I think I have made it fairly obvious in the year and 9 months I’ve been writing this blog that I’m not afraid to “overshare” when necessary. :-) So if we had a problem with stinky feet in this house, I wouldn’t be afraid to tell you. The funny thing is….despite living with all “boys” in this house…we really don’t. Well at least I don’t think we do. I’ve never had an overly-sensitive nose, so I guess I could just be missing the stink. But anyway, even though we don’t have a huge problem with this, I have had quite a few people email asking for help! So I am going to try my darnedest to do just that!
My mother-in-law told me once that she and her sisters would put “Stinky Pinky’s” inside their boys’ stinky athletic shoes. I remember laughing at that. Stinky Pinky’s! lol! I actually looked up Stinky Pinky’s online today and the only thing I came up with was this advertisement from a 1987 magazine:
Can you believe that? $19.00 for three pairs! That’s a lot of money…especially in 1987. :-) But as silly as the name was, or how ridiculously priced they were…the idea was a solid one.
The ad says, “Just put a Stinky Pinky “sock” in each shoe and overnight odor is gone, absorbed by the special blend of all natural earth materials.”
Well, I decided to come up with my OWN “special blend of all natural earth materials” and make my own Stinky Pinky’s. Are you ready for this?
How To Make Your Own Stinky Pinky’s
You will need:
- an old pair of nylons/pantyhose/tights (even an old sock would do)
- baking soda
- essential oil (optional)
- some string or twine (I used my homemade T-shirt yarn)
Cut the “foot” off of a pair of nylons or tights, fill with baking soda, add a few drops of your favorite essential oil, tie the top closed some string or twine, place in shoe.
You can also make one out of the “leg” of the nylons by tying both the top and the bottom.
Here are some other Homemade Remedies for Stinky Shoes and Feet (although it’s going to be hard to beat the Stinky Pinky’s!)
- Using the same idea as above, but substitute the baking soda for kitty litter or coffee grounds.
- Sprinkle Your Shoes. After removing your shoes for the day, sprinkle 1 tablespoon of baking soda into each shoe. Leave overnight then in the morning tap shoes over a trash can to remove excess before wearing.
- Newspaper. No powder, no problem. Stuff the shoes with newspaper to dry them out.
- Rotating Shoes. If you can, alternate shoes on a daily basis so that you don’t wear the same pair two days in a row. Loosen the laces and pull up the tongue on the pair you’re not wearing, and let them dry out in the sunshine.
- Vinegar. Soak your feet several times a week in an apple cider or plain vinegar bath. Mix 1/3 cup vinegar into a bowl of warm water. Soak for 10 to 15 minutes. Or, an alternative is to wipe out the shoes with hydrogen peroxide or vinegar and then let them dry.
- Black tea. Soak tootsies in black tea. Tannic acid, a component of tea, is thought to have astringent properties that prevent feet from perspiring. To make a foot-tea soak, brew 5 bags black tea in 1 quart boiling water. Let cool, and soak feet for 20 to 30 minutes. Afterwards, most people only have to repeat this maybe once or twice monthly. You can do the same thing for sweaty palms. The tannins have a drying effect and also kill the odor causing bacteria.
- Hot and Cold. Alternate foot baths of hot and cold water to help reduce blood flow to your feet and reduce perspiration. After soaking in a hot foot bath, dip them into a second foot bath containing cold water, ice cubes, and 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon juice. Try this dual treatment once a day, especially in warmer months.
- Salt. Add table salt or Epsom salts to water for a foot soak. Pour a few teaspoons of salt into a tub of warm water. Soak for ten minutes.
General Tips For Better-Smelling Feet:
Good Socks. Wear socks that let your feet breathe. If possible, change your socks at least once during the day, and don’t wear the same pair two days in a row without laundering them.
Open Shoes. Choose shoes such as sandals whenever possible, because they allow air onto the feet, which helps evaporate sweat and slows the growth of odor-causing bacteria. If sandals aren’t an option, choose shoes made of natural materials like leather or canvas shoes, which allow your feet to breathe and dry out.
Wash Well. Sweaty feet combined with bacteria make for foul-smelling feet. Washing with deodorant soap (and drying well) will prevent this.
Eat Wisely. Avoid strong-flavored foods such as garlic, onions, scallions, and peppers, because the substances that give them their powerful flavor and aroma can pass through the bloodstream and eventually concentrate in your sweat.
Keep Calm. Stress and anxiety increase production of sweat, giving bacteria even more to feed on.
Then there’s MY favorite cure for smelly feet…..just GO BAREFOOT! Growing up in Southern California I was always barefoot, much to my mother’s chagrin! But I never had stinky feet! And you can’t argue with that. :-)