Do your shoes stink after you take them off? You are not alone! Unfortunately, this is a frequent problem and is quite uncomfortable, especially when you sleep in someone else’s house; the dreaded stench appears, drowning the whole environment, and embarrassment takes over.
No matter how clean your feet are, bacteria and moisture end up causing shoes to smell. As they grow unstoppably on the feet, although they do not generate health problems, they cause organic acids called methanethiol, propanoic, and isovaleric, and with them, this rot arises.
If you are suffering from this annoying situation, conventional cleaning does not work and you are interested in knowing how to remove bad odor from shoes with vinegar easy, fast and cheap, read on. In this article, we show you how to make the most of this ecological product to eliminate this pestilence once and for all and what to do to prevent its appearance.
Why do shoes smell bad?
The main reason shoes have a stench similar to rotten cabbage is because of the organic acid methanethiol discussed above. Keep in mind that the feet have more sweat glands than any other area of the human body, and although sweat itself has no odor, this acidic product of bacterial waste does.
Therefore, the more humidity caused by the natural sweating of the feet, the more prone the shoe is to bacterial proliferation and the more breeding ground for these stink-causing intruders.
How to remove shoe odor with vinegar?
White vinegar is a natural remedy widely used in a long list of household tasks. It removes rust from iron, removes scale from glass and mirrors, removes chewing gum from clothing, unclogs drains and is even ideal for combating musty odors from almost any fabric. And on this occasion, it is no slouch.
It’s acid composition (acetic and malic acid) and disinfectant and antifungal properties make it perfect for stopping and eliminating all traces of bad odors. Including those generated by the accumulation of fungi, bacteria, and humidity from foot sweat, especially in winter, when we wear closed footwear for the longest time.
So yes, it is possible to combat extreme sweating of the feet and eliminate all traces of stench. You can do it with cleaning, food, or apple cider vinegar (the most recommended). These are the 3 most effective methods to neutralize shoe odor with vinegar without washing them.
Vinegar and water spray
When the pestilence is too much adhered to the internal fabric of the shoe, it is not enough to ventilate them out of the room for the whole night, it is necessary to apply other techniques. This is an ideal measure to put an end to shoe odor quickly and without spending too much.
- Prepare a mixture of equal parts water and white or apple cider vinegar.
- Pour the mixture into a spray container and shake well.
- Spray inside the shoes after use and let them air dry for a couple of hours.
Note: For a more noticeable and lasting effect, it is best to wash the shoe (inside and out) and then apply this technique.
Homemade vinegar and cotton air freshener
In addition to controlling stench, vinegar is able to regulate the pH of the skin. In this case, you will make your own homemade shoe air freshener Yes, seriously! See how to do it:
- Impregnate a couple of cotton balls with vinegar (do not soak them, just wet them).
- Insert them inside the shoe.
- Leave overnight for the cotton to absorb unpleasant odors. If necessary, repeat the process.
A plus: If you want to combat bad odor and also want to make its aroma pleasant,add a few drops of essential oil of your choice to the cotton dipped in vinegar.
Vinegar and gauze
If you do not have gauze, it is still feasible to do it with a piece of soft cloth that you no longer use. It is a simple and practical method you can use wherever and whenever you want.
- Moisten the piece of gauze or cloth with vinegar (it should be wet, but not dripping so as not to damage the shoe).
- Once you have moistened the material, rub it superficially on the inside, from the sole of the heel to the tip of the toes (with greater insistence on this area, which is where the most moisture is trapped), the sides and the instep.
- Remember not to rub or squeeze the gauze too hard so that the liquid does not spill on the inside.
- Finally, air the shoe for 10 to 12 hours.
Eliminating bad odor in shoes with white vinegar: Final recommendations
In addition to regular shoe cleaning and odor mitigation techniques, it is important to consider other measures to prevent shoe odor:
- Maintain good foot hygiene: Wash well with soap between the toes, along the sole and be sure to rinse and dry thoroughly after showering.
- Do not wear socks more than once: Especially if you have been training or have been wearing your shoes all day.
- Do not wear shoes without socks: This will prevent the inner fabric and insole from absorbing sweat and moisture produced by hot feet, especially if you sweat a lot in this area.
- Replace the insoles from time to time: Usually, an old and worn-out insole is the reason why, despite sanitizing and keeping them neat, the lingering odor keeps coming to up.
And don’t forget, after each one, to leave the pair of shoes in the sunlight for a while so that it dries and the humidity doesn’t wreak havoc. Try these tricks and preventive measures and forever say goodbye to this embarrassing and unwelcome mishap!