Ultimate Guide: How to Dry Wet Shoes and Prevent Unpleasant Odors

Ultimate Guide: How to Dry Wet Shoes and Prevent Unpleasant Odors

Ever stepped in a puddle and had your day dampened by wet, soggy shoes? It’s a common predicament, but the aftermath can be a real stinker. Literally. Drying your shoes improperly can lead to unpleasant odors that linger, making your favorite pair less than appealing.

But fear not, you’re about to discover a simple, effective method to dry your wet shoes without them smelling. This guide is a lifesaver, especially for those living in rainy areas or leading an active lifestyle. So, let’s dive in and turn this soggy situation around.

Key Takeaways

  • Start the drying process as soon as possible to prevent moisture from damaging shoe materials and causing unpleasant smells.
  • Use absorbent materials like newspaper, uncooked rice, or silica gel packs to draw out the moisture from your shoes. Exchange these materials regularly, as they become wet.
  • Avoid excessive heat when drying your shoes, such as using a hair dryer or placing them near a heater, as it can warp the shoes and reduce their lifespan.
  • Using a shoe drying device can speed up the process, especially for individuals frequently dealing with wet shoes.
  • Implement a preventative approach by considering the use of waterproofing sprays or solutions to reduce future occurrences of overly soaked shoes.
  • Regular shoe rotation, proper foot hygiene, and the use of moisture-absorbing shoe inserts can help prevent the development of foul odors from repeated wet experiences.
  • Always check the manufacturer’s care instructions when cleaning your shoes to preserve their durability.

Wet shoes are an inevitable nuisance, but with proper care, they can be quickly dried and kept odor-free. REI’s outdoor guide suggests effective drying techniques that protect the material integrity of your shoes. The Spruce offers home remedies for neutralizing bad smells, ensuring your shoes remain fresh.

How to Dry Wet Shoes Quickly

How to Dry Wet Shoes Quickly

When the weather has you stepping in puddles or pushing through a rainy race, promptness is key in keeping your favorite kicks fresh-smelling and durable.

Don’t let dampness linger. The longer you let your shoes sit, the more time moisture has to seep into the materials. This can weaken the structure and pave the way for unpleasant smells. So, it’s crucial to start the drying process as soon as possible.

First off, remove any excess water. Blot the shoes inside and out with a clean, dry towel to absorb as much moisture as you can. Be gentle to avoid damaging the material – especially when dealing with delicate fabrics like suede or leather.

Next up, stuff your shoes with newspaper or uncooked white rice. These serve as excellent absorbents and help to speed up the drying process. You’ll need to replace the newspapers or rice every few hours as they get damp.

For those in a hurry, consider using a shoe drying device. These gadgets circulate warm, dry air into your shoes and can have them dry in less than an hour. Just make sure to avoid methods that introduce excessive heat like using a hairdryer or placing shoes near a heater. These methods could warp your shoes and shorten their lifespan.

Also, consider investing in waterproofing sprays or solutions. While this won’t dry your shoes instantly, it’s a proactive step that prevents your shoes from getting overly soaked in the future, thus reducing the drying time.

Remember, the goal here is not only to get your shoes dry but to preserve their form, texture, and longevity. With the proper materials and actions, you can set your shoes to dry in the least time possible without damaging their construction. Picking the right drying solution for your shoes can save your favorite pair from a soggy, smelly fate.

Materials Needed for Drying Shoes

After you’ve recognized the importance of drying your wet shoes promptly to prevent unpleasant odors and maintain their durability, it’s time to gather your materials. To effectively get your shoes back into top-notch condition, you’ll need a few readily available items around your house. There’s no need for expensive or complicated equipment.

In your quest to dry your shoes, the first item on your list should be newspaper. It’s not only a great water absorbent but also easily replaceable. It’s important to note that using colored newspapers might stain your shoe so it’s preferable to use plain, black and white newspaper.

Next up is rice. It’s not just for cooking anymore! A common household staple, rice proves to be a great absorbent for water. You won’t need much, just enough to fill the inside of your shoes.

If you’re not keen on using food or newspaper, silica gel packs are another solid option. Often found in shoe boxes, they are designed to absorb moisture and keep items fresh.

For those who don’t want to deal with the mess or unavailability of the aforementioned materials, investing in a shoe drying device is a valid alternative. They come in many different models and price ranges.

Lastly, consider investing in waterproofing solutions for your shoes. This won’t help dry your wet shoes now but it’s an excellent preventative measure for the future.

Now that you have your materials set up, you’re ready to tackle the task of drying your shoes.

Step-by-Step Guide to Drying Shoes Properly

By now, you’ve gathered the necessary materials to kick-start your shoe drying process. What’s next? Follow this simple easy-to-follow guide and say goodbye to the challenges of drying wet shoes.

