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How To Whiten Your White Shoes

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Use Bleach For Heavy Stains


Bleach is like the knight in shining armor for tough stains. It has excellent results in cleaning both white shoes and clothes.

Butremember to use bleach very carefully. Its a potent chemical, and too much exposure can cause skin redness, burning, and breathing difficulties.

Therefore, you have to wear gloves, and you must be in a well-ventilated room.

If youve done this, heres how to clean white sneakers using bleach:

  • Mix bleach with warm water . .
  • Use a sponge or toothbrush to loosen surface stains. You can use a lot of pressure but focus on the soiled areas.
  • Now, dampen a small microfiber towel in warm water.
  • Squeeze out excess water from the towel.
  • Gently dab the towel over the shoes. If youre cleaning sturdier shoes like boots, you can run them under the water tap.
  • Finally, let the shoes dry for five to six hours in a well-ventilated room.

Afterward, your shoes will undoubtedly look brand new.

Fighting Stains With Toothpaste

  • 1Wipe your shoes with a damp cloth to get them wet. Wet the end of a microfiber cloth or towel and gently wipe it across your shoes. Get your shoes slightly damp but not soaking wet so the toothpaste can foam up.XResearch source
  • Try using toothpaste on fabric, mesh, or sneakers.
  • 2Rub a pea-sized dab of toothpaste into the shoes with a toothbrush. Put the dab of toothpaste directly onto your shoes where there are heavy stains. Spread the toothpaste thin so it coats the entire area before working your toothbrush in small circular motions. Work the toothpaste into the shoes fabric thoroughly before letting it set for 10 minutes.XResearch source
  • Make sure to use a non-gel toothpaste thats white. Other colors may leave stains on your shoes.
  • 3Wipe the toothpaste and dirt away with a wet cloth. You can use the same wet cloth as before to wipe the toothpaste off of your shoes. Make sure to get all of the toothpaste off your shoes so it doesnt leave any marks.XResearch source
  • 4Let your shoes air dry completely for 2-3 hours. Set your shoes in front of a fan or in a well-ventilated room. Leave the shoes to completely dry. Once theyre dry, your shoes should look a few shades lighter.XResearch source
  • Leave your shoes outside in the sun to speed up the drying process.
  • How To Clean Canvas Sneakers

    Canvas shoes like Chuck Taylors and Supergas can be difficult to clean because grime works its way into the shoes fabric. However, canvas can generally withstand a substantial amount of scrubbing, so most stains can be removed with a bit of work.

    After mixing some dish soap and water, clean your shoes by scrubbing them with a toothbrush in small, circular motions. When youre done, wipe them down with a damp towel to clear off any remaining suds.

    Let your shoes dry between rounds of cleaning. You wont be able to tell how much dirt remains if theyre still wet.

    If your sneakers still have stains, try using a stain remover like Tide or OxiClean. Apply the stain remover, and let the liquid sit for about five minutes before dabbing with a damp cloth. I was initially hesitant to try something this aggressive, but sneaker-cleaning legend Jason Markk said its okay, so Im fine with it.

    Into the washing machine?

    A hotly debated topic is whether you should toss your shoes into the wash. Some have done this successfully. But dont discount stories of shoes disintegrating in the washing machine . So proceed with caution because its not a gentle process.

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    How To Whiten Shoes

    Toothpaste works when you have tiny spaces that are hard to reach, like texturing on rubber soles.

    “Toothpaste’s microspheres break down anything, so they are perfect to clean a lot of things, especially your shoes,” said Abe Navas from Emilys Maids, a house-cleaning personnel service.

    Get your biceps ready for a thorough wash. “You really need to take off all the paste because it’s sticky, it traps dirt, so if you don’t clean the paste really well, your shoes will get dirty really fast,” said Navas.

