Spraying Lysol to Clean Shoes & Kill Fungi: Does it Work

Spraying Lysol to Clean Shoes- Is it Safe & Does it Work
Spraying Lysol to Clean Shoes- Is it Safe & Does it Work

Fact: Each of our feet contains approximately 125 000 sweat glands

Yep. That’s correct. Thanks to these guys, our shoes end up smelly quite musty and of course, they need to be cleaned often. One of the easiest things most people do is grab a can of Lysol and spray them out. But Does this really work?

Can You Safely Spray Your Shoes With Lysol?

Lysol is relatively safe when it comes in contact with skin or clothing (like socks) so it is safe to use in your shoes. 

It is recommended that you let your shoes completely dry after spraying the Lysol before wearing them. 

And it is best to wear socks with your shoes if you have disinfected them, especially if you have sensitive skin. 

If you notice that your skin becomes irritated or itchy after using Lysol in your shoes, remove the shoes, let them air dry, and wash your feet. 

Did you know you can get rid of shoe odor by freezing them click here to read more- Freezing Shoes to Get Rid of Smell & Fungi – What to KnowOpens in a new tab.

Will Lysol Get Rid Of Shoe Odor

Lysol is known to get rid of different kinds of odor and can also get rid of shoe odor. 

However, this will ultimately depend on the condition of your shoes. For shoes in very bad shape when it comes to grime and odor, it would be best to wash them first, let them dry, and then spray them down. 

However, for shoes that are mildly or moderately affected, you may spray the insides of the shoes and let them air dry completely. If necessary, you may repeat the spraying process. 

Other ways to get rid of odor from shoes:

Tea Bags For Smelly Shoes & Feet – Easy Home RemedyOpens in a new tab.

How to Use Hydrogen Peroxide to Safely Clean Smelly ShoesOpens in a new tab.

How to Use Rubbing Alcohol to Clean & Disinfect ShoesOpens in a new tab.

7 Hacks To Fix Smelly Shoes Overnight Without WashingOpens in a new tab.

Will Lysol Kill Fungus and Bacteria In Shoes

The regular Lysol disinfecting spray is very effective at killing germs, bacteria, and fungi on hard, nonporous surfaces like the bottom or sides of shoes. And it can also do a great job for soft surfaces like the insides of shoes as well when used as a spot treatment. 

The Lysol company has also created a disinfectant spray specially designed for fabric and soft surfaces that is just as effective as the regular one. 

Another way to disinfect your shoes is to use a UV Shoe Sanitizer – click here to learn more.

Related Article – 8 Best Alternatives to Lysol Spray- that are even BetterOpens in a new tab.

How To Use Lysol To Clean Your Shoes

To disinfect the outside of your shoes:

  1. Pre-clean surfaces before use.
  2. Hold the can upright 6 to 8 inches from the surface.
  3. Spray for 3 to 4 seconds until covered with mist.
  4. Surfaces must remain wet for at least 3 minutes then allow to air dry.

To sanitize soft surfaces:

  1. Spray until the fabric is wet.
  3. Fabric must remain wet for 10 minutes.
  4. Let air dry.
  5. For difficult odors, repeat the application.

To deodorize:

  1. Spray as often as needed and let the area air-dry properly. 
  2. Do not use damp shoes, even if it is damp with Lysol.\

Related Articles:

How to Clean Fabric, Canvas or Mesh Shoes: White & ColoredOpens in a new tab.

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Video: Lysol – How and where to use Lysol Disinfectant Spray

Pros and Cons of Using Lysol To Disinfect Shoes


  • The regular Lysol Kills 99.9% of germs on the outside of shoes while the specific fabric sanitizer spray does the same for soft surfaces
  • Targets and eliminates a wide variety of bacteria, viruses, and fungi
  • Kills the majority of germs on the inside of shoes
  • Helps to get rid of the odor
  • Is well tolerated (has not been known to cause any allergic reactions)
  • Affordable
  • Easily to find (in almost any supermarket, pharmacy or store near you)


  • The regular Lysol may not be as effective on soft surfaces like the inside of shoes as the hard, nonporous outside
  • Lysol cannot be used as a permanent fix (shoes will eventually need to be washed)
  • Depending on how bad the odor of your shoes is, you may need to use Lysol multiple times to get the smell out

Related Article – Why Shoes Smell After Getting Wet & What to Do to FixOpens in a new tab.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I safely spray Lysol on my socks?

