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How to Clean White Converse: 6 Easy Steps

Last Updated: October 12, 2021

White tennis shoes, in particular the stylish Converse brand, are the perfect accessories for almost any outfit. They go with just about anything, whether it be jeans and a t-shirt on a park bench or a well-cut dress in an up-scale shopping center. Plus, they’re comfortable to wear and won’t leave your feet feeling stiff and sore.

The problem is, these neat little shoes take a lot of up-keep. Just one day of bad weather can leave them stained and dingy. Today, we’re going to have a look at some of the best ways to clean your white Converse and keep them spotless.

How to Clean White Converse: Step by Step

Step 1: Prepare a Space

When cleaning your white converse, things can get a little messy, and some cleaning agents can even damage floors or countertops. 

So, the first step is to set up a space to work. You can work over the sink or basin or spread out some wax paper or plastic on the counter and work there. Just make sure that nothing will drip off.

Step 2: Remove the Laces

Unlace your shoes and remove the laces, setting them aside. They can be cleaned on their own soaking in warm, soapy water. 

Be warned, however, that they may not end up as bright and shiny as the shoes. If the laces are still dingy after soaking, consider purchasing new ones.

Step 3: Dust and Rinse

Once the laces are removed and you have a space to work, dust off any excess dirt (minding the crevices) and drench the shoes in cool water. 

Do not use warm water, as that can help stains set in. Once the shoes are thoroughly wet, prepare one of the following cleaning solutions to get rid of the stains and set-in grime.

Step 4: Apply Cleaning Solution

There are multiple cleaning solution recipes that have proven useful in working the stains out of white canvas. Choose whichever one you feel comfortable with. Just be sure to use a plastic bowl and spoon rather than a metal one, as metal does not always mix well with some of the ingredients.

  • Baking Soda and White Vinegar: One tablespoon baking soda and two tablespoons white vinegar (not red). Add a little warm water to get a paste texture. Increase the quantity to fit your needs.
  • Whitening Toothpaste: Take a brand of whitening toothpaste (not gel) that doesn’t contain any coloring. Apply and let sit for 15 minutes.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide and Baking Soda: Mix one tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide with half a tablespoon of baking soda and half a tablespoon of warm water. Stir into a paste. Apply and let sit for 30 minutes.
  • Bleach, Baking Soda, and Toothpaste: Take about 50 ml of liquid bleach and mix with a tablespoon of baking soda, a tablespoon of toothpaste, and some warm water for a paste texture. Apply and let sit for an hour.
  • Baking Soda and Laundry Detergent: Mx a tablespoon of baking soda and a tablespoon of laundry detergent, along with some water to make a runny paste. Apply and let sit for 30 minutes.
  • Acetone: Dip cotton balls in acetone or other nail polish remover. Apply to the affected area and rub vigorously. Wash with soapy water.
  • Dish Soap and Water: Mix a teaspoon of liquid dish soap with warm water. This is the same cleaning agent that can be used for the shoe laces.

Once the cleaning solution is mixed up, apply it to the shoe with a wash rag or toothbrush, scrubbing thoroughly. Be sure to get everywhere, even the sole and toe.

Step 5: Wash

Once the cleaning agent has been applied and allowed to sit for the appropriate amount of time, wish the shoes thoroughly with cold water. 

Do not put them in the washing machine.

Step 6: Dry

Once the shoes are thoroughly cleaned and washed, set them aside to dry. You can stuff the shoes with white paper towels to absorb moisture and help the shoes maintain their shape. They can be set outside or hung on the line to dry, but do not put them in the dryer.

Keeping Your White Converse Clean

After going through all that trouble to get your white Converse clean, you’re going to want a way to make sure they stay clean

Products like KIWI sneaker protector spray are just the thing for this. Spray your white sneakers down after every cleaning, and they’ll stay clean far longer.

Another trick is to keep products on hand for quick spot stain removal, even if you don’t have time for a full wash-down. A magic eraser is perfect for removing scuff marks from rubber, while cleaning wipes are good for wiping up stains.

The Bottom Line

So there you have it: some of the best methods available for how to clean white converse and making sure they stay clean. With these tips and tricks in your back pocket, you can wear your white shoes with style without having to worry about stains and scuff marks.