Let’s face it. Foot odor can happen to anyone, whether we are wearing boots, runners, or flip-flops. But wearing the wrong socks isn’t helping anything. That’s especially true if your socks are always getting sweaty. A trip to the gym or hot weather doesn’t have to mean inescapable foot odor. Here’s what toavoid when buying socks because the wrong socks canadd to the foot odor problem in a big way.
Once you’ve built great daily habits into your routine, it’s time to set out for the right socks. The first and best rule is to avoid cotton. Cotton socks hold moisture and keep feet wet. This can make foot odor worse. It’s tough to avoid cotton. Most packs of inexpensive socks are cotton, selected for comfort. They’re lightweight and retain heat in cooler weather. But heat retention without allowing for evaporation is the reason most people end up with foot odor. Cotton fibers absorb and hold onto moisture and bacteria. And if you don’t use strong enough detergent, bacteria can remain in those cotton fibers, picking up where they left off the moment you go for your daily run. Too much strong detergent can also be irritating. Your best bet is to leave the cotton out of your wardrobe.
Many wicking materials that keep moisture away from the skin are synthetic based or polyester derivatives. But other synthetics are a problem. In general, stay away from regular old polyester. Yes, it’s easy to clean. It’s durable and quick-drying. It’s strong and wrinkle resistant. And it’s more breathable and absorbent than fabrics like nylon. However, it’s also one of those fabrics that can hold onto the heat, and over time as the material becomes worn, it can harbor bacteria, even after washing. Inexpensive nylon that hasn’t been treated with modern antibacterial technology just won’t perform the same as other, more advanced fabrics.
Foot odor is caused by bacteria that like to feast on dead skin and other organic material in dark, moist places, like between our toes and around dry, cracked skin. There are some things everyone struggling with foot odor should do.
For example, keeping feet clean and always wear clean socks. If your socks got wet, so did the insides of your shoes. Don’t stuff them in your gym bag and leave them in the trunk. Air them out and let them dry completely before getting them wet the next day.
Using an all-natural odor neutralizer likeFoot Sense should be an everyday habit. If you’re dealing with sweaty socks and shoes, chances are you’re a runner, athlete, or a regular at the gym. For regular sweaty sock problems, tryRunner’s Feet all-natural foot and shoe powder specially designed to prevent bacterial build-up in socks and shoes. Go for some charcoal insoles. They’re inexpensive and, while they aren’t a replacement for the solutions mentioned above, they are an additional option to combat bacterial growth. Activated charcoal is an antibacterial and a deodorizer that won’t keep your feet dry, but can help shoes dry more quickly.
Use liner socks. If you are going for a certain look or rely on synthetics and cotton while at work, a pair of liner socks can help. They are thin, lightweight socks designed for comfort. Hikers use them to avoid hot spots and blisters. Liner socks are often one of those polyester derivatives that are treated and designed to wick away sweat and moisture. You can also find wool blends that won’t itch or irritate, like traditional wool. Wear them inside your day-to-day socks to help keep moisture away from the skin. By reducing moisture, they’ll keep the skin from softening and breaking down, giving bacteria that organic material to feed upon.
Once you’ve tossed your cotton socks, purchased Foot Sense all natural powder, and tried liners or charcoal insoles, you’re ready to buy some tech socks specially designed to help eliminate foot odor. Check out our next article on How to Avoid Foot Odor By Choosing the Right Socks.