How To Clean White Shoes Without Baking Soda & Vinegar

clean shoes without baking soda and vinegarDespite your multiple attempts to keep your shoes white and clean, it’ll always get dirty and yellowish. Don’t panic! It happens. As white shoes absorb water, dirt, stain, and oil, it easily gets dirty and spotted. Scuff, stain, and dirt can make your white shoes look dingy and yellowish fast. Although it’s easy to get them dirty, it is not easier to clean them.  

You will see many ways to clean white shoes. But if you don’t know what suits your shoes, it will damage your shoes. Though baking soda and vinegar are the most common hacks to clean white shoes, many people may not like it. So, here we have shown you some quick hacks on how to clean white shoes without baking soda and vinegar.

5 Quick and Best Ways to clean White Shoes without Baking Soda and Vinegar

1. Clean your white Shoes With Toothpaste

Clean shoes with toothpasteToothpaste can whiten your teeth. Now the question is, can toothpaste also whiten your shoes? Sure, it whitens your shoes like whitening your teeth. But how can you use toothpaste to clean shoes? Here I am telling you the shortest and simplest method using toothpaste for cleaning purposes. 

First, you’ll need a toothbrush to use toothpaste. The most ancient and common method to clean white shoes is to use a toothbrush. Avoid colored toothpaste. Take non-gel white toothpaste and take some toothpaste on your toothbrush. Remove laces from your shoes. And then scrub your shoes gently with the toothbrush. Once it’s finished, wait for 10 minutes. Then wipe your shoes with a damp cloth. Repeat the process until you get a satisfactory result. 

Clean your white mesh shoes with Toothbrush and laundry detergent

Mesh fabric is very delicate. So, you have to clean your mesh shoes very carefully. It can get damaged just with one wrong step. Therefore, you have to use tools on your shoes with a soft touch. 

Tools You need

  • Toothbrush
  • 1 tablespoon laundry detergent
  • warm water
  • soft cloth 
  • bleach pen
  • Eraser
  • White Paper towels

Step 1: Brush Away Dirt

Use a soft-bristled dry toothbrush on your shoes to remove excess dirt from your shoes. Make sure your hands are very gentle as the fabric is made of sheepskin. 

Step 2: Clean Shoes with Soapy Water

Take some warm water in a small bowl and add some liquid laundry detergent into the water. Mix the solution to create soapy water. Take a soft cloth and soak it into this water. Squeeze this cloth to get rid of any excess liquid. Then rub your shoes gently with this soaked cloth until your shoes are thoroughly clean. If your shoes have any dark spots left, use a toothbrush with soapy water to remove this spot. You can also use a bleach pen as an alternative. 

Step 3: Rinse Shoes and Let Dry

After removing dirt and spots, rinse your shoes into clean cold water. Make sure you do not submerge your shoes in water. It is because water can damage the interior of your shoe, which can affect shoe shape. To be on the safe side, use a damp cloth to wipe down the shoes’ outside fabric. 

If you want to clean shoes inside, dip your old toothbrush in soapy water and scrub the rubber sole of your shoe. Wipe your rubber sole with a damp cloth to clean any residue. After that, wipe your shoes’ outer layer and inside with another fresh cloth to clean any remaining spot.

After that, air-dry your shoes. Never dry your mesh shoes in the dryer or heat. If you do that, you will have a high chance of damaging your shoes’ skin. 

2. Clean white shoes with bleach

Clean shoes with bleachBleach can clean white shoes too. But you have to use it carefully as it is a type of toxic. Though household bleach is not considered toxic, it can irritate your skin, eyes, mouth, and lungs. 

You also have to know how much bleach you needfor cleaning. Excessive amounts of bleach can turn your shoes from white to a strange yellow tone. Most of the shoe cleaning experts suggest using 1/4 cup of bleach in one gallon of cold water. Make a bleach solution by using the formula.  

Soak your white sneakers into this diluted solution for 5 minutes. Wash your shoes in hot water using detergent immediately after taking them out from this solution. 

There’s another way. Dip your toothbrush in the solution. Scrub your shoes gently with the toothbrush. When your shoes are fully clean, rinse them with water. Let your shoe air dry for a minimum of 5 to 6 hours.  

3. Try a dedicated shoe cleaner

shoe cleaner

A dedicated shoe cleaner is still the best option to clean your white shoes. Different shoe brands sell their own shoe cleaner. If you don’t know which is best for your shoes, I’d suggest you have this one. It is equally effective for fabric, leather, and rubber shoes.

