Most people are now familiar with the risks of secondhand smoke exposure (being around someone smoking cigarettes).
But an often overlooked and potentially more dangerous risk is thirdhand smoke exposure.
Thirdhand smoke is the combination of smoke particles, chemicals, and toxins that linger in the air and on surfaces long after a cigarette has been extinguished. You know the distinctive smell of cigarettes on clothes, furniture, and cars.
Thirdhand smoke creates a longer span of exposure to harmful toxins and introduces dangerous pathways of exposure, such as through skin contact and hand-to-face transfer. Even if a child was not in the room when the cigarette was smoked, they could be exposed to this carcinogenic (cancer-causing) residue hours or days later.
Removing the Cigarette Smell From Your Skin and Hair
If you are a smoker, the best way to eliminate the unattractive smell that radiates from your skin and hair is to quit smoking.
The smell of old cigarettes leaks out of your skin pores through your sweat. Smoking can cause you to sweat even more, negatively impacting your body odor for as long as you continue smoking.
Make sure you thoroughly wash your hands, skin, and hair with soap and water regularly. It may also help to scrub with a washcloth or exfoliating pad to remove any residue that has built up on your skin.
Removing Cigarette Smells From Your Home
If you smoke indoors, the nicotine and other harmful chemicals in cigarette smoke will quickly build up on surfaces and in the fabrics of your furniture. Keeping your windows open and using fans to increase ventilation may help, but the smell will continue to linger until you take a more specific action.
You will need to frequently wash your fabrics and soft materials, including clothing, carpets, curtains, and upholstery.
If you recently stopped smoking and are eager to get rid of the smell, you may need to remove and replace some of your carpets and furniture completely.
Get new air filters for your HVAC system and clean the air ducts. You can also get air purifiers for each room.
It would help if you also consider repainting your walls. Wash the walls with a heavy-duty cleaning solution before repainting, and use a primer specifically designed to block smells.
Cigarette smells will attach to every little dust particle, so you must regularly clean all surfaces, including floors, ceilings, and light fixtures.
Remove Cigarette Smells From Your Car
Cigarette smoke can build up quickly in a small space like a car, and it can be tough to eliminate the smell.
To remove the cigarette smell, start with thoroughly vacuuming the entire interior. You will also need to wash everything you can with a cleaning solution, including the upholstery, carpets, and floor mats.
Again, if you continue to smoke, the rancid smell will accumulate on you and your surroundings. Many resources are available when you are ready to quit.