As things stand, combatting foot odor is a matter of pre- and after-care for shoes. Yes, for those who sweat excessively, there are medical solutions. But as you might expect, that is a rather extreme option that can be expensive and is, in the vast majority of cases, hardly necessary at all. Instead, combatting odor is a matter of caring for your shoes properly, using the best shoe odor eliminator and airing out your kicks after use. There are other techniques as well, such as replacing the insoles regularly, but most often the solution is little more than applying a good shoe spray like ShoeFresh and practicing some elementary shoe care.
But what if there was a way to stop the odor contaminating the shoe in the first place? In other words, could it be at all possible to eliminate odor – or the sources of odor – before the shoes themselves start smelling?
What is Anti-Odor Tech?
Anti-odor technology represents a new vista for footwear – and footcare – technology. The idea encompasses a range of prospective technologies which all revolve around one very simple idea – to stop shoes smelling in the first place. Naturally, this means that a lot of this technology is integrated into new shoe and sock products. These are the items that are in direct contact with the foot, after all, and if shoe odor is to be eliminated before any smell arises, then that needs to happen here.
As things stand, there are no such products on the market that can promise you fresh smelling shoes and feet after running two miles on a sweltering hot day. However, the technology that could ultimately be integrated into such future products certainly does exist – and it is being developed all the time.
New Anti-odor Technologies
So what are these technologies and how can they change the future of footwear. Here are two new prospects that have shoe manufacturers and anti-odor spray purveyors very excited indeed.
Activated Carbon Cloth
Activated carbon is one of those substances that has found a very wide variety of uses for quite a long time. Activated carbon is carbon that has been treated to imbue it with millions of tiny micro-pores. This has the effect of massively increasing the surface area of the substance, which is to say the parts of the carbon that can soak up or otherwise effect any substance it comes into contact with – such as foot odor.
Naturally then, new activated carbon cloth – developed by NASA, no less – has the ability to eliminate odor before it starts hanging around in the shoes themselves. The idea is simply to create a new insole from this material for insertion into shoes. The expense of mass producing such a product is naturally still an issue, but perhaps not for much longer.
Whereas activated carbon is already a common technology merely being repurposed for odor elimination, nanoparticle technology is much more authentically futuristic. Nanoparticles naturally refer to any product that make use of tiny particles of a particular substance. In this case, it is zinc oxide particles, which have real odor eliminating potential.
The idea is to coat socks in the substance. Zinc oxide has a triple advantage. The substance not only prevents foot odor from developing but it can also combat the development of the bacteria that causes foot odor too. And on top of that, the substance is friendly to human skin. That is a win-win-win.
Whatever new technology is ultimately developed, the elimination of these root causes of odor seems set to be the future of anti-foot-odor technology.