Why Do Babies Have Smelly Feet?

Anthony Caserta, podiatrist at AJC Podiatry, on sweaty baby & toddler feet:


"I had a great discussion with the staff recently and one of the queries they raised as a common concern from parents centred around “Would my child’s feet sweat more in these?” and “My child’s feet already smell, would these make them worse?”

Why do babies' feet smell?

One of the skin's many important roles is to expel excess heat from our body. The body does this by perspiration and evaporation. So, it’s normal for children, adolescents and adults to sweat. Normal, healthy sweating is caused by increased temperatures, physical activity, emotional stress, particular food intake and illness. There are more sweat glands on the sole of the foot than any other part of the human body and we have about 250,000 sweat glands on the feet.

Children will sweat 2-3 times more than adults and in combination with a larger surface to mass ratio in children. It means there is a lot of excess moisture hanging around those little toes, getting soaked up by socks and footwear. But sweat doesn’t actually smell, so why do some feet stink? This is from the bacteria that is living on the sole of the feet that can accumulate and break down in socks, shoe liners and between toes and gives off that foul odour." - Anthony Caserta, podiatrist


How do I get rid of my baby's stinky feet?

Here are some tips from experts at Attipas Australia:

How do I get rid of my baby's stinky feet?


1. Keep their feet clean: It might sound simple, but given their feet a soapy scrub daily will remove excess odour

2. Wear the right socks: If you put socks on your baby, make sure they're made of lightweight and breathable fabric such as cotton, wool or special knits. (Hint: Our socks work a treat!).

3. Make sure your baby's shoes are sized correctly: Tight shoes increase foot odour due to lack of circulation. Click here to check your baby's foot size if you're unsure.

4. Use odour eaters: Odour eaters are safe for children and there are many brands around that you can use in small amounts in your baby's shoes

5. Wash your shoes regularly: We recommend washing shoes regularly to ensure foot odours are removed. Baby shoes like Attipas are fully machine washable; click here to watch how easy it is to clean them. Let them hang to dry in the sun to kill excess bacteria.

6. Wear insoles: Wearing insoles may help prevent foot odour in babies and toddlers. You can buy them here, or cut your own out from regular adult insoles.

Insoles for baby shoes