How to Remove Work Boot Odor?

Do You Need to Remove Odor From Your Work Boots?
Are Your Work Boots Smelling? Our Experts Explain Why Your Work Boots Become Stinky, How To Prevent This From Happening, & the TOP 13 Methods To Get Rid of Odors Fast.
Do You Need to Remove Odor From Your Work Boots?

Have you ever been in a situation where you needed to know how to remove work boot odor?

Ways to get rid of the stink in your work boots include foot soaking, talcum powder, and boot dryers. 

Stinky work boots can come about for many reasons, the most prominent of which is the presence of bacteria in them.

The bacteria in your work boots can have a domino effect and lead to severe foot conditions like athlete’s foot.

I have a joke about smelly boots that I’d like to share with you, but it stinks

. Instead, I suggest you read this article on how to keep odor, and it’s accompanying bacteria, out of your work boots.

Through this article, you’ll discover:

    Our editorial crew at MyBestWorkBoots endeavors to bring you the freshest industry trends.

    That’s why we’ve compiled this badass list of masterly tips to keep the stench out of your work boots.

    Let’s get cracking.

    13 Ways to Get Rid of the Smell in Your Work Boots

    The 13 ways to get rid of the smell in your work boots fast are:

    • Foot soaking
    • Baking soda
    • Essential oils
    • Teabags
    • Lemonade spray
    • Dryer sheets
    • Boot dryers
    • Lemon peels
    • Talcum powder
    • Alcohol
    • Vinegar
    • Activated charcoal
    • Sunlight

    Let’s look at these in more detail.

    Foot Soaking

    Soaking your feet, shoes, and socks in a tub of water can solve the problem of bad odor in work boots.

    Foot sweating can be a major issue. It produces an unpleasant stench, but it can also cause the inside of your work boots to deteriorate. 

    To achieve the finest effects

    Soak your feet in various ways, such as using sea salt.

    The salt will absorb anything remaining on your feet and eliminate the stink.

    Baking Soda 

    Baking soda to get rid of work boot odor is perfect for folks who use their boots frequently because it absorbs water and moisture.

    Which keeps your boots smelling fresh and has a pleasant odor that eliminates unpleasant odors. 

    To use baking soda to get rid of odor, use 2 tablespoons of it with one or two cups of water.

    If you’re unsure how much water to use, combine 1 tablespoon of baking soda with 1 gallon of water.

    To completely remove the odor, mix thoroughly until you get the right soaking consistency, then soak your boots in this mixture for at least 2 days before wearing them again. 

    On the other hand

    You can fill each shoe with about 1 inch of baking soda powder, fasten them, and leave them to dry overnight.

    Shake them off first thing in the morning.

    This should be done once a month or whenever your boots begin to smell.

    Another method of baking soda is filling a sock with half a cup of baking soda.

    Remember to knot both socks to prevent leaks.

    Place them inside the boots for the entire night to eliminate the odor.

    Essential Oils

    Essential oil acts as a deodorizer for the boots, preventing odor from accumulating inside them.

    Simply pour a few drops of your desired essential oil into your boots before and after wearing them. 


    Teabags are another great way to deodorize your work boots. 

    Here’s how it’s done:

    1. To begin, boil the tea bags for 5 to 10 minutes.
    2. Take them out and set them aside to cool.
    3. Put the teabags inside your boots.
    4. Then remove them after 1 or 2 hours and brush away any extra juice.

    Lemonade Spray 

    Lemonade spray can be used to the odor of your work boots.

    Simply follow the steps below to make delicious lemonade:

    1. In a glass of water, squeeze a lemon.
    2. Insert the peels into the glass as well.
    3. Add a few drops of the essential oil of your choice.
    4. Add 2 tablespoons of vinegar.
    5. Fill a spray bottle halfway with the mixture.
    6. Proceed to spray the mixture inside your boots.
    7. Leave it in for 2 to 3 hours.
    8. Allow the inside of your work boots to dry before wearing them again.

    The scent, as well as the bacterium that causes it, is eliminated in the process.

    Dryer Sheets 

    Dryer sheets can be left in your boots overnight to absorb moisture and keep them smelling fresh for longer. 

    Dryer sheets are also useful for soaking sweat from your feet, which often seeps into your boot and causes an unpleasant stench. 

    Simply slip 1 inside each boot, and you’ll notice a difference the next morning when you put them on! 

    If your boots still have a slight odor, simply stuff another dryer sheet or two inside until you achieve satisfactory results.

    Boot Dryers

    Boot dryers dry your work boots quickly, preventing odors from settling inside the boots.

    Boot dryers are really useful, especially for those living in snowy or rainy weather conditions. 

    It aids in the removal of germs and fungus, which can cause our feet to stink and potentially become afflicted with athlete’s foot.