Yes, you can safely spray Lysol on your socks. However, ensure that your socks are completely dry before wearing them. Damp socks, even when soaked with disinfectant spray, and sweaty feet, all locked up in enclosed shoes will make odors and germs worse rather than better. 

Related Article: How to Clean Shoes with OxiClean – What You Need to KnowOpens in a new tab.

How long does Lysol take to kill fungus?

On hard, nonporous surfaces, Lysol will take about 15 minutes to kill fungi. However, on soft surfaces like the insides of your shoes, it may take a bit longer. 

It is best that you pre-wash the area first (to help get rid of some of the fungi) and let it dry (damp areas aid fungi growth). When the soft areas of your shoes have dried, spray on the Lysol and let it sit until it has completely dried.

Related Article – Using Vinegar to Clean Smelly Shoes -What You Need to KnowOpens in a new tab.

What can I use instead of Lysol to disinfect my shoes?

Other than Lysol, there are other disinfectant sprays and wipes, and other ingredients that you can use. Some of them are even designed especially for shoes! You can also use hydrogen peroxide, bleach, rubbing alcohol, baking soda, and vinegar, or UV shoe sanitizers. 

Related Article – Sunlight to Clean Smelly Shoes – What You Need to Know

What Fungi, Viruses, and Bacteria that Lysol can Kill

On both hard, nonporous surfaces like the outside of shoes, and soft surfaces like the inside of your shoes each kind of Lysol disinfectant spray is designed to kill the following viruses, bacteria, and fungi:


  • Avian Influenza A Virus (H1N1)
  • Influenza A Virus (New Caledonia/20/99)
  • Influenza B Virus (Strain B/Hong Kong/5/72)
  • Rhinovirus Type 39
  • Feline calicivirus (Norovirus)
  • Rotavirus WA
  • Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1
  • Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)


  • Staphylococcus aureus (Staph)
  • Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)
  • Streptococcus pyogenes (Strep)
  • Escherichia coli O157:H7 (E. coli)
  • Salmonella enterica (Salmonella)
  • Campylobacter jejuni
  • Klebsiella pneumoniae
  • Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococcus faecalis (VRE)
  • Listeria monocytogenes
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa


  • Aspergillus niger (mold & mildew)
  • Trichophyton mentagrophytes (Athlete’s Foot Fungus)
  • Penicillium chrysogenum 

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Lysol and Other Recommended Products To Disinfect Shoes 

1- Lysol Disinfectant Spray

Lysol is a bleach-free disinfectant that eliminates 99.9% of germs from hard surfaces and even soft surfaces when used as directed. 

Click here to get the Lysol Disinfectant Spray on Amazon. 

2- Lysol Fabric Disinfectant Spray

This version of the Lysol disinfectant spray was designed to be most effective on soft, porous surfaces like carpets, mattresses, upholstered furniture, bed sheets, curtains, and even the insides and soles of shoes!

Click here to check out the Lysol Fabric Disinfectant Spray on Amazon. 

3- Combat Cleaner Shoe Deodorizer Spray

This spray can be used for a wide range of things like shoes, socks, mattresses, yoga mats, gym equipment, etc. It eliminates odor and reviewers say that it keeps those odors away! It also comes in scents for women and men.

Click here to see the price for the Combat Cleaner Shoe Deodorizer Spray on Amazon. 

4- Purefypro Sports Equipment Disinfectant Spray

Even though this says that it is an equipment disinfectant, it can be used for a wide range of surfaces, including your shoes. It is said to kill 99% of a wide range of bacteria, viruses, and fungi. And, it is free of alcohol, synthetic fragrance, and VOC. It also has no harsh chemical residues that turn into water.

Click here to check out the Purefypro Sports Equipment Disinfectant Spray on Amazon.Opens in a new tab.

Related Article:

Lysol Wipes 101- What You Need to KnowOpens in a new tab.


Lysol® Disinfectant SprayOpens in a new tab. 

How to Disinfect ShoesOpens in a new tab. 

Can Lysol Spray into Shoes to Kill Germs and Odor – Nursing Trends 

How to Disinfect Your Sneakers. Nike.comOpens in a new tab. 

3 Ways to Disinfect Used Shoes – wikiHow 

Saskiya Inshanally

Saskiya Inshanally is the editor-in-chief at The HomeKeeperHub. She has years of experience researching and experimenting in a wide array of topics. Saskiya has also co-founded SasilySkin.com which is dedicated to helping individuals have better skin.

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