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Rid me of my smelly shoes...please?
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Apr 11, 2008
Taylors Falls also has some White Water Kayaking
For the past year I have been using a new pair of velcro climbing shoes but over that time they began to stink horribly. I tried using Febreze, scrubbing the inside, and some gold-bond to make it smell better. Sadly, nothing works to rid the shoe of the odors.

The shoes are great climbing shoes, and I would get another pair in a second if it wasn't for the smell. I had read reviews before I bought the shoe that some people experienced the same smell issues (because of the material used), but I couldn't resist the other positive feedback on the shoe and the price at the time.

Does anyone know how to get such smells out of shoes? I could just stop being so smelly, but that seems too difficult. :)
Matthew Prom
From West Saint Paul, MN
Joined Mar 18, 2008
60 points
Apr 11, 2008
rrg
Let me guess...are they Galileos? Mine are the same way. Can't get rid of the smell either. Peter L K
From Cincinnati, OH
Joined Jul 17, 2007
52 points
Apr 11, 2008
View of Longs Peak from Mt. Alice, RMNP
One thing that has worked fairly well for me is to leave several scented dryer sheets in the shoes after you climb. Depending on the strength of your foot odor, this may not work since you tried all those other things. Odor Eaters maybe?? Jeremy Monahan
From Fort Fun, CO
Joined May 18, 2002
477 points
Apr 11, 2008
J TREE
Don't stuff your shoes into your pack a the end of the day, let them stay on the outside to air/dry out... Jim Amidon
Joined Jun 12, 2001
927 points
Apr 11, 2008
Finishing up Elusive Dream at the King Wall.  Adir...
Freeze them...no, REALLY! Stick them in the freezer next to your Fudgecicles for a few hours and SHA-BAM!, stench is gone! The low temperature kills bacteria that causes odor. Chris Duca
From Havertown, PA
Joined Dec 16, 2006
2,312 points
Administrator
Apr 11, 2008
Green Monster  Photo by Thomas Holmes.
Until recently, my number one shoes were Evolv Demortos (sadly, they are too beat up for their third resole). I believe Demortos is Latin for "smells of small, dead animals."

Anyway, I tried a "sport" spray that worked a little bit, but required soaking the shoes and left them smelling of chemicals covering up small, dead animals.

The one thing that really worked was soaking the shoes in a mixture of rubbing alcohol and water, followed by washing them several times in the sink with Woolite. After that treatment, the shoes didn't smell at all. Of course, after a few weeks of use they were back to their old stinky selves, so repeated washing is probably the only real answer.

I suspect that as long as the shoe material is synthetic that the alcohol/water soak followed by washing with soap won't damage the shoes.

BTW, my shoes always hang on the outside of my pack. With synthetics, letting them dry quickly only helps a little.
Perin Blanchard
From Orem, UT
Joined Oct 1, 2005
8,434 points
Apr 11, 2008
The Cathedral Spires in RMNP, left to right: Stile...
Jeremy Monahan wrote:
One thing that has worked fairly well for me is to leave several scented dryer sheets in the shoes after you climb.


Do you find that this leaves a greasy residue in your shoes? I've never tried it, but it seems that if your shoes were exposed to any warm temps the dryer sheets would discharge their active ingredients into the inside of the shoe.

I'll second Duca's solution; I've heard that works well also. I wonder if a UV light would work also, by the same token...?

--Marc
Marc H
From Lafayette, CO
Joined May 10, 2007
280 points
Apr 11, 2008
I had an old stinky pair of Newtons, and I tried the following:

1. freezing them.
2. baking soda.
3. washing with soap in the bathtub.
4. leaving them to bake in the sun.
5. putting dryer sheets in them.

None of these remedies worked. They would cut the stench for a little while, but next time I worked up a good sweat in them it would return.
caughtinside
From Oakland CA
Joined Nov 21, 2006
1,896 points
Apr 11, 2008
Rx Burn
I haven't tried it on my climbing shoes yet, but for my boxing gloves I put regular foot powder in after each workout. An old sock full of cedar chips (hamster bedding style) stuffed in each glove has also helped. I have found the cedar chips I change out on a fairly regular basis - but it's cheap and easy. denise 911
From fort collins, co
Joined Jan 28, 2008
234 points
Apr 11, 2008
wham bam hand jam. Wrapping up the final moves of ...
what works for me is to wash my feet before i wear them Darren Mabe
From Flagstaff, AZ
Joined Dec 12, 2002
3,729 points
Apr 11, 2008
Taylors Falls also has some White Water Kayaking
Wow, those are all some great and creative ideas. Thank you for the help! I will probably cycle through each method and see what works best.

I will start off by taking a shower at least once a month and see if that helps (kidding!).

The shoes I am using now are the Evolv Defys. Like I said, great shoe except the smell. I think instead of leather they are some sort of leather look-and-feel-a-like material.

