Saturday, March 28, 2015

Embarrassing Foot Odor Hurting Relationship

Dear Tazi:

I have the embarrassing problem of severe foot odor. I have tried powders and crèmes to try and cure it, but nothing seems to work. I never really thought it to be too big an issue, but I recently started dating a woman that has put a snag in my habit of always wearing shoes.

“Robyn” has wall-to-wall carpeting throughout her house and, in an effort to keep tose rugs looking new, she does not allow people to wear shoes in her house; they most be removed in the mudroom before entering the main house. I have not yet been by Robyn’s house because of this rule. I know if I take off my shoes the smell of my feet will end up disgusting her, and that will be the end of this relationship.

Robyn keeps asking me when I am going to come by her place, asks me in for coffee at the end of our dates, and has told me she wants to make me dinner some evening. I am getting the hint that she wants something more – and I would, too – but I am afraid my foot odor will get in the way of any romance.

Tazi, can you think of any way to get past Robyn’s front door? At least until I have found a way to resolve my foot odor problem?

Smelly Feet

Dear Smelly Feet:

Foot odor can be caused by a number of things, but if you keep your feet clean and dry the reason is probably medical. An infection – bacterial or fungal – can cause unbearable odor and you may need a prescription medication to conquer it. I suggest you make an appointment with your doctor, who may refer you to a podiatrist (foot doctor) in order to conquer this problem with a permanent solution.

In the meantime, here are a few suggestions for your predicament: If you are not already wearing them, choose white cotton socks over colored or polyester socks. Sometimes, dyes can irritate our skin leaving it weakened and prone to infection. Cotton, unlike polyester, absorbs moisture, which is another cause of foot odor (bacteria feed off of the nutrients in our sweat). Although I do not like to recommend specific brand products (I am not a spokescat) I do like the feeling of Gold Bond Medicated Foot Powder on my paws; it leaves them feeling tingly and smelling fresh. I think it might do the same for you, and powder absorbs moisture, as well.

A way to get around Robyn’s no-shoes rule would be to buy a pair of men’s soft soled slippers exclusively for use at her place (you can even leave them just inside her door, a la the Japanese style). Inform Robyn that you are uncomfortable walking around in your stocking feet (which is not a lie, just an overview of your reasoning) and that you purchased these slippers for exclusive use at her house. Show her the soft soles so she will see that they will not wreck her rugs, and will keep worn socks (and the dirt they may track) off of her carpeting. If Robyn is not amenable to this compromise, perhaps it is time to reconsider your relationship with her. A person who values her carpets over the reasonable comfort of the man in her life might not be the right person for you.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.


  1. Washing and drying your feet very accurate is very important. Moreover the use of cedar wood is probably one of the best things to get rid of foot odor. The cedar wood fights the bad smelling food bacteria and give off a very good smelling flavor. So there are several insoles made from cedar wood (cedarsoles) available.

  2. See a foot Dr. - you could have a stress fracture - or tendonitis. In the meantime -try to stay off it, put ice on it and take ibuprofen for pain and inflamation.
    Foot Podiatrist Piedmont Triad

  3. Thank you for the great advice, Doctor! I hope the writer follows it!

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