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Why You Have Smelly Ballet Flats, and How to Fix That

It’s no secret that ballet flats are one of the season’s hottest shoe styles. But, as many fashionistas are discovering, they’re also one of the stinkiest. But why are you dealing with smelly ballet flats? And how can you remedy that issue, while also supporting your feet? Keep reading to find out!

Why You Have Smelly Ballet Flats

Whether you’re all about those Tieks, or prefer to get runway-ready with Chanel ballet flats, women everywhere are rocking ballet flats this year. Unfortunately, they’re doing so without the benefit of socks or stockings. And, for that reason, your ballet flats are getting smelly.

You see, like the rest of your body, your feet sweat. In fact, they sweat even more when you’re wearing closed-toed shoes without socks, creating a closed, moist environment inside your shoes. Then, without the benefit of socks to soak up that sweat, it only has one place to go: into the lining of your shoes.

What if Smelly Feet are the Problem?

Sometimes, even if your shoes smell fine, your feet give off a noticeable odor. And, once again, the source of that odor is sweat. But, in this case, your feet start to smell because their sweat glands are overactive. Then, that excess sweat mixes with bacteria on your skin, leaving you with the embarressment of smelly feet. (Medically called localized bromhidrosis.)

Luckily, you don’t have to live with this problem. You can reduce foot odor by washing feet daily; changing your socks daily; and always wearing socks with your shoes. Now, that’s not always the best look when you wear ballet flats. But, if you skip the socks or tights with your flats, odor will soon transfer to your shoes. (Whether or not your feet are smelly.)

When Do You Notice Smelly Ballet Flats? black ballet flats

Over time, all that sweat–and the bacteria that comes with it–gets into your shoes. That’s when you may notice a strong odor coming from your shoes. And it doesn’t go away between wearings, meaning slipping clean feet into your ballet flats could transfer the odor to your skin even after the ballet flats go back in the closet.

So, how can you prevent smelly ballet flats? And if your shoes already stink, how can you fix the problem? As you may have guessed, wearing socks or tights with your flats can help keep odor away from your shoes. However, that may affect fit, leading to foot pain with ballet flats (more on that in a minute.)

A better choice? Focus on the construction of your shoes, choosing natural materials like leather instead of synthetic options that are less breathable. Also, you can try spraying anti-perspirant on your feet before you slip into ballet flats. And make sure to use an alcohol wipe to clean the inside of your shoes after each wearing.

Already noticing a strong odor coming from your shoes? Try the alcohol wipe trick. But also consider treating the inside of your shoes with an anti-fungal spray, since all that odor could be a sign of Athlete’s foot fungi living in your shoes, just waiting to attack your feet.

Now, that could prevent smelly ballet flats from infecting your feet. But how can you prevent this style of flat from causing other foot problems? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!

Don’t Let Ballet Flats Hurt Your Feet

Many women think that flat shoes are always better for your feet than high heels. But that’s not always the case. You see, when ballet flats are too, well, flat, they don’t support your arches. Plus, if the soles are thin, they won’t offer much shock absorption. And that can feel like spending your whole day walking around the city barefoot.

How can you remedy both problems and add more support to your favorite flats? First, look at the shape of the flats you’re choosing. Ideally, the heel height will be slightly higher than the rest of the shoe, with a nice rubber sole to absorb some of the impact of your steps.

Next, check the toes of the shoe. While a square toe is best, giving lots of wiggle room and preventing scrunching, at least look for styles that don’t cram your toes together. And, if you’re trying to improve the comfort of ballet flats that don’t meet these criteria? Come into the office and ask us about custom orthotics. Crafted to fit your feet and provide support exactly where you need it, they can make even your smelly ballet flats that much comfier and more supportive!