Did you know we have more sweat glands in our feet than anywhere else on our bodies? And when it’s hot out, your feet can sweat twice as much as usual. A pair of wet, warm shoes and sneakers is exactly the kind of place bacteria can thrive. And when they do, you’ll notice your footwear starts to stink. Sometimes the offending odor is merely an annoyance, but it can be embarrassing. Besides, we want our shoes to last as long as they can—now more than ever.
There are old school deodorizing methods you may’ve heard of from time to time: sprinkling baking soda (mildly effective yet messy) or stuffing shoes with newspaper (who has physical newspapers these days?), but these modern solutions have been tested and vetted for ultimate results.
Instead of dusting the inside of your shoe with baking soda, use this spray, which dries clear and is safe on all types of shoes. The sweat-activated formula (which includes baking soda) eliminates odors on contact. And the unique trigger and nozzle are designed to be sprayed upside-down, so you can reach even the toughest locations.
Arm & Hammer
For heavy sweaters, you can use this spray on your feet as an alternative to talcum power in order to keep them cool and dry. Then you can spray it into your shoes when you’re done wearing them to neutralize any leftover smell. It’s formulated with activated charcoal, natural eucalyptus oil and pulverized talc to absorb moisture and kill bacteria.
These little beanbags get rid of overwhelming odors without leaving behind a heavy perfume-y scent. They also help absorb moisture from wet shoes. Active silver will get rid of the bacteria, but since the beads are heat-activated, you should toss them in your shoes as soon as you take them off.
This one surprised most testers. You peel off the adhesive back on these stickers and place them inside your shoe (we preferred under the tongue so they’re out of the way). Utilizing the same activated carbon NASA uses to clean the air, this little strip absorbs stink and wicks away moisture. But they’re not for heavy smells, as there’s no added scent—it simply gets rid of mild odors.