Shoes that are worn get dirty – here are some tips for cleaning them. If the shoes are extra delicate, colorful, or made of wool then I dry brush, spot clean, or hand wash in the sink as needed without product. This is often enough, but I sometimes use a dab of dish soap or leather cleaner.
If the shoes are very dirty or smelly, then I resort to fully immersing them in water or using the washing machine. Most shoe brands are wary of suggesting you wash your shoes in the machine, because they can get damaged. But I personally have washed many a shoe – even leather ones!
Here’s my formula:
– A drop of tea tree oil & a couple tablespoons of baking soda in each shoe
– Put shoes in mesh garment bag
– Dye & Scent Free Detergent (I use Trader Joe’s brand or soap nuts)
– Use Gentle Cycle or Delicate on the machine
– Air dry the shoes over an air vent
You can also scrub the inside with a brush (an old toothbrush works) to get rid of dead skin cells and any funk that has gotten into the materials. And if you use a removable insole in your shoes then it’s even easier to take it out to clean!
For more shoe care and fit tips, check out this resource!