How To Get Grass Stains Out of Shoes

Product Care

Check out these four easy steps to remove stubborn grass stains from shoes.

Last updated: May 13, 2022
4 min read
How To Get Grass Stains Out of Shoes
Time Required
30 min
Estimated Cost

Supplies

  • Laundry detergent or washing-up liquid
  • Water
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Bicarb of soda
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Enzymatic cleaner (optional)
  • Leather cleaner (optional)

Tools

  • Soft, dry cloth
  • Toothbrush
  • Pencil eraser or suede brush

Grass stains can be challenging to remove, but with the right supplies and some elbow grease, it's possible to get a stained pair of shoes looking spotless. Check out these four tips to bear in mind when removing grass stains from shoes—and read on for how to treat grass stains on suede and leather shoes.

  1. 1.Remove Laces and Insoles

    It's best to separately wash these shoe components. You can hand-wash insoles or shoelaces in a solution made from warm water and a small amount of laundry detergent or mild washing-up liquid. For more on shoelaces, check out Nike's guide: 3 Easy Ways To Clean Shoelaces.

  2. 2.Pretreat with Vinegar

    Mix one part white vinegar with one part water. Using a soft, clean cloth, dab the stain with this solution and allow it to soak into the stain for about 30 minutes. Next, gently scrub the solution into the stain with a toothbrush, moving in the direction of the fabric.

  3. 3.Brush With Laundry Detergent

    Rinse a spare toothbrush and dip it in a solution of warm water and a small amount of laundry detergent. Apply the solution to the stain, lightly moving the brush in the direction of the fabric.

  4. 4.For the Toughest Stains, Use Hydrogen Peroxide or an Enzymatic Cleaner

    If the stain won't budge after steps two and three, try mixing a tablespoon of bicarb of soda with enough hydrogen peroxide to form a paste. Cover the grass stain with the paste and let it sit for 30 minutes, then scrub with a toothbrush dipped in cold water. If any lingering colour remains, repeat the process. Alternatively, you can use a shop-bought, chlorine-free bleach product containing hydrogen peroxide or an enzymatic cleaner.

How To Remove Grass Stains from Canvas Shoes

Cotton canvas sneakers, particularly white ones, can seem like a magnet for grass stains. However, canvas material isn't as delicate as suede or leather and can be cleaned with any of the techniques above.

How To Remove Grass Stains from Leather Shoes

Grass stains can be removed from leather shoes with rubbing alcohol, vinegar or leather cleaner. First, try dabbing the stain with a cotton ball dipped in isopropyl alcohol and see if it lifts. If that doesn't work, wet the stain with vinegar and allow it to sit for 30 minutes before scrubbing it away with a toothbrush. You can also use a shop-bought leather cleaner to remove the stain.

How To Remove Grass Stains from Suede Shoes

Suede is a delicate fabric that often requires being treated with extra care. For example, it's important to use minimal liquid when cleaning suede. Here are three steps to get grass stains out of suede shoes:

  1. Use a suede brush or pencil eraser to remove any loose dirt and debris. When doing so, make sure you brush in the direction of the material.
  2. Cover the stain with a few drops of white vinegar and scrub with a dry cloth or brush.
  3. Dip a cotton ball in micellar water and dab the stain until it disappears.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Grass Stains Permanent on Shoes?

Grass stains tend to fasten onto fabrics like fabric dye might, making them tough to remove. However, it's possible to remove grass stains by treating the shoes quickly before the stain fully sets in. For stubborn stains, try mixing a tablespoon of bicarb of soda with enough hydrogen peroxide to form a paste. Cover the grass stain with the paste and let it sit for 30 minutes, then scrub with a toothbrush dipped in cold water.

For grass stains on suede shoes, use a suede brush or pencil eraser to remove any loose dirt and debris, then cover the stain with a few drops of white vinegar and scrub with a dry cloth or brush. Dip a cotton ball in micellar water and dab the stain until it disappears.

Are Canvas Shoes Machine Washable?

It's best to hand-wash canvas shoes and then let them air dry. The heat from the dryer can damage the shoes. If you do put canvas shoes in the washing machine, use the gentle cycle and allow them to air dry.

Words by: Lindsay Frankel

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