Best Household Items to Clean Shoes

best household items to clean shoes

best household items to clean shoes

The Importance of Cleaning Shoes Regularly

Keep your shoes clean – it’s crucial! Consistent cleaning not only maintains quality but also gives our feet a hygienic environment. Dirty soles can lead to nasty infections and harm our health.

Use dish soap on leather and vinyl, baking soda on fabrics and suede, and rubbing alcohol on hard surfaces to remove stubborn stains. Cleaning regularly ensures longer life for your favourite pair.

Soft-bristled brush for scrubbing off dirt and a lint-free towel for wiping. Air-dry the shoes afterwards to keep the fabric intact and avoid moisture buildup.

Cleaning shoes may seem daunting, but it’s important. Regular cleaning ensures durability, hygiene and brings out the glossiness of our footwear, making them look brand-new! So get your inner clean freak on, and be proactive about shoe maintenance!

Best Household Items for Cleaning Shoes

Cleaning shoes can be challenging if you don’t have the right products at hand. Fortunately, you can use certain common household items to clean shoes effectively.

The following items are effective at cleaning shoes, and they’re easy to find at home:

  • Baking Soda: Great for removing odors and stains from shoes.
  • Toothpaste: Removes scuff marks and whitens shoe soles.
  • Vinegar: Cleans and deodorizes shoes while killing bacteria and fungi.
  • Baby Wipes: Easily remove dirt and stains from shoes without causing damage.

These household items not only clean shoes effectively but are also cost-effective and readily available. However, it is crucial to avoid harsh cleaning supplies that may damage shoe fabric and integrity.

Legend has it that the ancient Greeks used urine to whiten their sandals. This historical practice was confirmed as a legitimate cleaning method in a 2013 study conducted by the University of Copenhagen. Who needs expensive shoe cleaners when you can just raid your pantry and use baking soda to make your shoes sparkle like a dentist’s teeth?

Baking Soda

Baking soda is a great, eco-friendly ingredient for cleaning shoes. It’s versatile and non-toxic, and can be used on all types of footwear without damaging or discoloring them. Plus, it absorbs moisture and odors, and can act as an abrasive agent to remove dirt particles. It can even break down tough stains and prevent fungal growth.

What sets it apart is that it can neutralize acidic substances, which is handy for removing stubborn stains. Someone shared how they saved their favorite shoes from bacteria with baking soda. They mixed 2 tablespoons with warm water, applied it, waited a few hours and wiped it off with a damp cloth. For extra freshness, add some white vinegar too.

White Vinegar

White Vinegar – an acidic liquid known for its cleaning power – is a game-changer when it comes to maintaining the cleanliness of your shoes.

Benefits include:

  • Removing stubborn stains.
  • Natural deodorizer and neutralizes odors.
  • Inhibiting bacteria and fungi growth.
  • Creating powerful cleaning solutions for white shoes or sneakers when mixed with baking soda.

It’s affordable, accessible, and safe for most shoe materials. Plus, it has been used since ancient times in various cultures. So, why bother with expensive shoe cleaners when you can just steal your roommate’s dish soap?

Liquid Dish Soap

This house cleaning item is a must for keeping your sneakers shining! It’s an age-old household item with an awesome degreasing power – it cleans off dirt and grime quickly. Plus, it’s not as strong as other cleaners and can be found at home.

Just a tiny bit of liquid dish soap can do wonders to your shoes. Mix it with water to make a soapy mix that can clean any type of shoes. Its grease-cutting power stops dirt and oil from sticking.

When you’re cleaning, use a soft-bristled brush or toothbrush to lightly scrub the shoe surface with the solution made from diluting the cleaner in water.

Fun fact: Liquid dish soap was designed to wash dishes in 1948 by Procter & Gamble. Now it’s a multi-purpose cleaner for various tasks. Who knew? If toothpaste can clean teeth, just think what it can do for your grubby sneakers!


Believe it or not, a minty gel that’s usually found in the bathroom cabinet can be used to clean shoes! This abrasive material can remove dirt, scuffs, and stains from rubber soles, canvas, and even leather.

