We have all been there, cut up a bunch of onions to cook dinner and then your hands smell like onions! It’s an awful smell and hard to get the smell off from your hands.
There is no need to go out and buy yourself food prep gloves just to prevent onion-smelling hands. In this post, I am going to go over a few different ways to get that smell off your hands.
5 options to remove onion smell from your hands
Onions add so much amazing flavor to many great recipes but prepping them can be a different story.
First, we should talk about why onions keep your hands smells so awful after cutting them.
Onions are full of enzymes and once they are cut into them these enzymes are released and changed into a sulfur enzyme which is what creates the smell. This does not happen so much after you peel the onion.
This is what makes you tear up or even sometimes cry when you are cutting onions.
Well, those same sulfur enzymes get into your skin and stay until you use something to neutralize the smell.
Not only do they make you cry when you cut an onion but they can add an awful odor to your fingers if you are the one prepping them.
I have a few tricks up my sleeve to help you get rid of that smell.
Most people immediately go straight to what you would this would be the obvious, soap and water. You will be pleasantly surprised that this is not the answer to nasty onion-smelling hands.
1. Stainless steel
Once you are done prepping your raw onion and you are ready to get the atrocious smell off your hands, grab yourself a metal spoon.
No soap is needed for this one! Under cold water rub the spoon with your fingers and voila the smell will magically disappear!
The key to this trick is using stainless steel, not just any metal will work. It doesn’t have to be a spoon, that was just an example. But the metal of stainless steel neutralizes and erases the smell of onions right from your fingertips.
2. Baking soda
Baking soda is known to be a great deodorizer for many things. The onion smell on your hands is no different.
Mix together a tablespoon of baking soda, a pinch of salt, and 1/4 cup of cold water, and then use that to wash your hands.
Once you have given them a good scrub, rinse your hands thoroughly and the smell will be gone.
The deodorizing compound of the baking soda and the granular salt will act as a scrub and work the smell out of your skin and free you of that awful smell on your hands.
OK, I know, you are thinking, toothpaste is to brush your teeth not to wash your hands! Toothpaste eliminates sulfur compounds from the onions and will remove the smell.
Squeeze a little into your hands and scrub your hands for about 30 seconds and then rinse your hands completely! Minty fresh-smelling hands!
If toothpaste can get rid of onion breath it can certainly get rid of onion smells on your hands. Mouthwash also works in the same way so whichever your preference is.
Not only is coffee good for giving you that boost of energy in the morning, but it can also be great for neutralizing smells too.
If your hands wreak of onions you can use coffee beans or grounds to eliminate the onion smell. Use the coffee in either form and scrub your hands with them rubbing them all over your hands.
Do this for about 30 seconds and then rinse your hands under cold running water. I think we can all agree that a lingering coffee smell is much for pleasant than an onion smell.
If life gives you onion smelling hands, lemons will remove the smell. Cut a lemon in half and use the inside like a bar of soap. Scrub it all over your hands and in between your fingers.
Rinse your hands under cold water. If you have any open cuts or lesions on your hands you might not want to use this method because the lemon juice will surely sting!
You can also use lemon juice if that is all you have on hand. Pour some juice on your hands and scrub them. Use cold water to rinse your hands clean afterward so that they are not sticky.