few months I'll pour a couple pitchers of hot water through my gloves.  Nothing special, just heat on the stove until just before it starts to boil and pour it through.  Clears out some of the crusty bacteria and softens stuff up for a while.  Haven't had to do it with my newer set though.

My post-game hygiene is pretty similar to most, base layer, sweatbands, jersey, socks go into the wash.  I got a drying rack off of ebay/amazon that holds my C/A, Pants and skates.  It's just pvc, but it also has holes drilled in and came with a little fan that plugs into an open end of pvc.  That fan died in like a week though, so I just use it to hang dry.  Gloves stand up with open ends down on a little stool, mask is wiped out and lower snaps undone and hardware wiped off.

I do keep a bottle of anti-bacterial febreeze in the room for periodic sprays, but nothing too heavy.  I also have a mini-dehumidifier for the summer months when humidity gets higher.

Stuff still smells "sweaty" if you stick your face up against it, but it doesn't fill the drying room, and doesn't smell like Dorito's nacho cheese like some of the guys I play with.

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1 hour ago, cwarnar said:

What are most of you wearing for your base layers?  Under Armour?  I have UA leggings and a loose gear shirt... but am thinking of moving to a long sleeve shirt after reading more on this thread

Bauer. The 37.5 fabric is the real deal. It's noticeably cooler. And yes, switching to a long sleeve shirt is a good idea. The more skin covered, the cooler you'll be. 

I know some guys that still wear cotton t-shirts... yuck, I can't even imagine. 

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6 minutes ago, IPv6Freely said:

Bauer. The 37.5 fabric is the real deal. It's noticeably cooler. And yes, switching to a long sleeve shirt is a good idea. The more skin covered, the cooler you'll be. 

I know some guys that still wear cotton t-shirts... yuck, I can't even imagine. 

I didn't know Bauer does a 37.5 shirt... I have their sweat band and love it... Although after a pick up session I have to wring it out... The sham holds a bit more sweat... but I digress 

Edited by cwarnar

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5 minutes ago, cwarnar said:

I didn't know Bauer does a 37.5 shirt... I have their sweat band and love it... Although after a pick up session I have to wring it out... The sham holds a bit more sweat... but I digress 

They've had one for years. Leggings, too. Actually they also have 37.5 socks but I don't like wearing tall socks with my goalie stuff. 

I agree about the sweat band. I started with the sham and it was okay but hated that the sweat would pour down my face when I raised my eyebrows, squishing the sham a bit. Went to Monster kewl bands and loved those but they get kind of gross after a few months mostly because you have to keep them wet. Moved to the Bauer 37.5 sweat bands and they're the best of all worlds. Sweat absorption is better than the Monster, and they are much cooler than sham. 10/10 would recommend :) 

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3 hours ago, cwarnar said:

What are most of you wearing for your base layers?  Under Armour?  I have UA leggings and a loose gear shirt... but am thinking of moving to a long sleeve shirt after reading more on this thread

I bought a seemingly lifetime supply of Hespeler one-piece suits from Tron. Works pretty well and I got mine 10 sets for $30. 

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