How to Clean Old Navy Canvas Shoes: A Step-by-Step Guide

Canvas shoes from Old Navy are a wardrobe staple. They’re versatile, comfortable, and affordable. But after weeks of wear, they can start to look dingy and dirty. Don’t toss them out! With the right techniques, you can get your Old Navy canvas kicks looking fresh again.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk through the various methods for cleaning canvas shoes from Old Navy. We’ll cover how to tackle dirt and stains, remove odours, brighten whites, and more. With a bit of elbow grease and patience, you can bring new life to your well-loved pair.

How to Clean Old Navy Canvas Shoes

Why Proper Cleaning Matters for Canvas Shoes

Before jumping into the cleaning tips, let’s look at why taking care of canvas shoes is so important:

  • Extend their lifespan: With regular cleaning, canvas shoes can last for years rather than months. Dirt and stains weaken fibers over time.
  • Maintain breathability: When dirt clogs the canvas pores, shoes become less breathable and comfortable.
  • Avoid odors: Sweat, bacteria, and mildew can lead to foul odors if shoes aren’t cleaned.
  • Improve appearance: A good cleaning returns shoes to their like-new look.

Neglecting care makes shoes wear out faster. But with our cleaning tips, your Old Navy canvas kicks will stay looking and smelling fresh.

Supplies You’ll Need

Gather these supplies before getting started:

  • Mild laundry detergent: Look for a gentle, fragrance-free formula.
  • Old toothbrush: Use an old toothbrush for scrubbing dirt in crevices.
  • White vinegar: Helps remove stains and odors.
  • Baking soda: Works as a natural abrasive and deodorizer.
  • Bucket: Fill with water for cleaning. A plastic storage bin works too.
  • Soft cloths and towels
  • Shoe brush: Use a soft-bristle brush to gently scrub.
  • Shoe trees: Inserts shape and absorb moisture inside shoes.

Optional extras: dish soap, hydrogen peroxide, eraser sponge, magic eraser

With the key supplies ready, let’s get cleaning!

How to Easily Clean Old Navy Canvas Shoes

This step is not for spot cleaning old navy canvas shoes. You can scroll down to read more about spot cleaning process.

Step 1 – Remove Loose Dirt and Debris

Before anything else, get rid of surface build-up on your shoes. Here’s how:

  • Shake shoes upside down over a trash can to dislodge dirt and debris. Small pebbles, grass, sand, and other grit will fall out.
  • Use a soft brush like a shoe brush to sweep away remaining loose dirt. Gently brush uppers, soles, and crevices.
  • Wipe with a dry cloth to pick up any last specks. Don’t use a wet cloth yet.

This quick cleaning removes the easy stuff. Now you’re ready to tackle set-in stains and grime.

Step 2 – Scrub With a Mild Detergent

For basic canvas shoe cleaning, a mild detergent does the trick. Here’s how to get started:

  • Mix a cleaning solution of 2 teaspoons laundry detergent per 1 quart warm water. Avoid using a harsh detergent that could damage the canvas.
  • Use a soft bristle brush to gently scrub the soiled areas of your shoes. Focus on stains and heavily soiled spots.
  • Let sit 5 minutes so the solution can penetrate stains. Gently brush again.
  • Rinse thoroughly with clean water, removing all soap residue which can cause stiffness.
  • Stuff with paper towels to absorb excess moisture. Change towels as needed.
  • Allow to fully air dry before wearing again. Detergent cleaning works great on light to moderate dirt. For tougher stains, try some extra techniques next.

Step 3 – Use Vinegar for Stubborn Odors and Stains

For stinky and stained Old Navy canvas shoes, vinegar is a miracle cleaner. The acidic vinegar kills odor-causing bacteria and helps break down stubborn stains.

To use it:

  • Mix equal parts white vinegar and water. About 1/2 cup each is sufficient.
  • Using a soft brush, gently scrub vinegar solution onto stained/smelly areas.
  • Allow solution to sit 5-10 minutes before rinsing with clean water.
  • Stuff shoes with paper towels and allow to fully dry before wearing.

The vinegar cleaning can be repeated as needed for tough odors and set-in stains. It’s safe for regular use.

Step 4 – Whiten With Baking Soda

Over time, white canvas shoes from Old Navy can start to appear dingy and yellowed. For a brightening boost, baking soda does the trick.

Here’s how to whiten up canvas kicks:

  • Make a paste with 3 parts baking soda to 1 part warm water.
  • Using an old toothbrush, gently scrub the paste onto white canvas areas.
  • Let sit 5-10 minutes before rinsing clean.
  • Stuff with paper towels and allow to dry fully.

The abrasive baking soda loosens dirt and absorbs oil and sweat stains to reveal a brighter white! For heavy soiling, repeat the process.

Step 5 – Deodorize With Baking Soda

Baking soda isn’t just great for whitening. It also absorbs tough odors lingering in canvas shoes.