    Lemon Peels 

    Lemon peels are another fantastic way to remove odor from your boots because the acid in lemon acts as a cleaner. 

    Citrus fruits, like lemon, are anti-bacterial in addition to being acidic. 

    Fresh citrus peel has a pleasant aroma due to essential oil, which helps mask the odor of work boots.

    Simply peel the lemon and place the peels inside your boots overnight.


    Crush the peels and stuff them into your boots for the night, which should offer great results by morning.

    Talcum Powder

    Talcum powder absorbs sweat and helps prevent and eradicate the odor from your work boots.

    Talcum powder comes in a choice of appealing scents that leave the boot smelling fresh.

    You simply need to follow these basic steps:

    1. Apply some talcum powder to your feet before putting on your socks.
    2. When your boots and feet become sweaty, make it a habit to powder them from time to time.
    3. Avoid applying too much powder as it may irritate.


    A small amount of alcohol applied to the inside of your boots will also assist with the stench, alcohol is also the most effective antifungal and antibacterial agent.

    1. Just fill a spray bottle with equal parts water and alcohol for maximum effectiveness. 
    2. Once the solution is ready, simply sprinkle some inside the boots. 
    3. A cotton swab can also apply the solution to the surface. 
    4. The alcohol will evaporate, taking the stench with it. Within hours, the scent will be gone.


    Using vinegar is another simple method for removing odor from your shoes and keeping them smelling fresh. 

    Your work boots absorb moisture, especially if you work in wet work environments or weather conditions.

    As you work, the moisture in your boots evaporates but will likely leave a horrible odor behind.

    To counteract this

    Soak your boots in a mix of one part vinegar to three parts water for about an hour, then allow them to dry before wearing them. 

    Activated Charcoal

    Activated charcoal absorbs unwanted odors from the inside of your boots. 

    Simply place some activated charcoal inside each work boot and leave it to absorb unwanted odors overnight without leaving any residue. 


    Drying your work boots in the sun eliminates odor to a large extent.

    UV rays emitted by the sun naturally destroy microorganisms which are one of the causes of the smell in your work boots. 

    Simply unlace your boots, allow them to air out or dry in the sun, and watch the odor fade away. 

    This method is completely natural and free.

    What Can Cause Work Boots to Smell?

    What can cause work boots to smell are: 

    • Waterproof boots
    • Thick insoles
    • Leather material
    • Thick soles
    • Ventilation
    • Moisture
    • Work boot integrity
    • Sweat

    Let’s delve a little deeper into each of these.

    Waterproof Boots 

    When the boots are waterproof, they do not enable sweat from your feet to dissipate, and the sweat trapped inside your work boot begins to generate a foul odor after some time.

    The simple rationale is that being waterproof means not allowing moisture or water to enter your boot, and since moisture cannot enter, it can’t exit either.

    Thick Insoles

    While thick insoles bring comfort to your feet, they can cause your feet to become warm after a certain period, which causes sweat and, as a result, an unpleasant odor from your feet.

    Leather Material

    The majority of work boots are made of leather, which tends to heat up, causing your feet to sweat which leads to a bad odor.

    Thick Socks 

    Thick socks heat the feet and cause them to sweat profusely. In this case, your feet and your socks create an unpleasant stench.


    Steel toe work boots generally have little ventilation, which distributes heat to your feet and, as a result, have a stronger odor than any other type of footwear.


    If moisture is not escaping from your work boots, a foul stench is caused by foot sweat.

    Wet feet or sweaty boots can also lead to major odor issues. 

    Moisture also provides breeding habitat for the bacteria that give that foul odor. 

    Work Boot Integrity

    A decline in your work boots’ integrity can lead to smelly work boots.

    Your work boots’ exterior leather can deteriorate; the coating that protects against water is known as tannin.

    When this breaks down, it can lead to bacteria on leather fibers as a result of chemical, mold, and fungi exposure, and ultimately smelly work boots.


    Sweat is another cause of stinky work boots.

    Your feet sweat to assist and maintain your body’s temperature, leaving a pungent stink behind that you’ll want to get rid of as soon as possible.

    This problem can be handled by purchasing lightweight, breathable shoes or wearing socks that absorb sweat, leaving your feet and work boots smelling fresh all day.

    Precautions to Avoid Smelly Work Boots

    Precautions to avoid smelly work boots are: 

    • Boots design
    • Ventilation
    • Work material
    • Keeping your feet clean
    • Changing your socks
    • Cleaning your work boots
    • Drying your work boots
    • Boot storage
    • Sweat-proof boots
    • Moisture-wicking socks
    • Non-metal safety toes

    Let’s investigate these in more detail.

    Boots Design

    Ensure that your boot design is neither tight nor loose to avoid getting smelly work boots.

