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Should you wash your shoes?

Yes! An occasional wash will keep your kicks looking clean and sharp and will also help to remove the unpleasant odors that can build up over time. In our opinion, washing your footwear semi-regularly is one of the best ways to extend the life of your most beloved pairs and is one of the first steps to take to remove odor from shoes.

Today, the majority of shoes are made of synthetic materials that hold up quite well during washing. Additionally, most footwear made with non-vegan materials can also withstand a wash (though we’d probably avoid trying it with anything that’s very ornate, suede or otherwise seems delicate). In fact, with a simple, shoe-sized lingerie bag, we’ve found the vast majority of our footwear can even be machine-washed. We’ve had success freshening up our running shoes, ballet slippers, the heels we wear at the office and even our favorite pair of leather booties.

Try using this method:

  • Brush off any loose dirt or mud with a damp cloth. Tie or remove laces and zip any zippers to prevent tangles. 
  • Place into a lingerie bag and zip or tie closed to keep both shoes together and prevent damaging other laundry and your washing machine. 
  • Drop the bag in the washer with your laundry - in this case, it really is best to separate light colors from dark colors. 
  • Start the machine using a cold, gentle cycle with minimal detergent. 
  • After the cycle is complete, remove your shoes from the machine. 
  • While still damp, reshape shoes. Usually it’s enough to just put your feet in and smooth out any wrinkles with your palm. Other times, it’s best to stuff the toes with something firm - like a wad of stiff paper bag. 
  • Place shoes in a warm (not hot) place to dry. 

And voilà! (Now go finish the rest of your laundry.)





Copyright 2019, Roseneath Farm.

1 comment

  • Love this post! I’m famous for washing shoes and for recommending it to my personal stylist clients. The detailed explanation is really helpful for folks and I can’t wait to share it. Thanks!

    Mellicia Marx, Poplin Style Direction

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