How to Wash and Remove Bad Smell from Running Shoes

Running shoes are an essential part of any fitness enthusiast’s gear, but they can often develop an unpleasant odor due to sweat and bacteria buildup. Fortunately, there are effective methods to wash and eliminate bad smells from your running shoes. In this article, we will provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to wash running shoes and remove the unpleasant odors, allowing you to keep your favorite kicks fresh and odor-free.

Step 1: Prepare your running shoes for washing

Before diving into the cleaning process, it’s important to prepare your shoes properly. Remove the shoelaces and insoles if they are removable. This will ensure that every nook and cranny of your shoes is thoroughly cleaned and deodorized.

Step 2: Hand washing your running shoes

Hand washing is often the safest method to clean running shoes, as machine washing can potentially damage the shoes’ materials. Here’s how to do it:

a. Fill a basin or sink with warm water and add a small amount of mild detergent. Avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals, as they can damage the shoe’s fabric.

b. Dip a soft brush or cloth into the soapy water and gently scrub the exterior and interior of the shoes. Pay close attention to areas that are prone to odor, such as the toe box and insole.

c. Rinse the shoes thoroughly with clean water to remove all soap residue.

d. Gently squeeze out excess water from the shoes, taking care not to wring or twist them. e. Stuff the shoes with crumpled newspaper or paper towels to help them retain their shape and absorb moisture. Allow them to air dry in a well-ventilated area, away from direct heat or sunlight. This process may take up to 24 hours.

Step 3: Deodorizing your running shoes After washing, it’s time to tackle the bad odor. Here are a few effective deodorizing methods:

a. Baking soda: Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda inside the shoes and leave it overnight. Baking soda is excellent at absorbing odors. In the morning, shake out the excess baking soda.

b. Tea tree oil: Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with water in a spray bottle. Spritz the solution into the shoes, focusing on areas that tend to smell the most. Tea tree oil has antibacterial properties that help eliminate odor-causing bacteria.

c. Activated charcoal: Place a few activated charcoal pouches or briquettes inside your shoes. Charcoal is highly effective in absorbing odors and can be left inside the shoes for several hours or overnight.

Step 4: Maintenance tips to prevent future odor buildup

To keep your running shoes smelling fresh for longer, follow these maintenance tips:

a. Allow your shoes to fully dry after each use to prevent moisture buildup.

b. Alternate between multiple pairs of shoes to allow them to fully air out.

c. Use moisture-wicking socks to minimize sweat absorption.

d. Store your shoes in a well-ventilated area, away from dampness and direct sunlight.

By following these simple steps, you can wash and remove bad smells from your running shoes effectively. Regular cleaning and deodorizing will not only extend the lifespan of your shoes but also ensure a pleasant and fresh experience during your runs. Remember to maintain proper hygiene practices and follow the maintenance tips provided to keep your running shoes in optimal condition for many miles to come.

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