Step 1: Remove Excess Water

Begin by handling the external moisture. Wipe the exterior with a dry cloth, carefully removing as much water as you can.

Step 2: Take Out Any Inserts and Loosen Laces

For more efficient drying consider loosening up the laces, pull them wide apart. Does your footwear have inserts or insoles? Take them out. They’ll dry faster when removed.

Step 3: Use Absorbents

Time to put those newspaper rolls or absorbent materials to good use. Stuff the shoes with you chosen material aiding in more rapid drying from the inside. Change out the material as it becomes wet. For maximum effectiveness, replace every few hours.

Step 4: Use a Fan or Open Air

This step is for those who might not have shoe drying devices. Position a fan to blow into your shoes or simply leave them in a well-ventilated spot. Avoid exposure to direct sunlight or using excessive heat. Excessive heat can warp shoes and even degrade their quality over time.

Step 5: Use a Shoe Drying Device

Do you own a shoe drying device? Turn to it for a hassle-free drying process. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to avoid any potential damage to your pair.

Step 6: Apply Waterproofing Treatment

Finally, add an extra layer of protection. Invest in a waterproofing treatment for your shoes. It’s the extra step that offers proactive protection against future wet conditions.

Remember, each pair of shoes is unique. Always consider the manufacturer’s care instructions to ensure they get the best care preserving their durability for years to come. Carry on to the next section to discover more shoe care tips.

Tips to Prevent Smelly Shoes

Tips to Prevent Smelly Shoes

Often, wet shoes end up smelly due to the build-up of sweat and bacteria from feet. It’s not mandatory that once your shoes get wet, they must smell. There are ways you can prevent this unpleasant odor.

The first step would be to avoid making your shoes wet in the first place. Sounds simple but ignoring this can lead to smelly shoes. Invest in waterproof shoes or shoe covers especially if you’re in a rainy region or engaging in splashy outdoor activities.

Next, take care of your feet hygiene. As mentioned earlier sweak and bacteria can cause your shoes to smell. Make sure you clean your feet properly and consider using antiperspirant for feet or special socks that help reduce sweat.

Another tip is to rotate your shoes. Don’t wear the same pair every day. By doing so, you give your shoes more time to air out and dry, reducing the chance of them developing a foul smell.

Think of inserts or foot powders. These are designed to absorb excess moisture in shoes hence eliminating the conditions necessary for bacteria to thrive. You can find a range of shoe inserts and foot powders in the market that are perfect to keep your shoes fresh and dry.

Consider cleaning your shoes regularly in addition to drying properly after they get wet. Some shoe types are machine washable. However, make sure you check the manufacturer’s instructions before tossing them in the wash. Cleaning not only keeps your shoes looking good but also helps eradicate any bacteria that might cause them to smell.

Next time your shoes get wet, follow these useful tips. This way, your shoes will not only be dry but also fresh and free from any nasty smell.


So, you’ve now got the know-how to dry your wet shoes without a trace of stink. Remember, it’s all about adhering to those manufacturer’s care instructions and keeping a consistent shoe care routine. Waterproof footwear and foot hygiene are your best defense against damp, smelly shoes. Don’t forget the power of shoe rotation and the benefits of inserts or foot powders. Regular cleaning is your final step to ensuring your shoes stay as fresh as the day you bought them. By putting these practices into play, you’re not just preventing unpleasant odors – you’re extending the life of your favorite footwear. Here’s to dry, fresh-smelling shoes all year round!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: How can I dry wet shoes properly?

It’s important to follow your shoes’ manufacturer’s care instructions for the best results. Most shoes can be air-dried at room temperature, away from direct sunlight or radiators. In some cases, stuffing shoes with newspaper can speed up the drying process.

Q2: How can I prevent my shoes from getting smelly?

There are various ways to prevent this, including investing in waterproof footwear, maintaining foot hygiene, and rotating between different pairs of shoes. Using inserts or foot powders can also help by absorbing moisture.

Q3: How often should I clean my shoes to prevent odors?

Regular cleaning plays a vital role in preventing unpleasant odors. The frequency of cleaning depends on the wear frequency of the shoes, but a general rule is to clean athletic shoes once a week, dress shoes once a month, and seasonal shoes at the end of each season.

Q4: Do shoe inserts and foot powders really help to absorb moisture?

Shoe inserts and foot powders can be effective at absorbing moisture but don’t replace regular shoe care. They are best used in conjunction with other preventative measures, like rotating shoes and regular cleaning.

Q5: Will these tips work for all types of shoes?

Most of these tips apply to all types of shoes. However, it’s always essential to check and follow your shoes’ specific care instructions, as some materials may require special attention or methods of cleaning.