How to Get Smell Out of Wet Shoes

How to Get Smell Out of Wet Shoes

Wet shoes can be a breeding ground for unpleasant odors, caused by the accumulation of moisture and bacteria. Whether you’ve stepped in a puddle, gone for a rainy hike, or had a mishap during water sports, it’s important to address the issue promptly to prevent the smell from becoming overwhelming. In this article, we will discuss effective methods to get rid of the smell in wet shoes, ensuring that your footwear remains fresh and odor-free.

Scenarios where the smell in wet shoes becomes a concern:

1. Rainy Weather: Walking in the rain can leave your shoes soaked, leading to moisture buildup and unpleasant smells.
2. Outdoor Activities: Engaging in activities like hiking, fishing, or camping can expose your shoes to wet conditions, making them prone to odor.
3. Water Sports: Participating in water sports such as kayaking, surfing, or swimming can result in wet shoes, which may develop a foul smell.
4. Accidental Spills: Accidentally spilling liquids on your shoes, like water or beverages, can lead to moisture accumulation and odors.
5. Sports Activities: Engaging in sports that involve water, such as soccer or rugby, can cause your shoes to become wet, resulting in unwanted smells.

Now, let’s explore some effective methods to eliminate the smell from wet shoes:

1. Drying: The first step is to thoroughly dry your shoes. Remove the insoles, if possible, and place them in a well-ventilated area. Stuff the shoes with crumpled newspaper or paper towels to absorb moisture. Replace the paper regularly until the shoes are completely dry.
2. Baking Soda: Sprinkle baking soda inside the shoes and leave it overnight. Baking soda absorbs odors effectively. Shake out the excess baking soda the next day.
3. Vinegar Solution: Create a solution by mixing equal parts white vinegar and water. Dampen a cloth or sponge with the solution, and wipe the inside of the shoes. Vinegar kills bacteria that cause odors. Allow the shoes to air dry afterward.
4. Freezing: Place the shoes in a plastic bag and seal it tightly. Freeze the shoes overnight. Freezing kills odor-causing bacteria. Thaw the shoes at room temperature and allow them to dry completely.
5. Charcoal: Place activated charcoal briquettes or sachets inside the shoes. Charcoal is highly effective at absorbing odors. Leave them in the shoes overnight and remove them the next day.

Common Questions and Answers:

1. Can I use scented sprays to mask the smell?
While scented sprays may temporarily mask the odor, they don’t eliminate it. It’s better to address the root cause of the smell by using the methods mentioned above.

2. Can I wash my shoes in a washing machine to get rid of the smell?
Washing your shoes in a machine can damage them. It’s best to follow the methods mentioned above, as they are less likely to harm your shoes.

3. Can I use essential oils to eliminate the smell?
While essential oils can provide a pleasant scent, they may not eliminate the odor entirely. It’s recommended to use baking soda or vinegar solutions to address the root cause of the smell.

4. How long does it take for the smell to go away?
The time it takes to eliminate the smell depends on the severity of the odor and the method used. Generally, it can take anywhere from a few hours to a couple of days.

5. Can I use a hairdryer to speed up the drying process?
Using a hairdryer on high heat can damage your shoes. Stick to air drying or using absorbent materials like paper towels or newspaper to speed up the process.

6. Can I use scented dryer sheets to remove the smell?
Dryer sheets may provide a temporary fresh scent but aren’t effective at eliminating the root cause of the smell. Stick to the methods mentioned above for best results.

7. How often should I repeat these methods?
Repeat the methods as needed until the smell is completely gone. It’s also advisable to use preventative measures such as allowing your shoes to dry thoroughly after each use.

8. Can I use these methods on all types of shoes?
The methods mentioned above are generally safe for most types of shoes. However, it’s always a good idea to check the manufacturer’s instructions or test on a small, inconspicuous area before applying them to your entire shoe.

9. Can I use these methods on leather shoes?
While some methods, such as drying and using baking soda, are generally safe for leather shoes, it’s best to check with the manufacturer or test on a small area first, as certain methods may affect the leather.

10. Can I use these methods on shoes with sensitive materials?
If your shoes have sensitive materials, it’s best to consult the manufacturer’s instructions or seek professional advice to avoid any potential damage.

11. Can I prevent odor in wet shoes?
Yes, to prevent odor in wet shoes, always allow them to dry thoroughly, preferably in a well-ventilated area. Additionally, using moisture-wicking socks and applying foot powder before wearing your shoes can help reduce odor-causing bacteria.

12. Are there any products specifically designed to eliminate shoe odor?
Yes, there are many shoe deodorizers available on the market. Look for products that contain odor-absorbing ingredients like activated charcoal or baking soda.

13. If the smell persists, what should I do?
If the smell persists even after trying various methods, it’s recommended to consult a professional shoe cleaner or cobbler who can provide additional advice or treatment options.

By following these methods and tips, you can effectively eliminate the smell from wet shoes, ensuring your footwear remains fresh and odor-free. Remember to take preventative measures to avoid the buildup of moisture and bacteria, as prevention is key to maintaining pleasant-smelling shoes.


  • Laura @

    Laura, a fitness aficionado, authors influential health and fitness write ups that's a blend of wellness insights and celebrity fitness highlights. Armed with a sports science degree and certified personal training experience, she provides expertise in workouts, nutrition, and celebrity fitness routines. Her engaging content inspires readers to adopt healthier lifestyles while offering a glimpse into the fitness regimens of celebrities and athletes. Laura's dedication and knowledge make her a go-to source for fitness and entertainment enthusiasts.

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