How To Wash Vans In The Washer? A Complete Guide

Vans are a timeless shoe type that can go with any clothes and give you a casual, laid-back look.

Even though these shoes are flexible and stylish wardrobe essentials, maintaining them may be challenging, especially for white Vans.

These sneakers are susceptible to exposed discoloration, mud, and stains that might spoil your appearance because of their materials and fabrics.

Maintaining and washing your Vans regularly without degrading the material will keep them clean and looking new.

You may clean these Vans in various methods, regardless of whether they are made of canvas, suede, or leather.

Some people prefer to remove the stains with household products, while others may want to use a washing machine to save time.

How to wash Vans in the washer? This post will recommend a complete guide.

Let’s scroll down to discover more!

How To Wash Vans In The Washer?

Wait no longer! Here are complete guides on washing Vans shoes in the washing machine. Let’s look through it and get some extra tips!


Before putting your shoes into the washer, you should consider a few factors.

1. Check The Material

The material of your footwear determines how you will clean it. For instance, suede shoes are made from soft materials, so cleaning them in a washer may ruin them.

Instead, they need a gentle washing technique. For this reason, it’s better to know the material of your Vans before applying any cleaning method.

2. Inspect Bleach In Detergent

Ensure the laundry detergent isn’t too harsh and contains no bleach before pouring it into the washing.

You should use mild detergent because this product won’t make the color of your shoes wear out.

Besides, using bleach detergent to clean Vans shoes is acceptable, but it’s not safe and suitable for colored Vans.

3. Avoid Solvent Cleaners

Because the adhesive used will be weaker after using solvent cleansers, sole removal may occur.

When solvent cleansers and the glue that holds the shoe’s sole together come into touch, the adhesive may become loose. For this reason, don’t use solvent cleaners to wash your shoes.

4. Remove The Laces

You should remove the laces from your Vans sneakers before washing them to reduce the possibility of them becoming ruined.

How To Wash Vans In The Washer? A Complete Guide

Step-by-step Instructions

If you are too busy to clean your Vans, you can put them in the washer. Ensure you follow the guidelines below carefully!

Step 1: Remove any debris from the surface of your Vans using a soft-bristled brush before putting them in the washer.

Dust and dirt should become less adherent. So, making it easier to wipe away.

Step 2: Remove the shoelaces from your footwear before adding the detergent to the laundry cycle.

Step 3: Place your Vans inside mesh laundry bags. Washing your footwear with the same care as lingerie or other delicate clothing would be best.

Add extra items like one or two towels if you want to give your Vans sneakers a gentle cleaning.

It will stop your shoes from rolling around inside the washing machine too much and harming the appliance.

Step 4: Set the gentle cycle on the washer. Most washing machines have a mode for hand washing as well.

You should select the settings for a delicate cycle using warm water. A hot water spin cycle may damage your shoes, so avoid it.

Choose a standard cold cycle if your washing machine lacks a gentle cycle. Ideally, you should do two spin-free processes of the rinsing cycle.

If your washing machine doesn’t have this feature, rinse your footwear once the regular cycle is complete.

Generally speaking, to avoid heat damage, it’s optimal to keep the washing as cool as possible.

Step 5: Dry your Vans.

It’s not a good idea to use the dryer to dry your shoes because the heat may cause damage to their material.

It would help if you let your Vans dry naturally under sunlight. However, avoid excessive direct sunlight as it may cause the color to fade.

You can use packing paper or newspaper to stuff your Vans so that they can keep their original form.

Extra Tips

After washing your Vans in the washer, here are some extra tips to make your cleaning process more effective.

Never place your footwear, especially colored and checked sneakers, directly under harsh sunlight for extended periods.

Avoid putting them back into the washing machine for cleaning after you’ve rinsed, dried, and given them a thorough run. Too frequent cleaning can destroy your footwear.

Avoid bleach, as this chemical may cause skin irritation when wearing.

How To Clean Canvas Vans?

As shared earlier, the material of your shoes will determine how you clean them. Thus, below are the most suitable ways to wash your canvas Vans.

Baking Soda & Hydrogen Peroxide

  1. Remove insoles and shoe laces before cleaning.
  2. Use a soft-bristled brush or dry toothbrush to remove dirt and grime on the surface.
  3. Mix baking soda (1 tablespoon) and hydrogen peroxide (½ tablespoon) to have a paste.
  4. Gently brush the mixture on your footwear with a circular movement.
  5. After covering the sneakers, let them outside in the sunlight to dry.
  6. When the mixture has dried, wipe out any residual by rinsing your footwear with a moist microfiber towel.
  7. For a shiny finish, wiping the soles is also advisable.
  8. Dry your Vans in a cool, dry place. Avoid direct harsh sunlight.
  9. Don’t put your footwear in the dryer, as it may destroy its shape.


You can use bleach to clean a pair of white canvas shoes, making your footwear look new.

However, choose dye-free solutions and operate in a properly ventilated location to prevent breathing in this dangerous chemical.

  1. Mix bleach and water with a ratio of 1: 5 to create a cleaning solution. Avoid using excessive bleach since you run the danger of dyeing your sneakers yellow.
  2. Dip a soft toothbrush and apply the mixture to your footwear to remove dirt, stains, and scuff marks.
  3. Brush away to make the cloth whiter, but don’t scratch the surface.
  4. Rinse your Vans with water and a towel.
  5. Dry them naturally overnight and avoid direct sunlight.
  6. If your sneakers are still dirty, you can repeat the cleaning process.

Magic Eraser

Another cleaning product you can use for white Vans is Magic Eraser. It can remove cuffs and stains, making your footwear clean and have a new look.

This sponge-like product transforms melamine resins into a frothy material when it is in contact with water.

