Can You Put Shoes In The Dryer? Let Me Show You How

Whether your shoes get wet from playing outside, stepping in a puddle or after giving them a good wash, you don’t want to wait a whole day for them to dry.

Putting your shoes in the dryer might sound risky but we’re here to tell you it doesn’t have to be.

There are a few tips that you should have in your back pocket before you toss your shoes in that dryer.

Check the tag

This might sound like your mom nagging you about doing the laundry but it’s really, really important!

Pull the tongue on the shoe back or check inside the ankle for a label. There should be a tag with a bunch of symbols on them that you’ve seen on every clothing item but might not be clear on.

Don’t worry. Here to help. Square with an X = no dryer action. Square with a circle = dry on low. 

dryer settings

Check the material

What are those shoes that you’ve got made out of?

Cotton, polyester and canvas shoes are in the clear. However, if you’ve got a little bit of a fancier shoe on your foot made of leather or suede, skip the dryer. Putting hot air on those kinds of shoes can damage the material.

The method

If you just toss your (dryer approved) shoes in the dryer, you risk the shoe being damaged from tumbling and you risk the dryer being damaged by your shoe! What to do…

Tie your laces together in a bow at the end of the laces and use the bow as an anchor for your shoes to hang in the dryer!

shoes in dryer method
shoe laces dryer

Place the bow at the outer edge of the dryer and close the door. Make sure the shoes are still hanging when you let go and you’re good to dry. Dry for 20-30 min, depending on the thickness of the shoe material.

Dryer settings

Check if your dryer has an “air dry” setting. This is the one that you’ll want to use. If there’s not an “air dry” option, no worries! Just set the dryer on the lowest heat setting possible. This is to ensure that your shoe material and colors will be safe. 

If your shoes don’t meet the above requirements for automatic drying, newspapers are the best alternative. 


There are so many uses for old newspapers. Substitute them for packing peanuts, use them for kindling in your fireplace, wrapping paper or drying out your shoes. 

If your shoes are too precious to put in the dryer and you aren’t in a hurry to dry them, you can use newspapers to soak up the moisture.

Just remove the insole, if possible, and stuff the shoe full of balled-up newspaper. Not too tight – you want there to be a good airflow in there. Place the shoes in the sunlight or near an air vent to get a little bit of heat and airflow going and replace the newspapers when they are damp.

Check out: Why Do Shoes Smell?