Vancouver company creates stink-free athletic gear using crab and shrimp shells

WATCH: It’s always been the most unpleasant side effect of staying in shape: those workout clothes that end up smelling like a locker room. A local company says it’s solved that problem with its new line of active wear. Linda Aylesworth reports.

A new Vancouver athletic wear company has developed a new technology that will keep your gym clothes from smelling like, well, gym clothes.

“I don’t know about you, but I’ve had that one shirt that you wash and wash and wash and it’s still a little bit funky,” says Meghan Conyers, one of the founders of Strongbody Apparel.

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That malodorous smell comes courtesy of Micrococci, bacteria that are particularly fond of synthetic fabrics like polyester, the stuff much of today’s exercise gear is made of. Some manufacturers attempt to reduce the problem by permeating their products with antimicrobials like triclosan or silver chloride.

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Strongbody Apparel, on the other hand, uses a substance known as Chitosante, named after chitin, an antimicrobial found in crab and shrimp shells.

According to Conyers, Chitosante has many practical applications.

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“It has multiple uses, in biomedical engineering and bio-pesticides,” she says. “It’s non-toxic. There are supplements made from it and now they’re using it in the textile industry as well.”

Right now, Strongbody sells most of their odour-free apparel online. They’re clothes are not cheap–$104 for men’s shorts and $88 for a Chitosante-treated shirt–but they’re confident they’ll find their market.

-with files from Linda Aylesworth

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