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Get Rid of Stinky Feet with the Best Foot Soak Recipes

We’ve all experienced it – kicking off your shoes after a long day and getting a whiff of something unpleasant. Stinky feet happen to everyone occasionally, but if it’s a chronic problem it can be embarrassing and frustrating. The bacteria on our feet feeds on sweat and dead skin cells, causing odor. Fortunately there are some easy, effective home foot soaks that can help combat smelly feet. Read on for recipes to soak your feet, kill odor-causing bacteria, and freshen your feet.

Baking Soda and Lemon Foot Bath

Baking soda neutralizes foot odor thanks to its alkaline properties, while lemon juice offers antifungal and antibacterial benefits to fight bacteria. Mix a cup of baking soda with enough warm water to cover your feet, then add the juice of 2 freshly squeezed lemons. Soak feet for 15-20 minutes. The lemon fragrance overrides foot odor and you’ll be left with clean-smelling fresh feet. Baking soda also exfoliates dead skin to prevent future bacteria growth.

Epsom Salt and Essential Oil Soak

The antifungal and antibacterial properties of Epsom salt make it a great ingredient for foot soaks. Add 1/2 cup Epsom salt to a large basin of warm foot soak water. For essential oils, good choices are peppermint, eucalyptus, rosemary, or tea tree oil, which combat foot fungus and bacteria with their antimicrobial effects. Add 5-10 drops of your chosen essential oil and mix well before soaking feet for 20 minutes. The magnesium in Epsom salt also reduces sore, achy feet.

Apple Cider Vinegar Foot Bath

With its highly acidic properties, apple cider vinegar creates an unfavorable environment for odor-causing fungi and bacteria to grow. Pour 1 cup apple cider vinegar into enough warm water to cover your feet. For extra odor fighting power, add 5-6 drops tea tree essential oil as well. Tea tree oil enhances apple cider vinegar’s antibacterial effects. After soaking feet for 15-20 minutes, bacteria counts will be lowered and feet refreshed. Use a pumice stone afterwards to gently scrub away dead skin and calluses.

Oatmeal Foot Bath

An oatmeal foot soak softens calloused skin while also fighting bacteria and fungus due to its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Grind 1 cup of rolled oats into a powder using a food processor or blender. Add the powder to warm bath water along with the juice of 1 lemon. The lemon juice kills odor-causing bacteria for fresher smelling feet. For an extra soothing touch, stir in 1 tablespoon honey as well. After soaking for 20 minutes, feet emerge super soft and smooth.

Onion Soak for Foot Fungus

Onions contain powerful antifungal sulfur compounds that can help cure fungal infections which sometimes cause foot odor. Chop 1 large red or yellow onion and boil in 2 cups water for 15 minutes until onions are soft. Strain out the onions and discard them. Add the warm onion water to your foot bath and soak feet for 20 minutes. Onions have antibacterial properties as well to leave feet cleaner. Make sure to use this treatment every day until fungus clears. It also helps athlete’s foot.

Hydrogen Peroxide and Vinegar Blend

When combined, hydrogen peroxide and vinegar pack a strong bacterial-killing punch. In a bucket or basin, mix equal parts hydrogen peroxide and vinegar – about 1-2 cups of each mixed with warm water for soaking feet is the perfect amount. Soak smelly feet for 25-30 minutes in this solution to kill odor-causing bacteria. Rinse when finished. If skin is very calloused, use a pumice stone after soaking to remove dead cells harboring bacteria.

Coconut Oil Foot Soak

The moisturizing fatty acids in coconut oil kill bacteria and fungus leading to foot odor. The medium-chain fatty acids break down the cell walls and proteins of odor-causing bacteria. Melt 1/4 cup coconut oil in warm water and add 2 teaspoons Betadine antiseptic solution which helps fight fungus. Soak feet for 20 minutes. Lightly scrub feet with a loofah brush afterwards to boost circulation and skin renewal. Rinse and gently pat dry.

Sea Salt and Grapefruit Bath

A sea salt foot bath removes bacteria and softens calluses. For extra aromatic antibacterial power, grapefruit essential oil makes the perfect pairing. In warm water, mix 1 cup sea salt and 5-10 drops grapefruit essential oil which has a clean citrusy scent. The high vitamin C content in grapefruit oil creates an unfavorable environment for bacteria and fungus leading to odor. Soak feet for 20 minutes for super clean and soft feet with no unpleasant smell.

Tea Bath Blend

Black and green teas contain tannins which act as antibacterial astringents, shrinking swollen sweat glands to reduce sweating and odor. Steep 5 black tea bags and 3 green tea bags in 4 cups just-boiled water for 10 minutes. Remove tea bags and pour the liquid into your foot bath, waiting for it to slightly cool. Soak feet for 25 minutes to kill bacteria and close pores. Tea’s antioxidants fight future bacteria growth and leaves feet less likely to get smelly. Rinse feet when finished and follow up by scrubbing with an exfoliating brush or loofah to remove dead skin cells.

Fresh Mint Foot Spray

Sometimes a foot spray is a convenient on-the-go option for combating foot odor rather than a full tub soak. Fill a spray bottle with 1 cup water, 1/4 cup witch hazel, 10 drops peppermint oil, and 5 drops tea tree oil. Shake vigorously before each use. The witch hazel acts as a natural antiseptic while the mint and tea tree oils give a clean, refreshing scent and kill bacteria. Spritz on feet whenever you want a quick odor treatment. Let air dry. It’s soft enough to use between toes and the perfect thing to keep gym bags and lockers smelling fresh.

With all these great foot soak recipes, anyone can say goodbye to smelly feet! Whether it’s a relaxing tub soak or a quick spray, these ingredients all help combat odor-causing bacteria. Find the one that works best to keep your feet clean, soft and smelling fresh.