Summer is coming! Or, depending on where you live, summer is here. In Toronto, where I live, the temperatures are starting to soar. And while I’m so excited for summer BBQs, pool hangouts, and all kinds of summer fun, I am not excited for sweaty feet and stinky shoes.
So in honor of the very hot summer Toronto is forecasted to have, I want to share how to get rid of smelly shoes. And I don’t mean tossing your shoes in the garbage and heading to the store. I mean, we’re talking about how to clean stinky shoes plus a DIY shoe powder recipe to banish foot stank.
And if your shoes are extra stinky, don’t worry. I’m going to go over how to clean Converse shoes, how to clean Crocs, and how to clean flip-flops. Before you know it, your shoes are going to be stink-free.
How to Get Rid of Smelly Shoes: DIY Shoe Powder
If your shoes are just a little smelly, or you’re anticipating a sweaty foot summer, this DIY shoe powder is for you. All you need is:
- ½ cup cornstarch
- ¼ cup baking soda
- ¼ cup baking powder
- 5 drops essential oil (optional)
You’ll also want a container to store it in. I like to label my shoe powder container, so no one mistakes it for a cooking ingredient.
Add all of your ingredients to the container, close the container, and shake to mix. If you like essential oil, shoe powder is a great use for it. The baking soda, powder, and cornstarch work on their own to deodorize your shoes. But if you want to add a nice scent, choose your favorite essential oil.
Personally, I like to add thyme or lavender oil to my DIY shoe powder because I love how they smell, and they both have great odor-fighting properties. And if you’re not familiar with essential oils, you should absolutely read Everything You Need to Know About Cleaning with Essential Oils.
Once you’ve added your essential oil, close and shake your container again. And voila, your own DIY shoe powder. If you’re not a fan of essential oil, skip it. You don’t need it to deodorize.
To use your show powder, sprinkle a pinch in each shoe and tap the shoe at the heel and then at the toe to effectively distribute the powder. You can do this in the morning before putting your shoes on and any time you feel your feet are getting sweaty (read: smelly).
How to Clean Stinky Shoes
If your shoes are a little too ripe to be saved by shoe powder alone, I recommend cleaning your shoes and then adding shoe powder. While this is an extra cleaning step, all shoes need to be cleaned at some point. So refresh your shoes and beat that stink.
Let’s talk about a couple different summer shoes and how to clean them.
How to Clean Converse Shoes
If you own converse shoes, you can actually clean them in the washing machine. Remove the laces and put them in a delicates bag, then put them in the washing machine along with your Converse and a couple of heavy towels or jeans.
Wash the whole load in cold water with a gentle detergent. And if you want an extra deodorizing and brightening boost, add a scoop of oxygen bleach straight into the drum of your washing machine before you start the cycle. Always air dry your converse.
When your Converse are dry and ready to wear, add your DIY shoe powder, and they’ll never be stinky again! For more detailed information on cleaning Converse plus stain removal and cleaning converse rubber, read How to Clean Converse Shoes.
How to Clean Crocs
I know Crocs can be divisive. Are they fashionable? Are they ugly? My vote is fashionable and great for summer. To clean stinky Crocs, all you need is mild dish soap, a microfiber cloth, a cleaning toothbrush, and warm water.
Rinse Crocs under warm water to dislodge loose dirt. Then, soak them in a sink or bucket full of warm water and a teaspoon of dish soap. Soak for at least ten minutes, then rinse under warm water again and use a cleaning toothbrush to scrub any leftover dirt and get into all those hard-to-reach places.
How to Clean Flip-Flops
Lucky for all you flip-flop lovers, they can be washed in the washing machine. Easy-peasy. Toss your flip-flops in the washing machine and choose a delicate, cold water cycle. You need a really minimal amount of detergent here, so don’t overdo it.
Before you start the wash, add one cup of white vinegar directly into your washing machine’s drum. This will eliminate that stanky foot smell. And, like all shoes, let them air dry.
For more info on washing flip-flops and sandals too read, How to Wash Stinky Flip-Flops and Sandals.
How to Get Rid of Smelly Shoes
For shoes that are starting to smell a little ripe, DIY shoe powder is enough. Or, for preventative stink maintenance, choose DIY shoe powder. If your shoes are dirty or particularly stinky, give them a good clean, and then start using DIY shoe powder.
Smelly feet are embarrassing and a little gross. But now you can enjoy a wonderful stink-free summer. At least when it comes to your own feet, I can’t speak for all those people around you. Now I’m going to go throw some shoe powder in my sandals and sit by the pool!