Purchasing a brand new pair of white Vans comes with a commitment to keeping them shining as brilliant as the sun. It takes devotion because everyone knows as soon as you're wearing white, you're destined to becoming a total magnet for every puddle of rain, ketchup packet, and dirt pile for miles and miles. It takes dedication to keep your vans clean and to know how to prevent a disaster from happening.

How To Clean White Vans


What You'll Need

  • 1 tablespoon of lukewarm water
  • 2 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons of distilled white vinegar
  • toothbrush
  • kitchen towel
  • bowl

How To Do It

For the best results, remove the shoelaces to reach in the areas where dirt is likely to accumulate. If your laces are in need of whitening, you can simply wash them in the washer. Since they are delicate, place the laces in a laundry bag before washing. Otherwise, they are generally inexpensive to replace.

  1. Pour water into a small bowl. Add both the baking soda and vinegar. Mix until it reaches a pasty texture.
  2. Using only a toothbrush, gently apply the pasty substance on your shoes. Work in slow circular motions, ridding the shoe's surface and soles of debris.
  3. Remove the excess baking soda using a kitchen towel.
  4. Set the damp shoes in a warm area to dry, avoiding direct sunlight. Drying the shoes directly in the sun can create a yellow hue on the rubber soles of the shoes.

Shoe Cleaning Mistakes To Avoid

dirty shoe

Keeping your white Vans pristine is a challenge. Finding the correct methods, and products to keep your vans looking their best can also be daunting. So, what should you avoid to protect your shoes? Read on.

1. Don't Wash Them In the Washing Machine

washer machine

Although it may seem like a good idea to place your shoes in the washer, as it's convenient and simple, we wouldn't recommend it. The washer machine puts a lot of wear and tear on your shoes, weakening the fabric, which can eventually lead to a tear. The washer can also potentially give the white soles of the shoes a yellow hue. If you must use a washer machine, place your shoes in a washable bag. Wash the shoes with a non-bio detergent meant for delicate items and set the washer on a gentle cycle.

2. Don't Use Bleach

clorox bleach

Bleach usually makes things sparkingly white, but it will do the opposite to your white Vans. Using bleach on your Vans will turn them a dreadful yellow, as well as eat away at your shoe.

3. Stop Using Harsh Chemicals

household cleaners

Choosing to use cleaners with harsh chemicals or abrasives to clean your shoes may not always be a wise choice to tackle stains and dirt. Harsh chemicals may not be safe on the fabric and may weaken the glue used to bond the rubber soles. Choose more natural products, or something less abrasive.

Quick fixes such as Mr. Clean Magic Erasers and nail polish remover are sometimes used to remove scuff marks, or grass stains on the rubber roles of vans. However, due to the abrasiveness of both cleaners, they should never be used on the canvas of the shoe.

4. Don't Put Your Vans in The Dryer


It's tempting to put your freshly cleaned kicks in the dryer so you can put them right back on; however, that's a terrible idea. Tossing your white vans in the dryer not only may cause a slight discoloration, but it also causes them to lose their shape and damages the soles. Instead, let your shoes air dry. Place some crumbled-up newspaper inside the vans to help them hold their form, as well as to soak up any dampness.

Cleaning Products For Your White Vans

white shoes on logs

In addition to do-it-yourself whitening methods, you can also purchase cleaning products for your white Vans that will not only clean the shoe safely but will also help keep your shoes looking their best.

Vans Water And Stain Shield ($6.99)

vans water and stain shield

This must-have item helps protect your white Vans from future stains by creating a barrier between the world and your shoes. It works on a wide range of materials including but not limited to leather, cotton, canvas, and nylon. Find it here.

CleanKicks Shoe Cleaning Wipes ($14.97)

shoe cleaning wipes

If the worst should happen, and your Vans are exposed to dirt or stains, having a quick fix on hand is vital. CleanKicks shoe cleaning wipes give you peace of mind that perfectly white shoes are never more than a wipe away.

Jason Markk Premium Shoe Cleaner Brush With Solution ($30.80)

jason markk premium shoe cleaner brush with solution

This natural cleaning solution is popular among many shoe enthusiasts. The shoe cleaner is free of any chemicals that can cause pitting or other damage to your white Vans. The synthetic bristle brush is tough on dirt and grime, but won't damage your shoe, and the wooden handle allows you to apply more elbow grease when cleaning. Find it here.

When you have a new pair of white shoes, keeping them clean is very important. Regular spot cleaning is an integral part of keeping your white Vans shiny. However, when your shoes get dirty, you're not out of luck. There are many ways to tackle a variety of stains from prevention to post-exposure care.

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