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How to Clean the Bottom of Shoes: Tips & Tricks | DC.ONE Skip to content


how to clean bottom of shoes

Shoes are meant to protect your feet and keep them clean. However, this means they can get dirty. This guide on how to clean the bottom of shoes will help you keep your footwear looking fresh. 

The soles of your shoes are always on the ground, so they’re bound to pick up some things over time. All kinds of weird and wonderful things can get caught in your shoes, whether it's chewing gum, rocks, mud, a piece of lego or small stones.

Every once in a while, the soles of your favourite shoes will need cleaning. Luckily, this handy guide will make doing so simple.

Best Way to Clean Bottom of Shoes

The best way to clean the bottom of shoes will depend on the type of shoes you have, how dirty they are and the materials you have on hand. These simple steps will help you get your shoes looking spotless.

clean bottom of shoes

Cleaning your shoes can also help prevent them from getting smelly. And if you’re heading on holiday with your shoes, we’d advise giving your shoes a thorough cleaning before you go

Remove Excess Dirt

The first step when it comes to cleaning your shoes is getting rid of the excess dirt. Take them outside and hit the shoe soles together or against a wall to shake loose any loose dirt on the soles.

Then take a plastic knife, a key or a toothbrush to get rid of any dirt clumps from the sole. The thinner the tool, the more you’ll be able to get into the crevices to scrape away dirt. If the dirt is stubborn, it may take some time to get your soles clean, but it’ll be worth it in the end.

Soak your Soles

If you have time to give your shoes a thorough cleaning, we’d recommend soaking the soles in some soapy water. You’ll need to make sure the water covers the soles only. Be careful not to get any water on the upper of your shoe, especially if they are suede.

The soapy water will help soften the dirt, as well as break down any stains.

You can then leave them for about 20 minutes and then move on to the next step.

Scrub, Scrub, Scrub

Next, it's time for you to start scrubbing the soles of your shoes with an old toothbrush or something similar. Dip the brush into the soapy water and scrub up and down the shoes.

You can also use a bigger brush (like a shoe brush). But the small head of the toothbrush can work its way into small areas and give you more control over the cleaning. Keep wetting your brush as you go along. 

Using your brush to scrub the bottom surface of the shoe will help remove any stubborn dirt that’s leftover. If you have time, you can even use the brush to clean the upper of the shoe.

clean shoe soles miss black

Use a Sneaker Eraser

Using a sneaker eraser is a great way to clean the bottom of your shoes. A magic eraser can remove scuffs, spots and stains with ease. This is a great shoe cleaning tool if you’re in a rush. All you need to do is buff the shoes, and they’ll look just like new in a few minutes.

This step is great if you just need to touch up your sneakers. However, if you really want your shoes to be clean, it’s worth doing all the steps above.

Take Your Shoes to a Cobbler

If you don’t want to clean your shoes yourself, you can send them to your local cobbler. They are shoe cleaning experts, so they’ll be able to make your shoes look as good as new without any of the effort.

Other Tips on How to Clean Bottom Soles of Shoes

You can also try using nail polish remover on your soles, especially if they are really dirty. But the acetone in nail polish can cause discolouration on the upper, so be careful. 

shoe cleaning

You can also try distilled white vinegar to clean your shoe soles. Another technique to try is using plain white toothpaste. The whitening agents in toothpaste can also help clean your white shoe soles (as well as other things around the house). Just rub it on with a toothbrush and leave it for 10 minutes. Then simply wipe it off with a damp cloth.

Final Thoughts on How to Clean Soles of Shoes

When it comes to figuring out how to clean shoe soles, there are plenty of things you can try. You can do a quick cleaning or spend a little more time on your shoes. It won’t be long before your shoes look brand new again. 

What are your favourite shoe cleaning tips? Leave us a comment below and let us know.

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