How to Clean Nike Running Shoes (6 Easy Steps)

Keeping your Nike running shoes fresh and clean improves performance and extends their lifespan. However, it’s important to clean them properly to avoid damage.

Follow this straightforward 6-step guide to safely wash your Nikes at home with common household items.

Supplies Needed:

Step 1: Remove Laces and Insoles

Start by completely unlacing your Nikes and gently pulling the laces out through each eyelet. Place the laces aside for washing later.

Next, carefully remove the insoles by starting at the heel and slowly peeling towards the toe.

The insoles can get very dirty from sweat and wear, so it’s important to remove them before washing your shoes. Set the insoles aside as well until the shoes are fully cleaned.

Removing these components allows you to fully expose all surfaces of the shoe for cleaning.

Step 2: Clear Off Loose Debris

Before scrubbing, use a soft bristle brush to gently brush away any large chunks of dirt, mud, or small pebbles stuck to the outsoles, midsoles, or sides of the shoes.

Getting this debris off first prevents the particles from getting pushed into the shoe material during the washing process.

Focus on brushing particles from crevices and indentations where debris often collects.

Step 3: Make a Safe Cleaning Solution

Fill a bowl with cool or lukewarm water. Avoid using hot water, as this can potentially damage the shoes.

Add a small amount of mild liquid detergent such as dish soap or laundry detergent to the water. One to two teaspoons is all you need—too many suds can leave behind a residue.

Gently swirl the brush around to mix the solution. The mild detergent solution will allow you to lift dirt and stains without damaging the shoe materials.

Step 4: Scrub Uppers, Mesh and Fabric

Dip the soft bristle brush into the detergent solution and gently scrub the upper part of the shoes in a circular motion. Pay close attention to the mesh and fabric components, as dirt and sweat can really accumulate in these areas.

Lightly scrub sweat stains around the heels and toes. Be extra gentle when cleaning lightweight mesh zones, which can be delicate.

Dip the brush back into the solution periodically to re-wet it. For stubborn spots and stains, use an old toothbrush for some extra scrubbing power.

Just take care not to excessively brush areas with branding details or printed designs.

Step 5: Clean Soles and Midsoles

With the soft bristle brush and detergent solution, gently scrub the soles and midsole foam of the shoes.

Carefully get into all the nooks and crannies of the sole tread to remove compacted dirt and debris. Rotate the shoes to scrub all sides and edges thoroughly.

The midsoles can absorb dirt and grime over time, so be sure to concentrate on getting this area clean.

Step 6: Rinse and Dry

Once you’ve fully scrubbed the entire exterior of the shoes with the detergent solution, rinse them well with cool, clean water.

Rinsing removes all traces of dirt, debris, and soap. Thoroughly rinse until the water runs clear. Gently blot the shoes with a towel to soak up excess moisture.

Be careful not to twist or wring the shoes. Stuff them with crumpled newspaper or shoe trees to help them hold their shape as they dry.

Allow the shoes to fully air dry for 24-48 hours in a well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight or heat sources. Once completely dry, you can replace the clean laces and insoles.

Things To Avoid When Cleaning Nike Runners:

  • Don’t machine wash or dry them
  • Don’t use extremely hot water
  • Don’t let them soak too long
  • Don’t use bleach or harsh cleaners
  • Don’t scrub with stiff-bristled brushes
  • Don’t place near direct heat
  • Don’t overlook mesh areas
  • Don’t wash compression bands or inserts

Final Verdict:

By following these 6 simple steps, you can safely clean your Nike running shoes at home and extend their life.

Regular cleaning also eliminates odors and maintains shoe performance. Just be sure to avoid any damaging cleaning methods that can wear down the shoes prematurely.

Keeping your Nikes fresh allows you to confidently log more miles in comfortable and supportive footwear.

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