Create Your Own Natural Shoe Deodorizer

When you have issues about shoe odors that don’t go away even if you have washed your shoes regularly, you may need to incorporate into your shoe cleaning routine the use of shoe deodorizer.

Shoe odors are usually caused by bacteria that breed when moisture is present since shoes are mostly enclosed and can be a good breeding ground for bacteria.

Shoe deodorizer comes in different forms like powder, spray, and inserts. You can choose which ones are most suited to you. It will help eliminate bad odors and fight off bacteria that breed in your shoes.

If you are undecided which kind of shoe deodorizer to choose then you can read on to find out which one fits you and there’s a bonus on how to make your own shoe deodorizer that you may find interesting to learn.

What you should consider when buying a shoe deodorizer

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Although all shoe deodorizers bring about the same purpose of keeping your shoe from smelling bad, there are some characteristics that can affect the quality.

Before you go ahead and shop for the best shoe deodorizer, here’s what you need to consider.

1. Scent

Nobody wants smelly footwear and shoe deodorizers are meant to give a solution to this kind of problem. Unfortunately, some shoe deodorizers just simply mask the foot odor with another overpowering aroma. While added fragrances are featured in some shoe deodorizers that eliminate odor, others managed to do this without additional scents.

If you are sensitive to fragrances, you may want to consider purchasing a product that has odorless variance or doesn’t have too much fragrance that may trigger any sensitivities.

2. Longevity

One of the prime concerns when it comes to shoe deodorizers is their quality to last long once applied. Powders and sprays are meant to be used regularly to fight the unpleasant smell while deodorizing insoles are designed to last for months before they can be replaced. Other shoe deodorizers like sachets, deodorant balls, pouches, and pods are last long as well.

3. Natural or chemicals

This is also a concern for others who are careful about the products they are using.

  • Shoe deodorizers that use a wide range of chemicals to fight foot odor are meant to have fast-acting and effective in eliminating odors. It is also capable of disinfecting bacteria that may breed inside the shoes. Although it also contains natural essential oils as fragrance, you may want to avoid spraying it on your skin as it can irritate it because of its formulation.
  • Natural ingredients like activated charcoal, baking soda, and zinc oxide used in shoe deodorizers are capable of absorbing odors and moisture that won’t harm your skin when you apply them. They are also safe to use around children and pets.

4. Antifungal products

Antifungal products are meant to be applied to the foot’s skin. Its formulation is designed to treat or prevent infection in the foot like athletes’ feet. It comes in a form of creams, spray, and powders. The main medicinal ingredient used on these antifungal foot products is miconazole nitrate which is used to treat a variety of tropical fungal infections of the feet and other parts of the body.

5. Convenience of use

There’s also an issue of convenience when it comes to using shoe deodorizers. Shoe deodorizer spray is great because it is not messy to use but it is bulky to carry with going to the gym or for travel especially there are limitations as to the number of liquids and aerosols you can carry on a plane. While pods, balls, and sachets are easy to carry. Powder shoe smell remover is more ideal to use at home or to locations that can be cleaned easily since it can create a mess.


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Types of shoe deodorizers

We go down to the types of shoe deodorizer which is in three forms such as powder, sprays, and inserts. Each has a different way of doing things but they all aim to serve the same purpose of being the best shoe odor eliminator.

1. Powder

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Shoe smell remover in powder form is inexpensive and safe to use. They usually contain ingredients like baking soda and zinc oxide which are safe to apply on your shoes or directly to your feet. It comes in a scented and unscented variety. One thing that you should be wary about is that it can cause discoloration to your footwear. They don’t dissolve well unlike the sprays and have a chance of transferring to your socks or floors.

2. Sprays

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Shoe deodorizer sprays are the common and popular form to use because it has the ability to disperse the product evenly through a nozzle. They comprise either natural or chemical formulas which come in an unscented or scented variety. The good thing about using a shoe odor removal spray is that it dries up quickly and doesn’t leave any residue allowing you to put on your shoes shortly after it was sprayed on. It deodorizes instantly and can be long-lasting. Other sprays allow you to spritz it on gym bags and other training equipment safely as well.

