It's hard to find a way of having more fun in the winter, so there's nothing better than spending time on the slopes at the weekends, boarding and skiing. The trouble is when you get home, exhausted but happy, the temptation is to simply put the gear away in the garage and go and get a hot drink. You think to yourself that you'll get up early and sort it out in the morning, but you forget and the next time you see the gear will be the next weekend you pack it in to the car to head off to the slopes. So the ski gear will still be left cold and damp for another few days.
After a few weeks of this kind of treatment, you'll probably notice that your boots are starting to smell a little ripe. This is because all the cold and damp has led to the growth of bacteria in the fabric parts of the boot liners, and they love to give off that very noticeable odour.
What to Do
To get rid of the smell you have to get rid of the bacteria, so you'll need to do the following:
Clean the Boots
- Take the liners out of the boots, and put them in a warm room or office to dry. This step alone will kill a proportion of the bacteria.
- Fill a sink or a bucket with warm water and add one cupful of white vinegar and small amount of laundry powder.
- Soak the liners in the mix for at least 30 minutes. The vinegar will kill off most of the remaining bacteria and the detergent will deal with the sweat and dirt that any future bacteria would like to feed on.
- While the liners are soaking, use a sponge soaked in the same solution to clean off the rest of the boots.
- Once the liners have soaked, rinse them thoroughly in clean water. Do not worry if they still smell of vinegar after rinsing, that smell will disappear as they dry.
- Reshape the liners and leave them on a towel to dry thoroughly in a warm room.
Keep the Bacteria at Bay
The cleaning will have dealt with the majority of the bacteria, and so the liners will smell much more sweetly now. The next step is try to prevent the bacteria taking hold again:
- Spray the liners with an odour spray such as Febreeze or Odour Eater. Office cleaner suppliers are usually a good source for these kind s of products.
- Make an insert that you can use between sessions on the slopes. Baking soda and Coffee Grounds are ideal for this. Fill and old pair of socks with a mix of the soda and coffee, and tie them off to make a pouch, and put them into the boots when they're not in use.
The best solution is to dry the boots thoroughly after each use.
- Get in the habit of bringing the boots in to a warm dry room and removing the liners to allow them to air, rather than putting them away wet.
- Once they are dry, spray the liners with an odour control spray, and drop in the sock pouches described above.
These simple cleaning tips will make your boots much more pleasant to put on and wear, and who knows, you may even find other people want to join you on the slopes again!