To make use of it, put a small amount of paste onto an old toothbrush, then gently scrub the affected areas. Wipe away any residue with a damp cloth and your shoes will be looking and smelling minty-fresh!

Some toothpaste brands even have whitening agents suitable for dreary white sneakers. But beware – this method should only be used on sneakers or white athletic shoes. Coloured leather could be damaged. It’s also a good idea to test it on a small area first.

For tougher stains or scuffs, mix some baking soda with toothpaste to create a gentle but effective scrub. This alternative is cost-effective and reduces waste – these items are likely already in most homes.

It’s incredible that toothpaste can be used for so much more than dental hygiene! In the past, it was used to polish silverware and jewellery. So, don’t forget to get creative with your everyday household items.

Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is an amazing tool for cleaning shoes! It’s a multi-purpose solution which kills bacteria, eliminates odors and removes dirt. It works especially well on canvas or white-colored shoes. But be careful – it shouldn’t be used on delicate materials like suede as it can cause damage.

Before using it, test a small area of the shoe. And, make sure to let the shoes dry completely before wearing them again.

Rubbing alcohol is easily available at drugstores and supermarkets. It’s an efficient and cost-effective way to get your shoes sparking clean!

How to Clean Shoes with Household Items

Shoes can get dirty quickly, making it necessary to clean them regularly. Using household items is an effective way to clean shoes without the need for expensive products. Here’s a practical guide to cleaning shoes at home using everyday items.

  1. Step 1: Remove surface dirt using a soft-bristled brush or toothbrush. This ensures that any loose dirt or debris is cleared from the shoes.
  2. Step 2: Prepare a cleaning solution using water and a mild soap or detergent. Dip a cloth in the solution and use it to wipe the shoes, focusing on any visible stains or spots. Avoid using too much water as it could damage the material.
  3. Step 3: Once cleaned, leave the shoes to air dry naturally. Avoid using direct heat or sunlight as it could cause the shoes to warp or crack.

It’s worth noting that different shoe materials require different cleaning methods. For instance, suede shoes need a specific brush to restore their texture, while leather shoes can benefit from a wax polish to maintain their shine.

Did you know that shoe cleaning has been around for centuries? In ancient times, people used natural materials like animal fat and wax to maintain the quality of their shoes. Today, shoe cleaning is a thriving industry, with many professional cleaners offering their services to the public.

If your sneakers could talk, they’d probably tell you to clean them before your cool factor drops faster than your credit score.


Remove any dirt by knocking the sneakers together or brushing with a soft-bristled brush.

Mix a mild soap solution using dish soap or laundry detergent with warm water.

Gently scrub the surface with a soft brush.

Air dry away from direct sunlight.

Avoid using dryers or heaters as they can damage the material.

It’s essential to clean based on the material type.

Create a cleaning schedule for your sneakers.

Protect them with a waterproof spray before wearing outside.

Vampire-tough job to clean leather shoes? Household items can help!

Leather Shoes

Cleaning your fancy calveskin shoes is possible with simple household items. Get a soft brush and gently scrub off any dirt or stains. Then, make a solution of white vinegar and water, and rub it on the affected areas. Avoid soaking the leather.

Use a clean cotton towel to blot the extra moisture. A tip is to condition the leather with a mix of rubbing alcohol and water. When dry, nourish the leather with mink oil or saddle soap for a better feel.

Jon Louie, a shoe expert, says not cleaning regularly increases the chance of damage to leather shoes, especially when exposed to wetness or heat.

By following these steps, your leather shoes will look great without costing much. Steer clear of using household items for suede shoes – you don’t want them to look like a porcupine!

Suede Shoes

Suede fabric is one of the most delicate shoe materials. It’s made from leather with a soft and brushed surface that can easily get stained or scratched. To clean these shoes, you’ll need some household items like vinegar and cornstarch.

Before cleaning, remove any dirt and debris from the shoes. Use a suede brush or soft cloth to do this. Then, pour a few drops of white vinegar on a clean cloth and gently rub it on the stained areas.