    Hydrogen Peroxide Is A Great Alternative To Bleach


    If you only need mild bleaching and dont want to deal with using bleach, a great substitute would be hydrogen peroxide. This product will help you clean white shoes and might even turn yellowed fabric into bright white. You can use it by itself or diluted in water, following a 1:1 ratio. For hard-to-remove marks, you can create a paste by mixing hydrogen peroxide and baking soda together.

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    Stuff The Shoes And Brush Off Loose Dirt

    To help shoes maintain their shape, begin by filling them, either with shoe trees or something else, such as rags or newspaper. Doing this makes the shoes easier to handle and provides a buffer to absorb any liquids that happen to seep through.

    If you have a shoe brush, use it to brush off loose dirt. An old toothbrush, a soft nail brush, or even a soft cloth will also work. The goal here is to knock off any dust and dirt without pushing it deeper into the material.

    Hack #: Use The Power Of The Sun


    Of course, this one is among our favorites. Simply put a 40 volume crème to the soles of your shoes.

    After applying a good layer of volume crème in the shoes, cover it up with a plastic wrap. It would be easier to begin with the toe of the shoes first and then around the shoe itself. The purpose of putting a plastic wrap is so the 40 volume crème remains in place and it also holds the heat.

    Now, the next step is to let the shoes sit in the sun for about 30 to 45 minutes to bake the volume crème as well as whiten the shoes. During this step, we suggest you rotate the shoes so youll know the sunlight is evenly balanced to the shoes.

    After about half an hour of sunlight, remove the plastic wrap and clean the shoes using warm water.

    Quick Tutorial Video

    Heres a quick demonstration from JaFire Sneakers YouTube channel on how to put Salon 40 volume crème.

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    Different Options For Removing Scuff Marks

  • 1Use plain soap and water. Usually, scrubbing scuff marks with a sponge soaked with soapy water will do the trick.
  • Use a mild soap, such as hand soap or a liquid dish detergent with no added fragrances or chemicals. Mix a few drops into a cup of warm water and stir until bubbles form on the surface.
  • When scrubbing the scuff mark, rub the shoe with your sponge using firm, circular motions.
  • 2Try WD-40. Spray a little WD-40 directly on the scuff marks and buff the marks away with a sponge or rag.XResearch source
  • Among other things, WD-40 is often used to extract moisture and clean off dirt and residue from a range of surfaces. Only use it on the rubber part of the shoe, however, and not the canvas. As an oil-based product, WD-40 can leave stains on material like canvas.
  • 3Apply nail polish remover. Soak a cotton ball or cotton pad in a little acetone nail polish remover and scrub the scuff marks with the remover until cleaned.XResearch source
  • Vigorously rub the mark with the nail polish remover to get rid of it. The scuff mark should fade in appearance almost instantly.
  • An acetone-based nail polish remover works best.
  • 4Dab on a little bleach. Dilute a small amount of bleach with water.XResearch source Dunk a clean toothbrush into this bleach mixture and use it to scrub out the scuff marks.
  • 5Scrub out scuffs with whitening toothpaste. Apply the toothpaste directly to the scuff mark and scrub at it with a toothbrush.XResearch source
  • Will Bleach Destroy Canvas

    How to whiten shoes soles

    It is also advised to use bleach, which is also an extremely caustic substance. If you combine vinegar and bleach, a toxic chlorine gas is produced. A bleached canvas tent will not last long. Since we have clarified that vinegar and bleach are both CAUSTIC for the canvas and destroy it, they are also not efficient.

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    Or Try A Brush To Get Out Tough Shoe Stains

    After applying your chosen cleaning product to your shoes, brushes can help scrub out the stains better than an ordinary cloth. Hardie believes the key to shoe maintenance is using the right brush and cleaner. For example, toothbrushes are fine for the soles, but they might pill the upper part of your shoe. Campana recommends buying softer brushes for your uppers, such as the Jason Markk Premium Sneaker Brush, which is made of a gentler hog bristle.

