How to Get Rid of Shoe Odor

shoe odor
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Are you embarrassed to remove your shoes in front of others? Do you wish to throw away your favorite pair of shoes due to the foul smell it transmits? If the answer is yes, the good news is that you do not need to get embarrassed about the unpleasant smell that comes from your shoes. Almost everyone faces the problem of stinky shoes once or twice in a lifetime.

If you have noticed that your shoes smell bad, it’s likely that you want to get rid of the odor as quickly as possible. But before that you need to first understand that reason behind the stinky smell coming from your shoes.

In This Article:

Causes for smelly shoes

Feet often sweat when they are locked inside a shoe for hours at a time. Due to excessive sweating it becomes an ideal place for bacteria to reside that cause the shoes to emit an unpleasant odor. Another reason behind smelly shoes is the materials used for making shoes. Shoes are usually made from synthetic material and have rubber soles and plastic innersoles. These plastic innersoles are the main culprits behind unpleasant stinky shoes.

Simple ways to get rid of the unpleasant shoe odor

The bad smell coming from shoes can be overwhelming and make you wish to throw them away as soon as possible. Well, there is no need to spend money on buying new shoes as there are many simple and easy ways to get rid of the unpleasant odor.

  • To get rid of the unpleasant smell coming from your good pair of shoes, you can stuff the shoes with newspaper. Do this at night and next morning you will find ‘stink-free’ shoes.
  • When the shoes are not in use, place a dryer sheet in each one. This way whenever you need to use the shoes you will not be disheartened with the unpleasant smell.
  • Another simple solution to get rid of the smell coming from your shoes is to throw the shoes in the washer. Keep the shoes to dry in direct sunlight and when dry, double bag them and put them in the freezer overnight. This will kill the bacteria that cause the odor. The next morning, remove the bag from the freezer and place it in the sun, to dry.
  • To get rid of smelly shoes you can use insoles made from cedar material. Such kind of insoles will tackle the cause of the problem and soon there will be no smell.
  • The most obvious way to get rid of smelly shoes would be to wash them thoroughly. Using a soapy detergent and bleach, wash the shoes inside out. Thereafter, keep them under the sun, to let dry them well. Don’t wear them until they are completely dry.
  • You can also use fabric conditioner sheets available in the market to get rid of smelly shoes. All you need to do is place a sheet in each of the shoes and keep them for the night. The next morning, you would be possessing nice-scented shoes.
  • Though this may sound strange, but cat litter has proved effective in getting rid of shoe smell. For this, collect fresh, unused cat litter in a pair of old sock and seal its mouth. Now, put the socks inside your smelly shoes and leave overnight. The litter, a great deodorizer, would absorb all the foul smell, making your shoe perfectly ready to wear.
  • Pour some rubbing alcohol in a cotton ball and wipe the insides of your shoes with the same. Now, leave them undisturbed for a while. The foul smell is sure to fade away.
  • If your shoes are not washable, wipe out the interior with a cotton ball dipped in alcohol to kill bacteria.
  • If your shoes are damp, you may be able to microwave them for 90 seconds to kill the bacteria.
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  1. douha

    November 6, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Thank you so much this really helped

  2. Tutugirl

    February 23, 2014 at 6:32 am

    At home we use DryPointe Shoe Inserts they use silica to dry the shoes and keep them smell free.

  3. Stephanie

    March 16, 2015 at 6:13 pm

    Do NOT use antibacterial soap regularly unless it’s medically necessary. Triclosan in antibacterial body washes is a bad practice. Regular soap and warm water work just fine to clean hands, feet, and body.

  4. Vincent

    February 4, 2016 at 11:26 pm

    What I’ve been doing BEFORE ordors become a problem is place a small scented candle in each shoe.Small scented soap works too.

  5. George

    June 22, 2016 at 1:36 pm

    Please remove the comment about putting smelly shoes in the microwave

    I did this and it’s melted my very expensive shoes. Very disappointing that you have such unreliable suggestions.


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