How To Keep Your UGG Slippers Smelling Fresh

UGG slippers are warm, fuzzy, and comfortable - the ideal wintery footwear to help you stay warm during those especially cold December nights. Unfortunately, that signature fleece lining often lacks the breathability to keep the footwear odor-free. However, by following a few simple tips and tricks, you’ll be able to make the most out of your UGGs and keep them smelling fresh for a long time.

Here’s how to keep your UGG slippers smelling fresh:

  1. Keep your UGG slippers dry.
  2. Replace the inserts in your UGG slippers.
  3. Always wear socks with your UGG slippers.
  4. Air out your UGG slippers after every wear.
  5. Use cornstarch and baking soda on your UGG slippers.
  6. Place tea bags inside your UGG slippers.
  7. Put deodorizing balls in your UGG slippers.
  8. Put dryer sheets in your UGG slippers.
  9. Freeze your UGG slippers overnight.
  10. Clean or wash your UGG slippers.

Keeping your UGG slippers smelling fresh doesn’t have to be too difficult or time-consuming; however, it does require a bit of effort and care on your part. In the following sections, I’ll provide you with some of the simplest techniques for keeping your UGGs odor-free. I’ll start with a few tips on preventing any odors from forming in the first place, followed by some of the best ways to combat unpleasant smells once they’re present.

1. Keep Your UGG Slippers Dry

UGG Cozy Slipper, Cream, Size 8

UGG Women's Cozy Slipper
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The most efficient way to keep your UGG slippers smelling fresh is to prevent any strong odors from developing in the first place, and humidity (usually resulting from sweat) is the main culprit that causes your footwear to lose its freshness.

Therefore, you’ll want to make sure that your UGG slippers are always dry. It’s best to keep them away from high-moisture areas like your bathroom or kitchen (where you’re prone to spills). For this same reason, you’ll want to avoid wearing your UGG slippers outside, especially if it has recently rained or snowed.

Sometimes getting your UGGs wet is unavoidable; you’ll even have to wash them yourself once in a while. In this case, you’ll want to avoid re-wearing them until they’re fully dry. Keeping the inside of your footwear as moisture-free as possible will help you prevent odor-causing bacteria from finding an ideal environment to grow on.

If you don’t want to change your slippers throughout the day, at least consider spraying them with a water-protectant spray (the same varieties you’d use on boots). While a water-protectant spray won’t make the slippers immune to big spills, it will make them water-resistant enough for you to comfortably enter a high-humidity space (like a bathroom) with peace of mind.

2. Replace the Inserts in Your UGG Slippers

Another excellent way to keep your UGG slippers smelling fresh is to replace the inserts from time to time, which can be especially important if you wear the footwear regularly.

Luckily, you can easily buy a pair of UGG Women's Sheepskin Insole on Amazon.com, which you can even wear on rotation with the original ones, washing a pair and using the other. After a few years of use, all slippers are bound to develop a bit of a smell; however, by changing the insole, you’ll be giving your UGGs a much-needed refresh to keep them usable for several years to come.

3. Always Wear Socks With Your UGG Slippers

You’ll want to treat your UGG slippers as UGG boots rather than other types of footwear you might wear around the house. This means keeping your socks on at all times to avoid excessive moisture from collecting on the sheepskin lining.

I know that wearing your slippers barefoot can sometimes be much more convenient; however, sweat can quickly accumulate inside the wool fibers, leading to a strong, unpleasant smell. Ideally, you’ll want to invest in a pair of moisture-wicking socks to keep your slippers as dry and odor-free as possible.

4. Air Out Your UGG Slippers After Every Wear

UGG Women's OH FLUFFITA Slipper, Key Lime, 5

UGG Women's Oh Fluffita Slipper
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Airing out your slippers after every wear dries down the sheepskin interior and allows unpleasant smells to escape. However, if you’re a frequent UGG wearer, airing your footwear every day might seem a little unrealistic.

In this case, I’d say that airing your slippers once every few days would still be efficient in keeping them from developing odors. Having said that, considering how simple the airing process is, there’s no reason why you can’t do it more often.

All you have to do is stuff your slippers with a balled-up newspaper (which will help soak up any excess moisture), and leave them near a window or another open space where air can circulate freely. After a few hours, your UGGs should be fully dry, aerated, and ready to wear again.

5. Use Cornstarch and Baking Soda on Your UGG Slippers

Treating your footwear with a solution of cornstarch* and baking soda can do wonders when it comes to removing strong unpleasant smells. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Make sure your slippers are fully dry inside and out. Pouring cornstarch and baking soda into a wet pair of slippers is a recipe for disaster, as the substances will clump up inside the wool fibers, making a mess. Therefore, you’ll want to run your hand inside and outside your UGGs to make sure that both surfaces are dry. If not, you can speed up the drying process by following one of the approaches mentioned in this article.
  2. Mix equal parts cornstarch and baking soda. Making the odor-repelling mixture isn’t an exact science. All that matters is that you use a 1:1 ratio of cornstarch to baking soda. Generally speaking, one or two teaspoons (10 grams) of each should suffice; however, you can adjust the quantity depending on the number of slippers you’re treating with the mixture.
  3. Add a few drops of your favorite essential oil (optional). This is optional, but if you want to give your slippers that extra bit of freshness, you can always add a few drops of your favorite essential oil into the cornstarch and baking soda mixture. Some essential oils have antibacterial properties as well, helping you further prevent unpleasant smells in the future.
  4. Mix well. If you’re adding essential oil, a few clumps are bound to appear in the mixture. However, take the time to break them up well, and ensure that all of the ingredients are evenly distributed.
  5. Sprinkle the mixture inside the UGG slippers. Sprinkle the baking soda and cornstarch mixture liberally inside your UGGs, making sure that the entire insole is evenly coated. You can use a spoon to pour the mixture into the slippers, and then you’ll want to gently rotate and shake until you reach the desired coating.
  6. Let the mixture sit overnight. The ingredients require at least a few hours to fully absorb the odor; however, the safest bet is to leave them overnight. As a rule of thumb, the stinkier your slippers, the longer you want to leave the mixture to absorb unpleasant odors. If a pair of UGGs are especially smelly, you might even want to let the cornstarch and baking soda work for a full 24 hours.
  7. Shake the mixture out of the slippers. By now, your UGGs should be aerated and odor-free, meaning it’s time to shake out any excess cornstarch or baking soda and properly dispose of the waste.

