The odor control space has gotten more heated each year. Here are three players in the running with smell-proofing technology…

By Aaron H. Bible



Polygiene is a dominant anti-microbial technology that prevents the growth of odor-causing bacteria. Some key outdoor brands using Polygiene technology include Patagonia, La Sportiva, Eddie Bauer, POC, Dissent, Sitka and Athleta.

Bluesign approved and tested to be safe on skin, the brand put forth that Polygiene is only active on the textiles itself and does not interfere with the skin’s natural bacterial flora. The technology is bound and permanently integrated in the fabric, meaning it will not wash out. Therefore, Polygiene technology is guaranteed for the lifetime of the garment. Polygiene treated textiles do not need to be washed as often either, which saves water, energy, time and money. Polygiene is manufactured in the EU and uses extremely low concentrations of silver salt, which, interestingly, is recovered from recycled silver in electronic waste.


Microban International, Ltd. is a global technology and marketing company enhancing consumer, industrial and medical products with branded built-in protection from microbes. The brand is a consumer Trustmark for effective and long lasting antimicrobial product protection. Microban International licenses the Microban name, sells custom-engineered compounds and provides a range of services, including regulatory and marketing support. They have worked closely with outdoor manufacturers for more than 30 years and currently collaborate with iconic brands in the outdoor industry including Merrell, Oakley, Reebok socks, Sof Sole inserts and Teva footwear.


Anticipating the continued growth of the athletic leisure sector in the outdoor category, Microban introduced Scentry, the company’s first odor capture product platform for apparel and footwear, at ORSM. The company said Scentry reduces odor by 99 percent, lasting for more than 50 home launderings. Unlike other odor capture finishes, according to the brand, Scentry’s wash durability is achieved without the use of textile binders that can negatively impact the hand and moisture management properties of a fabric. Scentry expands upon the success Microban enjoyed with its other recent introduction, SilverShield.

microban-illustration-copy“We saw the growing demand from product designers for a cost effective, highly durable, easily applied odor control solution for activewear,” said Richard Chapman, global VP of marketing at Microban. “Scentry is primarily intended for polyester based activewear, which is known to develop an objectionable odor over the course of time. In addition to odor control, Scentry has shown to improve wicking properties of polyester garments, providing an additional benefit to activewear brands and consumers. Scentry can also be used with footwear, providing the same benefits to consumers, significantly reducing smell.”

According to Chapman, Scentry forms a protective barrier on fabrics that attracts and traps odor, preventing apparel from giving off an offensive smell during wear and in-between washing. During laundering, Scentry releases trapped odors allowing them to be rinsed clear of the fabric. During its development, Microban’s R&D group invested in new instrumentation, developed new methodology and conducted thousands of tests in order to understand the science of body odor.


Sciessent is also in the smell game, helping make products cleaner and longer lasting by controlling bacteria-related odors via a variety of technologies including Agion Antimicrobial, Agion Active and Lava.

Importantly, Sciessent strives to create technologies that are environmentally preferable and sustainable. The first of their kind, according to the brand, Agion Active XL and Lava XL have the ability to self-regenerate odor-fighting properties, allowing garments incorporating these technologies to maintain odor-fighting function longer without the need to wash between uses.


The company recently launched a new website to help dealers and consumers understand its antimicrobial and odor absorption solutions for the medical, textile and apparel industries. “We are proud to present our new, user-friendly website to the world while introducing our new Agion Active XL and Lava XL technologies,” said Steven Cunningham, director of marketing for Sciessent. “As a global organization, we intend to make it easier than ever for current and future brand partners around the world to learn more about our unparalleled antimicrobial, anti-odor and water repellent products.”

Agion antimicrobial solutions from Sciessent have been incorporated into a wide range of healthcare, industrial and consumer applications, including medical devices such as central-venous catheters and IV-access ports, drinking-water applications like water filters and ice-making equipment, and textiles and apparel. The company umbrellas Agion, Agion Active, and Sciessent Lava– all based on naturally occurring elements. Sciessent customers include leading international brands REI, Williamson Dickies, Eagle Creek, Maier Sports, Follett, Adidas, Reebok and Skechers.