    Make A Diy Shoe Cleaning Solution With Vinegar And Water

    If you dont want to shell out for shoe-cleaning products, Toronto shoe store Getoutsides special request manager Giselle Ferguson recommends scrubbing dirt off with a solution of equal parts water and white vinegar. Apply the solution with a cloth, and gently scrub away. She says this method can work on any material but that it works best on leather.

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    How To Clean White Shoes With Baking Soda

    Sure, it freshens your fridge, but baking soda is just another tool in your arsenal of what to clean white shoes with and its one of our favorite DIY cleaning tricks. To play it safe, youll also need a splash or two of white vinegar, which in addition to freshening up the scent of your home is a pretty useful cleaning agent as well.

    To clean white shoes with baking soda: Combine one tablespoon of hot water, one tablespoon of white vinegar, and one tablespoon of baking soda. Mix until it reaches a paste-like consistency, and then use an old toothbrush to lather the mixture onto the canvas areas of your shoes. Work in circular motions for best results. Once the shoes are covered, leave them outside in bright, warm sunlight for three to four hours. After the mixture is dry, clap the shoes together to remove it brushing again with a toothbrush should shake it all off. Shoes should be several shades whiter.

    How Often You Should Clean Your White Sneakers

    9 Ways to Clean White Shoes

    If you want your white sneakers to always look squeaky clean, youll want to wash them every two weeks. Obviously, this depends on how often you wear them. Frequent cleanings can keep dirt, grime, and stains from building up. Remember, the longer you let a stain sit, the harder it will be to remove.

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    Lemon Juice Isnt Just A Natural Source Of Vitamin C

    When using this natural bleach, always dilute it with a bit of water. The most effective ratio is two tablespoons of lemon juice with a cup of cold water. You can then apply this to your shoes using a spray or by using an old toothbrush. Use a circular motion when rubbing it in. To further boost the bleaching power of lemon juice, leave your shoes under the sun for a few hours to let it soak through.

    If the usual homemade solutions arent working as well as you hoped they would, you can always turn to commercially available cleaning products. There are ones specifically made for shoes and you can also use multi-purpose ones that pack a bit more punch when it comes to cleaning white shoes. Here are a few of our recommendations:

    Cleaning Your White Shoes With Baking Soda And Hydrogen Peroxide

    A variation of the baking soda method substitutes the use of white vinegar with 3% hydrogen peroxide. Essentially, all of the steps are the exact same as our above baking soda method, all youâll need is 3% hydrogen peroxide, which you usually can find at independent chemist or . In lieu of vinegar, mix one to two tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide with one tablespoon each of baking soda and water.

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    How To Clean White Canvas Sneakers

    Ready to put on your chemist hat? Combine baking soda with an equal amount of a mixture thats half water and half hydrogen peroxide until it forms a paste. After making sure all excess dirt is brushed off of the canvas parts of your sneakers, apply the mixture. Let your shoes sit for around four hours until the mixture has hardened. Shake off the hard stuff and use a crumpled up paper towel to remove the excess cleaning solution. Youll notice your shoes are way whiter. If you want all of the other shoes in your closet to look brand new too, heres how to clean every type of shoe.

    Prevention Is Better Than Cure

    How to Whiten Your Shoes Quick & Easy

    However, it is worth noting that prevention is always better than cure. The best thing you can do to keep your white shoes clean is by treating them with a stain and water repellent treatment the moment you get them home. Most shoe shops sell leather protectors or fabric protectors, just ask when you hit the checkout.

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    Try A Dedicated Shoe Cleaner

    If youre serious about your sneakers, buying a designated shoe cleaner is your best bet. Different shoe stores often sell their own versions . Adrian Campana, the regional manager for Livestock footwear in Toronto emphasizes that people should look for natural cleanershe likes Jason Markks Premium Sneaker Cleanerso harsh chemicals dont wear away your shoes.