If you want to know more about this product, you can watch this video:

  1. Active melamine by submerging Magic Eraser into water.
  2. Spend time cleaning up stains and scuffs.
  3. To remove stubborn marks, mix dish soap with Magic Eraser and apply this solution to the dirt.
  4. After cleaning, use newspaper to stuff your sneakers to keep their form and remove excess moisture.
  5. Dry your Vans in warm sunlight. Avoid direct harsh light.

How To Clean Leather Vans?

Always wash and clean leather Vans by hand to keep your footwear’s original shape and look.

These shoes need a dedicated cleaning technique if you prefer to protect their material. For this reason, it’s best to avoid hydrogen and peroxide.

Baking Soda

When cleaning leather shoes, baking soda works well to melt away mud and filth without compromising the leather’s surface.

  1. Mix water with baking soda with a 2: 1 ratio to have the paste.
  2. Use a microfiber towel to apply the paste on your shoes carefully.
  3. If your sneakers are filthy, wipe down the areas lightly and repeat the cleaning process.
  4. Don’t clean leather footwear using a toothbrush, as the bristles can leave marks.
  5. After cleaning, use a towel or paper to stuff them to maintain their form during the drying process. Otherwise, your sneakers may warp or sink.
  6. Put your footwear in a warm place that doesn’t have too much direct sunlight.
  7. Apply leather conditioner to keep your Vans supple. This material needs more special care than others to have a longer lifespan.


Nikwax is one of the best cleaning and waterproofing products to condition and maintain leather footwear.

This product can remove stains and dirt, protect your footwear from wear and tear, and prevent it from absorbing water.

  1. Use a light cloth or shoe brush to remove dirt, grime, and stains on the surface. Brush gently to protect the leather.
  2. Apply the product to your Vans and gently clean them.
  3. After cleaning, leave your footwear in a place without harsh sunlight.
  4. Wait until your sneakers are completely dry, and use leather conditioner or waterproofing spray for better protection.
  5. You should reapply this coat regularly if you often wear your shoes in severe weather.

How To Clean Suede Vans?

It would be best to take additional precautions when cleaning your suede Vans since suede is susceptible to stains.

The best solution for these shoes is suede cleaner. However, you can also use other household products to clean them.

Follow the guides below to clean your suede Vans!

Suede Cleaner

  1. Gently clean the dirt on your shoe surface with a suede brush. Ensure you buff away all parts of your Vans to clean them thoroughly.
  2. Pour suede cleaner on a toothbrush and scrub your footwear. Avoid using too much cleaning solution.
  3. Clean the rubber sole using a cloth or toothbrush and warm soapy water. Scrub until the stains go away.
  4. Use towels or newspaper to stuff your shoes to keep their original shape while drying.
  5. Select a place without too much direct sunlight to dry your sneakers.

White Vinegar

If you can’t find suede cleaner, it’s a good idea to use white vinegar to clean your suede footwear.

  1. Use a pencil eraser or art gum to remove stains and dirt on your shoes.
  2. Dip a microfiber cloth into white vinegar and apply it to the marks.
  3. Gently clean to protect the material.
  4. If stains don’t disappear, you can repeat this cleaning process.
  5. Use a clean, dry paper towel to blot the areas you have cleaned to remove residual vinegar.
  6. Stuff your Vans with towels or paper to maintain their form.
  7. After thoroughly drying your footwear, use a suede brush to scrub it to get its original finish.

How To Keep Your Vans Look New?

Below are some easy-to-follow ways to maintain the appearance of your sneakers. Let’s take a closer look!

Use Shoe Trees

The leading cause of shoe wear and tear is improper shoe storage. Vans have firm and stiff bases. However, the upper parts are flimsy.

While these features make them comfortable to wear, these parts may lose their form and get creased.

Luckily, you can use shoe trees to fix this problem. They are objects to place inside your footwear to prevent it from losing shape.

These objects are often constructed from wood to absorb excessive moisture and prevent your Vans from smelling.

Alternate Pairs

Regularly wearing one pair will make it degrade quickly, which lessens and reduces its longevity.

To reduce wear and tear, it’s better to have at least two pairs of shoes and rotate between them. This way, your shoes will look better and have a longer lifespan.

Keep Them Dry

Besides making your sneakers look new, making them smell fresh is crucial. Moisture is the main culprit to cause your feet and footwear to have a bad smell.

Therefore, ensure you leave your Vans dry before storing and after using them.

Keep Them Clean

Depending on the region where you live, your Vans may look dirty quickly. However, you can apply several methods to keep them clean.

Applying a waterproof coat to your footwear is best if it’s susceptible to getting wet.

If you plan to wear your sneakers in mud, puddles, or sand, you should scrub the base regularly using a soft toothbrush and remove dirt with warm water and a soapy solution.

Avoid using the dryer to dry your Vans. Let them dry naturally. Also, give them enough time to dry before you use them again.

Care For Laces

People frequently neglect their laces when striving to maintain their shoes appearing brand new.

However, like each other component of the sneaker, laces contribute to the overall look.

Your sneakers will appear older if the shoelaces become faded, frayed, or damaged.

If the laces become discolored, you may hand-clean them or put your Vans in the washing machine with your white clothes.

If they show signs of wear and tear, the best solution is to throw them away and get new laces. You can find shoelaces at any shoe store in your region.

The last tip is to buy identical laces from Vans to give your sneakers an authentic look.

The Bottom Line

After referring to this article, have you mastered how to wash Vans in the washer? Hopefully, these detailed guides will be helpful for your task.

The cleaning process is not as complicated as you thought. However, you must apply suitable techniques for the specific type of footwear.

Most importantly, you should always maintain your sneakers to look new.

Thank you for your interest in the article!

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