Have you ever removed your shoes in the midst of others and they blocked their nose in disgust? Embarrassing as that might seem, it might interest you to know that smelly feet is very common and can easily be treated.
What Causes Smelly Feet?
Just like most parts of our body, our feet have sweat glands. This explains why we sweat on our feet. Interestingly, your feet have more sweat glands than any other part of the body.
The truth is; sweat is not responsible for the foul smell. There are bacteria on the skin of your feet. When these bacteria mix up with sweat, your feet begin to smell. This is because sweat contains proteins and amino acids on which the bacteria feed on.
Smelly feet however don’t have to make you worried because it is easy to treat. All you need is a better personal hygiene.
Take Good Care Of Your Feet
It is quite easy to neglect your feet. Your feet deserve good skin care. The beauty of it is that you don’t need expensive skin care products to do so. Here are some simple but effective tips:
Wash your feet
This might seem very simple but it is very effective. A clean skin leaves little room for bacteria. Be sure to scrub your feet. Do not forget your toes and the spaces in between them.
A Foot file or Pumice stone at home is very necessary. While washing your feet, use the Foot file to scrape off hard and dry skin from under your feet.
Keep your feet dry
If your feet are not moist or sweaty, the bacteria have nothing to feed on. So, be sure to dry your feet well after washing. As much as you can, ensure that your feet is dry at all times.
Let your feet breathe
You need to stay away from shoes as often as possible. This is so your feet can breathe. Shoes are enclosed and give little room for the circulation of air. Whenever you are at home, do not wear shoes.
Even when you are in the office, remove the shoes from your feet whenever you are alone. The more your feet breathe, the less they smell.
Antiperspirants are not only useful for under arms, they also help to reduce the foul smell on your feet. Whether it is a stick or spray, rub it on your feet.
However, do not wear shoes immediately you use an antiperspirant. Since they are usually moist, they might make your feet slippery. Moreover, moist feet in shoes usually lead to smelly feet.
So, let the antiperspirant dry out.
Some people find it hard to wear socks. Some find it unfashionable. Socks are there for a reason. They help to absorb moisture from your skin. Without sweat for bacteria to feed on, your feet don’t smell. Wearing socks should not be a fashion statement, it is a necessity.
Also, wear socks made from breathable and natural fibers like cotton, lycra etc. They absorb moisture and reduce foul smell. Socks made out of synthetic fibers like nylon retain sweat on your feet. This gives room for bacteria to explore.
Do not wear a sock twice without washing
Simply put, change your socks every day. Do not wear unwashed socks. Socks absorb sweat and sweat is caused by heat. Dirty socks smell when they come in contact with heat. They also give bacteria a lot to feed on.
Make foot baths
Foot baths are very necessary. Not only do they help to reduces smell and keep your skin fresh, they give a soothing feeling. You could make foot baths with tea leaves or oils.
Tea leaves contain tannins, which help to absorb moisture and reduce sweating. Add four tablespoon of tea in three liters of warm water. Dip your feet in and let them soak for twenty minutes.
Lavender oil could also be used for foot baths. It reduces smell and gives your feet a nice fragrance. Add three drops of oil into three liters of water and let your feet soak in for twenty minutes.
Foot baths could be made daily.
Take Good Care of Your Shoes.
Your shoes play a great role in determining whether or not your feet smells. This is why they should be properly taken care of. Below are some tips that should help.
Wash your shoes regularly
Make sure to wash your shoes as often as you can. A good scrub removes dry sweat, stains and gets rid of the foul smell. Since shoes are enclosed, there is a lot of heat generated within. Smelly shoes trigger smelly feet.
Store your shoes properly
The main idea is to keep your shoes dry. Ensure that you do not store your shoes in enclosed areas with little or no ventilation. Avoid putting them in bags, boxes or enclosed containers. Just as your feet need fresh air, so also do your shoes.
Alternate your shoes
You should have at least two pairs of shoes so you do not have to wear the same shoe always. Your shoes need to be aired out regularly. So after wearing one, the next day wear the other. This gives each shoe enough time to dry properly.
Wear open-toe shoes
This kind of shoe allows air to circulate within the shoes and around your feet. Even when your feet get sweaty, the sweat evaporates easily because of constant airflow. Tight shoes should be avoided. They do not only cramp your toes, they make your feet really sweaty.
Do not wear shoes that generate heat
No matter how fashionable they might seem, plastic shoes are not good for the feet. Avoid shoes that have rubber soles. They generate heat and make you sweat more. Also, shoes made with nylon lining are not healthy for your feet.
Smelly feet can easily be an issue of the past. The key is to keep your feet and shoes clean and dry at all times. Make sure to pay special attention to your feet and soon, your feet would not only smell nice, it would glow.