Confused about how to go about washing your pair of favorite converse shoes? The safest bet is to wash them with your hands gently. However, a faster and simpler way to clean your shoes is to put them in the washing machine, which might make you wonder if you can toss a pair of converse shoes into the washing machine.
Technically speaking, it may not be safe to wash your Converse shoes in the washing machine. As a professional shoe brand itself, Converse recommends not to toss your shoes in the washing machine. However, you can take that risk with your pair of old Converse shoes that are lying around in the shoe rack for ages and have dirty stains all over them.
Some stubborn stains and dirt are better off with the washing machine than manual washing and hard work. But it’s not as easy as it sounds. You need to be extra careful to make sure that you don’t end up spoiling your Converse shoes by deciding to wash them in the machine.
Therefore, we decided to lend a helping hand to all you converse fans by suggesting steps to wash your converse shoes in the washing machine without damaging them. Read below to clean your converse shoes to perfection!!
Prepping Your Converse For Washing
You cannot expect your washing machine to be magical and do all the cleaning for you. Before tossing your shoes into the washing machine, dust off all the mud and dirt that is stuck on the surface. Else, the dirt and mud can choke your washing machine and may spoil the device. Use a soft-bristled brush or soft toothbrush depending upon the converse shoes’ material and brush off all the dirt.
You may want to remove the laces and the shoes’ insoles as they can interfere while washing and get stuck in the washing machine. This can damage not only your shoes but also your washing machine. You can clean the shoe insoles and the laces separately, depending on the material and quality.
Protecting Your Converse All-Star
Tossing into the washing machine is neither safe for the machine nor your pair of converse shoes. The machine cycle can be too harsh for your converse and may end up damaging them. If the converse keeps hitting on the washing machine walls, your shoes would get spoilt and come apart eventually. Additionally, it can also damage the insides of the washing machine tub.
The best you can do to protect your shoes is put them inside a mesh bag or a laundry bag before putting them directly in the washing machine. Alongside, you can put a few towels for washing as they would provide adequate cushioning to the shoes. This would prevent them from hitting against the walls of the machine and eventually protect them.
Detergent & Stains
While the washing machine would help you get rid of the stains, the detergent or the stain remover does the main trick. Before tossing it into the machine, you can apply some stain remover on the stain spots with a toothbrush.
Prepare a solution of stain remover with water and rub it on and around the stain spots gently. Make sure that the stain remover is mild and does not cause discoloration or spoiling of the shoes.
For safety, test the stain remover on a small surface of the shoe to check for darkening or discoloration. If it does not react, then it’s safe, and you can use it over the spots. Scrub over the area on and around the spots for an even cleaning and distribution. This also helps in proper blending and cleaning using the stain remover.
If the stains don’t come off easily, then using a laundry detergent and washing them in the machine is the only option. Use a mild detergent like Purex that is suitable for shoes and does not alter them. Use the same amount that you would use for washing your standard set of clothes.
It is best if your laundry detergent is scent or perfume-free. These can have color-altering effects on your shoes and spoil them, reacting adversely.
You may want to go gentle on those pair of converse shoes if you are tossing them in the washing machine. However, make sure to set in on a cold water gentle cycle because warm water can react with the glue that holds the shoes together, causing them to disintegrate easily.
If the stains are stubborn and won’t come off easily, then you can use warm water but not extremely hot water at high temperatures. It is best to use cold water instead of hot water to protect your shoes and avoid damage to the design and color. Ensure that the machine has a less aggressive cycle set over so that the machine tub’s movement does not destroy your shoes in any way.
Once you have set the cold wash gentle settings, tossed your shoes, and added detergent or any shoe cleanser, you are good to go and get started. The maximum time required for cleaning the washing machine would be 15-30 minutes.
Post Washing Care
After your shoes are washed in the machine, then comes the drying part. Do not use a warm drier or place under direct sunlight as it can cause extreme drying and weaken the fabric of the shoes altogether. A warm and well-ventilated space in your house or outdoors would be an excellent place to dry the boots. Let them dry for at least 24 hours or until they are completely dry before you use them. It can take even longer to dry them based on the material. Use it only after it has completely dried and should not remain damp.
Tips and Warnings for Converse Shoes
- Do not put your Converse shoes in a clothes dryer.
- Do not use bleach to wash your Converse shoes. This will cause discoloration.
- Do not wash them very frequently if they are dirty. Give washing a break and have more than one pair at dispense. Frequent washing can spoil the material and disintegrate the shoes.
- Do not wear them when they are wet.
- Use vinegar and baking soda for Converse shoes in the washing machine. Especially for white shoes, baking soda and vinegar help in removing stubborn stains and odor.
When it’s Converse, they deserve and require extra care and attention in cleaning and maintenance. While you can always prefer washing them manually, tossing them in the washing machine is also a good option once in a while.
Ideally, most shoe experts advise you to either dry clean your shoes or take them to a shoe expert for good care and maintenance. But, if you want to clean your boots independently and save yourself some bucks, then our article above can help you clean your shoes in the machine.
One needs to be extra careful, especially with the machine settings and the kind of detergent used, and how to protect your shoes while washing them in the machine. Our step-by-step guide will help you clean them just right and make them shine as new. We have also suggested some tips and warnings to consider for your Converse shoes to increase their life and that they are not damaged due to frequent washing.
Read our article and ideas suggested above and let us know how clean your Converse shoes turned out to be through the comments section below.
Brandon R. Katz is a registered professional nurse who has been instrumental in providing us with an informed opinion on the medical aspects of footwear. He graduated from NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and currently provides his services at a non-federal long-term care hospital in Brooklyn, NY.
Brandon proves to be the champion in the group of expert writers with his in-depth knowledge in foot health, how to take care of it adequately, and what shoes, socks, or insoles will be supreme for you. He has previously worked with hospitals where he has foreseen both inpatient and outpatient departments and has been a practicing nurse since 2009.
Brandon hails from Jersey City, NY, and has a loving family of four with a small popper called Rozo. His decision to become a nurse arises from the desire to be in the position of helping and rehabilitating people.