Smelly feet do not feel good at all. But calling feet odour embarrassing does not exactly do it justice. Anyone can get sweaty feet, regardless of temperature or time of the year. Understand why that odour comes and why your feet sweat?
You are likely to have foot perspiration if you are on your feet all day or you are under a lot of stress or you have a medical condition called hyperhidrosis. Your feet get damp due to sweat and then bacteria start to grow. Feet become smelly if sweat soaks into your shoes and your shoes do not dry before you wear them again. The bacteria continue to breed in once you have taken your shoes off and keep them in a warm, dark or moist place. When you put up the same shoes the next day, even if you have just taken a shower, putting your feet in the same damp shoes will create the perfect conditions for the bacteria to thrive in warm, dark and moist place. Apart from excessive sweating, bad hygiene can also cause your feet to smell bad.
Preventive measures to keep your feet stink-free:
· Hygiene is important. Keep your feet clean. Wash them with antibacterial soap every day. Leave on the soap for a couple of minutes, then wash it off. It will help keep the bacteria in your skin under control. Do not forget to dry them thoroughly after bathing or washing them, since microorganisms thrive in damp skin especially between your toes.
· Exfoliating your feet regularly is also important.
· After bathing use a normal underarm deodorant or antiperspirant on your feet to keep them smelling pleasant.
· If your feet sweat a lot, dab between your toes with cotton balls dipped in surgical spirit after a shower. Surgical spirit helps keep the skin between the toes really sweat-free and stink-free.
· Choose right shoes. Wear leather or canvas shoes as they allow your feet to breathe. You may also wear open-toed sandals in summer.
· Wear different shoes on successive days so that your shoes have at least 24 hours to dry out. Keep rotating your shoes regularly allowing your used shoes to dry and air out properly.
· Change your socks at least once a day. Prefer to wear socks made of breathable material – cotton in summer and woollen in winter. Avoid wearing nylon socks completely. You can also try antibacterial socks to keep your feet fresh and dry.
· Trim your toe nails time to time and keep them short and clean. Remove any hard skin with a foot file because after becoming damp, it provides a perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
Home cures to get rid of stinking feet:
· Apple cider vinegar: The main substance in apple cider vinegar is acetic acid. It can kill harmful bacteria or prevent them from multiplying. It has a history of use as a disinfectant and treating nail fungus. Dilute half cup of apple cider vinegar in three litres of water. Water can either be warm or cold. Dip your feet in this solution for half an hour, then rinse with normal water and pat dry. Repeat daily until you get relief from stinking feet.
· Black tea: Tannic acid in black tea kills odour-causing bacteria and closes pores of the skin. Thus your feet will sweat less. Boil three tablespoons of black tea in a glass of water for 10 to 15 minutes on low flame. Let it cool. Strain it. Dilute it with three litres of water. Soak your feet in this mixture for 30 minutes. Rinse with water. Pat dry. Repeat every day until the smell is gone.
· Epsom salt: This salt pulls moisture out of your skin which in turn makes a less inviting place for bacteria to survive. Take three litres of water. Add one cup of Epsom salt in to it and mix well. Soak your feet for 15 to 20 minutes in this concoction and then wash with water. Dry them thoroughly. Repeat once a day until you get rid of smelly feet.
· Antibacterial cream: These creams help kill bacteria that grow in your skin. Wash your feet before going to bed. Pat dry thoroughly. Apply a thin coat of any antibacterial cream on your feet and give a massage for 5 to 10 minutes. Put on some cotton socks and sleep. In the morning, the bacteria as well as the odour will be gone. You can also rub lavender oil instead of any antibacterial cream. It smells nice and also helps to kill bacteria.
· Lemon juice: Citric acid present in lemon juice kills the bacteria and reduces foot odour. It also contains astringent properties that will shrink your skin pores and help deal with excess sweating. Take half cup of fresh lemon juice and dissolve it in three litres of warm water. Soak your feet in this solution for 15 to 20 minutes, then wash off with water. Pat them dry. Do it every day and keep smelly feet at bay.
· Baking soda: Baking soda neutralises stubborn acidic odours and thus eliminates the bacteria that cause odour in feet. Mix one-third cup of baking soda in three litres of water. Soak your feet in this solution for 15 to 20 minutes. Pat dry with a clean towel. Repeat daily until you get cure of your problem.
Although stinky feet does not cause any harm to your body, however visit a doctor if these home solutions do not work.
These home cures are safe because they are natural.