    Work boots should hug your ankle bone snugly. 

    Your feet will sweat more if you wear boots that are too tight.

    You don’t want your feet to be drenched in sweat because this will lead to smelly work boots!

    If your boots are too loose, your feet will slide excessively within them, causing sweat, stench, and pain.


    Poor ventilation in your work boots will lead to an unwanted stink; the interior of your work boots will remain wet, warm, and smelly if they are not aired. 

    These conditions also create an ideal environment for germs to thrive, which will produce a foul odor that you will want to get rid of ASAP! 

    To allow for maximum ventilation, your work boots must be aired.

    Work Boot Material

    The material that your work boots are made of also determines how susceptible they are to absorbing moisture and emitting a foul odor if not dried or cleaned quickly and properly. 

    Leather and suede deteriorate if they get wet and stay wet for an extended amount of time, but they will also begin to smell. 

    Leather and suede should be dried and ventilated as soon and as frequently as possible. 

    They should also be conditioned regularly to keep the leather nourished.

    Keep Your Feet Clean

    If your feet sweat a lot, you should keep your feet clean to avoid gross odors. 

    Before putting on socks and boots, wash your feet with soap and apply deodorant.

    This will keep sweat from forming on your feet and keep your boots dry.

    Alternatively, use wet wipes to wipe the bottoms of your feet before placing them in your socks or boots.

    This will assist you in cleaning them fast and preventing sweat from becoming trapped in the cracks and crevices and generating an unpleasant odor.

    Change Your Socks 

    The more frequently you change your socks, the fresher your boots smell.

    Avoid wearing the same socks day after day. 

    After removing your socks, wash them with detergent powder and dry them in the sun.

    This will keep the scent of your feet and boots at bay. 

    Wearing the same socks every day causes a bad odor to develop within your boots. 

    Clean Your Work Boots

    Cleaning your work boots once a week is one of the most effective ways to eradicate odor.

    If you wear the same pair of work boots every day, they will most likely develop a foul odor sooner than later. 

    Keep in mind

    You’ll need a good cleaning agent, the correct tools, and some time to let your boots dry completely after washing them. 

    It is critical not to dry them with direct heat, like near a fire, or they will shrink and crack.

    For instance, leather can shrink and break when exposed to direct heat. 

    Dry Your Work Boots

    Dry your work boots as frequently as possible to avoid the development of bad smells.

    Every day, the inside of your boots gets moist with sweat from your feet.

    It is critical to properly dry your boots after returning home.

    Place your boots in front of a fan to dry them, or use any of the multiple effective ways to dry them. 

    You can also remove and dry the insoles individually to dry your boots more thoroughly.

    Boot Storage

    Boot storage is also an important factor to consider when avoiding bad smells in your work boots as odor-causing bacteria flourish in dark and wet environments.

    Once your boots have been worn, you must keep them in well-ventilated, well-lit, and airy areas.

    Sweat-Proof Boots

    Sweat-proof boots will ensure enough airflow inside your boots; your feet will not sweat, and your boots will not stink.

    It is critical to select the proper pair of boots.

    Choose ones that allow air to circulate within the boots. 

    Moisture-Wicking Socks

    Moisture-wicking socks are socks composed of moisture-wicking textiles, such as merino wool and cotton, which absorb sweat produced by your feet, keeping your work boots dry and eliminating any resultant foul odors.

    Non-Metal Safety Toes

    Non-metal safety toes are used in new generation work boots; they don’t conduct heat; therefore your feet don’t become hot or sweaty, which eliminates the likelihood of causing smelly work boots.

    Does Putting Your Work Boots in the Freezer Eradicate Odor?

    Putting your work boots in the freezer works excellently to eradicate odor!

    Because bacteria cannot survive at freezing temperatures, this is the quickest and most efficient approach to eliminating the bacterium that generates the odor in your work boots in the first place.

    Here’s some tips:

    • Simply place your work boots inside a plastic bag.
    • Place the bag in the freezer and leave it there overnight.
    • Take out the boots and place them in the sun for an hour before wearing them again.
    • Your boots will be free of bacteria and thus odor.

    Common Questions

    Does Baking Soda Get Rid of the Smell in Work Boots?

    Do Tea Bags Get Rid of the Smell in Work Boots?

    Why Do My Work Boots Smell After Washing Them?

    In Conclusion

    Smelly work boots can be a nightmare to fix, but there is always a method that will work best for you. 

    There’s no need to spend your money on new boots just to get rid of the stench, just follow these simple steps we’ve provided you with.

    Relax and get back to work without the humiliation of stinky work boots. 

    So, are you eager to remove your work boot odor and put these tricks to the test?

    Do You Need to Remove Odor From Your Work Boots?
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