Should I take my shoes off inside the house? © Getty Images

Should I take my shoes off inside the house?

Published: 04th September, 2022 at 18:00
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Keep them on, if you can stomach knowing what they carry on their soles.

Tests have shown that shoes carry a host of faecal bacteria – including E. coli – which could come from the floors in public toilets as well as from dog poo.


One study carried out at the University of Arizona, US, suggested that over 90 per cent of the bacteria from your shoes then transfer to the floors in your home. Shoes can also traipse in carcinogenic chemicals picked up from roadside dust, along with problematic pesticides from lawns.

Of course, some dirt is good for you, but you can always go into the garden to be exposed to germs.

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Asked by: Stephanie Lee, Bristol


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Dr Emma Davies is a science writer and editor with a PhD in food chemistry from the University of Leeds. She writes about all aspects of chemistry, from food and the environment to toxicology and regulatory science.


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