How to Clean Smelly Sneakers

Ten Methods:Soap and WaterBaking SodaPerfumeOdor EatersTeabagsWashing MachineIsopropyl Alcohol SprayWhile Wearing ThemDryer SheetPaper Towels

You are getting changed after sport and, without warning, everyone in the room moves away from you. You wonder why until you catch a whiff of a disgusting smell which seems to be coming from your shoes. This embarrassment does not need to occur every time you take off your shoes, however. Just start with Step 1 below to learn how you can get rid of the smell once and for all.

Method 1
Soap and Water

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    Wash your sneakers by hand. Take a bit of soap and water and scrub them down. Then, using a hair dryer and towel, dry them off. Be sure to scrub carefully so that you don't damage the shoe.
    • Consider using bleach to help. Reserve this for sneakers that won't be damaged or lose color from the bleach.

Method 2
Baking Soda

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    Put a bit of baking soda into the sneakers. Let them sit overnight. When you wake up, the smell will be gone!

Method 3
Perfume

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    Use shoe/perfume sprays.
    • Simply spray your shoes with some perfume to mask any traces of odour left in the shoe.
    • Even better, buy some special shoe spray. This can actually get rid of the smell, whereas the perfume just masks it.

Method 4
Odor Eaters

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    Try Odor Eaters. They can be bought at shoe stores and any Walmart, they are very cheap and work well!
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    Soak your sneakers and insoles in a vinegar solution. Use about 2 cups of vinegar in 8 liters (2.1 US gal) of water, and let them soak for an hour. Put something heavy on the sneakers to make sure that they are submerged. Let them dry.
    • Stuffing the toes with paper towel or newspaper can help maintain their shape while they dry.

Method 5
Teabags

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    Use teabags. If you drink tea using teabags, don't throw them away after use! Wash them up under running tap water, dry them up and stuff a few of these into the toe area of the sneakers and put them up at least overnight. No more odors guaranteed. Tea leaves are excellent moisture absorbers.

Method 6
Washing Machine

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    Consider putting your shoes in the washer. For inexpensive shoes or shoes almost beyond hope, put them in the washer and wash with towels. Add OxiClean or other non-chlorine additive to the soap to help sanitize. Air dry or dry on low heat.
    • If you were going to throw them away anyway, it's worth the effort. They may seem tight the first time you put them back on but will stretch into shape quickly.

Method 7
Isopropyl Alcohol Spray

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    Use 50% Isopropyl Alcohol / 50% water solution. Douse the shoes in the alcohol.
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    Let dry overnight. Any fungus or odor-causing bacteria left in the shoes will be dead and therefore not smelly, by morning.

Method 8
While Wearing Them

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    When wearing your sneakers, wear good, clean socks and never go barefoot.
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    Wash your feet regularly before and after sport.
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    Try having two pairs of shoes and alternating between them.
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    Use foot powder or spray on your feet regularly.

Method 9
Dryer Sheet

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    Take a dryer sheet.
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    Rip it into two halves.
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    Put one half into one shoe and other into the other shoe.
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    Leave in until the next wear. The dryer sheets will absorb the odors. Dispose of after each use.

Method 10
Paper Towels

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    Take a large paper towel.
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    Put some soap and water on it.
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    Crumple it up, and stuff inside of the shoes.
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    Leave overnight.

Tips

  • Order new insoles from the company and replace as instructions indicate.
  • If you just can't seem to clean them, get some new ones.
  • Try leaving baking soda in your shoes overnight.
  • Put the tea bags as far in the shoe as you can for best results.
  • Try using odor eaters from sports stores.
  • Sunlight does wonders as well. After washing, sprinkle liberally with baking soda and run into the insole. Set the shoes out in the sun and wait until they are dry.

Warnings

  • Always check with your parents before throwing away shoes.
  • Bad foot hygiene can result in problems such as athlete's foot.

Things You'll Need

  • Baking soda
  • Soap
  • Water
  • Sneakers
  • Money
  • Perfume/shoe spray
  • Socks
  • Foot spray
  • Paper Towels


Article Info

Categories: Running for Fitness | Care of Shoes