If you’ve got teens, you need to know how to deodorize smelly shoes. Even if you don’t have teens, you may still want to know how to get rid of that odor because, let’s face it, stinky feet are only funny to kids.
Here are five ways to get the funk out.
How to Deodorize Smelly Shoes
That horrible odor is the result of bacteria multiplying in the damp environment of a sweaty shoe. Your feet contain 250,000 sweat glands! When those sweat glands are stuck in a shoe that’s not ventilated, the sweat and warmth create a breeding ground for bacteria. To get rid of the smell, you need to destroy the bacteria.
1. Wash Them
Shoes made of fabric can be tossed in the washer with a couple of towels and run through a warm/warm cycle using your regular laundry detergent. Skip the fabric softener and use white vinegar which will kill the odor-causing bacteria.
Tumble freshly-washed tennis shoes in a dryer with towels or, if you can’t stand that banging sound, slip them into a bag that fits over your dryer’s door. Allow other shoes to air-dry thoroughly.
2. Use a Homemade Shoe Deodorizing Powder
The ingredients in this homemade deodorizing powder are powerful odor absorbers, and the tea tree oil’s antiseptic properties will kill odor-causing bacteria. Dump out the dust before wearing your shoes.
3 tablespoons baking soda
1 tablespoon cornstarch
5 drops of tea tree oil
1. Shake or stir until thoroughly mixed.
2. Sprinkle shoe deodorizing powder liberally into your shoes after each wearing and let it sit overnight. (You might want to keep a shaker can of this mixture in the laundry room for regular use.)
3. Dump the powder out before wearing.
OR Use a Shoe Deodorizing Spray
Some people swear by spraying their shoes with Febreze after each wear. If you don’t have skin allergies or sensitivities to corn, that’s worth a try. I do, so I use a homemade spray.
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup white vinegar
5 drops of tea tree oil
1. Lightly mist shoe insoles after each wearing.
2. Let the shoes air dry.
4. Store them stuffed.
Stuffing shoes with newspaper after wearing them does an excellent job of soaking up the sweat. The less sweat in your shoes, the less they’ll smell. Keep a stack of old newspapers in your closet, so you don’t forget.
5. Freeze them.
Sticking your shoes in the freezer is a great way to deodorize them since the smell-causing bacteria can’t survive the chill. Slip them into a pillowcase if you’re concerned about getting dirt in your freezer. Then, leave the shoes to freeze overnight. Defrost before wearing.
Tips to Control Shoe Odor
• Wear socks to absorb sweat.
• Don’t wear the same shoes two days in a row so that they can dry out completely between wearings.
• When possible, put your shoes outside. Sunlight is a natural disinfectant, so it also helps kill odors.