How to Get Wet Smell Out of Shoes

How to Get Wet Smell Out of Shoes

A pungent odor emanating from your shoes can be quite embarrassing and unpleasant. Whether it’s from getting caught in a downpour or a sweaty workout session, shoes can easily become wet and develop a musty smell. Fortunately, there are several effective methods to address this issue and restore your shoes to their fresh, odor-free state. In this article, we will discuss how to get the wet smell out of shoes and provide solutions for five common scenarios where this concern may arise.


1. Caught in the rain: Walking or running in wet conditions can leave your shoes damp and smelly.
2. Sports activities: Engaging in sports, such as soccer or basketball, can lead to sweaty feet and a lingering odor in your shoes.
3. Hiking or outdoor adventures: Exploring nature often involves trudging through wet terrain, leading to a damp, unpleasant smell in your shoes.
4. Post-workout: After an intense workout, your shoes can become soaked with sweat, leaving them with an unpleasant odor.
5. Wet shoes left to dry: If you leave your shoes to dry without proper ventilation, they may develop a wet smell.

Now, let’s explore some effective methods to combat the wet smell in shoes:

1. Baking soda: Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda inside your shoes and leave it overnight. The baking soda will absorb the moisture and neutralize the odor.
2. Tea bags: Place a few unused tea bags inside your shoes and leave them overnight. Tea bags have natural deodorizing properties and can help eliminate the wet smell.
3. Newspaper: Crumple up newspaper and stuff it inside your shoes. The newspaper will absorb the moisture and leave your shoes smelling fresh.
4. Freezing method: Seal your shoes in a plastic bag and place them in the freezer overnight. The freezing temperatures will kill odor-causing bacteria, eliminating the wet smell.
5. Vinegar solution: Mix equal parts of water and vinegar, then dampen a cloth with the solution and wipe the inside of your shoes. Vinegar helps kill bacteria and neutralizes odors.

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Common Questions:

1. Can I machine wash my shoes to get rid of the wet smell?
It depends on the material of your shoes. Some can be machine-washed, but others may be damaged. Check the manufacturer’s guidelines before washing.
2. Can I use scented sprays to mask the odor?
While scented sprays can temporarily mask the smell, it’s better to address the root cause and eliminate the odor using the methods mentioned above.
3. How often should I repeat these methods?
Repeat the methods until the smell is completely gone. It may take a few attempts, especially for stubborn odors.
4. Can I use essential oils to freshen my shoes?
Yes, you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to baking soda or tea bags before placing them in your shoes. It will provide a pleasant scent while combating the odor.
5. Should I dry my shoes in direct sunlight?
It’s not recommended to dry your shoes in direct sunlight, as it can cause discoloration or damage. Opt for a well-ventilated area instead.
6. Can I use fabric softener sheets to eliminate the odor?
Yes, placing fabric softener sheets inside your shoes can help absorb moisture and leave them smelling fresh.
7. Is it necessary to remove the insoles before applying any method?
Removing the insoles allows better airflow and improves the effectiveness of the methods. However, it’s not mandatory.
8. Can I use a hairdryer to dry my shoes quickly?
Yes, using a hairdryer on a low heat setting can help speed up the drying process. Remember not to apply too much heat, as it may damage the shoes.
9. Should I wear socks with my shoes to prevent the wet smell?
Wearing socks can absorb sweat and prevent direct contact between your feet and the shoes, reducing the chances of developing a wet smell.
10. Can I use cat litter to eliminate the odor?
Yes, filling a sock with cat litter and placing it inside your shoes can help absorb moisture and eliminate the odor.
11. Can I wash the insoles separately?
Yes, most insoles can be hand-washed separately using mild soap and water. Make sure to dry them completely before placing them back into the shoes.
12. How can I prevent a wet smell in the future?
Allow your shoes to dry completely before storing them, wear moisture-wicking socks, and use foot powders to prevent excessive sweating.
13. Are there any professional treatments available for shoe odor?
Yes, there are professional shoe deodorizing services available that use specialized techniques and equipment to eliminate persistent odors.

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By following these tips and techniques, you can say goodbye to the wet smell in your shoes and enjoy fresh and odor-free footwear. Remember to maintain good shoe hygiene practices to prevent future odors from developing.


  • 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.