Smelly trainers

I got drenched yesterday , running shoes got soddened through . Took them off & forgot to dry them out , noticed a wiff when I opened shoe cupboard , it's the trainers they are still soaked & they reek ! . What can I do , I know you are not supposed to stick them in the washer , they are outside now , don't know a remedy , anyone got any tips . Apart from disposing of them .


Featured Content

Join the NHS Couch to 5K community

Couch to 5K has been designed to get you off the couch and running 5km in just 9 weeks

Start today!

Featured by HealthUnlocked

18 Replies

  • Uh oh... they do say you're not meant to put running shoes in a washing machine, though some people do. You could try handwashing them with some detergent, and take out the insoles and wash those separately - leave them to soak. Then let them dry very thoroughly and that should get rid of the worst of it!

  • Daughter no.2 washes her Converse by hand with a scrubbing brush and washing liquid, then rinses them with the garden hose on full jet. Don't think I'd let them anywhere near my washing machine!! Good idea of TT to wash and dry the insoles separately. Good luck

  • I've put running shoes of my sons in the washing machine many times. They've been more than ok

  • A while back I put a pair in an old pillow case and washed them on a delicate cycle on the washing machine but if they are expensive trainers you may want to do it by hand. Then you need to leave them somewhere to dry, they will take ages to dry.

  • To dry them, just take out the footbeds and stuff loosely with newspaper and let them dry naturally.

  • Did mine in the machine on a cool cycle and they were fine, but I did take out the insoles (gave them a wash in the sink as they were whiffy as well), and put an old towel in the machine to stop them knocking 7 bells out of the drum. And air dry them stuffed with newspaper, as Cruziere just mentioned. They were fine, and lovely and clean afterwards. I know you're not supposed to do it if they have fancy cushioning but mine are pretty bog standard.

  • I have used a washing machine too, but it's not advised. I would suggest a bath or sink full of water and give them a really good hand wash in biological liquid. Then, when they are thoroughly rinsed, stuff them with scrunched-up newspaper and let them dry out slowly, but NOT on a heat source eg radiator/fire. I use our walk-in airing cupboard floor ~ sounds posh, but it's not!!

  • Remove innersoles and wash these in a normal cycle. The rest of the trainers hand wash with washing powder, warm water and a scrubbing brush. If the smell doesn't leave the inners - you can always pop down to your local sports shop and get another set.

  • This advice was originally given to my husband for smelly ski boots, but can probably be adapted for trainers.....

    Cat litter!

    It is absorbent and odour neutralising.

    You may want to wrap it in newspaper or a paper or small fabric bag, but it may avoid the need for resorting to the washing machine.

  • Good thinking with the cat litter.

  • baking soda lifts odours too - you could mix it with water and see how it goes :) Haven't tried it on trainers though!

  • Love the kitty litter as a option,I think, it would relate to many of those smelly moments in life, going to try it with a old handbag,that I love, but kinda smells a bit...many thanx

  • I wash mine out under a cold tap then stuff with newspaper to dry ( I normally need to change the paper once). If it's the inside of the trainers that are smelling rather than just wet material, you probably have bacteria in the shoes. Easiest way to get rid of this is an aerosol shoe deoderisor. You can pick these up at supermarkets and general stores or chemists.

  • Mine regularly go in the washing machine (30 degrees and short spin) with no ill effect, although it will probably shorten their life. I did not know you are not supposed to !

  • Bicarbonate of soda!! Get a pair of socks, fill the toes with bicarbonate of soda, tie with elastic band to stop soda spilling out, pop a sock in each trainer and leave for a day. My daughter did this with her trainers and the difference was amazing - absorbs the nasty smells!

  • Like this idea but how does it work? It must be bugs causing the smells so does the bicarbonate kill them? I guess so. I shall have to experiment. We have the same problem with Taekwondo training gear - often smells of toe cheese. V. nasty.

  • Sorry, can't give a 'scientific' explanation! She read it in a Girl's Handbook type book and had great success with it.

  • Not to worry. Just for my peace of mind really.

You may also like...