Thanks again!
Matthew Prom
From West Saint Paul, MN
Joined Mar 18, 2008
60 points
Apr 11, 2008
If there's room in your shoes, you could try a thin pair of socks. That's helped me a lot. flynn
Joined Feb 9, 2002
86 points
Apr 11, 2008
on lead, Mean Green Cody,WY
I had major issues with my mythos. I found a product online that worked amazing. I used it on my new pair from day 1 and they smell better than i do (not that hard). it is called "on your toes" and is footodor.net.
just sprinkle a little bit in your shoes every few months. great stuff.
failing this, consult an exorcist!
timt
From Wheat Ridge, CO
Joined Jan 21, 2006
57 points
Apr 11, 2008
Climbing the second pitch of Ancient Art
I have a pair of the Defys and Quests. They both stink something fierce. I'm sure its due to the fact that they are all synthetic, lined and outer. Anyway, I was about ready to burn the Defys and figured I had nothing to loose, so I threw them in the washer. Warm water, regular cycle, it worked awesome and didn't hurt the shoe. I've only done it once so I don't know if repeated washing will hurt the shoe. Since the first washing they have started to wreak again so I'm going to wash them a second time here soon. I'll let you know how it goes. Kevin Sainio
From Durango, CO
Joined Nov 18, 2006
518 points
Apr 11, 2008
Canadian Rockies Ice 2008.
It's not really a solution to 'already smelly' shoes, but it sure seems to help if you never put your shoes inside your pack after climbing -- because, inevitably you forget to take them out for a day or two. At that point, they're 'alive and growing'. Avery N
From Boulder, CO
Joined Apr 10, 2006
694 points
Apr 11, 2008
Me and my Fetish I guess.. ;)
Darren Mabe wrote:
what works for me is to wash my feet before i wear them

You nailed it at the source. Shoe odor is caused by fungus and bacteria. Both feed on dead organic matter, such as - dead skin cells. Warm, dark and moist location full of dead skin cells is pure heaven for odor causing fungi and bacteria so i've found the most effective remedy (but certainly not the only one to implement) is a very thorough washing of the feet. Use a washcloth or loofah (sp?) if available. The idea being to exfoliate the feet, reducing the dead layer of skin cells that will just rub off. Climbing shoes, being tight-fitting, typically will cause more skin cells to rub off.
Thanks, all for the remedies!
d
Daryl Allan
From Sierra Vista, AZ
Joined Sep 13, 2006
1,166 points
Apr 12, 2008
Eiger summit
I found that it is dependent on the shoes. Some manufacturers must use different leather (wart-hog :-) or use a different tanning process. I have a pair of LaSportiva that stink and I have other brands that never stink. I think that the only remedy may be to switch to another brand of shoe. I tried most of the solutions suggested and found that they only serve as a temporary measure. Once you take the shoes off at the end of the day everyone around you will scatter.

Matthew Prom wrote:
For the past year I have been using a new pair of velcro climbing shoes but over that time they began to stink horribly. I tried using Febreze, scrubbing the inside, and some gold-bond to make it smell better. Sadly, nothing works to rid the shoe of the odors. The shoes are great climbing shoes, and I would get another pair in a second if it wasn't for the smell. I had read reviews before I bought the shoe that some people experienced the same smell issues (because of the material used), but I couldn't resist the other positive feedback on the shoe and the price at the time. Does anyone know how to get such smells out of shoes? I could just stop being so smelly, but that seems too difficult. :)
Brian
From North Kingstown, RI
Joined Sep 27, 2001
656 points
Apr 12, 2008
Credits: Marty TwoBulls m2bulls.com  indiancountry...
definitely a shoe-material-dependent issue - good luck Matt

my feet always sweet (I could eat with them) till I slip on a RocketDogs made in China. I'm hangin on to my leather-type rock shoes till I find a no-smell-money-back guarantee

IMO pack up all the smelly shoes and ship 'em back in those empty containers. Anyone know the translation of "man-made materials"? -lol
kirra
Joined Feb 1, 2006
724 points
Apr 12, 2008
Toofast
kirra wrote:
my feet always sweet (I could eat with them)


about how far are you able to shove those things in?
Geir
From Tucson, AZ
Joined Jun 7, 2006
3,344 points
Apr 12, 2008
Credits: Marty TwoBulls m2bulls.com  indiancountry...
far enough to get my biner's gate to close

odd question Geir...is this how you eat?
kirra
Joined Feb 1, 2006
724 points
Apr 13, 2008
me bouldering in MT
Umm..... You could get rid of the source?

Try this? drionic.com/
EMT
Joined Jan 13, 2008
276 points
Apr 23, 2008
they are climbing shoes enjoy the sweet stench of hard use! john richards
From salt lake city UT
Joined Apr 21, 2008
12 points
Apr 23, 2008
Credits: Marty TwoBulls m2bulls.com  indiancountry...
Hey Matt -- Check this out... Stink Away

ran across a set, they smell pretty fresh hmmm... It's kind of like a LARGE version of a DO-NOT-EAT-moisture-wicking-packet
kirra
Joined Feb 1, 2006
724 points
Administrator
Apr 23, 2008
Courtright Reservoir, September 2013
Darren Mabe wrote:
what works for me is to wash my feet before i wear them

Yup, bathing once in awhile probably can't hurt....lol
Adam Stackhouse
Joined Jan 3, 2001
13,518 points
Apr 23, 2008
Taylors Falls also has some White Water Kayaking
Thanks for all of the help and great ideas, everyone! Matthew Prom
From West Saint Paul, MN
Joined Mar 18, 2008
60 points
Apr 24, 2008
soloing Boulder Canyon Upper Falls
I have galileos, and a pair of tradmasters. I regularly throw them in the washing machine (for last 2 years prolly every month or so). They are both in great shape. I hang them dry, and I've never had a problem with a resole coming loose or anything. Micahisaac
From Longmont, CO
Joined Apr 4, 2006
108 points


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