We’ve all experienced those those extra-hot days where we’ve taken our shoes off only to gasp at the odor. For many people, smelly feet — medically known as bromodosis — is a more regular inconvenience. In fact, a 2012 study of men and women aged 21 and up by the Institute for Preventative Foot Health showed that 16 percent (roughly 36 million people), suffer from the malodorous condition.
But stinky tootsies shouldn’t get to a point where it causes you embarrassment or keeps you from enjoying your life! There are dozens of products on the market that can curb foot and shoe odor so you can get back to more important things.
What causes feet to stink?
Everyone sweats — some more than others — but it only starts to smell when the moisture becomes trapped in your socks and shoes, leading to an overgrowth growth of bacteria or fungus. These bacteria eat your dead skin cells and digest your sweat before releasing a foul-smelling gas —the culprit behind your foot odor.
How to Get Rid of Smelly Feet
Now that you know what’s behind that foul smell, it’s time to get rid of it. There are several measures you can take to minimize the stench, beginning with prevention. Wearing moisture-wicking fabrics that allow your sweat to evaporate is a great first step you can take toward thwarting foot funk. Another is to opt for breathable shoes, which perform the same function.
You can also wash your feet with a good antibacterial soap ($14.95, Amazon) can help you put your best sweat-free foot forward.
To ensure you have a stink-free spring — and summer! — we’ve rounded up the best products for foot odor, from antiperspirant wipes to foot soaks, that will prevent you from ever having to plug your nose post shoe removal again.
Keep scrolling to shop FIRST for Women’s picks for the best products for smelly feet!
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Best Soap for Smelly Feet
Where to buy: $14.95, Amazon
Ensuring that your feet are clean — and we mean really clean — is a crucial step toward preventing funky foot odors. Remedy Wash's all-natural, antifungal soap contains tea tree oil, mint, and aloe vera to combat stubborn fungal and bacterial infections that can cause stinky feet. It also simultaneously moisturizes dry, itchy, irritated skin. Use this on your dogs or any other areas that may be in need of a more thorough clean, such as the underarms.
Best Foot Soak for Smelly Feet
FineVine Organics Tea Tree Oil Foot Soak
Where to buy: $15.97, Amazon
FineVine's organic tea tree oil foot soak is a natural remedy for foot odor thanks to its antifungal properties. Not only will its antibacterial ingredients — eucalyptus, peppermint, cajuput, camphor, rosemary, and lavender — wash away unpleasant odors, they'll also soothe and soften tired feet. According to one reviewer, it also has the added bonus of helping to clear up toenail fungus.
Best Foot Powder for Foot Odor
Foot Sense Foot and Shoe Powder
Where to buy: From $13.78, Amazon
Foot Sense's all-natural foot and shoe powder will kill the odor-causing bacteria that hang out in your sneakers and stink up the house. Simply sprinkle it in your shoes every day for a few days to activate its moisture-absorbing arrowroot and zinc oxide powder. Eventually, you'll reach a point where you need to use it only once or twice per month to neutralize shoe stink.
Best Foot Spray for Smelly Feet
Lotrimin Deodorant Powder Spray
Where to buy: $19.32 (Originally $21.99), Amazon
Athlete's foot is a common fungal infection that appears on the skin between the toes that's often caused by excessively sweaty feet. Having an antifungal spray on hand — like Lotrimin's deodorant powder spray — provides fast relief from the odor and itching commonly associated with this condition. This fast-acting spray sops up sweat, so your feet stay bacteria-, fungus-, and athlete's foot-free.
Best Shoe Deodorizer Spray
Lumi Outdoors Spray
Where to buy: $12.95, Amazon
This natural shoe deodorizer spray from Lumi Outdoors employs natural essential oils, such as tea tree, to eliminate any unpleasant odors that may be emanating from your shoes. Users love its zingy lemon eucalyptus scent so much, they also use it as an air freshening spray in the bathroom, kitchen, and anywhere else that needs a burst of freshness.
"Even with the great reviews, I was convinced there was no way this would touch the stank in my son's shoes," wrote one buyer. "One soak in this stuff and the smell was GONE! ... He's been wearing the newly revived demon shoes for a week at summer camp, spraying every day before he puts them on, smell is still GONE. Completely!"
Best Lotion for Smelly Feet
Carpe Antiperspirant Foot Lotion
Where to buy: $14.95, Amazon
We're all familiar with lotion for your body, but what about for your feet? Carpe's antiperspirant foot lotion is a fantastic option for those with hyperhidrosis — a condition that affects millions of people and causes excessive sweating, according to the International Hyperhidrosis Society. Simply rub a pea-sized amount of this hydrating formula and allow its active ingredient of aluminum sesquichlorohydrate (an aluminum salt used in many deodorants to temporarily block sweat ducts) and soothing eucalyptus oil to get work on the soles of your feet.
Best Foot Deodorant
Lavilin Bio Balance Foot Deodorant Cream
Where to buy: $16.94 (Originally $17.50), Amazon
While this deodorant cream won't prevent you from sweating, it does offer up superior odor control. What sets Lavilin apart from its competitors is that you can enjoy seven odor-free days after just one application. Yes, you read that right — Lavilin's formula will protect you from your own foot stench for a whole week, even through showers, baths, and strenuous exercises.
"I've had horrible foot odor for years ... and hundreds of shoes ended up thrown away when the smell became unbearable and I could no longer wear them. ... I have tried all sorts of remedies — foot creams, tea baths, natural treatments, medicinal creams, if it's out there, I've tried it. Nothing worked for long. Now I've been using this for about a month, and it's incredible. I would not believe it if I had not experienced it myself. My feet have NO SMELL, for a full six DAYS, MY FEET DO NOT SMELL. ... This cream is incredible."
Best Foot Wipes
Sweat Block Antiperspirant Wipes
Where to buy: $19.99, Amazon
Antiperspirant wipes, like these sheets from Sweat Block, are a must-have if you're sick of always being sweaty. Though they'e marketed for use on your underarms, many users say you can use them on your feet, too, with fabulous results. In fact, each one can help control your sweat for up to seven days. You can also toss them in your purse to use on-the-go.
Best Insoles for Sweaty Feet
HappyStep Barefoot Insoles
Where to buy: $15.99, Amazon
If you wear shoes without socks on a near daily basis, you'll know how icky the insides of your shoes can get. The solution? HappyStep's cotton insoles. These guys are designed to absorb sweat and moisture, as well as control odor, all while cushioning and supporting your feet. Each pack comes with two pairs, so you'll always have fresh insoles to use when the other is in the wash.
Best Shoe Deodorizer
Marsheepy Charcoal Bags
Where to buy: $14.98, Amazon
Stocking up on shoe deodorizer bag, which can be placed inside your shoe to soak up excess sweat, is always a good idea. These ones from Marsheepy are made from a moisture-wicking bamboo and linen. They also have charcoal inside, which is known for drawing out impurities and neutralizing odors. Shoe deodorizer bags are an eco-friendly cleaning option, as they last up to two years: Just remember to place them in direct sunlight at least once a month so the sun's UV rays can activate the charcoal's smell-busting properties.
Best Shoe Dryer
Kooder Boot Dryer
Where to buy: $14.44 (Originally $16.99), Amazon
Wet shoes are a breeding ground for bacteria — and that's where a shoe dryer comes in handy. Kooder's boot dryer — a No. 1 best-seller on Amazon — provides even, long-lasting heat so that every bit of moisture left inside your kicks evaporates. Simply insert the rod in your shoes or work boots and let this little guy get to work.