Machine Washing

Wearing a Nike sneaker is a cool, trendy thing but that comes with a cost too. You notice some stains and spots after using it for a while. Even if you are not a sneakerhead, you need to have an idea about the proper washing.

If I ask you “ Do you want to keep your vintage and a little bit older pair to give a new look?”. Your answer would be ‘Why not, right?’.

To keep your favorite Nike sneaker glowing you can both hand wash and machine wash your sneaker. For the optimum result use light detergent powder, a soft brush for scrubbing, and mild warm water. Then dry them properly and deodorize which will keep your sneakers in mint-fresh condition.

Below, I am gonna tell you some steps that might be very helpful for you to have an idea about how to wash Nike sneakers.

Factors to consider before washing Nike sneakers

Washing your Nike sneakers includes many things. It’s not like other regular washing clothes tasks. So spend a little time for the best result.

First of all, you need to find out what the materials of your Nike sneakers are. Depending on the materials of your pair, you have to wash them or the end result might be disturbing for you. And for that, you just need to read the label or product description.


You can’t soak a leather sneaker in soapy liquid. Leather material like full-grain or calfskin leather won’t make any difference in the cleaning process. For leather care, you need to buy a very high-quality leather conditioner. It will help the leather from becoming fully dry.

To keep the sneaker free from creases or lessen it you can wrap your sneaker with a towel and iron over it. It would help to smooth the uneven creases. So the process is dry brushing, rubbing, and then applying the conditioner.


To wash this material made of sneakers, you need vinegar to wipe out the dry stain on your sneaker. If there is any wet stain then make sure to blot dry the specific area so as not to spread the stain.

Mixed Material

If your product material is made of mixed fabric then you can keep some suede, leather-friendly cleaning kits. Make sure no water touches the leather part even if you wash the other part with a wet brush.

Let’s Learn How to Wash Nike sneakers

Nike sneakers can be washed in two ways. One is using your hand and another is using the washing machine. In the below part, I will explain the steps of both types of washing.

Handwashing of Nike Sneaker

Now I am going to tell you the steps of handwashing your Nike sneaker. The very first thing you need to keep in mind to get the premium looks is to use the premium washing and cleaning kits. A premium quality washing kit will eventually reduce the overall effort of the washing process. So the steps are as follows

Organize and Preparation

Choose a nice comfortable washing station. A flat dry surface would be best for this purpose. Bring your required tools like premium shoe cleaner, polish, soft brush, toothbrushes, small paintbrush, and a microfiber towel. It would make the overall job easy, fast, and handy for you.

Dry Brushing

Insert a shoe tree to keep the sneaker in perfect shape. It would help to scrub the sneaker efficiently. Now brush the sneaker using a soft-bristled toothbrush or a small paintbrush to wipe off the dry dust. You can easily remove dirt from the outsole, midsole, and upper using the same brush. By removing the excess dirt you can save your sneaker from staining.

Create a Mild Cleaning Solution

Now take a small bowl 90% filled with mild warm water and add some laundry detergent powder. Be cautious that you are not exaggerating it. It is supposed to be a light mild soapy liquid. So a slight amount of detergent would be enough for the washing task.

Please take note that while you are going to wash Nike Flyknits you have to use cold water. Because hot water will damage and fray your sneaker’s fabric. Every time you are going to buy detergent for your Nike sneaker washing, buy the one that has the least amount of soapy effect and chemical concentration.

Scrubbing and Cleaning

The cleaning solution is prepared. Now you just need to remove the lace of your sneaker and wash it with your hand. Now rinse it and keep it aside.

Dip the soft brush into the solution and start washing the upper and inner lining of the sneaker. While scrubbing them you will see foam is forming. Don’t do rough scrubbing or it might tear out your fabric. Be gentle while scrubbing.

The next step is to use the hard brush. You can do the scrubbing of the bottom and midsole scrubbing with the hard brush.  Now you wipe off the foam using a microfiber towel.

You can remove the insole and keep it in the bowl. Wash it using a soft brush. Try to ignore the labeled area on your insole. If there is any mini tearing, uneven or peeled is visible then very lightly wash that area. After washing it, rinse it under cold water. Take a towel and keep it on top of your sneaker’s insoles. Try to remove most of the water by tapping the towel. Now just keep it in front of a fan or well-air circulated room to dry it out.

You should also be careful while cleaning with the brush. Before washing with the brush, shake the brush to remove the extra water. Simply try to stop any extra liquid from entering into the sneaker which is not good for the inner materials.

Drying out your Sneaker

After washing is done properly you just need to keep your Nike sneakers in an air-circulated room or under a ceiling fan to make it dry. Don’t forget your wet sneaker can’t be exposed to direct sunlight or it will become yellowish.

Disinfecting Sneaker

If you live in an area that has a kind of extreme weather like too hot or mostly rainy weather then you might be in fear of bacteria forming inside your sneakers. So the best solution would be to spray the insoles of the sneaker to completely eliminate the remaining bacteria.

