How to Deal with Smelly Boots

We’ve had a lot of wet weather up where I live, and my boots have taken a lot of abuse the last little while. City sidewalks are full of puddles and salt and all sorts of muck, and I almost stepped in some dog poop this morning. I took my boots off earlier and was met with the familiar smell of damp and stinky boots, so I’m taking care of that right now before they get any worse. The last thing I want is to have to deal with fungal infections, and I really like my boots so I don’t want them to die any faster than they have to. Here are a few tips to deal with smelly boots if you have them, and the sooner you deal with them the better.

Use Tea Bags

I am a tea fiend, so I always have some black tea bags in my cupboard. Brew a cup of black tea for yourself using a tea bag, but make sure not to use any sugar or milk– you want a black cup of tea! Let the tea steep for a few minutes, and then remove the tea bag and let it cool for a minute or two. Then, put the still-damp tea bag in your boots and let it stay there for a couple of hours before throwing it away. Tea has tannins, molecules that are great for dealing with the organic sources of odour in boots.

Use Dryer Sheets

If you don’t have a lot of time to dedicate to making your boots less stinky, and can only air them out to dry, consider using dryer sheets between treatments. If you pop in a dryer sheet into each of your boots before wearing them, they’ll help cut down on odour and moisture throughout the day.

Use Vinegar

In a spray bottle, mix together a cup each of white vinegar and water. Everyone knows that vinegar has incredible antibacterial properties, and diluting it makes it safe to use on most fabrics. Spray the insoles and the mesh lining of your boots (think twice if your boots are made of leather), and let the boots air dry. Most odour should disappear by the next morning, but if not, repeat the process the next night.

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