    Dalton Jackson, founder of Canadas Sole Exchange: The Ultimate Sneaker Show, likes Canadian brand Moneysworth & Bests gel cleaner, which he says is amazing for removing dirt and grass stains.

    How To Clean Rubber Shoe Soles

    So what about pebbled, rubbery soles that are the most vulnerable to soiling? Fairouz Ait Lkhal, founder of the Oh My Hacks blog, recommends a delicate process. “Take a little bleach with a cotton swab and apply the product to the rubber parts of your shoes, then rub it in lightly,” she said.

    No bleach, no problem! Dig into your beauty cabinet for nail polish remover, which is just as effective.

    When rolling up your sleeves to whiten your leather shoes, per Jennie Varney, brand manager for Molly Maid, keep in mind that doubling this recipe makes for a zesty vinaigrette, too.

    • Combine 1/4 cup white vinegar with 1/2 cup olive oil in a medium-size spray bottle.
    • Screw on the spray top and shake the bottle vigorously to combine the ingredients.
    • Spray shoes with the vinegar and olive oil mixture, coating the entire surface thoroughly. Apply more solution to particularly dirty or discolored areas.
    • Allow the solution sit for five minutes.
    • Wipe off the solution with a soft, dry cloth.

    While the vinegar serves as an astringent, the oil lubricates the leather to keep it supple.

    You certainly want leather to dry as quickly as possible, so opt for stuffing shoes with water-absorbing microfiber cloths to speed up the process.

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    How To Clean White Leather Sneakers

    It might sound too good to be true, but getting your favorite white leather sneakers looking good-as-new is as easy as taking a toothbrush with your favorite white toothpaste to the sootier surfaces of the shoe. Just like you would brush your teeth, scrub until youre satisfied. Use warm water with this method to speed up the process. You can even add sugar to the toothpaste to create an exfoliant effect for any areas where filth seems to be caked on. Now youll never have to guess how to clean white sneakers again!

    Baking Soda And Laundry Detergent

    How To Use Lemon Juice To Clean Your White Shoes

    In order to thoroughly clean your white cloth shoes, you first have to remove the laces and then soak them in water before applying the mixture that you will use to whiten the fabric.

    Start by pouring enough water to soak both the shoes and the laces until they are completely covered with lukewarm water. This last part is especially important. Warm water could make the stains even harder to remove from the fabric.

    When the fabric is wet, mix one part baking soda and one part of detergent in a bowl, so you have a solution that contains 50% of each ingredient. Using a brush or an old toothbrush, rub the mixture on the shoes. Spend more time on the darkest stains.

    To remove the soapy mixture that you used to clean the sneakers, you can simply rinse them, soak them in water again, or even use a sponge and then dry them using a microfiber cloth.

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    How Do You Clean White Shoes At Home

    White shoes are such a statement, but they can be a pain to keep clean! To clean them at home, we recommend one of these cleaning methods:

    • Machine washing
    • The baking soda and vinegar method
    • The baking soda and 3% hydrogen peroxide method
    • A weak bleach solution
    • Sun power

    Each of these methods are tried and tested, but it fully depends on the material of your white shoes and how dirty they are. Read on as we walk you through each of these methods, step by step with our recommended products!

    Can I Use Hydrogen Peroxide On My Shoes

    To make a paste, mix two parts baking soda with one part hydrogen peroxide and stir it together until it is mixed. The solution can then be applied to any dirty areas of your shoes using an old toothbrush and massaged in gently to soak into the fabric and agitate the soil. Allow the shoes to air dry.

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    Why Is Proper Drying Of Your Shoes Important

    You dont want your white sneakers to develop a musky smell or mold, right?

    Although white canvas sneakers can dry quickly when exposed to direct sunlight, the heat can damage them. As an alternative, you can dry them under a fan then wrapping them in a newspaper to absorb any excess moisture. You can also crumple newspaper and put it inside.

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