Natural Ways for Cleaning Sandals

Natural Ways for Cleaning Sandals


Sandals are a popular footwear choice for many people, especially during the summer months. However, sandal maintenance is often overlooked, leading to a buildup of dirt, grime, and odors. While there are many commercial cleaning products available, using natural methods to clean your sandals can be both effective and environmentally friendly. In this article, we will explore ten natural ways to clean your sandals, keeping them looking fresh and smelling great.

1. Removing Surface Dirt

Before attempting any deep cleaning, it is essential to remove surface dirt from your sandals. Use a stiff brush or an old toothbrush to gently scrub away loose dirt and debris. Be sure to brush the soles, straps, and any other areas where dirt may have accumulated.

2. Soaking in Warm Soapy Water

One of the easiest and most effective ways to clean your sandals is by soaking them in warm soapy water. Fill a basin or sink with warm water and add a mild detergent or dish soap. Allow the sandals to soak for about 15-20 minutes, then use a soft brush to scrub away any remaining dirt or stains. Rinse thoroughly with clean water and allow them to air dry.

3. Using White Vinegar

White vinegar is a versatile natural cleaner that can be used in many ways, including cleaning sandals. Dilute white vinegar with equal parts of water and use a cloth or sponge to scrub your sandals gently. Vinegar effectively removes dirt, grime, and odors while also disinfecting the surface. After cleaning, rinse your sandals with water and allow them to dry.

4. Lemon Juice for Stain Removal

Lemon juice is not only refreshing but also a fantastic natural stain remover. Squeeze fresh lemon juice onto a cloth or sponge and rub it over the stained areas of your sandals. The acidity of the lemon juice helps to break down stubborn stains and brighten the color of your sandals. Afterward, rinse off the lemon juice and allow your sandals to dry.

5. Baking Soda Paste for Tough Stains

For tougher stains, create a paste using baking soda and water. Apply the paste onto the stained areas of your sandals and let it sit for about 10-15 minutes. Then, scrub the stains with a brush or sponge. Baking soda’s abrasive properties will help lift the stains without damaging your sandals. Rinse off the baking soda paste thoroughly and allow your sandals to air dry.

6. Eliminating Odors with Tea Tree Oil

If your sandals have developed an unpleasant odor, tea tree oil can come to the rescue. Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with water in a spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the interior of your sandals and allow them to air dry. Tea tree oil has natural antibacterial properties that will help eliminate odors and keep your sandals smelling fresh.

7. Sunlight for Sanitizing

Sunlight is a natural disinfectant and can help sanitize your sandals. After cleaning, place your sandals in direct sunlight for a few hours. The UV rays will kill bacteria and eliminate odors. Additionally, sunlight can help to fade any remaining stains and restore the color of your sandals.

8. Freshening with Baking Soda

If your sandals still have lingering odors, sprinkle some baking soda inside them. Baking soda is a natural deodorizer and can help absorb and neutralize unwanted smells. Leave the baking soda in your sandals overnight, then shake it out or vacuum it up the next day. Your sandals will be refreshed and odor-free.

9. Storing Clean Sandals Properly

Once you have cleaned your sandals, it is crucial to store them properly to maintain their cleanliness. Avoid leaving them in damp or humid areas as this can promote mold and mildew growth. Instead, store them in a well-ventilated area or use shoe bags to protect them from dust and dirt.

10. Regular Maintenance and Prevention

Regular maintenance is the key to keeping your sandals clean and prolonging their lifespan. Wipe them down after each use and remove dirt or stains as soon as possible. Applying a protective spray or wax can also help prevent future dirt buildup and make cleaning easier.


Cleaning your sandals naturally is not only beneficial for the environment but also for the health and longevity of your footwear. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can maintain clean, fresh-smelling sandals without relying on harsh chemicals or expensive cleaning products. Remember to remove surface dirt, soak in warm soapy water, use natural ingredients like white vinegar and lemon juice for stains, and take advantage of the sanitizing power of sun and baking soda. By incorporating these natural cleaning methods into your regular sandal maintenance routine, you can enjoy comfortable and stylish footwear all summer long.