How to Clean Nike Shoes - Easiest Way to Clean Sneakers from Nike
Almost everyone, if not all, own a pair of shoes and most people own a particular pair of Nike. Keeping these shoes looking fresh and new involves a few different processes depending on the materials used in their construction. For instance, cleaning suede shoes will require a different approach compared to mesh.
Nike does not recommend washing your shoes in the washing machine, as this could damage the material and cause discoloration or stubborn stains.
Instead, regularly cleaning will help to prevent the build-up of dirt and grime. Lace also requires special attention.
Things You Need to Get Started
First of all, gather all the necessary supplies and tools. You will need washing-up liquid, bicarbonate of soda, and optionally a household magic eraser for stubborn stains. For leather shoes, a leather conditioner is recommended. White vinegar can also be helpful in removing tough stains but is optional.
Your tools should include a shoe brush for overall cleaning, a toothbrush for detailed work, a soft clean cloth for drying, and optionally, a suede brush if your shoes are made of suede material.
- Washing-up liquid: This will be your primary cleaning agent.
- Bicarbonate of soda: Helps in scrubbing off stubborn dirt and grime.
- Household magic eraser (Optional): Effective for removing stubborn stains.
- Leather conditioner: Only needed if your shoes are made of leather. It helps in maintaining the leather's softness and shine.
- White vinegar (Optional): Another alternative for tough stains.
- Shoe brush: For general cleaning, to scrub off any dirt on the surface of the shoes.
- Toothbrush: For detailed cleaning, especially in hard-to-reach areas or delicate parts of the shoes.
- A soft, clean cloth: For drying the shoes after cleaning.
- Suede brush (Optional): Necessary if your shoes are made of suede. It helps to restore the texture after cleaning.
Step-by-Step Cleaning Instructions
Step 1: Use a Dry Brush to Prepare Your Shoes
Before diving into the cleaning process, it's essential to prepare your shoes. Begin by using a dry brush or toothbrush to brush off any loose dirt or grime from the shoes. Make sure to be thorough, paying special attention to the outsole. A clean toothbrush can be particularly useful for reaching any grooves or crevices.
This initial brushing will help to keep your shoes in better condition during the cleaning process, preventing the spread of dirt onto cleaner areas. Pre-cleaning preparation is a crucial step to effectively clean and maintain your Nike shoes.
Step 2: Make a Cleaning Solution
Remember the things you need to prepare listed above? Now, it's time to create your cleaning solution.
Start by mixing warm water with a small amount of laundry detergent or washing-up liquid. Ensure that the detergent is mild to avoid damaging the material of the shoes.
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For white and light-colored shoes, there's another effective cleaning solution you can prepare. Create a cleaning paste by combining equal parts of baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) and water.
This paste is particularly useful for tackling stubborn stains and discoloration. Always bear in mind that the keyword in this cleaning process is 'mild', to ensure you do not damage your Nike shoes during the cleaning process.
Step 3: Start Washing the Laces
Regardless of what Nike shoe model you own, be it from the Air Max family or the Nike Flyknit shoes, it's important to keep them looking their best by paying special attention to the laces.
Due to their material, laces tend to attract a lot of dirt or stains, which can be quite noticeable and decrease the overall aesthetic appeal of your shoes.
Fortunately, hand washing is the best way to clean laces, effectively removing dirt, grime, and discoloration. Simply remove the laces from your shoes, apply a small amount of the cleaning solution, and gently scrub until clean.
Rinse thoroughly and leave to dry before lacing them back onto your shoes. This simple practice can significantly enhance the overall appearance of your Nike shoes, keeping them looking fresh and well-maintained.
Step 4: Wash the Soles
Now you're done with the laces, it's time to focus on the soles of your shoes. Apply the mild cleaning solution to your soft-bristled brush or toothbrush. You might even opt to use a clean face cloth. Start by cleaning the outsole, ensuring you get into every groove and crevice. Next, move on to the midsole, using the same method.
The key here is not to rush, but to take your time to clean every part of the soles thoroughly.
Once done, grab a clean cloth, preferably one soaked in soap and water, and wipe the soles down. Dry them with another soft cloth, and be sure to remove as much moisture as possible to avoid water damage.
Step 5: Proceed with the Uppers
Now for the uppers, there are some easy steps to follow. Start by targeting any scuff marks with your household magic eraser.
For knit or mesh shoes, such as the Nike Air Max, use a soft microfiber cloth to gently clean the surface. The material of your pair of sneakers might require different cleaning techniques.
For instance, suede shoes can be cleaned with a special suede brush, and leather shoes may require a specific leather conditioner. We recommend cleaning depending on the materials of your shoes to ensure proper maintenance.
Finally, any remaining dirt can be wiped away with a damp washcloth to keep your Nike shoes looking fresh and new.
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Step 6: Air Dry Your Nike Shoes
The last and probably the most important step in maintaining your clean Nike Air Max and other Nike shoes is ensuring they dry completely. Remove the insole, if possible, to improve breathability and speed up the drying process. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not advisable to use a dryer as the heat can deform the shoes and potentially damage your washing machine.
Instead, simply leave the shoes in a dry, well-ventilated place, away from direct sunlight. A word of caution - make sure to avoid dry cleaning, as harsh chemicals can damage the material of the shoes.
By allowing the shoes to dry naturally, you preserve their shape, comfort, and longevity.
Things to Consider and Avoid When Cleaning Nike Shoes with Different Materials
As mentioned earlier, suede shoes require a special suede brush for cleaning. A sneaker cleaning solution is usually not recommended for suede as it can affect the texture adversely. However, a cleaning kit specifically designed for suede can work wonders.
Gently using the suede brush, remove any loose dirt and then use the kit as per its instructions. For tougher stains, you may consider a professional shoe care service.
Read related article: How to Care for Suede Shoes
Also, never soak suede shoes in water; if they get wet, allow them to dry naturally, away from sunlight and heat. Always remember to treat your suede sneakers with a protective spray to guard against future stains.
Leather shoes, on the other hand, require a bit more care. Start by wiping them down with a clean cloth moistened with mild soapy water. It's crucial to maintain the leather's softness and shine; therefore, apply a leather conditioner post-cleaning.
A leather shoe cleaning kit, complete with a conditioner, can be a game-changer. While it's possible to clean leather shoes at home, sometimes they might need a professional touch. So, if the shoes are heavily soiled or stained, it's recommended to use a shoe care service.
Lastly, knit shoes such as the Nike Flyknit models are fairly easy to clean. Start by removing loose dirt with a dry brush. Then, apply a mild sneaker cleaning solution or soap with a clean cloth. Scrub gently to avoid damaging the knit material.
It's recommended washing shoes of this kind by hand rather than in a washing machine to maintain their shape and avoid fabric damage. When drying, ensure they are kept away from direct heat and sunlight. With knit shoes, a preventive approach is best. Use repellent sprays designed for fabric shoes to protect them from stains and water damage.
To sum up, to keep your shoes looking their best and extending their lifespan, it is important to clean them regularly based on their material type - be it suede, leather, or knit.
The cleaning process, from dealing with laces to the soles, uppers, and drying, should be executed meticulously. Remember, the drying step is essential in the cleaning process.
Avoid exposing shoes to direct heat and sunlight, and instead, let your shoes dry naturally to maintain their shape and quality. By following these cleaning practices, you ensure that your Nike shoes continue to provide comfort and style in the long run.