Medically known as "Bromodosis", smelly feet can be an embarrassing and persistent problem.
Here are some tips to reduce the issue!
The feet and hands contain more sweat glands than any other part of the body (about 3000 glands per square inch).
Feet smell for two (main) reasons: you wear shoes, and your feet sweat.
The interaction between your sweat and the bacteria that thrive indoor shoes and socks generates the odour. (Footwear is the perfect environment for this, as well as fungal growth, due to the dark, warm and moist environment which is the perfect breeding ground for these issues!).
Any attempt reduce foot odour has to address your sweating AND your footwear.
Smelly feet can be caused by 'hyperhydrosis'. This is a condition which causes excessive sweating and mainly affects men. Stress, some medications, fluid intake and hormonal changes can also increase the amount of perspiration your body produces.
Tips for "smelly feet":
Always wear socks with your shoes! Wearing clean cotton or bamboo socks can help with smelly feet. Socks can absorb the sweat and reduce odours. They can also protect your foot from shoe materials which may cause further sweating and blistering. Change your socks regularly to reduce the odours that may linger on your feet or in your shoes (this may mean changing them several times per day! Particularly if you are very active!).
Shoes that allow 'breathability' can help reduce the amount of sweating and moisture your feet experience.
Be conscious of the materials your shoes are made out of. Plastics are almost guaranteed to cause smelly feet. (We often see this issue with teenage girls/young women wearing 'ballet pumps' made out of plastics, who wear the shoe with tights or barefoot - changing the type of shoe and tights to be cotton can improve the situation dramatically!).
3. ALTERNATING SHOES AND SOCKS
It can take 24 hours for a shoe to fully dry out. Therefore allowing shoes to fully dry out between wears can reduce 'smelliness'. Alternate your footwear day to day.
As mentioned earlier, changing your socks and shoes throughout the day can be extremely beneficial.
4. ODOUR REDUCING INSOLES
Pop and odour reducing or antibacterial insole in to your shoe. These are inexpensive and can be purchased at most pharmacies, online or sports shops.
Antibacterial shoe sprays can also help (but don't use instead allowing the shoe to dry out, or instead of wearing socks).
Use a foot file to gentle remove dead skin cells that harbour bacteria. Avoid foot files that look like cheese graters as they are too harsh and can cut the skin. (We recommend paddle files with a gentle, but abrasive surface that looks similar to an emory board. They are inexpensive and easily purchased form pharmacies. (for example the 'smoothing foot file' from boots is great!)
Keep the nails clean and short too!
6. SALT SOAK
Soak the feet in epsom salts for 10 to 15 minutes and ensure to dry them thoroughly!
Prepare a tub of warm water and dissolve half cup of epsom salts in it. Ensure the water is NOT hot and does not scald your skin! This is hugely important for anyone suffering from diabetes or any neuropathy (numbness) of the feet and legs - check the water as carefully as you would for a newborn baby!)
Applying antiperspirant to the feet may help.
8. VISIT A PODIATRIST
If you are still struggling, have thick, discoloured nails or excessive hard skin or cracks in the skin, visit us for an in-depth treatment to get your the right track! We can reduce excessive callous (hard skin), thin thick nails and offer treatments for associated issues such as fungal nails, athletes foot and verrucae.