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How To Get Rid of Stinky Feet

It's true! Your Buddy used to have incredibly stinky feet. I solved the problem over 30 years ago. It has never recurred. I can kick off my boots and recline in the livingroom without a single complaint or object being thrown at me. If you have a foot-odor problem, I have the solution.

I have to go back 30 years and begin at the beginning. I also have to warn you that the solution is something that I could never get anyone to take seriously. I've researched this problem on the internet and seen some bizarre solutions such as a concoction using banana peels, anti-bacterial scrubs, etc. They might work. I know mine works.

When I was a teen I was athletic, and got athlete's foot. I got it so bad I had to go to the doctor, because besides the infuriating itching, the athlete's foot was causing my feet to crack open. It was gross. He gave me some cream that I had to goop on my feet at night, and then put plastic bags on my feet and put my socks on over that. Then I had to sleep that way. In addition, my feet were itchy all night. But this method cured the athlete's foot.

The doctor knew what worked and had proven it, so when I went for the follow-up visit I asked him about how to cure my foot-odor problem. He suggested it was a good time to tackle that problem and outlined how to do it.

He explained that there are all different types of bacteria on our skin at all times. Some bacteria cause foot odor, some don't. When we scrub our feet clean, we dislodge the good bacteria, but the foot-odor-causing bacteria are either better at staying on our skin, or quicker at colonizing after a scrub, than the good bacteria.

I asked, "So what should I do, Doc?"

He said flatly, "Don't call me Doc."

I blushed, as I was prone to do in my teens.

He contined, "Don't scrub your feet. When you get in the shower, ignore your feet. The soap and shampoo you use to wash the rest of your body will flow over your feet. That's enough to keep them clean. The good bacteria can then replace the bad bacteria."

I went home and took his advice. I had been taking two showers a day, one in the morning and one after wrestling practice. I stopped with the aggressive foot-scrubbing, and learned that less is sometimes more. I made sure I had clean socks and shoes and in a few weeks, my feet didn't stink, (and the athlete's foot didn't come back either). That was decades ago.

(As I get older I wonder how many slip and fall accidents that happen in the shower are because someone is standing on one foot and scrubbing the other with both hands.)


When I was first married, my mother-in-law, God rest her soul, would get home from her shift as a nurse and sit in her recliner and kick off her white shoes. A wave of pungent odor would spread throughout the room.

Thank goodness we were just visiting for a few days. Everyone would politely and silently get up and have to go somewhere. Mom-in-law would tell us all to enjoy whatever it was that was so pressing. I think she wanted peace and quiet and control of the remote. She had to have known. No wonder her wallpaper was peeling.

As I sat huddled around the picnic table on the back porch with my new in-laws, refugees from the horrendous odor, we discussed the problem. They told me she uses a foot odor spray, tons of it. She runs her work shoes through the washer once a week. She's always scrubbing her feet. She does her best and has to be on her feet all day in those nurse's shoes.

I said I had the answer, and gave it to them straight, like the doctor had given it to me. Everyone said, "Eeoooh! That's gross! You don't wash your feet?" I came in for some ridicule. I insisted that my doctor's solution worked. I insisted my feet don't stink and their mom's did, regardless of who scrubs their feet and how often.

It was a rift that never healed. No one would dare advise her on this matter. It certainly wasn't my place. Until her death, my M.I.L. always had the stinkiest feet I have ever smelled. But she had such a sweet spirit that when we'd visit it became a familiar smell, and could bring back many happy memories, which I liked to pondered while I sat at the picnic table. Life is so incredibly odd.

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So, given that life is odd and other methods haven't cured your stinky feet or those of someone you have to live with, try the one the doctor gave me. Good Luck!


© 2009 Buddy Watchman


listens on November 06, 2011:

soak feet in baking soda

Kelly on September 14, 2010:

Well, I never washed my feet- just let the fallen shampoo/soap do the job like you, but starting about 2-3 years ago (in my mid-twenties) they starting stinking to high-heaven. It's horrible.

lilly_dens on March 10, 2010:

there's no harm in trying though ^^

Buddy Watchman (author) from Townsend Delaware on February 16, 2010:

It's true! I just smelled 'em to make sure, Jeniferr. Still don't stink...

Jeniferr from United States on February 15, 2010:

Hmmm, very intersting hub. I'm a bit skeptical though. You never wash your feet and they don't smell?

jamie on November 22, 2009:

i kant belive that not washing works! i come home from PE and i can smell my feet when im standing up! im eating healthy, drinking loads of water, but nothing works! here's a tip to everyone: DO NOT PUT BABY POWDER IN UR SOCKS! IT WILL JUST STICK TO UR FEET WITH THE SWEAT! i also heard about putting epsom salt on ur feet, if that helps at all, i haven't tried it yet, but trust me, IM GONNA TRY EVERYTHING I CAN! i also heard about soaking urfeet in 2 bags of black tea

frogyfish from Central United States of America on April 28, 2009:

Really cool story, but I just have to keep washing my feet! When I found out I was low in zinc, and corrected that, my barely stinky feet(comparatively) no longer smelled. How's that too! Thanks for sharing.

goldentoad from Free and running.... on April 17, 2009:

I'm every inch of my being smells like cayenne pepper

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