Washing Vans in a Washing Machine or Dryer- What to Know

Washing Vans in a Washing Machine or Dryer- What to Know
Washing Vans in a Washing Machine or Dryer- What to Know

If you are a sneaker and shoe lover, then you probably own a pair of Vans. Vans have a nice balance between being stylish, comfortable, affordable, and sturdy. And thanks to this a lot of us tend to reach for them a lot.

And more wear equals more tear. So how do we keep our Vans clean? 

Can You Wash Vans a Washing Machine

While Vans do recommend washing your shoes, they do not recommend using a washing machine. However, some people still manage to do so at their own risk.

Even if you put them in a shoe bag or pillow case, the company strongly believes that the material and shape of the shoes can still be damaged. This is because washing them in a washing machine can weaken the fabric.

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But if You Still Want To Try The Washing Machine…

If you still want to try washing your Vans in the washing machine remember that there is no guarantee that they will come out undamaged.

But here are a few tips you can follow to try and avoid getting your shoes damaged:

  1. Take out the soles and laces and clean them separately. 
  2. Pre-clean the excess grime off the shoes so that they do not have to stay in the washing machine too long. 
  3. Use a show bag or pillowcase and place each shoe inside one. Let the shoes wash through the cycle in the bag.
  4. Do not use hot or warm water. Use your washing machine on the cold or room temperature setting. 
  5. Use the gentle cycle and take off the spin function if you can. This will help to prevent the shoes from warping. 
  6. Do not use harsh detergents or bleach (unless your Vans are plain white). Use a gentle clothes detergent.
  7. Only use the washing machine for canvas Vans. Do not put your leather or suede Vans in the washing machine. It won’t matter what steps you take. Leather and suede Vans will not survive the washing machine.

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Can you put vans in a dryer?

I do not recommend putting your Vans in the dryer and neither does Vans. 

Even if they are put in shoe bags or pillowcases, the heat and spin action can warp and/or damage the shoes. To avoid this, Vans recommends letting your shoes air dry, and we agree!

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Can you wash Vans in a dishwasher?

Neither I nor Vans recommends washing your shoes in the dishwasher.

It is best to hand wash your Vans. This way, you have more control over how intense your cleaning method is. 

Placing them in the dishwasher can potentially get them damaged, especially if your dishwasher is heated!

To avoid damaging your shoes, Van’s have instead provided detailed instructions on how to clean different kinds of Vans shoes based on what they are made of. 

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How To Clean Suede Vans

  1. Use a suede brush with soft bristles to remove any loose debris and filth from your shoes.
  2. Dark stains can be removed by gently wiping them with a cloth moistened in a solution of equal parts water and white vinegar, taking care not to soak the entire shoe.
  3. To get a deeper clean on tough stains, use a small amount of specialist suede cleaner on a toothbrush and work it into the stained areas of the suede.
  4. Then, you can clean your suede Vans rubber outer strip using a magic eraser. But, for a deeper clean the rubber strip and bottoms can be scrubbed with soap and water, using a toothbrush or soft-bristled scrubbing brush.
  5. Let your Vans dry naturally.

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How To Clean Leather Vans

  1. With a shoe brush, start by cleaning surface dirt from the tops, sides, and bottoms of your shoes.
  2. Use a synthetic brush and Nikwax Footwear Cleaning Gel (recommended by Vans®) to clean your leather shoes.
  3. After cleaning your shoes, apply a waterproofing agent to the leather and stitching (Vans® recommends Nikwax).
  4. Let your shoes 24 hours to naturally dry out.

How To Clean Canvas & Synthetic Vans

Quick Clean

  1. Before you begin washing the fabric parts, use a brush to remove any loose dirt and muck.
  2. To carefully remove tough stains from the tops, sides, and rubber strips, clean them with warm, soapy water and a toothbrush.
  3. Remove any residual soap suds from the surface by wiping them off with a clean, moist cloth.
  4. Allow the shoes to air dry.

Deep Clean

  1. With a shoe brush, remove any loose mud or debris while being careful to clean the rubber strips and soles.
  2. Spot-treat tough stains by applying a stain remover on them beforehand. Apply right to the spots, then wait 15 minutes.
  3. Hand wash your Vans with warm water and a little bit of mild detergent after removing the insoles and laces.
  4. After swaddling your wet Vans in a towel and squeezing out any extra water, let them air dry.
  5. In a basin of warm water with a little bit of mild detergent, clean your laces.
  6. Use a toothbrush and a mixture of baking soda and mild detergent to scrub the insoles clean.
  7. After 15 minutes, rinse them and let them air dry.


How to clean Vans shoes | Official GuideOpens in a new tab. 

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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