While steel toe work boots are great and protect you in the workplace, their main flaw is that they tend to cause your feet to smell.
Smelly feet come about when the bacteria on the skin break down the sweat.
During the breakdown, a cheesy smell is released. There are many reasons why your feet might smell when you are wearing the work boots. These reasons include:
Wearing the same safety boots every day: When you wear the same boots every day, you don’t give the shoes time to breath as the sweat soaks the shoes.
Poor personal hygiene: How many times do you clean your feet? If you wash them once a week or go for weeks without cleaning the work boots, that is the reason you are having smelly feet.
Hormonal changes: This is usually common with teenagers and women.
Hyperhidrosis: This is a condition that causes your feet to sweat more than it’s normal. Due to the excessive sweating, the bacteria have a lot of sweat to break down thus the smell.
What to do when you have smelly feet
The cool thing about having the condition is that you can fix it. Here are some of the things you can do:
Wear desert boots
This is effective if you work in the high-temperature environment. If you work in such an environment, the chances are that you won’t come across water puddles or any sources of water.
Due to this, you don’t have to go through the trouble of investing in top notch, waterproof work shoes.
Instead, you should invest in desert boots. These are breathable shoes that give your feet time to breath thus they remain cool.
The cool thing about them is that they are also lightweight therefore you have an easy time moving around in them.
Wash your feet daily
As mentioned above, one of the reasons for smelly feet is poor personal hygiene. To get rid of this problem you should make it a habit of washing your feet every day.
By cleaning your feet daily, you minimize the fungi and bacteria that might be on your feet. When washing, ensure that you use antibacterial soap.
After washing your feet, you shouldn’t be in a hurry to wear your work boots—let your feet dry. This is to minimize the potential for bacteria growing thus you have fresh smelling feet all the time.
Many people apply antiperspirants under their arms, but this doesn’t have to be the case all the time. If you have smelly feet, you should apply the deodorant on the soles of your feet.
For ideal results, do this before you put on the socks. You also should ensure that the deodorant you use has aluminum zirconium or aluminum chloride as the active agents.
Wear absorbent socks
These are socks that have a high affinity for sweat. They absorb it fast thus keeping it away from your feet. Absorbent socks are made from polyester or natural fibers. Such as bamboo, hemp, and wool.
This calls for you to avoid those made from nylon, cotton, and other less absorbent materials.
To keep your feet as smell free as possible, you should change and clean the socks every day. As rule of thumb, you should never wear the same socks two days in a row without first cleaning them.
If your feet are excessively sweaty, consider changing the socks several times in a day.
Seek medical advice
If you have tried all of the above and nothing seems to be working, you should get the input of a doctor. You need to visit a doctor who will undertake tests and recommend the way forward.
If you have a severe condition, the doctor may recommend that you take some medications.
In minor cases, there are a number of topical medications that the doctor can ask you to take. One of these medications is Drysol. This is a prescription strength antiperspirant. You need to apply it on the feet and then put on your socks.
In cases when you are suffering from excessive sweating, the doctor might recommend that you undertake iontophoresis. This is a procedure that has been shown to be highly effective (91% success rate).
The procedure involves the sending of small electrical current through water before it gets into contact with the skin.
You should note that this procedure isn’t one-off—you need to continue with the treatments indefinitely for you to continue seeing the results.
Finally, there is sympathectomy. This is usually the last result after all the other procedures have failed. Here the surgeon cuts or clamps the nerve chain that regulates the fight and flight response in the body.
Once the chain isn’t working, you don’t sweat, blush, or react to environmental changes as well as you did before.
These are some of the ways in which you can keep your feet from sweating in your steel toe safety boots. Clean the boots regularly, wear socks, and visit your doctor and you will have fresh smelling feet within no time.