Although they rarely ever touch the ground, shoelaces tend to accumulate dirt and grime that can quickly become noticeable.

White shoelaces in particular have a tendency to turn brown with use as they pick up dirt and can detract from your entire outfit in the process.

Thankfully, it is easy to avoid unsightly shoelaces by learning how to clean shoelaces.

Cleaning your shoelaces from time to time is an easy way to keep your shoes looking like new without having to buy new shoelaces every few weeks.


 Related : How To Clean Leather Boots


What you will need

What supplies you need to clean your shoelaces depends on whether you are cleaning white, colored, or leather shoelaces.

For all shoelaces, you will need a toothbrush, a bowl of water, and a towel.

For white shoelaces, you will also want to have bleach, a mesh laundry bag, and a washing machine, while for colored shoelaces you will want detergent and for leather shoelaces you will need olive oil.


How to Clean White Shoelaces ?

If you are cleaning white shoelaces, start out by adding three tablespoons of bleach to one gallon of warm water in a large bowl and remove the laces from your shoes.

Soak the laces in the bleach solution, using a toothbrush to scrub away at the dirt.

After you have scrubbed as much as you can, put the laces inside a mesh laundry bag and submerge them in the bleach solution for a few minutes.

White Shoelaces


During this time, you can use a spoon to mix around the shoelaces in the solution.

Afterwards, put the shoelaces, still inside the laundry bag, into the washing machine and run the machine on a hot water cycle with a half cup of bleach added.

Finally, rather than put the shoelaces in the dryer, which can damage the fabric, allow the shoelaces to air dry for several hours before lacing them back into your shoes.

What About Colored Shoelaces ?

Cleaning colored shoelaces starts out much like cleaning white shoelaces, except you should make a mixture of detergent and water rather than bleach and water.

Again, soak the shoelaces in this solution and use a toothbrush to scrub away any visible dirt and grime.

Colored Shoelaces

If this doesn’t get all of the grime off, you can submerge the shoelaces in the detergent solution for several minutes to allow them to swell and loosen the dirt.

Then try scrubbing with the toothbrush again.

Once you are satisfied, refill the bowl with clean water to rinse off the shoelaces – simply submerge them and agitate the laces in the water with your hands.

Finally, allow the laces to air dry for a few hours before lacing them back into your shoes.

and Leather Shoelaces ?

Leather shoelaces do not absorb dirt to the same extent synthetic laces do, so in this case it is best to scrub as much dirt off of the laces with a toothbrush before getting them wet.

If scrubbing alone does not remove all of the dirt, make a solution of detergent and water, but do not soak the laces in the solution.

Instead, use the toothbrush or a cloth to gently and lightly brush the solution onto the laces where needed. When finished, wipe off any excess soapy water with a fresh cloth, and then lay the laces on a towel for several hours to air dry.

Once the laces are completely dried, it is important to recondition them rubbing olive oil along the length of the laces using a cloth is excellent for this task.

The oil should be absorbed into the laces, but wipe off any excess oil before allowing them to air dry for several hours and lacing them back into your shoes.


Dirty shoelaces can be unsightly, and unfortunately it is nearly impossible to prevent dirt from building up on your shoelaces.

However, you can avoid having to continually buy new shoelaces to keep your outfit fresh by learning how to clean shoelaces.

The methods outlined in this article are quite effective and will make your shoelaces look as if they were new.

We would love to hear how these cleaning methods worked for you in the comments section below and always appreciate you sharing the article with your friends if you found it helpful!

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