When You Have Smelly Feet
Oh, That Stench!
Ever been to a place where you have to remove your shoes? How did it smell like?
When we were at the Grand Palace in Bangkok, I had wanted to go into one of the temples there. However, when I saw the so many shoes, I asked my husband about it and he said it is not polite to have your shoes on inside. Anyway, it didn't seem strange to me as in the Philippines, we have a similar custom when entering someone else's house. But, did I enter? Nope. Just for the simple reason that I smelled someone's pair of shoes. I didn't know who he or she was but, boy, those feet really stink!
In order to avoid situations like these, it is imperative that we be conscious of the way we look and smell. Our body has its natural musk but some unpleasant odors emanate from different parts that we do not pay particular attention to. One of them is our foot. Strangely, it is common to neglect it because when we have our shoes on, they don't smell anyway. But hey, you do smell them too, right? Here are some ways to prevent stinky feet:
a. Regular wash. - at least twice a day to keep the dirt and bacteria from mixing with our sweat which produces the smell.
b. Keep them dry. We must wipe them dry after they have gotten wet. Keep them dry through out the day. One way of doing this is to towel and air dry the feet after washing. Also, wear cotton socks to absorb the sweat and let your feet breathe.
Another way is to use a foot powder. Use any but be sure to have the powder between your toes and underneath them too. If a commercial foot powder is no available, get hold of some cornstarch. The trick is to get any substance that absorbs the wetness.
Have a second pair of shoes. Just like toothbrush, the shoes need to be totally dry when you use them. So, use a pair every other day or less often than that. In the Philippines it rains everyday during the rainy season. So, unless you have a boat type of shoes, it's best you have 3 pairs so you get to dry each one well enough. Geox has breathable shoes and they are worth the try.
c. Use sulfur soap and fungal treatments. The combination of sweat and dirt will encourage athlete's foot which produces a foul smell . Sulfur soap and fungal treatments can be use to discourage and even treat athlete's foot.
d. Have a regular foot bath of tea or lemon grass. Prepare them as you would any tea but in a larger amount - maybe twice the regular quantity. When done steeping, add warm water and some tap to it so it will be bearable for you. Dip your feet in and relax as well. This will be good for your feet and for your body. 15 minutes every other night will do wonders to your feet. You might like to follow it with a coffee scrub every now and then to moisten and soften your skin. Remember to dry the feet well after soaking.
e. Use natural fungicidal treatments. Apply yogurt to your whole feet giving particular attention in between your toes. It is antifungal and will treat both the fungi that causes it and the odor that your feet emit. As a bonus, you'll have not only sweet smelling tarsals, but soft and smooth skin to go with it. A regular scrub of coffee grains and the daily application of coconut oil will truly make your feet look like royalty. LOL
f. There are herbs that you can try to use. Garlic, sage and tea tree are among them. Among the three though, garlic proves to be more potent.
g. Yogurt can do wonders for your feet. It not only makes your skin supple, it also kills fungi and bacteria that causes odor. It's so easy. Just get any of those yogurt that has live active microorganism. It has to be live as it will not work if you get those that are not active. Wash your feet, dry and apply the yogurt as you would cream between your toes and whole foot. Do the same for the other foot. Keep it there for as long as possible with a minimum of 15 minutes. You may rinse it off with water afterwards.
What NOT to do:
A few things that you mustn't do when you have foul-smelling feet are the following:
1. not changing socks regularly. By regularly, we mean every time you use your pair of shoes. Some people tend to keep their socks inside their shoes after they have worn them. When socks are used, they absorb sweat from the feet. When there's wetness and warmth, fungi usually grow.
2. sharing shoes. Never borrow other people's shoes and do not ever have anyone use yours either. When you do this, you actually cross contaminate. This means that even when you no longer have athlete's foot, you could get infected again. Unlike chicken pox that gives you an immunity after exposure, athlete's foot could come back when the environment is favorable. The feet is always a place for fungi to thrive - they are warm, moist and are sources of nutrition for any microbe.
3. For obvious reasons, avoid going barefoot because stepping on any place that has been contaminated with Athlete's foot will make you contract the fungi. However, it is also good to limit using closed shoes either.
4. Keeping your feet moist. Fungi and bacteria like the moisture.
There you go. So next time you go visit the pedicurist, smile and know that she will be glad to serve you when your feet smell good.
How to make a natural anti-fungal foot powder
- 3/4 cup baking soda
- 1/4 cup corn starch
- 15 drops peppermint essential oil
- 15 drops of lavender essential oil
- 10 drops of tea tree essential oil
- Blend everything thoroughly and store in a glass or plastic jar.
- Keep the jar in a cool dark place.
- Shake the jar before each use.
- Put directly on feet, socks and shoes.
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