3. Shoe inserts

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Most shoes are designed to be enclosed and not breathable that’s why shoe inserts are the best investment for those who have persistent foot odor to remove moisture and eliminate odors.

There are 3 kinds of shoe inserts namely insoles, pods, and bags (sachets or pouches).

  • Insoles are a great use for those that have recurring issues with foot odor because it remains in your shoes working while you wear them. It also provides additional arch support while deodorizing.
  • Pods or shoe deodorizer balls are convenient to use as they can be packed easily in your gym bag, suitcase, and backpacks that won’t create any mess.
  • Bags, sachets, or pouches is an all-around shoe deodorizer that you can place not only in your shoes but also in cars, closets, in bathrooms, or even on your fridge. They can be filled with different materials but mostly uses activated charcoal that absorbs, neutralizes, and eliminates odors without using any fragrances.

How to make your own homemade shoe deodorizer

Feet can be sweaty most of the time especially if you are using shoes that are not breathable all day. You can fight all those horrible shoe odors by creating your own shoe deodorizer in minutes. The ingredients are very simple and most of it you can find at your home.

For DIY-minded people, adding essential oil on your homemade shoe deodorizer will help shoes to smell great and if incorporated with other natural ingredients may help in fighting the bacteria that’s causing the unpleasant smell. However, essential oils are generally optional.

So have fun doing your own shoe deodorizer with these great recipes.

1. Homemade shoe powder deodorizer

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Powder shoe deodorizer is messy to use as it gets all over the place but that’s what we want for it to be deeply dislodged to the inside of stinky shoes to get foul odors out and absorb moisture.

What you’ll need:

  • Baking soda
  • Essential oils

Step 1: Mix 2 tablespoons of baking soda and 5 drops of your favorite essential oils. You can skip the essential oil if you want as it is not essential. It will only make your shoes smell good.
Step 2: Give a good stir to the mixture. Do your best to break the essential oil as it has the tendency to clump up.
Step 3: Sprinkle about a tablespoon of the baking soda mixture into the heel of each shoe.
Step 4: Tilt the toe of the shoe slowly downward to work the powder evenly and completely across the entire footbed.
Step 5: Let the mixture sit for a couple of hours to soak up all the odors inside your shoes. You can also let it sit for 24 hours for a better result. The longer you let it sit the better your result will be.
Step 6: Once you have soaked it, give it a good shake over the sink or trash can. Tap also the sole of your shoes a little to shake any loose powder.

If you see a little dusting on your shoes, you need not worry about it as baking soda and essential oils are very safe ingredients that won’t harm your feet in any way.

2. Homemade shoe deodorizer spray

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For a handy and chemical-free shoe deodorizer, use apple cider and rubbing alcohol. These two cleaning agents are great disinfectants and germ fighters aside from eliminating shoe odor.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 small spray bottle
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of rubbing alcohol
  • 4 drops each of tea tree and lemon essential oils.

Step 1: Fill the spray bottle with equal parts of rubbing alcohol and apple cider vinegar.
Step 2: Add the essential oils.
Step 3: Shake the solution inside the bottle.
Step 4: Start spraying on smelly shoes whenever desired or every after taking off your shoes.

3. Homemade activated charcoal shoe deodorizer

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Charcoals are known to be a great absorber of nasty smells and have a lot of beneficial uses as well. If you like a shoe deodorizer that does not use any baking powder, you going to love to do this method with charcoal.

What you’ll need:

  • Bamboo activated charcoal
  • Essential oils (optional)
  • Coffee filter
  • Fabric squares
  • String

Step 1: If you are using essential oils, add a few drops of essential oils to the outside of the coffee filter.
Step 2: Add 1/4 cup of activated charcoal into the coffee filter. Please be careful in handling the activated charcoal as it can get all over the place.
Step3: Once you have your essential oils and activated charcoal loaded inside the coffee filter, wrap the filter as tightly as possible while tucking the corners to prevent the charcoal from leaking.
Step 4: Place your activated charcoal packet in the center of the fabric.
Step 5: Pull the fabric as tight as possible.
Step 6: Tie a string around the fabric just above the charcoal packets.
Step 7: Put your DIY charcoal shoe deodorizer in your shoes. For the best result, you can put 2 or 3 more to each shoe to fully absorb the odors.

