Every sneakerhead dreams of having a collection of kicks, but nothing’s worse than getting them scuffed and soiled after going out. If you leave your pair dirty, they might become permanent. Meanwhile, some treat their sneaker collection as a collectible and keep them in a pressure-controlled vault.
Whether you use them or keep them, you have to keep them fresh by giving your pairs intensive and regular maintenance. You can wash and dry your sneakers at home, and there’s no need to rush for laundry pickup service. You can avail of such service at Liox.
General Sneaker Cleaning Instructions
Knowing the basics or general cleaning instructions for sneakers is important because you might need them anytime.
1. Remove the visible dirt on the shoe surface and soles
You can gently remove visible dirt on the shoe surface with a soft-bristled brush or a clean towel. Removing visible dirt before you put away your shoes helps prevent buildup and saves you from serious problems.
Dirt that stays on the surface for a long time results in stains. Thus, whether you clean your shoes or put them away, it is best to remove the dirt first.
2. Rinse off the soles
There is no clean walking surface. You will be surprised to check the amount of dirt and debris stuck on the soles of your shoes. Rinse off the debris and dirt with a hose or wet towel. This step does not have to be overly excessive, but it has to be done.
Meanwhile, you have to wash your insoles differently. You have to remove them first and clean them with the solution. Ensure to dry completely dry them before putting them back in your shoes.
Do not submerge your shoes in the water when rinsing. It can damage its interiors and affects its shape. You can dampen a clean white cloth and wipe down its exteriors. Insert dry paper towels in your shoes to help retain their shape.
3. Hand wash the shoelaces
It is time to tend your shoelaces. You have to remove the shoelaces to ensure all sides are washed. You need these things when washing a white shoelace: laundry detergent, a white mesh lingerie bag, and 3 tablespoons of bleach.
Apply a small amount of laundry detergent to the shoelace. Massage it gently and rinse thoroughly. Place the shoelace in a white mesh lingerie bag and soak it in a bleach solution for 5 minutes. Use rubber gloves when handling with bleach. Remove them from the soak and rinse them thoroughly. Let the shoelace air dry.
4. Spot clean the stains
Some might recommend using bleach to remove the stains. This might cause more harm than good to your shoes. Bleach may ruin the fabric and result in color discoloration. It is best to use warm water and a small amount of mild laundry detergent to clean the stains from your shoes. Gently rub the stains with a soft-bristled brush or damp cloth. Do not excessively rub the shoe surface because it can wear down its fabric.
If you are satisfied with how clean it looks, use a dry microfiber towel to remove the soapy moisture and dirt.
5. Air dry sneakers
It is prohibited to throw your sneakers in the dryer. Always air dry your sneakers at room temperature. It takes at least 8 hours for most shoes to dry thoroughly. Do not dry your shoes under direct sunlight; it causes excessive wear. If you want to speed up the drying process, it is best to place your sneakers in front of a fan or beside a refrigerator vent.
Some might use a hair dryer to dry their shoes quickly. Do not expose your sneakers to heat, this can compromise the glue, rubber, and other materials that make your shoe whole and durable. Hence, sneakers are not best dried in a dryer.
Cleaning Different Sneaker Materials
Sneakers have different materials, and the general sneaker cleaning instructions could not be the proper cleaning required. Reading the specific cleaning instructions according to your sneaker’s material is best.
- Mesh shoes: Do not scrub or use bleach on mesh sneakers. You can use a soft brush to remove the excess dirt, but do not scrub or rub it excessively. Warm water and mild dishwashing soap can be the best to use for thorough cleaning.
- Running shoes: Most running shoes get the most mud, gunk, or dirt. Use a sponge and a mixture of detergent and baking soda to clean the dirt. Always remove the dirt and stains in a circular motion.
- Canvas shoes: These shoes are made of cotton canvas fabric. It is easy to remove dirt and stains if you use lukewarm water with its shoe cleaner and a soft-bristled brush. If you are dealing with white canvas sneakers, let the cleaning solution sit on the canvas. Make a paste out of baking soda and white vinegar, and apply it to the canvas while there is the cleaning solution. Let it dry. When the cleaning paste is dry, wipe off the hardened paste with a dampened soft cloth.
Friendly Reminder When Cleaning Sneakers
- Do not scrub. Scrubbing your sneakers may damage their materials and cause scuff marks. It is best to rub or brush them gently while applying pressure gradually.
- Always remove the insoles. Do not forget to remove the insoles and wash them separately. Insoles have the most dirt and sweat, you have to wash them separately. Moreover, if you soak your shoes in water, damage may happen to their interior.
- Do not throw sneakers in the washer. This has always been a topic for debate. Some people have successfully washed their sneakers in a washer, while others suffered from damaged shoes. It is best to stay away from washers as some shoes have delicate materials.
It is essential to clean your sneakers regularly to maintain their optimal look. Moreover, knowing the tricks makes cleaning not a chore. However, if you have several sneakers to tend to and find it consuming, it is best to ask your trusted laundry service if they accept sneaker maintenance.