Socks or No Socks?

Just last week our local news media got all excited by the fact that a

woman was not permitted to visit a shopping mall because she was


Not only did it make our main television news, but Seven Sharp also

picked up on the story and extended it to a discussion on the

wearing of shoes but no socks. The poor misunderstood sock was

described as disgusting.

I have a feeling that the common sock would be most upset by this

failure to acknowledge its act of sanitation – in the interest of

protecting our olfactory sensitivities.

Yes folks, whether you like it or not, our feet sweat! The function of

the sock is to absorb the sweat. When our feet sweat bacteria is

formed and that creates the smell. Bacteria is fond of dark warm

places where air does not circulate too well.

The question is can shoes do the job instead? Well, yes they can, but

there are some problems:

Shoes are often made from synthetic materials that do not allow

circulation of air to combat the formation of bacteria, and so the

aforementioned insult to our nasal region remains considerable. The

solutions are as follows;

1. Spray the shoe with an aerosol especially marketed for this

process – but remember this is really putting one pleasant

smell on top of an unpleasant smell. You are not removing the

source of the smell.

2. Wash your shoes. This remedy is not really a remedy because it

will eventually ruin your shoes.

3. Wear high quality footwear using genuine leather to allow

maximum air circulation. Shoes with leather uppers, leather

soles and leather linings are the best for keeping your shoes

bacteria free (another good reason for buying shoes from 1800


Therefore if you have a serious problem with bacteria forming

in your shoes, wearing socks made of materials that will do

what leather does (i.e. breathe), along with high quality leather

upper, leather soled and leather lined shoes, is the best

protection. Alternating your footwear so that you do not wear

the same pair on consecutive days is also a major help.


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