How To Clean White Vans | Make Them Look New Again

Vans are a well-loved sneaker that can really take a beating over the years. Grass and asphalt stains, spilled drinks and mud can leave your Vans desperate for a cleaning. Especially if they’re white.

But there’s no need to run to the mall and get a new pair. You’ve probably already worn your white Vans to fit your foot perfectly, anyway.

Cleaning your white vans is easy and, if done regularly, can keep your sneakers looking fresh every time you put them on.

The best way to clean your white vans is to use a natural solution and manual cleaning and drying process.

Bleach is more than likely to turn your white vans yellow and harsh chemicals can weaken the glue or fabric. This will lead to dull shoes with holes and tears.

Here is a step-by-step guide with a few bonus tips to getting your white vans clean.

For the cleaning solution:

  • warm water
  • baking soda
  • distilled white vinegar


  • toothbrush
  • bowl
  • towel
  • newspaper
  • magic eraser


  1. Remove the shoelaces
  2. Mix all the cleaning solution ingredients in a bowl to form a loose paste
  3. Use the toothbrush to apply the paste to the shoe and scrub gently, in a circular motion
  4. Remove any leftover paste from your white Vans with a towel
  5. Use a magic eraser for the rubber part of the shoe as well as any really stubborn stains on the canvas
  6. Stuff you clean white Vans with crumpled up newspapers and set them in a warm place to dry

Pro tips

  • Your white Vans shoelaces can be soaked in a separate bowl with a diluted bleach-water solution. Rinse them well after the stains have been removed
  • Don’t put your white Vans in the sun. The rays can cause white Vans to yellow.

Using the washer and dryer for your Vans

If you think you’ve got Vans that are too stubborn for the manual method or you’ve tried cleaning your white Vans this way already and you aren’t satisfied, you can put them in the washer and dryer.

When washing your white Vans in the washing machine, throw a few towels in the mix and wash with as natural of a detergent as you can find on the most delicate wash setting.

The towels protect your sneakers from getting too banged up in the machine as well as protect your washer from being dented by the sneakers.

To dry your clean white Vans in the dryer, lace the shoes back up and tie the shoes together at the end of the laces. Use the knot as an anchor to hang your shoes from the washer door. Again, put the dryer on the most delicate air setting and lowest heat setting you can. If they aren’t dry, leave them to air dry with old newspapers stuffed inside. They’ll be clean and ready to wear in no time!

Check out: Can you put shoes in the dryer?