Quick Fixes For Smelly Shoes, From Baking Soda to Newspaper

Many people feel panic-stricken when they realize their feet stink. Having smelly shoes is a very common problem. After all, no one is immune to sweat or picking up bacteria from the environment. Of course, biology dictates that some people have more “musk” than others, but that doesn’t mean these people are doomed to suffer the social stigma of being smelly. We have collected some of the best quick fixes for stinky feet and shoes.

baking soda shoes

Image Source: WikiHow.com

Baking Soda

What: Sodium bicarbonate is used to absorb odors in refrigerators and kitty litter, so why not shoes?

How: Sprinkle a liberal amount of baking soda into your shoes overnight, says Reader’s Digest.

Cons: You can try dumping the powder out in the morning, but you’ll find a gummy residue once you sweat again.

Fabric Softener Sheets

What: Fabric softener neutralizes odors in gym bags and musty sheets.

How: Tuck a fresh sheet into each shoe and leave overnight.

Cons: Fabric softener has been accused of harboring harsh chemicals. Not everyone is cool with that.


morton's salt

Image Source: TVAcres.com

What: Morton says their salt eliminates odors from garbage disposals, fish hands, and cutting boards.

How: Sprinkle a little salt into canvas shoes to remove moisture and odor.

Cons: A few granules may be left behind and make it feel like you’re walking on tiny pebbles all day long.


What: We hear paper has absorptive powers.

How: Stuff crumpled newspaper sheets into your sweaty shoes to help them dry overnight.

Cons: You know how that black ink rubs off on your hands? It could rub off on your shoes, too.

Loafer Socks

What: They come by many names — Mocc Socks, Loafer Socks, or No-Show Socks.

How: Socks absorb sweat. We’ve already talked about the problem of sweaty feet in sockless shoes.

Cons: What if your socks peep out? Oh, the fashion horror!

Dry Them

dry out shoes

Image Source: WikiHow.com

What: Sweat gives bacteria a smorgasbord to feast upon. Drying time creates a less enticing environment for germs.

How: You can alternate your shoes to dry them and avoid stink build up — or place them out in the sun / near a heater.

Cons: There is still bacteria in your shoes.

Get Rid Of Smelly Shoes With A SteriShoe UV Shoe Sanitizer!

What: UV light is used by hospitals to sanitize tools and patient rooms, eliminating all bacteria, fungus, and microbes.

How: Place a wand in each shoe, close the shoe bags around them, and click “on”… get sanitized shoes in just 45 minutes!

Cons: The device costs more than a dryer sheet or pack of baking soda. (But it works better, too!)

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