6 Reasons Why Leather Shoes Make Your Feet Smell

Leather shoes are great for many reasons, but one of the most common complaints is that they make your feet smell. This article talks about why this happens and what you can do to keep your feet smelling fresh.

Why do leather shoes make your feet smell? Leather shoes will make your feet smell if;

  1. The leather shoe is made of faux or synthetic leather
  2. Wearing The Leather Shoes Too Frequently
  3. Wearing The Leather Shoes For Long Periods
  4. Not Cleaning The Leather Shoes Too Often
  5. Not Wearing Socks With Leather Shoes
  6. Not Wearing Clean Socks

These are some of the most common things that cause leather shoes to make your feet smell.

1. Leather Shoe’s Material May Be Sythetic Material

If your shoes are made from a synthetic material, it is going to trap heat and make your feet hotter. This means that there would not be proper ventilation, which would cause smelly feet.

Synthetic fabrics are also not as breathable or porous. This means that they will trap more heat and moisture, which would cause bacteria to form.

Bacteria feed off of sweat or dead skin cells that are trapped in the shoes. This will cause your feet to smell.

When you combine sweat with heat, it creates a breeding ground for bacteria.

Bacteria is what causes your feet to smell, and synthetic materials will trap more of the moisture that the bacteria needs to grow.

If you are wearing leather shoes that are made from synthetic or faux leather material, then this can cause your leather shoes to make your feet smell.

2. Wearing Leather Shoes Without Socks

If you are wearing your shoes without socks, then this can cause your leather shoes to make your feet to have a musky smell. A common fashion trend today is wearing shoes without socks.

Wearing shoes without socks can cause sweat to accumulate inside of the leather shoe and also allow dirt from outside into your leather shoes as well.

Wearing leather shoes without socks can also cause your feet to rub against the material of the shoe which will create friction and allow bacteria to grow.

So If you wear your leather shoes without socks, then this can cause your feet to have a musky smell.

3. Wearing The Leather Shoes Too Frequently

Not allowing breathing time between the wearings of leather shoes can cause bacteria to build up.

If you are wearing your leather shoes too frequently, then this will allow the sweat and moisture that has built up to be trapped inside the leather shoes.

If you wear your leather shoes too frequently, then this will cause your feet sweat and moisture to build up and create an environment for bacteria to grow.

So If you wear your leather shoes too frequently, then this can cause your feet to have a musky smell.

Drying your shoes in-between each wear can help to reduce the bacteria that is growing in your shoes. If you do not have time to let them dry, then using a spray or powder can help to reduce odors.

4. Not Cleaning The Leather Shoes Often

Another common reason why leather shoes make our feet smell is that we do not clean them often enough. This basically includes cleaning the inner soles of the shoes.

When you do not clean your leather shoes often enough, then this can cause them to begin to smell like mildew or mold.

If you do not clean your leather shoes often enough, then this can cause them to begin to smell bad.

Cleaning your leather shoes regularly will help to remove the sweat and bacteria that are trapped inside the leather shoes.

5. Not Wearing Clean Socks

Wearing dirty socks can cause the leather shoes to smell. If you wear the same pair of socks for multiple days in a row, then this can cause your socks to become damp with sweat.

If you do not change your socks often enough, then this will cause them to become damp with sweat.

Wearing dirty socks can also allow bacteria to grow, which can cause your feet to smell.

So If you do not wear clean socks regularly, then this will contribute to the reason why your leather shoes will make your feet smell.

6. Wearing the Shoes for a Long Period of Time

Wearing the same pair of leather shoes for too long periods of time during the day can cause your feet to sweat.

Your feet will sweat more during the day if you are wearing leather shoes that have closed-toe designs.

If you wear your leather shoes for a long period of time, then this will contribute towards the reason why your leather shoes make your feet smell.

So If you wear your leather shoes for a long period of time, then you might want to consider having spare shoes or slippers you can change into if you have to wear the shoes for long periods of the day.

How To Remove Foot Smells From Leather Shoes

To remove foot smells from leather shoes, there are a lot of things you can do. One of the first things you can do is to sprinkle a light layer of baking soda on the soles and insoles of your leather shoes.

Baking soda is a natural deodorizer that can help to absorb the odors that are trapped inside your leather shoes.

Simply leave the baking soda in your leather shoes overnight and then shake it out the next morning.

Another thing you can do to remove foot smells from your leather shoes is to use a dryer sheet.

Simply put a dryer sheet inside your leather shoes and this will help to keep the odors from escaping every time you wear your leather shoes.

If you do not have a dryer sheet, then using some fabric softener will also work just the same.

I will have dedicated a special article about how to remove foot smells from leather shoes soon. So follow my blog and I will post that article as soon as it is complete!

How To Prevent Leather Shoes From Making Your Feet Smell

As you can see, there are a lot of things that can cause your leather shoes to make your feet smell. There are some simple steps you can take to prevent smells from leather shoes.

Ensure Your Leather Shoes Are Made Of Real Leather

Leather shoes that are made out of real leather will allow your feet to breathe. This means the sweat and moisture can escape instead of staying trapped inside the leather shoes.

So When you buy a new pair of leather shoes, make sure they are made from real leather and not synthetic materials that will not allow your feet to breathe.

Choose Leather Shoes With Porous Soles Or Laces

The designs of the leather shoes are also important. If you are looking for leather shoes to wear, then look for ones that have porous soles, open-toe designs, or laces.

If your leather shoes have porous soles and open-toe designs, then this will allow the sweat to escape instead of trapping it inside the leather shoes.

So When shopping for leather shoes, make sure the design of the shoe allows your feet to breathe and does not trap sweat.

Wear Clean Socks With Leather Shoes

Wearing clean socks with your leather shoes will help to absorb the sweat. The socks help to absorb the sweat and moisture so that it does not get to your shoes.

So when wearing leather shoes, make sure to wear clean socks and not just any type of socks but ones that are made from breathable materials such as cotton.

This means you can wear your leather shoes for longer periods of time without worrying about them making your feet smell.

Cleaning Your Leather Shoes Regularly

Cleaning your leather shoes regularly will help to remove the sweat and bacteria before they get the chance to build up.

If you clean your leather shoes regularly, then this will help to prevent the sweat and bacteria from starting to grow inside of the material.

Keep the inner soles of your leather shoes clean always to help prevent the sweat and bacteria from growing inside of them.

You can also install inner soles that wick away the sweat and moisture if you are concerned about your leather shoes trapping in too much sweat.

Drying Your Leather Shoes Out In-Between Each Wear

It is important to dry your leather shoes out in between wearing them. Leaving the leather shoes to sit damp with sweat for too long can cause bacteria and other bad smells to start to grow.

If you want your leather shoes to stop making your feet smell, then it is important for you to dry them out in-between wears.

You can also invest in a shoe dryer to help speed up the process of drying your leather shoes and ensure you do not leave them in damp conditions.

Final Thoughts

So as you can see, there are many ways that your leather shoes can make your feet smell.

This article discussed in detail the reasons why leather shoes make your feet smell, how to prevent it, and how to remove foot smells from leather shoes.

Thank you for reading this article.

Macwilliam K. Appianing

Hi! I’m Macwilliam, the owner and founder of Favored Leather. I’m a huge Leatherwork enthusiast and I’ve been that for almost 13 years now. I'm excited to share my experiences and all the new stuff I learn each day!

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