Machine Washing of Nike Sneaker

Machine Washing

Most of the Nike shoes are made of mixed materials. Major components are leather, foam, rubber, and fabric. Nike usually makes their running shoes with lightweight fabrics instead of any leather on the upper. So there is a specific limitation regarding washing your sneaker in the machine.

Putting sneakers covered with towels

You can wash your Nike sneakers by adding them to the washing machine with some extra towels. These towels will help the sneaker from getting hit from all the corners. Because in the washing machine, everything moves circularly at a high speed.

Take off the lace and insoles

Remove the lace and insoles. Laces can become tangled in the washing machine. You need to be very careful while using the washing machine.

Mild detergent powder and low water temperature

Use a mild or light detergent powder for washing. Make sure you have also decreased the temperature of the water inside the washing machine. If the water is hot, it will simply wear out the outer level.

Lower the washing time

There also remains a high chance of losing the original shape of the filling material of your sneaker. Ultimately it may become uncomfortable to wear after the washing. As the washing machine will be filled with water the shoe is going to be soaked by water fully. You may also see that the color is getting faded and the crease of the sneaker may become cracked and uneven. So, don’t wash it for a long time.

Drying Method

Never try to dry it up using any machine because it will fully destroy the longevity of your sneaker. Let it dry up in a good air circulation room.

Recommendation of using the washing machine

The Nike company itself doesn’t recommend cleaning it using a washing machine. So I am also telling you that don’t follow this step if you are completely unable to do it with your own hand. However some sneakerhead gives advice to wash in the washing machine. After all, if you want to wash then it’s your own choice.

Why it is important to wash your sneakers regularly?

wash your sneakers regularly

The bad odor in your sneakers would be enough for you to wash your Nike pairs. If that is not a problem then I must say if you want to keep the longevity of your sneaker then it’s proper washing that can help you. It would help the sneaker to be in good shape for a long time. 

All that stuff like bacteria, grime, sweat, dirt, and the weather is going to give your sneakers a very hard time. Which ultimately speeds up the process of deterioration of the condition of your sneaker. By now, I hope you know why you need to wash your pair.

One thing you should take note of is that the frequency of washing will vary on the frequency of using your sneakers.

How to keep your Nike Sneaker from bad odor?

It can be the case that after a few days of washing your Nike sneaker may stink or spread a bad odor. So to prevent that you can easily use 3 easy things to keep any bad odor away from your Nike sneaker.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is an amazing antibacterial chemical. You just need to add 2-3 tablespoons of baking soda inside your sneakers and leave them for a night. And the next morning you will see there is no bad smell inside your sneaker. In the morning you just wipe out the powder with a fresh piece of cloth.

Essential Oil

The essential oil itself is antimicrobial. So adding them inside your sneaker and leaving it overnight will eliminate any kind of bad smell. Oils like clove oil, and lavender oil would be best for this task. Please be careful while adding the oil because if you drop oil on the surface or upper side of the sneaker then it will have a spot on it.


Teabags are also very good for deodorizing your sneakers. If you keep 3-4 boiled, cool, and dried-out tea bags inside your shoes for overnight inside your shoes it will definitely remove any bad odor from your sneakers.

Things to do and not to do while washing your Nike sneakers

There are a few things you also need to know when you’re about to wash your precious Nike sneakers to not only make it easier for you but also for a thorough cleaning…

Things To Do

Some things you really need to do for the accurate washing of sneakers. None of these should be skipped for the best end result.  These are following

  1. You should use a shoe tree to keep the leather free from any cracking and stay in shape while washing the pair.
  2. Simply remove the shoelaces because they will get tangled and irritate you during washing time.
  3. Take off the footbed or insole from the sneaker.
  4. A complete dry brushing before the actual washing.
  5. You must use a soft bristle brush for the cleaning of the upper and inner lining to make sure that the material is not wearing out.
  6. Deep cleaning of the inside of the sneaker is important to wipe out the residing bacteria and sweat stains.
  7. You need to use a toothbrush to clean the area which is tough to reach and clean.

Similarly, there are also some red flags that you gotta avoid. Otherwise, it could ruin your sports shoes.

Things Not To Do

For proper cleaning, you need to ignore something that may damage the overall life and condition of your sneaker. These are following

  1. Hardcore detergent and high-concentration bleaches should be ignored and never be used for cleaning.
  2. Direct sunlight is not good for the outer material of the shoe, especially after cleaning. If you let it dry in the sunlight your sneaker will become yellow.
  3. Don’t apply any kind of direct heat from the hairdryer and iron.
  4. Hard bristled brushes are only good for cleaning the inner sole but never use it for the upper and inner lining of the sneaker.
  5. Never store your sneakers in a closed box and damp environment.  Always keep your sneakers in a bag where enough airflow is available.


Nike sneakers are indeed one of the best and most comfortable footwear in the market and also offers a lot of variation for the different backgrounds of people. To keep your sneakers look flawless like a new one doesn’t need much effort. Regular minimal cleaning will do the job.

Never compromise when it comes to washing and maintenance of your Nike sneakers and it will continue to provide you the service you need. I hope all the information you read in this article will help you to understand how to wash Nike Sneakers.

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