When it comes to cleaning and whitening things, bleach is a common, go-to answer. Not only does it get rid of tough stains and grime, but it also packs a serious punch when it comes to disinfection.
But how can we safely use this strong chemical to clean and whiten our shoes without ruining them? Let’s see.
Can You use Bleach on White Shoes
Yes you can use bleach on white shoes or on the white parts of your shoes and once used correctly it won’t damage them. But you can’t use it on colored shoes this is because bleach contains chlorine which will strip the color from dyed shoes.
Therefore, you should only use bleach to clean shoes that are white to prevent damaging the colors of your other shoes.
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Can I put straight bleach directly on my shoes?
You should not use straight or pure bleach to clean your shoes, you need to dilute it with water before using.
Bleach is a very concentrated and strong cleaning agent. Apart from possibly damaging your skin, you can also damage the material of your shoes. Using a bleach solution that is too strong can damage the fibres of the fabric that your shoes are made of.
How To Use Bleach To Disinfect, Clean & Whiten Shoes
Household bleach will not only clean and whiten your shoes, but it will also help to get rid of the stinky odor by killing shoe germs.
You can use regular household bleach diluted with water, or you can purchase bleach products like Clorox that have specially designed products for specific uses.
Here is how you can use bleach for shoes.
Using Bleach to Clean & Whiten the Outside Of White Shoes
- First, brush the shoes to remove loose dirt or soil. This makes them easier to clean.
- Next, remove the shoe laces and set them aside to clean later.
- Add 1 tablespoon of bleach to 1 quart (4 cups) of water in a measuring cup and stir to mix.
- Working on one shoe at a time, dip the brush in the bleach and water solution, and then gently scrub the surface of each shoe in a circular motion,
- Applying the bleach solution until the entire shoe has been treated.
- Rinse the first shoe completely with clean water before starting the second shoe.
- Put your shoes outside in the sun to completely air-dry or let them air-dry overnight.
- Let shoelaces soak for 5 minutes in the bleach and water solution before rinsing thoroughly and laying them flat to air dry.
- Toss the laces into a lingerie bag and wash them with your regular bleach load.
Now if stains remain, scrub them thoroughly with the nylon brush, then spray with hydrogen peroxide before rinsing. Click here to learn more about how to use Hydrogen Peroxide to Clean Shoes.
How to Spray the Inside of Your Shoes With Bleach
This is a great method if you would prefer not to wash your shoes and you just want to get rid of odor.
- Make your bleach spray solution by mixing 1 tablespoon of bleach with 1 cup of water.
- Open your shoes and remove the laces and the soles (if they can be removed).
- Wash your laces and soles and let them dry separately.
- Use a clean cloth and some detergent to clean the inside of your shoes (wipe but do not saturate).
- Then spray the bleach spray all over the inside of the shoes.
- Let them air dry completely (in the sun would be better).
Most Recommended Household Bleach That Can Be Used For Shoes
The Clorox Disinfecting Bleach with Concentrated Formula is probably the best bleach you can use, click here to see it on Amazon.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can you soak white shoes in bleach?
Yes. You can soak white shoes in diluted bleach. This will help to loosen up dirt and grime and kill germs.
How to Soak White Shoes in Bleach
- Begin by filling the kettle with water and bringing it to a boil.
- Set your shoes in the sink or on a clean surface outside.
- Use gloves if necessary to protect your hands from the bleach.
- Fill each shoe with boiling water and add a small amount of bleach (1 tablespoon bleach to 1 cup of water)
- Let this set for a few minutes.
- When the water has cooled, dump out the water and wash following the instructions above. The bleach will kill the bacteria, thus removing the odor.
- Let your shoes completely air-dry (in the sun would be better).
Related Article: Using Vinegar to Clean Smelly Shoes -What You Need to Know
How much bleach should I soak my shoes in?
The CDC recommends that you always dilute bleach in the following way:
- 5 tablespoons (1/3 cup) of bleach per gallon of room temperature water or
- 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart (4 cups) of room-temperature water
Related Article: Why Shoes Smell After Getting Wet & What to Do to Fix
How long do I soak white shoes in bleach?
This will depend on how dirty your shoes are and the material of your shoes.
However, you may soak your white shoes in a bleach solution for a few hours or even overnight.
Related Article: How to Use Rubbing Alcohol to Clean & Disinfect Shoes
Can you leave white shoes in bleach overnight?
If your shoes are made of materials that can withstand bleaching, then you can soak them overnight but make sure that the bleach is diluted enough.
Be sure to check your shoes’ care instructions to see if the material can be bleached or not.
Can bleach turn white shoes yellow?
If you leave the bleach on your shoes for too long, or if you do not dilute your bleach enough, then it can leave yellow stains on your shoes.
This happens if bleach is overused on white synthetic fibres like nylon, microfibers, or polyester. The bleach weakens the fibres and returns the synthetic polymers to their original color, which is yellow.
If you end up with yellow bleach stains, here is a great way to help:
Video: Best Way to Remove Yellow Bleach Stains from White Shoes
Does bleach keep white shoes white?
Yes, if used correctly and often enough, bleach can keep your white shoes looking nice and white for a long time.
The more often you clean your shoes, the better!
Related Article: 7 Hacks To Fix Smelly Shoes Overnight Without Washing
Can you use bleach on white canvas shoes?
Yes, you can use bleach to clean white canvas shoes. Just Ensure you dilute the bleach with water.
Related Article: Tea Bags For Smelly Shoes & Feet – Easy Home Remedy
Can you use bleach on white mesh shoes?
Yes, you can use bleach to clean white mesh shoes. Just Ensure you dilute the bleach with water.
Related Article: Freezing Shoes to Get Rid of Smell & Fungi – What to Know
Can you use bleach on white rubber shoes?
Yes, you can use bleach to clean white rubber shoes. Just Ensure you dilute the bleach with water.
Related Article: Spraying Lysol to Clean Shoes- Is it Safe & Does it Work
Can you use bleach on white leather shoes?
You should not use household bleach to clean white leather shoes or any kind of leather shoes.
Oxalic acid, a form of bleach suitable for leather, can be used to clean white leather. However, you should never use ammonia or chlorine bleach on white leather or any other type of leather since it can cause it to dry out and crack.
How to Machine Wash the Inside of Your Shoes With Bleach
- Remove the shoestrings, and soles (if possible) from your shoes.
- Place the shoes in the pillowcase.
- Place the pillowcase in the washing machine.
- Run the shoes through a normal cycle using HOT water and plenty of detergent. If your shoes are white, you could also add some bleach. Remember to use a small amount of bleach (5 tablespoons (1/3 cup) of bleach per gallon of room temperature water or. 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart of room temperature water).
- If the odor is very strong, you may want to run them through two complete cycles to get rid of the odor.
- Let your shoes completely air-dry (in the sun would be better).