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How to Clean Running Shoes

How-to-Clean-Running-Shoes

Running exposes your shoes to a lot of things. Be it trail running or pavement running. Chances are your soles and sometimes even the body of the shoes will get caked with mud and other debris. This will cause a reduction in traction and in the aesthetic appeal of your shoes. Add to this the damage caused by sweat, dirt, grime and weather and you have on your hands one pair of dirty running shoes. This has the potential to ruin your shoe fabric and grind at your feet chaffing them like sandpaper. So how do you protect your feet and your shoes from this damage? The answer is simple. By keeping your running shoes clean through regular washing. This guide will help you in keeping your shoes clean thereby extending their working life. Trust this guide in cleaning your shoes and both your shoes and your feet will thank you for it.

Step by Step Guide to Keeping Your Running Shoes Clean

Cleaning your shoes can seem daunting and cumbersome. This is especially true when you don’t have a good handle on how to go about the whole cleaning process. A basic step by step process is listed below for you to get started on cleaning your shoes without feeling overwhelmed.

Bucket List

Before you start the actual process you need to make sure you have all the things that you will need ready and handy. The things you require are listed below:

  1. Mild Detergent even clothes washing soap will work if you are hand washing the shoes.
  2. A toothbrush or a soft brush for scrubbing
  3. Sponge for lathering
  4. Paper towels for mopping and dabbing
  5. Some warm water

Method

After making sure you have the ingredients needed for cleaning you can begin the process. You can either machine wash your running shoes or you can hand wash them. Both methods are discussed below:

Machine Washing Running Shoes

Before tossing the shoes into the washer please read the care instructions to see if they are machine washable.

  1. Using a toothbrush dislodge any dry mud, debris, dirt, and grime from the sole of the shoes.
  2. Remove laces and insoles. These need to be washed separately from the shoes though they can be washed in the same load.
  3. Put your shoes in a protective bag like a shoe bag or a pillowcase.
  4. Put the insole and the laces also in a separate small bag.
  5. Load both the bags in the washing machine.
  6. Add one scoop of detergent in the dispenser. Skip the softener.
  7. Start the cycle with the machine at a low temperature and on a short duration.
  8. After the cycle put the shoes, insole, and laces for drying in the sun.
  9. It is best not to use the dryer for drying the shoes since they can harm the adhesive and the mesh fabric of running shoes.
  10. Make sure the shoes are completely dry before putting in the insole and the laces on the shoes.

Hand Washing Running Shoes

This is the preferred cleaning method by most of the popular brands like Adidas and Nike.

  1. The starting point is the same for both methods. Dislodge any dirt, grime, and debris using a toothbrush or soft brush.
  2. Remove the laces and the insoles.
  3. Fill the sink or tub with warm water. Add detergent to the water and mix it to create soap suds.
  4. Wet the sponge in this solution and rub the surface of the shoes to remove any stains. You can scrub the tongue and other spots with a toothbrush. Make sure that you use adequate soapy solution to break up the dirt and grime from the shoe surface.
  5. Avoid using the toothbrush or scrub on the mesh part of the shoes.
  6. Use the paper towels to dab out any excess water remaining on the surface of the shoes.
  7. Clean the bottom of the shoes with a toothbrush or a soft brush.
  8. Next, use the wet sponge to remove all the soap from the shoes.
  9. Now clean the insoles with the toothbrush or soft brush. Don’t dunk the insole in the water or you will spoil the foam.
  10. The laces can be cleaned with soap under running water.
  11. Let the shoes, insoles, and laces air dry.

Things to Avoid

There are certain points you need to keep in mind when cleaning your shoes so as not to spoil them. These are:

  • Machine wash your shoes only if they are specified as machine washable. Otherwise, you could end up spoiling the adhesive and the fabric of the shoes.
  • Never use bleach or other cleaning supplies like hydrogen peroxide to clean shoes. Always stick to a mild clothing detergent.
  • Never dry the running shoes in the dryer or in direct sunlight. They can both damage the shoes with too much heat causing them to fall apart or even lose their shape.
  • Shoes should not be washed with the laces and insoles in them. You have to take them out and wash each separately.

Things to Remember

There are some pointers that will help you in extending the life of your shoes. The points to remember are:

  • Always wear socks. These not only protect your feet but also your shoes. They keep the sweat and moisture from your feet away from the shoes.
  • Put foot powder on the insoles of the running shoes. This helps in absorbing any moisture in the shoes keeping the odor at bay.
  • Don’t bend the shoes out of shape by twisting your feet or arching unnecessarily or by using excessive force.

FAQ Section

Are Running Shoes Washable?

Running shoes like any other shoes can be washed. They can be both hands washed and machine washed. However, check your shoe care label to see if they can be machine washed. If not then settle for handwashing them instead. When machine washing makes sure you put the shoes in a protective casing like a shoe bag or pillowcase before running through the washing machine.

How Do You Clean Running Shoes That Have Mesh?

Running shoes with mesh are cleaned in much the same way and capacity like other running shoes. You just have to be careful the mesh does not tear. So put the shoes in a protective shoe bag before putting in the washer. Keep the cycle for delicates and on warm or cool temperatures. Do not use a brush on the mesh if you are hand washing the shoes.

How to Remove Odor From The Shoes?

You can get rid of the smell in your smelly shoes by washing them with soap and water. After that let them air dry or sun-dry out in the open. Next, sprinkle some baking soda in the insole. Alternatively, you can put drying sheets on the insole to eliminate any lingering odor.

Is It Possible to Clean Muddy Running Shoes?

Yes, you can clean your muddy running shoes. Just rinse the mud off the shoes under a running tap. Then you can clean the shoes in the washing machine or hand wash them instead like any other dirty running shoes.

Washing your shoes just sounds cumbersome. Like this guide enumerates when you get down to the business of it you realize that there is nothing to it. So instead of replacing your shoes when they get overly dirty try washing them instead. This will go easy on your wallet as well.

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