Many people want to know how to keep feet from sweating in work boots. Sweaty feet are unpleasant and give microbes such as fungi and bacteria the warm, moist environment they thrive in.
Excess moisture also can lead to tissue breakdown. your feet from sweating keeps odors at bay, makes you more comfortable, and protects against bacteria and germs.
Preventing sweating in work boots is possible and is far better than treating the after-effects of excessive sweat.
Can You Stop Feet Sweating in Work Boots?
Maybe. It depends on why your feet are sweating, to begin with. Sweaty feet can be the cause of fungal infections, poorly fit work boots, warm work conditions, dirty socks and boots, dehydration, or imbalances.
For these conditions how to keep feet from sweating in work boots has some solutions.
Sometimes sweating in work boots is just the result of being a sweaty person.
Rarely, excessively sweaty feet are the result of plantar hyperhidrosis which is a condition where sweat gland produce more sweat than is needed regardless of heat or activity.
Below are some ideas for how to keep feet from sweating in work boots to keep excess sweating to a minimum.
How to Keep Feet From Sweating in Work Boots:
There are some things you can do to reduce sweating if you are dedicated enough to employ the steps.
Reducing work boot seating will lead to happier, healthier, and more comfortable feet. Here are some steps that are key in how to keep feet from sweating in work boots.
1. Stay Hydrated
Water is the key to how to keep feet from sweating in work boots. Some people reduce water intake in an effort to reduce sweating. This is dangerous and not effective.
Restricting water intake can dehydrate you and raise your internal body temperature. Drinking enough water will reduce sweating by keeping cells hydrated and at a normal temperature.
2. Choose Your Socks Carefully
Quality socks that breathe and wick moisture away from your feet are your first protection against sweaty work boot feet. If you are in cold climates, wool is king for super absorbent, moisture wicking, comfortable socks.
In warm climates or hot work conditions, all cotton or majority cotton socks will keep your feet drier than artificial fibers.
It is not uncommon for socks to have some stretchy materials int them, but choose work socks that are mostly natural fibers.
Choose socks that are thick enough to absorb sweat, but thin enough to feel comfortable and not lead to further sweating. The idea here is more absorbent, rather than warmer socks.
Some socks are marketed as highly absorbent and may absorb a surprising amount of sweat for how thin they are.
You may select to wear antibacterial or antimicrobial socks if you have challenges with frequent bacterial infections. All of these specialty socks can be expensive, so try one pair before you invest in more.
3. Always Wear Clean, Dry Socks
Socks should be washed each time you wear them and changed throughout the day if they get saturated with sweat.
Try to get into the habit of bringing extra socks with you to work and changing them two to three times throughout the day.
If possible, buy high-quality socks in bulk. If your budget limits the number of socks you can purchase, hand washing your socks in cool water at night and then hanging to dry can keep clean socks in rotation until the end of the week’s laundry.
4. Wear Appropriate Work Boots
Waterproof work boots are great for wet conditions, but not for hot, dry locations such as the desert. Similarly, boots that breathe and stay cool work great for hot climates but work be miserable in the snow and ice.
Some jobs require steel reinforcement and sometimes the extra protection is overkill. Remember that not all work boots are the same so choose a work boot that offers you enough protection for your feet without going overboard.
Your work boots should fit well without being too tight. Although a snug pair of boots may feel great when you first put them on, they will not give your feet any breathing room.
Be sure your toes have some room to move as overly tight, ill-fitted shoes will cause more sweating. Avoid materials such as vinyl, rubber or plastic.
Consider investing in quality leather or canvas work boots; they will last longer and breathe better than other materials.
5. Promptly Treat Infections
Bacterial infections, fungal infections, and other diseases can lead to an imbalance in the flora of the feet. The body is carefully balanced between helpful and harmful microorganisms.
An imbalance can lead to excess sweating. If you notice itching, peeling, redness, sores, toenail changes, white or blanched skin consider that you may have a bacterial or fungal foot infection that needs treatment.
Be on the lookout for infection, see a doctor and treat promptly and correctly to avoid contributing to excessive sweating.
Tips to Prevent Work Boot Odors
Learning how to keep feet from sweating in work boots is not a guarantee that you will never have sweaty work boots again.
