whenever I go fishing I have to handle the bait (usually squid or prawns) which ends up leaving my hands stinking heavily of fish, even after washing them.

I wash my hands with soap and water and even use hand sanitizer, but they still stink like fish.

How can I remove the fishy smell from my hands right after fishing?

3 Answers 3


Stainless steel - its worth buying a stainless steel bar or tablet, sometimes called stainless steel soap; these are sold for removing garlic, onion and fish odours from the hands. All you need to do is put your hands under running water for a minimum of 30 seconds, rubbing the bar all over your hands and fingers at the same time, with or without soap, doesn't matter. I imagine plunging your hands in the river or whatever you're fishing in whilst using the bar will work too. Any stainless steel object will do though, its just easier to use the soap tablet shaped bar - I used a stainless steel ladle in a friend's house once after chopping garlic. They definitely work for garlic, never tried it for fishy smells, but they are sold for that purpose too.

  • Very cool! Never knew that. I always used baking soda, which only mostly works, not quite all the way...
    – J. Musser
    Commented May 17, 2015 at 10:54
  • @J.Musser - still doesn't work for under the fingernails though - I use a stainless steel nail file for that... but I'm told there are tablets which have a sort of pointed edge on them, never seen one like that though.
    – Bamboo
    Commented May 17, 2015 at 11:01

Copied from WikiHow:

Try one of the following:

  1. Cut a fresh lemon into wedges. After you are finished handling the fish, squeeze the lemon onto your hands, rub your hands together, and rinse with water. Squeeze liquid hand-sanitizer onto your hands. Rub your hands together till dry. Rub your hands with toothpaste, then rub together, and rinse under water. Use a soap specifically made for removing fish odors, like De-Fishing Soap. surgical spirit works well

  2. One Step Solution: Whether its raw fish smell or stink bait smell lingering on your fingers after fishing for catfish. Seriously, it takes just one wash with Head&Shoulders Intensive Treatment shampoo to get it out. Try it for yourself.Rub some vinegar onto your hands. FYI, vinegar can get rid of bleach smell off your hands too in an instant!

Source: Wikihow

  • 1
    Hi Nuach :) I think your post is really accurate and has the ability to help many people, my only concern is that your post is very similiar to another article on the internet. While, you may be citing a source, I think that you should also state where you got the info from or change it to your words. Thank you for being active on the site and I hope to see you around. Bye! P.S. Feel free to contact me or another user if anything is unclear ;)
    – Pobrecita
    Commented May 10, 2015 at 2:32
  • 3
    Plagiarism is not cool. When you cite content that you copy from elsewhere, you must give proper attribution: cited content must be marked as such, and you must give the source. Just stating “source: …” isn't enough, if you didn't write the words, you must use quote formatting. And you must give a precise reference for the source. Commented May 10, 2015 at 14:46

There's a product that's called Thee Fisherman's Soap that's supposed to remove all kinds of stink off hands immediately. Never tried it but have heard it works.

  • Welcome to Lifehacks SE! I think this might help, my only question is "Are there any alternatives to this soap?" Thank You for the response and I hope to see you around, Lifehacks SE in the future :)
    – Pobrecita
    Commented May 10, 2015 at 13:40

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