4. Homemade deodorizer sachets

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Making shoe deodorizers in sachets is a very easy method to do and using it won’t create so much mess, unlike the powder type.

What you’ll need:

  • Baking soda
  • Arrowroot powder or cornstarch
  • Essential oils (optional)
  • Fabric scraps
  • Twine

Step 1: Pour into the mixing bowl 1/2 cup baking soda, 1/2 cup arrowroot or cornstarch, and 10-20 drops of essential oils.
Step 2: Mix all ingredients all together. If you did add the essential oil just make sure you break the clumps that essential oil may create.
Step 3: Cut your strings about 10-12 inches in length. You may use whatever tie is available in your homes like twine or unused ribbons.
Step 4: Measure and cut your cloth in about 10×10 inch squares. Using any scrap fabrics will work well but thinner fabrics will work best.
Step 5: Scop a good amount of the mixture and pour it on the center of each cloth.
Step 6: Gather up the corner of your cloth and pinch them together.
Step 7: Tie the fabric with a bow using the cut-out strings.
Step 8: Put one of these shoe deodorizer sachets in your shoes. For the best result, you can put 2 or 3 more to each shoe to fully absorb the odors.

See video for a simple DIY shoe deodorizer

Frequently asked questions

1. What causes shoe smell?

Most of the shoe designs lack ventilation that traps moisture on your feet inside. This may cause bacteria to breed and leave a bad smell even after your shoes had dried.

2. Are there any natural deodorizers that are available?

Yes, and the most common natural deodorizers that fight shoe odor are activated charcoal, baking soda, bamboo, and zinc oxide that comes in spray, powder, and sachet form. If you want to make a DIY shoe odor removal, you can refer to the recipe above.

3. How do I know which shoe deodorizers are the right ones for me?

It really depends on what you want to achieve. If you want a fast-acting and instant result and won’t mind re-applying regularly then spray and powders may suit you. On the other hand, if you want long term solution, then inserts might just work for you.

Air freshener that acts as a shoe deodorizer at the same time


Pillow Mist – Natural Eucalyptus Spray – Gentle & Non Toxic Pillow Mist Spray

Vanilla – 4997 Servings IN STOCK - ready to ship
      42 REVIEWS 2.93 of 5

Real reviews

  • 🏆 BEST EUCALYPTUS OIL SPRAY: Natural scent great for rooms, closets, draws, wood
  • 👍 EUCALYPTUS PILLOW MIST: Eliminates and neutralizes odor. Does not mask it like chemical sprays
  • ❤️ A LITTLE GOES A LONG WAY: Spray and forget. Nontoxic, non-irritating, and natural air spray.


Add to cart

View Label / Ingredients
30-Day Money Back Guarantee
Free ground shipping

Smelly shoes can be both unpleasant and embarrassing. It’s a good thing that there are shoe deodorizers that we can use whenever we need them to keep our shoes smelling good and out of reach of any bacteria. It’s also easy to make one for yourself if you urgently need one right away.

Choosing the best shoe odor eliminator is really up to you and the guidelines above will give you hindsight on how to choose them.

If you want a more versatile product that acts as an air freshener and shoe deodorizer, The Crown Choice selection of natural air fresheners is perfect to enjoy the long-lasting aroma of all-natural essential oils air freshener and shoe deodorizer.

  • It contains active ingredients of plant-derived essential oils as well as natural deodorizers and natural preservatives.
  • It safely attracts and neutralizes even the strongest odors like pet smells, smoke, and smelly shoes.
  • It is non-toxic with NO artificial perfumes or fragrances or chemicals, and NO animal by-products, and Non-toxic to children, pets, and the environment.
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