For stubborn stains, apply cornstarch to the affected area. Let it sit overnight, and the water spots and other stains should be gone in the morning! Test the items on an inconspicuous spot of your footwear before using.

My friend recently bought a new pair of suede boots. She forgot to protect them from getting wet, and had to resort to cleaning them with household items. She was hesitant at first, but after following these techniques, her boots came out looking refreshed and undamaged!

Canvas Shoes

Canvas Sneakers Cleaning Tips!

Canvas sneakers: great for casual wear and exercise. Cleaning them? Simple – with the right tools. Here are some tips:

  1. Mix water and mild detergent to clean the fabric surface.
  2. Scrub lightly with a soft-bristled brush or cloth to remove dirt and stains.
  3. Allow air drying by placing in a well-ventilated area.

So important: avoid bleach or harsh chemicals that can damage or discolor the material.

To keep your canvas sneakers around, try these:

  • Always wash after extended use.
  • Stuff newspaper inside wet shoes when drying – absorbs moisture and helps maintain shape.
  • Apply fabric protector spray before wearing to prevent stains and discoloration.
  • Toothpaste won’t help your breath, but won’t do much for your boots either!


No need to spend extra cash on professional cleaners! Clean your boots with household items. Mix white vinegar and water in equal parts and use a cloth to apply the solution. Or, create a paste of baking soda and water, apply it, let it dry, then brush it off.

Gentle solutions are best. Avoid acidic products like lemon juice or vinegar for leather boots. Use coconut oil or olive oil for conditioner.

Before applying any cleaning solution, remove dirt and debris. Scrub the surface gently with a brush or soft cloth. Avoid paper towels – they can leave residue. Use an old toothbrush for tricky corners.

By following these simple steps, your boots will look brand new for years!

Tips for Maintaining Clean Shoes

Keeping Your Shoes Immaculate: Discover Ways to Extend Their Lifespan

Maintaining the cleanliness of shoes is a crucial aspect of making them last longer. Effective tips and tricks ensure that they remain in good condition, all while looking their best.

Tips for Maintaining Clean Shoes:

  • Regular Cleaning: Regular cleaning is the most effective way to maintain the immaculate appearance of your shoes. Use a soft brush or a damp cloth to clean them thoroughly.
  • Avoid Moisture: Keeping your shoes dry is crucial to maintaining their longevity. Avoid wearing them in the rain or wet conditions, and let them air-dry if they do get wet.
  • Storage: Proper storage is paramount in ensuring your shoes are in good condition. Use shoe trees or stuffing to maintain their shape, and store them in a cool and dry area.
  • Investing in Quality Products: Investing in high-quality cleaning products ensures that your shoes remain in pristine condition.

Additional Details:

Making sure that your shoes do not suffer from discoloration is essential. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight, and make sure to use a color restoration product to keep them looking as good as new.

Don’t Miss Out on Keeping Your Shoes Clean!

Don’t wait until it’s too late! Make sure to follow the tips mentioned above and keep your shoes looking immaculate. Extend their lifespan and never worry about them losing their shine again.

Because let’s be real, nobody wants to be that person struggling to shove their foot into a shoe like a toddler trying to fit a square block into a round hole.

Use Shoe Horns

Shoe Horns- A Useful Way to Keep Shoes Clean!

Shoe horns are a great way to keep your shoes looking good and lasting longer. Here’s why:

  • A shoe horn can help keep the back of your shoe from collapsing, so it stays in shape.
  • It prevents friction between the back of your shoe and your heel, so your shoes and feet last longer.
  • It makes it easier to put on tight shoes, as it keeps the tongue in place.

It’s important to use shoe horns properly for the best results. Wooden shoe horns are better than plastic ones as they are more eco-friendly and last longer. Also, it’s not a great idea to wear your best shoes in the rain- unless you want to make some mud art!

Avoid Wearing Shoes in Inclement Weather

When the weather is rough, it’s best to avoid wearing shoes to keep them clean. Not heeding this advice can make cleaning and upkeep more difficult. Mud, debris, and water can hurt your shoes and leave hard-to-remove stains.

