Any rigorous activity makes your shoes stinky, especially if they are not made from breathable material. This can be a bit of a turn-off, especially if you tend to go rock climbing in a group. All you need to do is learn how to clean your rock climbing shoes. And all your stinky shoe days will be behind you.
Cleaning smelly climbing shoes is easier than it seems. If you can manage to tackle the odor, you will have won half the battle. Since most climbers wear their shoe sockless, sweat can cause bacteria to grow in the rock climbing shoes, which makes them stink. The first step to handling this is to air dry them as soon as you take them off.
This will dry the sweat and prevent the growth of bacteria. You can also stuff them with newspapers, use boot dryers, or anti-microbial shoe pads to speed up the drying process. Additionally, when you take them after climbing, please do not put them in your backpack; instead, carry them in the open air to aerate them.
Once you get home, clean the shoes with lukewarm water and mild soap. You can add some vinegar to the soap to help kill bacteria and remove any odor in the shoes. Use a soft brush to avoid damaging the shoes. Ensure you clean the climbing shoe soles thoroughly, as this is where most of the bacteria thrive.
Check this too: How tight should rock climbing shoes be?
Can You Put Rock Climbing Shoes In The Washing Machine?
No. It would be best if you did not wash your climbing shoes in a washing machine. For started laundry detergent and the steam will damage the rubber soles rendering them useless. It may also damage the leather and the laces. The heat may also alter the shape, heel tension, hook and loop fasteners, and the fit of the shoes as well as the adhesive that holds the shoe together. You are better off washing them by hand.
To remove any leftover odor, use gentle remedies such as baking soda. Also, dry them in the open air but away from direct sunlight.