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The best ways to clean your Converse

Here are our tips for how to clean white Converse-style shoes and keep them looking good.


Reading Time: 5 minutes

By Cleanipedia Team

white converse-style shoes freshly clean

A pair of Converse-style shoes are great all year round, suitable for most any season. When you have white Converse though, you will need to take particular care to ensure that they remain white and looking great. Here we’ll share the best way to clean Converse-style shoes at home, whether you choose to wash by hand or use the washing machine.

A gentle detergent is the perfect product to help give you clean white Converse both in the washing machine and to create a paste to wash by hand.

Key Steps:

  1. Always remove the laces before cleaning any shoes.

  2. Use mild detergents like Persil Non-Bio when washing Converse-style shoes.

  3. Never use hot water as this could loosen the glue used to hold your shoes together.

  4. Always air dry. Use the sun’s UV rays as a natural brightener by drying them outside.

How to hand-wash white Converse-style shoes 

If you decide to try washing Converse by hand there are some easy steps for you to follow to give you the best clean white Converse.

  1. Remove the laces to expose as much of the canvas shoe material as possible.

  2. Soak your Converse in cold water.

  3. Create a paste using two parts baking soda and three parts white vinegar (other vinegar types are likely to stain.) If you would prefer not to use vinegar you can also use a gentle laundry detergent instead.

  4. Use a toothbrush or nail brush to gently scrub the canvas. Make sure you cover the entire surface of the shoe.

  5. Rinse your Converse in cold water.

  6. Leave your Converse to air dry. The best way to brighten their whiteness and speed up the drying process is to hang them in a warm, sunny area.

  7. If there are persistent stains, follow the steps below to give them an extra clean in the washing machine.

Our instructions are generalised and should be safe for most footwear brands but remember to check the manufacturer’s instructions first to avoid unwanted damage as some brands may use more delicate materials than others.

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Safety Warning

Always check your shoe manufacturer's guidance before washing Converse or any other shoes. You don't want to cause accidental damage!

How to clean white Converse-style shoes in the washing machine

  1. Remove the laces first.

  2. Place your Converse into a mesh wash bag or pillowcase to protect them inside the washing machine drum.

  3. Always use a low temperature and gentle cycle.

  4. Use a gentle detergent and avoid using fabric conditioners.

  5. Pad out the drum with a couple of towels to help cushion your shoes during the spin cycle.

  6. Leave your Converse to air dry.

Whilst the best way to clean white Converse-style shoes is often to do it by hand, you can also try cleaning Converse pumps in the washing machine. This is great if you have persistent stains which won’t come out when handwashing but you must make sure your chosen brand of Converse-style shoes are washing machine safe first.

Person wearing white converse shoes

What's the best way to dry Converse-style shoes?

When it comes to drying Converse-style shoes, there are a few methods that can effectively restore them to their original state. Firstly, it's important to remove any excess moisture by blotting the shoes with a clean towel or paper towels. Next, stuff the shoes with crumpled newspaper or dry cloth to absorb moisture from the inside. Placing them in a well-ventilated area, away from direct heat sources, allows for gradual drying. Alternatively, using a fan or low heat setting on a hairdryer can expedite the process, but caution must be exercised to avoid overheating. Ultimately, patience is key to ensure thorough drying without compromising the shoe's integrity.

We hope these top tips for washing white Converse-style shoes will help you take extra good care of your favourite pair of comfy pumps. Now you know the best way to clean Converse you can be sure to keep them sparkling like new use after use. For further information on how to clean white trainers, read our article!

Originally published