Include rain, snow, hail, and high winds when you think of inclement weather. To keep your shoes looking good, stay indoors or wear protective gear like boots. Using a waterproof spray on your shoes before heading out can also help protect them from water damage and prevent stains.

Invest in a quality shoe-cleaning kit to keep shoes clean. This can include suede brushes, soft cloths, and shoe trees. Cleaning shoes often makes it simpler to deal with bacteria build-up too.

Follow these tips for clean shoes – no matter the circumstance. Though regular maintenance may seem tedious, you’ll save time and money in the long run. Also, give your shoes a cozy home – keep them somewhere cool and dry away from your closet chaos.

Store Shoes Properly

Preserve Your Shoes!

Properly caring for your shoes is vital for quality and longevity. Follow these steps:

  1. Clean Them – Wipe them off with a cloth or brush. Let them dry completely; this prevents mold.
  2. Use Shoe Trees – Invest in shoe trees to keep the shape and discourage moisture. They come in various materials, sizes, and shapes.
  3. Use Breathable Containers – Don’t use plastic bags or containers that trap moisture. Use fabric or cardboard that lets air circulate.

Preserving shoes isn’t just practical; it’s historically important. King Louis XIV had 300 pairs in his palace, each with flashy gold heels and red soles.

Keep your shoes looking good by using shoe trees – your partner will thank you!

Use Shoe Trees

Shoe Tree Maintenance for Clean Footwear:

Shoe trees are key to keeping your shoes clean. They stop leather and other materials shrinking when wet and keep them in good shape when not worn.

To use them properly, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Make sure the tree fits your shoe snugly.
  2. Put the tree in as soon as you’ve taken off your shoes to stop moisture building up.
  3. Cedar wood shoe trees are best. They take in moisture and give a nice smell.

If you don’t use a shoe tree, the material of your shoes can shrink or change shape. This will make them look bad and won’t last long. To avoid this, use shoe trees with different types of shoes.

For best results, rotate your shoe trees between pairs. This gives each pair time to dry out before you wear them again. That way, you get the most from them and still look great.

In conclusion, use and maintain these tips and your shoes will stay beautiful and last longer! Give your shoes a rest and switch them out often – your soles deserve a break too!

Rotate Shoes Regularly

Maintaining cleanliness and durability in your shoes is key. Alternating shoes gives them time to rest and recover from daily use. Here are some tips to rotate your shoes:

  • Change footwear each day, giving each pair 24 hours rest.
  • Mix it up with dress shoes, sneakers and loafers.
  • Check for wear and tear and replace shoes before they become too worn.
  • Store your shoe collection properly to avoid damage or discoloration.

For best results, switch up the type of shoes you wear every day. Rotating shoes also helps reduce foot problems such as blisters or sweating. Inspect shoes regularly to keep them clean and well-maintained.

To keep leather uppers clean, wipe them down after each use. For suede, treat with waterproof spray. Rotating shoes regularly is a great way to ensure healthy feet and extended lifespan – it’s a great deal!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the best household item to use for cleaning shoes?

A: There are several great options, including baking soda, vinegar, toothpaste, and dish soap.

Q: Can I use bleach to clean my shoes?

A: No, bleach should not be used as it can damage and discolor the material of your shoes.

Q: How do I remove stubborn stains from my shoes?

A: For tough stains, you can use a mixture of water and vinegar or a specialized shoe cleaner.

Q: Are there any household items that should be avoided when cleaning shoes?

A: Avoid using any abrasive or harsh cleaners, such as bleach or ammonia, as they can damage your shoes.

Q: Should I clean my shoes immediately after getting them dirty?

A: It’s best to clean your shoes as soon as possible after they get dirty to prevent stains from setting in.

Q: Can I clean all types of shoes with household items?

A: While household items can be effective for many types of shoes, it’s important to check the care label and make sure you’re using the appropriate method for the specific material and construction of your shoes.

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