How to Clean Your Basketball Shoes

When you keep your basketball shoes clean, you can keep your eye on the ball and your head in the game. Follow our guide for keeping your favourite basketball shoes clean, the soles sticky and ready to go so you can manoeuver your competition.

Cleaning Instructions

Keeping your basketball shoes clean isn’t hard with a little maintenance. Follow our do's and don’ts below.


  • Remove stones: If you love outdoor bball, it’s easy to get stones stuck in the soles of your shoes. Pick them out with a toothpick.
  • Wipe off dirt: Find a soft brush or old toothbrush and wipe any dust and dirt from the bottom of your shoes. Be careful not to scrub the more delicate material areas on the shoe.
  • Mix soap and water: Mix some warm water with a little eco-friendly laundry detergent, and gently rub the soles of your shoes with a cleaning cloth.
  • Rinse well: Rinse the washing cloth in warm water and wipe off any leftover detergent from your shoes.
  • Dry naturally: Pat the soles of your basketball shoes with a paper towel or let them air-dry naturally.
  • Wash laces: Wash your laces in a little soap and water or replace them if they show signs of wear and tear. Broken laces can cause injury and take you out of the game.
  • Air out the insoles: Remove the insoles of your basketball shoes to air them out. This will keep them smelling fresh. If your shoes continue to smell, wash and dry them with the same steps above. Sprinkle a small amount of baking soda on the insoles when they’re dry to help soak up the smell.


  • Wash them in a washing machine: You’ll risk damaging the shoes or discolouring the material.
  • Dry them with a dryer or heater: Heat can change the shape of rubber so always air dry basketball shoes at room temperature to keep their shape.
  • Use harsh cleaning product:. Chemicals, alcohol or bleach can dry out and crack the soles of your shoes. Use softener or scented detergent. Use eco-friendly laundry detergent to make sure your kicks get clean without damage and they don’t have a greasy residue left on the soles. Greasy shoes can make them slippery which will impair your stability on court.

Check out a couple of extra cleaning tips we have to keep your basketball shoes grippy and clean:


White Soles: if you have white basketball shoes, help keep them bright by adding a small amount of toothpaste to the soapy mix you use when cleaning the shoe soles.

Spot Clean: if you stain your shoes, clean them as soon as you can as stains can permeate the material and cause long term damage. Gently remove stains with our tips above and be sure not to scrub materials harshly as they can cause surface damage.

Once your basketball shoes are clean and sticky, focus on the game. With clean kicks, you’ll be able to hit the court with more stability and traction. If you want to treat yourself to some fresh sneakers, shop for basketball shoes