If your kid is anything like mine, she lives in her sandals all summer. KEEN’s, if you really must know. KEENs rock as the ultimate outdoor shandal for kids. Easy to put on and comfortable to wear on a boat, the beach, out to dinner and out to hike. It protects tiny toes from stubbing on rocks or sliding out of the shoe altogether when she runs and kids love wearing them (3/4 the battle when it comes to wearing shoes). In fact, all three of us wear KEENs religiously.
The problem is that after a few days of constant wear they wreak. The smell is so bad that I won’t let Sage take them off because the odor about knocks me out. Her feet somehow block the putrid scent from wafting beyond the soles. But when she does kick them off, look out.
KEEN uses an antimicrobial material but not in the neoprene that’s used in the straps so the smell is a tough issue for many moms. Not much works when it comes to my daughter’s (and boyfriend’s) sweaty feet.
The rubber soles are like Petri dishes for bacteria and fungus to work their magic producing that stank. If you don’t keep up on regular washings, the odor can be unbearable.
Normally, I’ll take the shandels and shove them in the dishwasher on the ‘pots and pans’ cycle. This extreme measure works but can dull the color of your shoes. Plus, it takes them a day or two to dry out. Recently I came across some alternate solutions that really do work.
Add one more thing to the list of useful purposes this handy white powder performs. Cover the soles with baking soda, leave overnight, shake it out in the morning and toss in the washing machine- cold water, gentle cycle, mild detergent. You still may experience fading and longer drying periods, however. Don’t throw them in the dryer unless you’re prepared to have them tighten up around your feet.
You can run a slightly more complicated experiment by sprinkling the baking soda inside each damp shoe after washing and spraying them down with a 50/50 blend of vinegar and water. Don’t forget the inside uppers. Let sit for about 30 minutes, rinse and air dry.
Grab a dryer sheet, wipe all around the inside of the shoe, then stuff it in and leave it overnight. Rub down your feet with hand sanitizer before putting the shoes on and you should be good to go for a couple of days.
These suggestions may not work for everyone but I’m sure there are other ideas out there and I would love to hear them! Please share your cure for stinky feet.