Cleaning with the cleaner is a pretty simple processto clean your shoes. Just spray on your shoes with a cleaner. Scrub the shoes’ dirty areas with a toothbrush. Then use a soft cloth to remove any excess cleaner. Repeat the process until your shoes are fully white and clean.

4. Clean your Shoes With Lemon Juice

clean shoes with lemon juiceLemon juice is often used to whiten clothes. If you have white canvas shoes, lemon juice will work fine for whitening.

Soak your shoes in the water so that they are fully saturated. Then squeeze juice from a lemon and mix it with water. The ration of water and lemon is 1:1. Apply the diluted juice on the shoes using a toothbrush. Let it sit for one hour. Rinse your shoes and let them air dry. 

5. Use OxiClean and Dish Soap 

The combination of OxiClean and dish soap works well to clean white shoes. Take some warm water in a small bowl. Add equal parts of dish soap and OxiClean in a water-filled bowl. Mix it well and then soak your shoes in the solution. Let it wait overnight. After that rinse them with clean cold water and let them air dry. 

How to Clean White Shoelaces

Sometimes your shoelaces also get dirty because of wearing frequently. If you only clean your shoes’ outside fabric, but not your shoelaces, what’s the point of cleaning?So, you must clean your shoelaces too.

Tools You Need

  • Rubber gloves
  • White mesh lingerie bag
  • 3 tbsp. of bleach
  • 1 gallon of water
  • Laundry detergent

Your first task is to remove your laces from your shoes and place the laces in a white mesh lingerie bag. 

Wear rubber gloves to start this process as bleach is harmful. Take 3 tbsp bleach powder in one-gallon water to make a bleach solution. Soak your mesh bag into this solution for five minutes. Then take out your mesh bag from this solution. Wash the shoelaces by using detergent. Now the last step is to air dry your laces.  

How to prevent your shoes from getting dirty and stain

It is very normal to get your shoes dirty as they’re always in touch with the ground. But there are several ways you can prevent your shoes from getting dirty. Here’s how-

1. Spray with stain or water repellent

Spray your shoes with stain or liquid repellent. It creates a protective layer around your shoes. As a result, your shoes do not absorb any stain or water.   

The spray lasts for three to four weeks. Repeat this process every four weeks to keep your shoes protected all the time. 

2. Spot clean your shoes

When you see any spots or dirt, immediately wipe your shoes to remove it. Always carry a clean cloth to do this. You can make it your habit. Although it’s not possible all the time. Suppose, when you are on an occasion, and cleaning your shoes won’t be a wise thing to do that time, as it will look awkward. But you can excuse yourself to go to the washroom to clean your shoes. 

3. Magic Eraser

If you have grippy rubber soles like converse, you can use a magic eraser to keep your shoes tidy. Magic eraser is a kind of white foam. Just add some water to this foam. Then rub your shoes with it. That’s it. You can remove almost any mark using a magic eraser. 

4. Micellar water 

It is basically a makeup remover. It also keeps your shoes neat and clean. Just pop some micellar water on a clean cloth and rub your shoes with this damp cloth. It also works on leather and rubber shoes. 

5. Toilet paper and water

Toilet paper works like magic to clean shoes that have yellow marks or spots. Soak some sheets of toilet paper in water. Wrap your shoes with soaked paper. Let it dry for 12 hours. Then see the magic. Your yellow marks are gone. 

How Often to Clean White Shoes?

It will be best if you clean your shoes after every wear. But it’s certainly not possible all the time. So try to clean your shoes at least once a week. If possible, wipe your shoes with a damp cloth or scrub your shoes with a soft bristlet brush to remove dirt and stain or any spot. It’ll protect your shoes from further damage or discolor. 

Things to avoid to clean white shoes

  1. Never wash your shoes in the washing machine. It’ll only cause premature damage to your shoes. 
  2. Never dry your leather shoes in the dryer or under direct sunlight. The heat will melt the glue used for the construction of the shoes. 
  3. Never combine bleach and vinegar for cleaning your shoes. Even if the combination is diluted, it’s unsafe. It creates highly toxic gas and inhaling it will be very unhealthy. 


You have so many options to clean your shoes. Cleaning fabric shoes are different than cleaning leather shoes. Here I have explained almost all kinds of cleaning processes without baking soda and vinegar to clean or whiten your shoes. Choose any one of them that’ll be suitable for you. All the best to you and your shoes.



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