I purchased a used hutch with glass doors, cherry wood (I believe, and according to the person I bought it from), and some kind of softer wood for the inside of the drawers. Only after I bought it did I think to give it a smell, and it smells very strongly of perfume. I'm concerned with putting anything in there which might also absorb odors.

I've tried leaving the doors and drawers open for a few days, spraying down the inside with white vinegar and letting it sit for a day before wiping it off, and sprinkling the inside with baking board and leaving it for a substantial time (about a week, largely because I was too busy to get back to it). None of these have eliminated the odor, and I'm not sure they've even lessened it. I've tried searching for odor elimination advice on this site and the internet in general and those are the techniques I've seen folks talk about, so I'm looking for something more effective.

At this point I've had the hutch for about six months and the odor is still there. I don't know what products to avoid so as to not damage the wood, but I'm willing to take some risks to make the hutch usable.

  • Since the odor likely has penetrated the wood some distance, perhaps the only effective treatment is leaving it open while warming it gently, so as not to crack the wood for an extended time, perhaps months. An alternative would be to coat all surfaces heavily with lacquer or shellac, sealing in the odor, though that doesn't seem practcal. Oct 24, 2021 at 1:10

1 Answer 1


An effective way to remove odours, VOCs (volatile organic compounds), and many organic uglies such as cigarette/cigar smoke, bacteria, fungi, and molds is with ozone gas. Ozone is oxygen O2 enriched with an extra molecule of oxygen to make O3 It is as harmless to normal materials as sunlight but much more reactive. Ozone dramatically increases oxidation.

Perfume is a VOC and its odour can be completely removed by ozone gas.

The problem is that ozone gas itself is dangerous to us. It can be safely used if proper conditions can be maintained in a secure space.

Here's how:

  1. Find an isolated, secure space that can be sealed for up to a week such as a garage.
  2. Rent an ozone generator and place it and the hutch into the garage next to each other. Open the hutch doors and remove the drawers.
  3. Run the ozone generator for a few days.
  4. Air out the garage making sure there is sufficient circulation to change the air several times.
  5. Done.
  6. Repeat IF necessary. (Highly unlikely - A whole house can be treated in less than a week, normally.)

Good luck.


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