It’s important to note that no matter how well you shake the excess out of your slippers, a bit of residue is unavoidable. Therefore, you should expect the powdery substance to appear on your socks for the next few days.

However, if you want to avoid residue altogether, you can stuff the mixture into an old sock and insert that into your slippers. This approach might require a bit more time, but at least you’re guaranteed that there’ll be no powdery residue left behind (at least not as much as it would otherwise). Also, with this approach, you’ll want to make sure the old sock doesn’t already have a bad odor, as that would just defeat the purpose!

*Tip: If you don’t have cornstarch, you can use cornflour instead. However, don’t use cornmeal, as it isn’t a good substitute for cornstarch in this context.

6. Place Tea Bags Inside Your UGG Slippers

UGG Women's Disco Slide Slipper, Tide Pool, 5

UGG Women's Disco Slide Slipper
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Placing a couple of used tea bags inside your UGG slippers overnight can have a similar effect to the cornstarch and baking soda mixture. Almost any type of tea will do; however, it’s usually best to go for fresh-smelling scents that won’t overwhelm you once you put your slippers back on.

If using this approach, make sure that the tea bags are as dry as possible before putting them inside your slippers. You should also do a moisture check upon taking the teabags out, and only wear your UGGs again if the interior fleece seems fully dry.

7. Put Deodorizing Balls in Your UGG Slippers

Deodorizing balls are designed to keep foul smells away from your footwear, so there’s no reason why they shouldn’t work on your UGGs’ interior lining. Out of all techniques mentioned in this article, this is arguably the easiest one.

All you have to do is place the deodorizing balls inside your slippers and wait. The allotted time can vary depending on the manufacturer’s instructions and just how smelly your slippers are. I highly recommend these Eco-Fused Deodorizing Balls from Amazon.com - they’re effective, compact, and easy to use.

8. Put Dryer Sheets in Your UGG Slippers

Dryer sheets are one of the most versatile household items, and they can come in handy when it comes to keeping your UGG slippers odor-free too. They help deodorize the interior fleece lining while leaving behind a lovely fresh scent. Leaving a dryer sheet in each slipper overnight can do wonders for combatting foul smells.

However, dryer sheets can sometimes cause allergic reactions, so if you have any respiratory issues, it’s best to forgo this approach.

9. Freeze Your UGG Slippers Overnight

This might seem unorthodox, but freezing your UGG slippers overnight can help dry out excess moisture and fight unpleasant smells. All you have to do is place your UGGs inside an airtight plastic bag and place them in your freezer for at least eight hours. The cold will often kill most of the odor-causing bacteria, leaving you with fresh-smelling slippers.

10. Clean or Wash Your Ugg Slippers

UGG Women's Scuff SIS Slipper, Chestnut, 5

UGG Women's Scuff Sis Slipper
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Even though aerating your UGGs and using deodorizing balls might help keep your slippers odor-free on a day-to-day basis, there’s only so long you can go without taking the time to actually give them a wash.

When it comes to cleaning your UGG slippers, you have a few options. First, you can choose to clean only the fleece lining using a damp cloth and a bit of liquid soap. 

Another possible cleaning method (which I don’t usually recommend) is to use a washing machine; however, as expected, this technique can be rough on your slippers which is why you’ll want to try the gentler approach first.

Cleaning the lining of your slippers requires a clean damp cloth and a gentle liquid soap (a few drops should suffice). After gathering the necessary items, follow these steps:

  1. Gently scrub the inside of your Uggs. Make sure you cover the entire surface.
  2. Rinse out the cloth with running water, making sure there’s no soap left. This will allow you to give your slippers a final scrub to get rid of any excess soap.
  3. Let your UGGs air dry for up to 48 hours. Never let the slippers get in direct contact with a heat source, as this can damage the material.

If this approach doesn’t work, it might be necessary to put your slippers into the washing machine. Even though doing so is bound to clean your UGGs much more thoroughly, the roughness of the process can damage the material and structural integrity of the slippers. This is why you only want to turn to this method as a last resort.

When cleaning a pair of UGGs in a washing machine, make sure to wash on a cold-wash, delicate, no-spin cycle. However, the process can still cause irreparable damage to your slippers. So, if you choose this approach, be aware of the consequences.

I only recommend you try the washing machine approach if your slippers are so smelly/dirty that no other method works, and they would be thrown away otherwise.

Moreover, and this is essential, NEVER put your UGG slippers in a dryer. Let them air dry following the previous instructions instead.

If you’re unable to clean the slippers yourself and don’t want to risk putting them in a washer, you can always enlist the help of a professional cleaner. However, never take your UGGs to a regular dry cleaner without asking if they’ve had experience with the brand before.

Key Takeaways

By following these techniques, you’ll be able to keep your UGGs smelling fresh for years to come. With enough care and attention, your slippers should never develop any unpleasant smells throughout their use, keeping you comfortable and warm all winter long without having to worry about foul odors.

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