Deodorizing Water Shoes

OK, what’s the secret for deodorizing my Teva water shoes. I’ve tried washing in a bucket of soap and water, I’ve tried disinfectant spray, I’ve tried baking soda, I’ve let them dry out in the sun. Although each of these have helped, they haven’t solved my problem. Help!

Sink the Stink

get it in scuba diving shops


Wear poly socks and you wont have the problem. Same with wet suits. Wear poly or lycra under the suit.

I wear thin synthetic bike socks
in my Keen Taoses. They don’t hold any water, and they keep the shoes from stinking.

vinegar/oxy clean?
has anyone tried a simple vinegar/oxyclean solution in water? My water shoes stink also, and that was what I was gonna try this weekend…

ODOBAN works great.

Soaking in a mild solution of bleach works. It probably isn’t good for the shoes to do this a lot, but it worked fine for mine one time they were particularly smelly. Most of the time I just ignore it.


I’d try mild bleach
For rubber shoes I’d try a soak in mild bleach and laundry soap. For fabrics I’ve heard people recommend Woolite.

Lemon slices between your toes

What’s matter with you people!
For years after every workout, I wash “”“all”"" my paddling clothes with the washer machine and then use the dryer, and at least get in the water 4x a week.

I can’t believe people re-use their clothes without washing it: that’s descanting!!!

sweat, bacterias, dirt, etc…

white vinegar spray
I keep a spray bottle of white vinegar with me all the time and spray my shoes, booties, socks, whatever whenever I get off the water- sometimes I spray me. So far so good. The smell can be kind of addicting, unlike the smell of funky water shoes. Cheers

Nigel Foster writes:
Paddling Boots Smell?

Do your paddling boots smell “a little sour”? It’s not uncommon. Dunk them in diluted white vinegar, then lightly rinse. The acid in the vinegar discourages the growth of the bacteria that cause the smell. They’ll dry with a slight vinegar smell but it’ll take at least another damp day on your feet before they begin to small bad again. With regular treatment even your partner may be able to live with them in the house!

yeah,once the funk settles in,ick
I had to put someones booties outside the boat house they were so bad,then I took them home and soaked them in bleachy water.

prevention,prevention. Don’t wanna start a growing medium on your feet for exotic beasties.

Leave salty, dry in sun
Store inside (in AC in warm weather).


I used to rinse/wash religiously. They smelled of mildew, etc. With lazy salt/sun method they smell like new - even my 5 year old worn out pair.

Simple Green
Part of my hose everything off at the end of the day routine.

A spritz if Simple Green in each boot and fill with water from the hose to suds things up. The boots sit while I rinse everything else off.

Flush 'em out with clean water and set them to dry. No stink.