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As a dedicated runner, your Saucony shoes are one of your most trusted pieces of gear, mile after grueling mile.
The right pair provides the exact balance of cushioning, responsiveness, and stability to meet your needs.
However, after endless miles of pounding dirt trails and slick city streets, mud, sweat, and grime can quickly build up.
Not only does this look dirty, but it also leads to foul odors, reduced traction, and the breakdown of support and materials.
Implementing a consistent cleaning routine is key to restoring performance and extending the lifespan of your Saucony running shoes.
Luckily, revitalizing even very dirty Saucony is straightforward with some basic solutions and the right tools and techniques.
By understanding your shoes’ materials and customized stain state, you can tailor the appropriate mixture of gentle cleaners to lift grime and debris without damage.
Then follow proven methods to hand wash upper mesh fabrics and outsoles while scrubbing away caked mud.
Last, deodorize and disinfect slippery liners so shoes feel fresh for many more happy miles.
Take Inventory of Your Saucony’s Build
Before washing, inspect the upper, sole, and lining materials of your Sauconys to appropriately gauge which cleaning approach and solution strengths are ideal.
Standard mesh and synthetic blends require only very gentle scrubbing with mild soap, while sturdier rubber outsoles can withstand strong friction from firmer bristle brushes.
If shoes have specialty coatings like waterproofing or weather protection, these finishes may need to be reapplied after washing.
Assemble Your Cleaning Supplies
You’ll want to gather a few key supplies before tackling washing your dirty shoes:
- Mild liquid dish or laundry detergent
- An old toothbrush and shoe-cleaning brushes
- Large container, sink, or tub for washing
- Baking soda and anti-bacterial spray
- Old rags and lint-free cloths
- Cedar shoe trees
- Protective waterproofing spray
Avoid harsh chemicals or hot water that risk damaging shoe materials and adhesive.
Be sure to have stain-removing solutions on hand like dish soap, hydrogen peroxide, or vinegar for stuck orange clay or grass stains.
Prepare the cleaning solution.
Fill your wash basin, sink, or tub with cool or room-temperature water.
Hot temperatures can break down shoe glue and stitching.
Add a small amount of mild laundry detergent or dish soap—about a teaspoon—to start.
Mix the solution thoroughly, ensuring suds form throughout, as this lifts and suspends dirt from the shoes.
Have your stain removers nearby to address any stubborn buildup as needed.
Clean upper hems and fabrics
Fully dip the bristle brush into the warm soapy solution to absorb liquid through the bristles, super-saturating the brush.
Gently spot-scrub visible stains first, using a delicate circular motion to lift mud or discoloration.
Apply extra solutions and cleaning mixtures as needed.
Be very gentle around more durable leather, avoiding any abrasive scrubbing that can damage the finish.
Pay extra attention to fabric creases around the toes and seams, which collect dirt.
Fully submerge shoes while swirling and gently agitating to allow the solution to dissolve debris so it can be rinsed away.
This cleans the entire exterior upper portion.
Scrub the soles and sides.
With soles facing upward, use a firmer bristle brush and concentrated soapy mixture to rigorously scrub the deep rubber lugs, intricate treads, and along all edges where compacted mud and built-up trail debris hide.
Generating friction with a suitable bristled cleaning brush dislodges dried mud and rinses any loose particles away, leaving nothing embedded to hinder traction.
Rinse away all residue
After intense scrubbing above, thoroughly rinse shoes under cool running water until the water flowing over every surface runs completely clear.
Any suds or soapy residue left behind can break down shoe materials.
Stuff shoes with clean rags, allowing them to air dry completely overnight before wearing them again.
Be sure to fully dry Saucony shoes with Gore-Tex lining inside and out before next use to avoid compromising waterproof membranes.
Sanitize and deodorize interiors
Once fully dried, spray antimicrobial solutions inside shoes to eliminate odor-causing bacteria and fungal growth from accumulated foot sweat.
Tea tree oil solutions work well, killing most microbes and neutralizing smells without heavy perfumes.
Sprinkle antibacterial foot powder onto the linings, allowing it to sit before shaking out any excess.
Remove insoles to wash separately with mild detergent, allowing them to fully air dry before replacing them to avoid bacterial spread.
Test the cleaned insoles for any lingering dampness by pressing between paper towels before inserting them back into the shoes.
Restore protective treatments.
Apply a fresh waterproofing spray coating to guard shoes from future moisture damage and exterior stains.
For leather or suede shoe materials, treat with an appropriate conditioner to rehydrate the softened fibers during washing.
Tips for Keeping Shoes Cleaner and Longer
Implementing preventative measures keeps shoes fresher longer between deep cleans:
- Spray shoes with protective treatments to repel dirt, debris, and moisture.
- Change into clean, dry socks regularly, avoiding the transfer of bacteria back into the shoes.
- Insert cedar shoe tree-shaped retainers or charcoal inserts overnight to actively wick moisture and neutralize odors inside shoes while not in wear.
- Rotate pairs of running shoes, allowing foam materials to fully rebound between runs.
With the proper supplies and technique, you can blast through dirt buildup and have Saucony’s revived to feel like new.
Washing away mess immediately after muddy trail runs prevents stains from setting in, and regular cleaning keeps shoes performing comfortably for mile after mile.
The satisfaction of properly cared-for shoes
There you have an overview from start to finish of exactly how to wash Saucony running shoes so they last longer.
While it takes a little extra effort upfront, properly cleaning shoes pays dividends down the road with Saucony’s fitting and performance like the first time you slid them on for hundreds of miles.
Not only will your feet be happier run after run, but you can stand a little taller knowing your shoes shine inside and out.