Foot odor can be very embarrassing and can lead to inability to remove your shoes in front of people. Below you will learn how to prevent smelly feet and deodorize your shoes using simple natural home remedies.
Causes of foot odor
The main cause of foot odor is sweat which allows bacteria to breed. Bacteria thrives in humid condition. The actions of the bacteria on your feet gives rise to foot odor. Other causes of smelly feet includes.
- Certain medication
- Improper footwear
- Alcohol and other drugs
- Poor hygiene
- Hormonal changes
How to prevent foot odor
- Don’t wear the same pair of shoes two consecutive days. Instead, alternate between your shoes so they have at least 24 hours to dry out.
- Wash and dry your feet every day
- Change your socks at least once a day.
- Keep your toenails short and clean
- Hard skin provides an ideal home for bacteria when wet because it gets soft. File hard skin with a foot file.
- Wear wool or cotton socks.
- Store your shoes in a place that’s bright and well ventilated.
- Synthetic material such as plastic and rubber can contribute to sweaty feet and foot odor. Choose shoes made of natural, breathable materials such as leather.
- Insoles and other foot padding absorb lots of sweat making it necessary to wash them regularly to prevent accumulation of moisture. Wash shoe inserts weekly and allow them to air outside.
- Make sure your feet are always completely dry. Any kind of moisture can create favorable breeding ground for bacteria and bad odor. Take time to dry feet with a little more focus on the area in between the toes.
Home remedies to get rid of foot odor
Epsom Salt soak
Epsom salt can also help minimize smelly feet as it has microbial properties and can help fight infection and get rid of foot odor. Soaking your feet in an Epsom salt foot bath will also sooth aching feet.
- Mix two teaspoons of Epsom salt in half a bucket of warm water.
- Soak your feet in the solution for 10 to 15 minutes. For best results, do this before going to sleep so that you do not have to wear socks or shoes for a few hours.
Apply some talcum powder over your feet before wearing socks and putting on shoes. It will keep your feet dry and smell nice.
Vinegar and thyme essential oil foot bath
Vinegar creates an acidic environment for bacteria and thyme oil contains a strong antiseptic that kills odor-causing bacteria. Combine these two to make an odor-fighting foot bath to get rid of foot odor.
- Add a cup of vinegar to a basin of warm water.
- Mix a few drops of thyme oil.
- Soak your feet for 15 to 20 minutes 3 times a week. Don’t use if you have broken skin.
Tea bags foot soak
Fill a bowl with warm water, then add a few packets of black tea. Give the tea a few minutes to steep, then soak your feet in the mixture for up to 30 minutes.
Alcohol is a natural disinfectant that can help reduce bacterial growth on your feet. It is one of the best home remedies for getting rid of foot odor. You can also spray some on your shoes to stop the breeding of bacteria.
Salt and oil foot scrub
Scrub your feet with a mixture of salt and oil to help exfoliate dead skin cell that is on your feet. Do this regularly to keep your feet clean and odor free.
- Mix 1 cup of epsom salt and 1/4 cup of almond oil in a bowl.
- Use a tablespoon to scoop enough to scrub your feet.
- Store the rest in an airtight jar.
- leave on feet for 3 minutes and rinse off.
Baking soda and lemon
Baking soda can aid in eliminating foot odor. It is often used to kill bacteria, control odor and soften the feet. Lemon is an astringent and can help regulate sweating.
- Empty the baking soda into a bowl of warm water.
- Squeeze the lemon into the solution then soak your feet.
- Leave your feet in the solution for about 15-20 minutes and then dry your feet.
Lavender oil smells great and it has antibacterial properties . Simple add a few drops of the oil in a basin of warm water and soak your feet in the solution for about 20 minutes. Do this 4 times a week for up to two weeks to keep foot odor at bay.