Sweating is a normal function of the human body and is, unfortunately, more common in the situations that call for work boots.
If sweating cannot be stopped, there are some additional steps to take to reduce the odor associated with sweating in work boots. Preventing work boot odors is possible with these few steps.
1. Store Work Boots Correctly
When you are not wearing your boots, be sure to store them in a well-ventilated, cool, dry location. If you have more than one pair of work boots, rotate your boots to rest them.
Consider stuffing them with newspaper or sprinkling them with cornstarch at the end of each day to absorb accumulated excess sweat.
2. Foot Powders
Foot powers are meant to be used just before you put your work boots on. They are designed to absorb sweat and moisture to keep your feet and your work boots dry.
Some of these also have antiperspirant, deodorant, and antimicrobial properties. Foot powers may come in a dry spray form or loose form to be sprinkled inside your work boots.
There are several different types of commercial foot powders and some DIY foot powder options. Certain commercial foot powders employ eucalyptus or menthol to help cool and disinfect sweaty feet.
If at home, baking soda, cornstarch or baby powder work great as well. You can infuse these with essential oils for added deodorizer.
Antiperspirants are designed to stop sweating. There are brands made for direct use on feet or you can use underarm antiperspirant on your feet.
Antiperspirants can be a great tool but remember they are stopping your body from eliminating toxins and cooling, so only use them if needed.
If you find you need antiperspirants, do not forget the space between your toes. Spray powder antiperspirants are easier to use and apply than gel or roll on.
4. Clean Your Work Boots
Using a technique best fit for your type of boot, clean boots weekly to remove the build-up of excess sweat and dirt. Remember to clean and deodorize the insides of your boots. Allow the boots to dry thoroughly after washing.
5. Wash Feet Daily
Just as it is important to keep your socks and boots clean and dry, you must do the same for your feet. Wash daily with soap and warm water and pat dry with a clean towel.
You may need to use an antibacterial soap if you have an active bacterial infection, but avoid antibacterial soaps for routine use or if you have a foot fungus such as athlete’s foot.
Make certain your feet are dry before wearing any socks. Always use a clean, dry towel to pat your feet.
Surprisingly, keeping feet, socks and boots clean goes right along with how to keep feet from sweating in work boots. Dirty feet smell worse and also sweat more.
6. Soaking Your Feet Can Help
Epsom salt soaks can help reduce foot swelling, sweating, odors, bacteria, and fungi. The tannic acid in black tea can reduce sweating over time.
Soaking your feet in a foot bath made from brewed black tea can reduce sweating and clean feet.
Herbal soaks with antimicrobial herbs such as lavender and calendula or astringent herbs such as witch hazel can help reduce microbes, swelling, and sweating. Try to indulge in a foot soak at least once a week.
7. Have More Than One Pair of Work Boots
Ideally, work boots will get to rest between uses to fully dry out and regain their shape and structure. By rotating your work boots, you can always guarantee that you have dry, well-aired, well-formed boots to start the day with.
Your resting pair can be powdered and stuffed with newspaper until its turn comes, ensuring all extra sweat has been absorbed and the leather or canvas has been stretched comfortably.
8. Specialized Insoles
There are commercial insoles available that wick moisture away from the soles of your feet and may contain some extra benefits.
Some have antimicrobial and deodorant properties, and many add extra support and comfort. If you use insoles, be sure the follow the manufacturer’s directions for when to clean and change your insoles.
9. Essential Oils
Adding a variety of your favorite essential oils to your foot powder, cornstarch or baking soda can help treat work boot odors naturally.
There are certain essential oils that work to eliminate odors because they eliminate the bacteria that cause those odors. Peppermint, lavender, and lemon are a common combination that can deodorize and cool the feet.
Citrus blends such as orange, lemon, and bergamot will deodorize and brighten. Cypress, cedarwood, and fir are cooling and woodsy feeling.
Work boots are sometimes a requirement and sometimes a smart choice. If you work in an environment where your feet are at risk of injury or where you need extra support, don’t leave behind the work boots due to sweat.
Protecting your feet does not have to be associated with sweaty feet. Taking some time to know how to keep feet from sweating in work boots will ensure that your time at work is more comfortable, that you avoid common work boot odors, and lead to cleaner, healthier feet.