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How to Clean & Deodorize Nike Shoes

February 3, 2024

Nike manufactures a variety of shoes for men, women, and children. For example, they have collections for running, basketball, tennis, skateboarding, golf, and football. They also have casual shoes, as well as slides and sandals, which are meant for everyday wear.

A Look at the Different Nike Shoe Brands/Lines

Here are some of their most popular shoe models.

Nike Flyknit

The Nike Flyknit is made from a blend of yarn and fabric and is formfitting with a seamless upper. It’s also extremely lightweight, with the upper and tongue weighing only 34 grams.

Nike Free RN 5.0

Nike’s Free RN shoes are unique in that they are designed for a barefoot-like feel. Not only are they flexible but they come with a single mesh layer that provides a considerable amount of stretch.

It also comes with less foam in the midsole, which makes it easier for you to run.

Nike Metcon

The Nike Metcon features a strong platform that provides stability and a flexible forefoot that allows for natural movement. It also has a 3D-printed upper, which boosts durability.

Not only is it ideal for running and training but it’s also great for rope climbs.

Nike Trainer

how to clean nike trainers

Nike offers a variety of trainers that are ideal for most sports. They are built for performance, these shoes deliver cutting-edge technologies that make your workouts easier.

Nike Zoom

Nike Zoom is built for runners. Not only do they come with a full-length Zoom Air unit, which provides responsive cushioning, but they also feature a seamless Flymesh fabric .

The rubber outsole is also engineered for impact absorption.

Nike ZoomX

The Nike ZoomX features foam cushioning that is designed to maximize speed and energy return (up to 85%).

It’s also softer, lighter, and more responsive than their other foams.

How to Wash Nike Shoes the Right Way

There are a few ways to wash Nike Shoes – you just need a cleaning solution or some mild laundry detergent.

Are Nike Shoes Machine Washable?

Yes, most Nike shoes can be put in the washing machine (there are exceptions, however, like their suede shoes). First things first, remove the shoelaces from the shoes; you want to wash them separately in a mesh laundry bag.

how to wash nike shoes in the washerCarefully put your shoes and laces in the washer. Add a scoop of ACTIVE Detergent into the basin and if necessary, you can also add a cup of white vinegar for odor removal.

Run a delicate wash cycle with cold water.

Remove the shoes and laces once the cycle is finished and lay them in a well-ventilated area to air dry. Avoid putting your Nike shoes in the dryer; they are not designed to withstand high heat.

Cleaning Nike Shoes by Hand

Gently scrub the outsole with a soft-bristled shoe brush or damp cloth – the goal is to remove all of the excess dirt. You can also knock off some of the dirt by gently hitting the shoes against each other.

Take the insoles out and set them aside.

Fill a sink with lukewarm warm water and add a bit of ACTIVE Detergent to create a soapy mixture. Carefully place the insoles in and let them soak. Do the same with the shoelaces.

In a small bowl, mix some warm water with a small amount of ACTIVE Detergent.

how to clean nike shoes by hand

Apply some of the cleaning solution to a soft cloth or soft brush and use it to clean the dirty areas on the surface of the shoe.  Rinse the detergent off the cloth or brush when you’re finished.

The next step is to clean the sole. You can do this with the same soft bristled brush – simply dampen it with the mild detergent solution and use it to brush off any mud, grass, or dirt from the bottom.

Once you’ve done this, “rinse” the detergent off by wiping the sole with a clean cloth.

Give your Nike shoes ample time to air dry before wearing them again. You might want to stuff some newspaper into them to prevent the buildup of moisture (which can lead to unwanted odors developing).

Best Ways to Deodorize and Clean Nike Shoes

There are a few ways to de-stink your running shoes, which we will be going over below.

Deodorizing with Baking Soda

Baking soda has cleansing properties and can remove the contaminants that are responsible for the stinky shoe odor.

All you have to do is sprinkle a couple of tablespoons into your smelly sneakers.

Leave the powder in the shoes overnight – that will give the baking soda plenty of time to do its magic. By the next morning, the odor should be gone.

Once you’ve confirmed that, you can gently wipe the powder away with a clean microfiber cloth.

Deodorizing with White Vinegar

how to remove odors from nike shoesWhite vinegar can help neutralize odors. Simply mix equal parts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle and use it to spray inside your shoes.

Allow the shoes to dry completely afterward.

Deodorizing with Essential Oils

Essential oils are anti-microbial and are known for their strong fragrances, which can help eliminate the stink.

Choose an essential oil of your choice (e.g. lavender oil, clove oil, tea tree oil, etc.) and add 3 to 4 drops to the inside of your shoes. Be careful not to put it on the surface as there’s a possibility of discolouration.

Once you’ve done that, cover the sneakers with some tissue paper and leave it overnight.

The foul odor should be gone by the morning.

Deodorizing with Tea Bags

Tea bags also come in handy for eliminating odors. Start by preparing the tea bags – simply place them in boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes.

Remove them from the heat afterward and let them cool for at least 10 minutes before putting them in each of your shoes.

Leave the tea bags in there overnight. Like magic, they will reduce the smell inside your shoes. Remove the bags the next morning.

Easiest Methods to Prevent Your Nike Shoes From Smelling

There are a few things that you can do to prevent odors from developing. These include:

  • Dry your shoes completely between wearings
  • Avoid wearing the same shoes two days in a row
  • Apply foot powder before wearing the sneakers
  • Store your Nike shoes in a cool, dry area, away from moisture

Washing Nike Shoes – FAQs

Are Nike running shoes machine washable?

Yes, most of their running shoes are machine washable. If necessary, you can also remove stains by spot-treating the area with a laundry detergent solution.

Is it better to hand-wash Nike shoes?

Hand washing your Nike sneakers will always be gentler than machine washing.

With that said it’s fine to machine wash your Nike shoes every once in a while. For one thing, it can be a lot more convenient.

Can you put Nike shoes in the clothes dryer?

No, you should never put your Nike shoes in the dryer. Not only will the heat damage the materials but it can also melt the glue that’s holding certain parts together.

Let your shoes air dry instead, ideally in a well-ventilated area. You can also dry them outdoors.

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Picture of Sophia Grant

Sophia Grant

Sophia Grant brings her extensive knowledge of laundry and clothing care to the masses with her intensive cleaning guides. Her thorough understanding of fabrics, detergents, and washing techniques helps readers master the art of maintaining their wardrobe. Sophia's advice ensures that anyone can achieve professional-level results at home, keeping their garments looking pristine and lasting longer.

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