How To Clean Running Shoes With Mesh? 10 Easy Steps

Mesh shoes have got high acclaim globally on account of their radical features that make them useful for diverse purposes ranging from rigorous running on a hot day to comfortable luxury events. This is because along with being lightweight, they have a porous structure on which holes ensure the fresh air provision that averts foot sweating. 

However, there is one limitation associated with them which is their challenging cleaning due to the stubborn debris sticking into the mesh. This makes many people question how to clean running shoes with mesh. Since the mesh contains holes that can wear if treated carelessly so it is very significant to know the most appropriate way of their cleaning. 

With that in view, this post has summarized the best method of cleaning in 10 steps that are quick and easy. You can perform their washing at home simply.     

Material required for cleaning running shoes with mesh

Luckily, all things can be found at home and you won’t need to get to the market and spend money on an additional product. All you need is:

  • Lukewarm water
  • Washing powder or dish detergent
  • Shoe brush or toothbrush
  • Clean rag  
  • Plane water for rinsing
  • Disinfectant (optional)

how to clean running shoes with mesh? 10 Easy Steps

Take off the laces and insole

Take the insole and laces off the mesh shoes so they can be cleaned separately. If your insole is reluctant to come out, do not force it. You can clean it with a neat cloth later.  

Use a soft-bristled brush for sweeping off the dust

Remove the dust chunks on the shoes by using a soft-bristled shoe brush. Advisably, head to the market to get a double-sided shoe brush that will keep benefiting you every time you need to clean mesh shoes. However, if you don’t possess it, switch to a toothbrush but with soft-bristled.

Note: The mesh can easily damage if cleaned harshly so always treat it with soft hands.

Now using the brush, take off all the loose dirt and debris. Move the brush very lightly and carefully on the mesh. 

Mix some washing powder in lukewarm water

Take lukewarm water in a bucket and add some washing powder to it. Mix them well so you get well-mixed soapy water. You can also use a dish detergent as an alternative. 

Herein, beware that very hot water can damage the mesh fabric so keep its temperature moderate. Also, it should be plain and non-contaminated. 

The reason for taking the hot water is to clean mesh shoes efficiently because warm water kills germs and removes all the stuck debris. 

Also Read: How To Stop Feet Sliding Forward In Shoes?

Soak the shoes and laces in water or clean them with a soaked cloth

Place the shoes and laces in this water and leave for some time. Remember that if you will soak your pair in water, it will take them a long to dry. But this way you get your mesh shoes washed very finely. However, if you cannot wait for long drying or it’s not a sunny day; it’s better to not soak in water. 

If soaking is not carried out, soak a neat rag in that detergent mixed water for some time and use it over the running shoes. This is another way how to clean running shoes with mesh. However, ensure that midsoles have also got this mixture on. The preventive measure in this method is that don’t let the inside of the shoes get wet.  

Take off soaked shoes and clean them with a brush

Whether you soak the footwear or use a soaked cloth on them, the brushing will be certainly needed. This is because mesh contains holes in which dirt particles get stuck and resist coming out. Unlike a flat surface that can be cleared very simply even if they have got candle wax, a porous surface needs special attention in handling. This is why using a brush is vital to clean running shoes with mesh.    

Take off soaked shoes and clean them with a brush

Brush off the midsole and outsole too

Once you start mesh shoe cleaning, scrub all around the shoes including mesh, midsole as well as an outsole with a brush. Yes, the outsole is also needed to be cleaned even though it tends to be very dirty. 

Regarding the midsole, you can use some strong detergent too because that part of the mesh shoes is not sensitive. By the way, often times regular washing powder proves to be adequate. 

Concerning the outsole, keep dipping the brush in detergent-mixed water and continue cleaning it. You don’t need to make it crystal clear rather just get all the debris off. 

Take the soaked laces off the detergent-mixed water

Since the laces were soaked in water, take them off and perform the next mentioned step. You don’t need to use a brush on it because it can deteriorate the laces. 

Rinse all the components properly or tap the wet cloth

If you had soaked your running shoes, then you need to rinse them along with the laces and if they were not soaked instead cleaned them with a soapy rag then don’t rinse them. 

For such a method, take a wet cloth and wipe all the detergent with the care that no water goes inside. Carry out wiping two to three times until all the surface gets clear. If you still find the shoes dirty from somewhere, use a brush and do the scrubbing. 

Notably, laces will be rinsed in both cases. Till this step, you have learned how to clean running shoes with mesh with an exclusion of drying that has been described in the next steps. 

Clean and disinfect the insole

If your insole didn’t come out, clean it whilst lying inside. Use a lightly wet cloth and rub gently on the insole. Be mindful that the goal is to remove sweat stains from the insole that prevail due to warm and moist conditions inside. Particularly, if you are a runner or concerned with an all-day workout, the insole cleaning is of utmost significance. 

Once the wiping is done, use a disinfectant to kill the germs that will grant you entire purification and the best mesh shoes cleaning. Advisably, if you are having a plantar wart, this is crucial to disinfect the mesh shoes after cleaning. 

If the insole can come out, clean it and leave it under the sun without using any disinfectant because sunlight is a natural disinfectant. 

Also Read: How To Make Running Shoe Pixelmon?

Let the shoes air dry

The mesh shoes cleaning is done and the drying is needed now. It is recommended to dry under wind rather than fan drying. 

If you place the running shoes under the sun, the additional benefit is the natural disinfection. 

How To Clean Running Shoes With Mesh

Additional tip

If your shoes are smelling, you can use vinegar as well to clean mesh shoes which has been found very effective in overcoming odor. This is very useful for those who wear socks or put on shoes for the whole day.  

All you need to do is take some quantity of vinegar and mix it in an equal amount of water. Use a spray bottle and spritz this solution on the insole before air drying. 


How can I get the sweat off my mesh shoes? 

Sweating causes odor and staining on shoes that look nasty. To get rid of staining, wash the shoes in detergent mixed water, and for odor, take off the insole and clean it properly ahead of air drying. You can also use vinegar to remove odor. 

Can I wash mesh shoes in the washing machine?

It is not recommended because it contains mesh that can wear and deteriorate. It is suggested to soak them in detergent mixed with lukewarm water for some time and then scrub gently with a brush that will remove all the dirt and debris. 

How can I remove odor from cleaning mesh shoes?

You can spray a little amount of vinegar mixed with an equal quantity of water. Additionally, the odor is also caused by microorganisms inside the shoes so for that disinfection is a good solution either with an artificial disinfectant or under natural sunlight after washing properly. 


Getting mesh shoes cleaned is not difficult as people think it. This post has shed light on 10 easy steps regarding how to clean running shoes with mesh that can be followed. Fortunately, you don’t have to use any expensive products or buy an aftermarket material rather with a few things that are easily available at home, you can carry out the cleaning. If you further have any questions, bump into the comment section to let us know. 

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