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How to Clean White Canvas Sneakers

Advice from our experts
How to Clean White Canvas Sneakers

They’re so white when you first try them on… but then, the dog park, or coffee, or life, and sooner or later your white canvas sneakers need to be cleaned—now what?

It’s great to know that Clorox® Regular-Bleach2 with CLOROMAX® isn’t just for brightening and whitening white laundry; it can even be used to clean and whiten even white canvas sneakers that typically don’t go in a clothes washer. Here’s how:

Materials needed


  1. With the (dry) nylon brush, brush the shoes to remove loose dirt or soil. This makes them easier to clean.
  2. Remove the shoe laces and set them aside to clean later.
  3. To 1 quart of water in the measuring cup, add 1 tablespoon Clorox® Regular-Bleach2 with CLOROMAX® and stir to mix.
  4. Working on one shoe at a time, dip the brush in the bleach and water solution, and then gently scrub the canvas in a circular motion. Dip the brush again as needed to keep applying the bleach solution to the canvas until the entire shoe has been treated. This only takes a few minutes; you can scrub the rubber outsole while you are at it.
  5. Wait one minute, and then spray all the treated areas with hydrogen peroxide.
  6. Rinse the first shoe completely with clean water before starting the second shoe.
  7. For very dirty shoes, substitute Clorox® Bleach Pen Gel for the bleach and water solution, using the soft scrubber tip to apply the gel to the shoe. Scrub thoroughly with the nylon brush, then spray with the hydrogen peroxide before rinsing.
  8. Let the shoes air dry overnight.

Don’t forget the shoelaces!

Depending on how dirty they are, you have some options:

  1. Let them soak for 5 minutes in the bleach and water solution before rinsing thoroughly and laying them flat to air dry.
  2. Apply Clorox® Bleach Pen Gel to the laces and let stand for 3 minutes before rinsing thoroughly and laying them flat to air dry.
  3. After treating the shoe laces with the bleach gel, transfer them to a lingerie bag and wash them with your regular bleach load using detergent and ½ cup Clorox® Regular-Bleach2 with CLOROMAX®.

Helpful hints

  • Replace shoe laces once the shoes and laces have dried completely.
  • Only use a leather cleaner on leather shoes; make sure you know what material your shoes are made of before you use bleach to clean them (always avoid bleaching leather).
  • If you’re not sure, test a small hidden part of the shoe first.

Advice From Our Experts