Avoid socks. Enclosed shoes and socks are the perfect environment for fungi to grow and multiply. It’s dark, damp, and doesn’t allow air to circulate. Let the feet breathe by opting for open footwear, such as a slide, sandal, or flip flop, whenever possible. While feet affected with athletes foot may not be the most visually appealing, allowing the feet to be open to air frequently will help stunt the growth of fungi so that the feet can kick athletes foot to the curb.