How can I prevent (re-)infecting myself from my barefoot shoes? The obvious answer would be not to wear them while I am infected, but taken that aside, are there possibilities to clean/disinfect the shoes so I can wear them again? Is there a possibility to reinfect myself again at all?

My shoes - as probably most barefoot shoes - are washable with 30 - 40° C.

3 Answers 3


Some options I have used in the past

  • UV Pen - Strong UV Light will kill fungus
  • Anti-Fungal Powder - Works just as well on shoes as it does on toes
  • Anti-Fungal Cream - Same premise

Key thing is to get the shoes clean and dry. Wash the shoes at the hottest possible temperature and let them dry thoroughly. (Use a hair dryer on cool/warm setting carefully if needed). Use an anti fungal laundry rinse such as CANESTEN laundry wash if the problem is persistent.

Don't wear the same shoes two days in a row - with barefoot shoes look at rotating 3 pairs if you can afford it - ideally wash after every use until the problem stops recurring, then wash regularly. With three pairs you can wash one and cycle the other two till the first is dry, then wash another pair. Wear them as little as possible - put them on just before you leave and take them off as soon as you get home and let you feet breath.

Obviously unless you treat your feet properly its all a waste of time.

Ideally, use socks until you have the infection under control.


The trick to preventing chronic athletes foot in toe shoes is the same as with regular shoes, and that is to wear socks.

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Injinji toe socks are by far the most popular socks to wear with fivefingers shoes. They keep your shoes cleaner, and help prevent funguses from forming inside them. Just keep in mind that if you wear toe socks in your toe shoes, that you can't exactly go back to not wearing socks, as the shoes will stretch to make room for the sock.

If you don't wear socks in your shoes, then you pretty much have to treat your shoes like socks and wash them very regularly.

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