May 11


How to Clean Non-Slip Shoes

By Teddy

May 11, 2023

The best non-slip shoes can make various industries and environments much safer by providing extra grip and reducing the risk of slips and falls. However, over time, these shoes can accumulate dirt, grime, and even lose their slip-resistant properties. Regularly cleaning non-slip shoes is essential not only to maintain their appearance but also to ensure their functionality and safety. In this article, we will guide you through the process of effectively cleaning and maintaining your non-slip shoes, keeping them in optimal condition for prolonged use.

The Importance of Maintaining Slip-Resistant Properties

Proper maintenance of slip-resistant properties is crucial for non-slip shoes to fulfill their intended purpose effectively. Over time, dirt, grease, and other substances can accumulate on the outsole, diminishing its slip-resistant capabilities. By regularly cleaning your non-slip shoes, you remove these contaminants and ensure that the shoe’s traction remains reliable.

Preparing for Cleaning

Before diving into the cleaning process, it’s essential to gather the necessary supplies. Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. Soft-bristled brush or toothbrush
  2. Mild detergent or soap
  3. Water
  4. Clean cloth or sponge
  5. Towels or absorbent paper

Additionally, if your non-slip shoes come with specific cleaning guidelines from the manufacturer, be sure to review them and follow their recommendations. Manufacturers often provide specific instructions based on the shoe’s material and construction, ensuring the best cleaning results without causing damage.

Cleaning Non-Slip Shoes

Removing Loose Dirt and Debris

Start by removing any loose dirt or debris from your non-slip shoes. Use a soft-bristled brush or a toothbrush to gently scrub the outsole, sides, and crevices of the shoes. This step will help loosen and remove surface dirt, making the cleaning process more effective.

Handwashing Non-Slip Shoes

For most non-slip shoes, handwashing is the preferred method of cleaning. Fill a basin or sink with warm water and add a small amount of mild detergent or soap. Immerse your shoes in the soapy water and use a cloth or sponge to clean the entire surface of the shoes. Pay special attention to the outsole, as this is where dirt and grime tend to accumulate the most.

Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners, as they can damage the shoe’s material or strip away the slip-resistant properties. After thoroughly cleaning, rinse the shoes with clean water to remove any soap residue.

Machine-Washing Non-Slip Shoes

Some non-slip shoes, particularly those made of sturdy materials like rubber or synthetic materials, may be suitable for machine-washing. However, it’s crucial to check the manufacturer’s guidelines before proceeding. If machine-washing is recommended, place your non-slip shoes in a mesh laundry bag to protect them during the wash cycle.

Use a gentle or delicate cycle with cold water and a small amount of mild detergent. Avoid using bleach or harsh chemicals, as they can damage the shoes. Once the washing cycle is complete, remove the shoes from the mesh bag and let them air dry.

Drying Non-Slip Shoes Properly

After cleaning your non-slip shoes, it’s important to dry them thoroughly to prevent the growth of mold and mildew. Start by blotting the excess water with a towel or absorbent paper. Avoid wringing or twisting the shoes, as this can distort their shape.

Next, place the shoes in a well-ventilated area away from direct heat or sunlight. Allow them to air dry naturally. Avoid using a hairdryer or placing them near a heater, as excessive heat can cause the shoe material to warp or crack.

Maintaining Non-Slip Properties

In addition to regular cleaning, there are a few steps you can take to maintain the slip-resistant properties of your non-slip shoes.

Removing Stubborn Stains

If your non-slip shoes have stubborn stains that regular cleaning couldn’t remove, there are a few techniques you can try. For fabric or textile materials, create a paste using baking soda and water, and gently rub it onto the stained area using a soft cloth or brush. Let the paste sit for a few minutes before rinsing it off with water.

For leather or synthetic leather shoes, you can use a leather cleaner or a mild detergent mixed with water. Apply the solution to the stain using a cloth, and gently rub in a circular motion. Rinse off the cleaner with a damp cloth and allow the shoes to air dry.

Restoring Traction on the Outsole

Over time, the outsole of non-slip shoes may wear down, reducing their slip-resistant properties. To restore traction, you can use a rubber eraser or a specialized sole brush to gently scrub the outsole. This helps remove any buildup that may affect the shoe’s grip. Additionally, you can purchase sole grips or non-slip adhesives designed specifically for this purpose and apply them to the outsole.

Using Non-Slip Shoe Sprays or Treatments

Another option for maintaining slip resistance is to use non-slip shoe sprays or treatments. These products are formulated to enhance the slip-resistant properties of your non-slip shoes. Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer and apply the spray or treatment evenly on the outsole. Allow the product to dry completely before wearing the shoes again.

Remember to periodically reapply the non-slip spray or treatment to ensure continued effectiveness, especially if you frequently use your non-slip shoes in demanding environments.

Tips for Long-Term Care

To maximize the lifespan of your non-slip shoes and keep them in optimal condition, consider the following tips:

Regular Cleaning Routine

Make cleaning your non-slip shoes a regular part of your maintenance routine. By cleaning them after each use or at least once a week, you can prevent dirt and grime from building up and compromising their slip-resistant properties. Regular cleaning also helps to maintain the overall appearance of your shoes.

Storing Non-Slip Shoes Properly

When you’re not wearing your non-slip shoes, store them in a clean and dry area. Avoid placing them near direct heat sources, as excessive heat can damage the shoe material. It’s also a good idea to keep them away from chemicals or substances that could potentially cause staining or degradation.

Avoiding Harsh Cleaning Agents

When cleaning your non-slip shoes, stick to mild detergents or soaps specifically recommended for the shoe’s material. Harsh cleaning agents, abrasive cleaners, or bleach can damage the shoes, diminish their slip-resistant properties, or cause discoloration.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I clean my non-slip shoes?

The frequency of cleaning depends on how often you use your non-slip shoes and the working conditions. As a general guideline, it’s recommended to clean them after each use or at least once a week to maintain their slip-resistant properties and overall cleanliness.

Can I use bleach to clean non-slip shoes?

No, it’s best to avoid using bleach to clean non-slip shoes. Bleach can damage the shoe material and compromise the slip-resistant properties. Stick to mild detergents or soaps recommended for the shoe’s specific material.

Are there any specific cleaning techniques for different materials?

Yes, different materials may require specific cleaning techniques. Refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines or follow the general cleaning instructions provided in this article. However, it’s always best to check for specific recommendations based on the shoe’s material.

Can I put non-slip shoes in the dryer?

It’s generally not recommended to put non-slip shoes in the dryer, as excessive heat can cause the material to warp or crack. Air drying is the preferred method to maintain the shoes’ shape and integrity.

What should I do if my non-slip shoes lose their grip?

If your non-slip shoes start to lose their grip, you can try restoring traction by using a rubber eraser or specialized sole brush to scrub the outsole. Additionally, non-slip shoe sprays or treatments can be applied to enhance slip resistance.


Cleaning non-slip shoes is essential for maintaining their slip-resistant properties and ensuring their longevity. By following the proper cleaning techniques and taking preventive measures, you can keep your non-slip shoes clean, functional, and safe. Remember to refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines for specific cleaning instructions based on the shoe’s material. With regular care, your non-slip shoes will continue to provide the traction and protection you need in various environments.

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