Podiatrist Reveals 9 Different Ways To Prevent Smelly Feet

Posted in Podiatry, Uncategorized on May 14, 2017

Having smelly feet can be a really embarrassing probelm to have!

But don't stress...

...if you suffer from smelly feet there are a few things you can do that can make a really big difference.

Often it is not actually your feet that smell bad, but your shoes and socks, as they soak up all your sweat!

  • Sweaty or Smelly feet (Bromhidrosis) are a really common condition. Basically when your feet sweat a lot, it allows bacteria to form on the surface of your skin. Which can cause an odour.

So How Can You Stop Smelly Feet?

I thought it would be helpful to put together this list of the 9 way you can prevent smelly feet, so here it is:

  1. Washing smelly feet regularly (everyday) with an anti-bacterial soap.
  2. Either throw out all socks and start again.... or soak and wash all socks in Canestan (or similar) anti-bacterial and anti-fungal wash. This is available from the supermarket in the laundry section.
  3. Any shoes that have a removable innersole... throw out the innersoles and replace with new ones. You can usually pick up innersoles at either the supermarket or chemist. Soak some cotton buds or tissues in either tea-tree oil or lavender oil and leave them in your shoes whenever you are not wearing them. This helps to kill not only odour but any bacteria in the shoes.
  4. Throw out any old and particularly smelly shoes.
  5. Buy moisture management socks that have silver or anti-bacterial properties. Look for brands like X-socks, Light Feet, Thorlo and Experia. You can usually buy these from places like the Athletes Foot, Active Feet Sandringham or Rebel Sport. They are a bit more expensive but do a great job. You may also be able to find them a bit cheaper online.
  6. Change your socks whenever you can. Keep a few spares in you backpack/car/wherever you can and change socks regularly. If possible at least once a day but more often in warmer weather or if you have been exercising. Continue to wash socks with Canestan Wash whenever you can.
  7. Spray or swab smelly feet with tea-tree oil. Tea-tree is a natural anti-bacterial/anti-fungal. You can now buy it in a spray form (from the supermarket or chemist). If you spray your feet with it each day before you put socks on and before sport etc. You can also use this whenever you change socks etc.
  8. Soak your smelly feet for 1/2 an hour each night. There are 2 different preparations most people find effective. Using a bucket of warm water, add one of the following....
    A - 2 cups of white vinegar and a capful of tea-tree oil.
    B - Put 5 black tea-bags in 2 cups of boiling water. Allow them to infuse for a few minutes and then add to the bucket of water. CAUTION: Make sure you don't put your feet into the boiling water or you will burn your feet, wait until it has cooled down enough.
  9. If these options don't help there are stronger options available from the chemist. These include Formalin Foot Soaks, Potassium Permanganate Soaks and Drysol. You will need to speak to the pharmacist about getting any of these. And obtain correct directions for use. There is also a stronger version of Drysol that requires a GP prescription.

While it can be embarrassing when you have smelly feet or bad body odours. Unfortunately people tend to experience these symptoms at some point in their lives. Hopefully the techniques above have given some ideas about how you can prevent and reduce your smelly feet!

If you need to speak to a Podiatrist about your smelly feet or have any particular questions about bad foot odour, please do not hesitate to call the Clinic on (03) 9939 3339. 

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