What Type Of Boots Help Minimize Human Scent

Finding the correct footwear for hunting or hiking may be as easy as trying on a pair, finding the perfect fit, and calling it a day. but, seasoned hunters and hikers know that footwear plays an important part in outdoor activities, like hunting and hiking.

Hunters prefer their hunting boots to be scent-free to have a successful hunt. Minimizing your scent is a huge advantage when hunting animals, especially deer, as they have a strong sense of smell.

Rubber boots can trap odor and minimize human scent as they are not breathable. Animals can still smell rubber boots, but with hunting scent eliminators, rubber boots can be essentially scent-free.

But, rubber boots do not come scent-free. It has a distinguished rubber smell especially when brand new.

In this article, we will discuss how to make your boots scent-free so you can have a successful hunting or hiking activity. We will also be discussing other types of outdoor boots that you can use if you do not prefer rubber boots.

What Type Of Boots Help Minimize Human Scent

There are different types of boots used for hunting.

Rubber boots are preferred by white-tailed deer hunters as they are easy to keep scent-free and they do not absorb odors as leather boots do. Rubber boots are also waterproof which makes them a good option when trekking across streams, swampy areas, or just hunting in wet conditions.

Leather and synthetic boots are also used by some hunters for their breathability and durability. But, most of these types of boots are not waterproof. These boots also absorb odors so scent control is needed if these are your preferred boots for hunting.

Do Rubber Boots Leave Scent?

Rubber boots do leave scent but they are better at controlling scent than any other type of boots. Since rubber boots are not breathable, they trap moisture and odor inside the boots. This also essentially keeps the scent of your feet inside the boots.

However, new rubber boots have a certain smell which is not ideal for hunting.

This is why hunters buy rubber boots in advance and wash them with a scent killer so the boots can be ready for the hunting season.

Do You Need Rubber Boots For Hunting?

Do You Need Rubber Boots For Hunting

You do not necessarily need rubber boots for hunting. There are leather boots with rubber soles that can also be effective in masking your scent.

But, wearing rubber boots might be the best option for hunting as they can keep your feet’s scent trapped inside.

White-tail hunters keep their rubber boots scent-free so deers can’t detect their scent. Aside from rubber boots, the rest of your clothing and yourself should be scent-free as much as possible. White-tailed deers have a strong sense of smell and they can smell the human scent from afar.

This is why boots that do not absorb odors are preferred by hunters.

How About Leather Boots For Hunting?

How About Leather Boots For Hunting

Yes, you can still use a leather boot for hunting. But you need to make sure that you can keep your boots from absorbing odors as well as neutralize your scent.

Since leather is a natural material, it is absorbent. Leather can absorb smells and bad odors which can be bad if you are using it for hunting.

Scent Control, Is It Worth Doing?

If you are going hunting, yes it is. Unlike humans, animals have a strong sense of smell and some even use it as a means of communication.

Deer, especially, spread their scent to communicate with one another. With them having 297 million olfactory receptors, their sense of smell is a thousand times better than that of us humans.

More than using scent-neutralizing products, the wind also plays a huge part in the success of your hunt. Putting yourself downwind from the approaching deer will blow your scent away from it rather than towards it. Once the deer detects your scent, it will run away from you.

Eliminating Scent When Hunting

There are scent blockers or hunting scent eliminators that can be bought to neutralize or cover scents.

But it is still best to bathe with unscented soap and shampoo to prevent the smell from sticking to your body. Aside from that your clothes and boots should also be washed with unscented detergent.

If you prefer rubber boots, make sure to wash them first to get rid of the rubbery smell that they have when brand new.

Old, worn boots should also be washed as they can sometimes absorb other odors from places you have been to, especially when you wear them regularly even when not hunting.

Scent Control Routine

Before doing anything else, wash your hunting clothes and boots with unscented detergent. There are also different kinds of scent killer detergent that you can use to wash hunting gear. These kinds of detergents can really wash away the scent from your clothes and boots.

Before you hunt, make sure not to go to places where there are strong smells while wearing your hunting clothes and boots. Smells can stick to yourself, your clothes, and your shoes if you are not careful. This is also to avoid contaminating the sole of the boots as they can leave scent traces on the ground,

It is better to wear your hunting clothes and boots after arriving at the location where you will hunt.

How To Avoid Deer Detecting The Scent Of Rubber Boots?

To clean smelly rubber boots, you can wash the insides with diluted vinegar and warm water to get rid of the smell. Then you can wash them again with the hunting scent eliminator detergent to wash off other smells that might linger, especially on the exterior of the boots.

Make sure to let the boots air dry to prevent moisture from getting trapped inside the boots. This can cause bacteria and the smell to remain if the boots do not dry off completely.

You can also spray some scent eliminator spray after the boots have dried. 

Another thing to keep your boots from smelling is to make sure that your feet are dry to prevent bacteria from thriving.

What Are Other Boots That Can Be Used Outdoors?

There are other boots that you can use outdoors that are not necessary for hunting.

Insulated hiking boots are used for hiking in the mountains and are good to use in warm weather conditions. Backpack hiking boots that are insulated can also be used for hunting or hiking. These usually have a tall upper leather and a stiff footbed to help hike in steep hillsides.

Knee-high boots are also preferred hunting boots as the pants can be tucked inside to keep the scent of the pants inside the boots.

Snake boots are also popular among hunters and hikers as these boots can protect your ankles from a snake bite. The materials of a snake boot are very durable and are worth having in your boot collections, especially if you hunt in a snake-dense area.


 Minimizing human scent can make your hunts successful as it can minimize the risk of the animal smelling you and running away.

Rubber boots can be effective in minimizing human odor as they are not breathable. This traps odor inside the boots and is also waterproof so it is a nice option, especially when deer hunting or hiking in wet conditions.

We have covered other types of boots in this article and it will be a personal preference with regard to the type you want to wear.

Whatever type of boots you prefer, minimizing your scent and any other smell can be a game-changer in your hunts.

We hope this article helped you decide what type of boots help minimize human scent for your next activity.