Follow these steps to deodorize:

  • Remove shoe inserts and loosen laces.
  • Sprinkle 2 tablespoons baking soda into each shoe.
  • Let sit overnight or 24 hours to fully absorb odors.
  • Shake out baking soda and wipe shoe interior clean.
  • Consider adding new inserts or arch supports.

Baking soda soaks up perspiration, bacteria, and other odors for fresh smelling shoes. For extreme odors, repeat the process.

Step 6 – Freshen Insoles and Laces

Don’t forget about shoe components like inserts and laces. They need periodic cleaning too.

For insoles:

  • Remove inserts and scrub gently with mild detergent using a toothbrush.
  • Rinse thoroughly and allow to fully air dry.
  • Baking soda can also be used to deodorize insoles.

For shoelaces:

  • Hand wash laces in mild detergent and rinse clean.
  • Air dry laces before re-threading in shoes.

Step 7 – Maintain Protection With Conditioners

For ongoing care after cleaning Old Navy canvas shoes, use specialty conditioners to protect your shoes.

Look for conditioners made for canvas and follow product instructions. Apply a protective coating 1-2 times per month.

Conditioning makes canvas shoes stain and moisture resistant. It keeps them looking great between cleanings.

Some tips for conditioning canvas shoes:

  • Clean shoes first before applying conditioners.
  • Work conditioner into uppers and sides using a soft brush or cloth. Avoid soles.
  • Allow to fully dry before wearing.

Step for Spot Cleaning Stains on Old Navy Canvas Shoes

spot clean Old Navy Canvas shoes

When your Old Navy canvas shoes get a localized stain, prompt spot cleaning can help lift it before it has a chance to set in.

First, identify the stain and act quickly for best results.

For food-related stains, gently scrape off any chunks or debris with a dull knife. For dirt or mud, allow shoes to fully dry first and then brush off what you can.

Mix a dilute soap solution with warm water and use a soft toothbrush or cloth to gently scrub only on the stained area. For tougher stains, try letting them sit for a few minutes after applying baking soda or vinegar to help break down the discoloration before scrubbing.

As you spot clean, blot lifted stains with a clean damp cloth rather than rubbing, which can spread the stain. When finished, allow shoes to completely air dry, stuffing with paper towels to absorb moisture.

You may need to repeat spot cleaning for particularly stubborn stains, taking care not to overly scrub the canvas material. With timely attention and gentle care, you can lift almost any stain from the canvas.

Extra Tips and Tricks

For challenging stains and issues, try these extra tips:

  • Magic eraser for scuffs on white rubber edging. Gently rub stained areas.
  • Clear rubbing alcohol on old ink stains and permanent marker. Use a cotton ball to dab.
  • Hydrogen peroxide mixed with water can lift dried mud. Scrub on with toothbrush.
  • Nail polish remover like acetone for small paint specks. Use a cotton swab and gently dab.
  • White “eraser” sponges to scrub away scuffs and marks on white canvas.

With a range of techniques and products, you can handle all types of dirt issues!

You can also read on; Stores like Old Navy

When to Get Professional Help

While DIY cleaning can handle most canvas shoe problems, some severe staining and damage requires professional help:

  • Pervasive odors that resist home remedies. A deep clean may be needed.
  • Significant staining over large areas that affects color.
  • Canvas tearing, ripping or holes. May need patching or reinforcement.

Don’t attempt DIY fixes like bleaching or chemicals harsher than vinegar as these can damage shoes. For major cleaning challenges, seek professional care.

Keep Those Kicks Looking Fresh!

With our tips to clean canvas shoes from Old Navy, you can keep your favorite kicks looking and smelling fresh. While canvas requires care, it’s a durable material that can handle regular cleaning.

By promptly treating stains and tidying up canvas shoes every few weeks, you can add years to their lifespan. No more kicking off dingy, dusty shoes after a long day!

What are your favourite canvas shoe cleaning tricks? Share in the comments below!



How often should I clean my canvas shoes?

Aim to clean canvas shoes every 2-4 weeks depending on wear. Clean promptly after exposure to rain or mud.

Can I put canvas shoes in the washing machine?

Machine washing risks damage to canvas material. It’s best to clean by hand using the techniques in the guide.

What cleaning products should be avoided?

Avoid harsh chemicals like bleach, strong detergents, or solvents that can degrade canvas fibers.

How do I get rid of bad odors in shoes?

Baking soda or vinegar solutions help absorb and kill odor-causing bacteria. Conditioners also add odor protection.

My laces look dirty. Can I clean them?

Yes, you can hand wash laces in mild detergent and water. Let them air dry before re-threading in shoes.

How do I clean the rubber edges and soles?

Use an old toothbrush and mild detergent. Avoid harsh scrubbing. Magic eraser also works on scuffs.

My shoes have mold inside. What should I do?

Mold requires disinfecting. Wipe with diluted bleach or vinegar water. Allow shoes to fully dry after.

How can I make my whites look whiter again?

Baking soda or commercial whiteners designed for canvas can help brighten up dingy white canvas.

Disclosure: This article, other Camping, Fashion tips and DIY Guides on Almostsimilar are contributed by experienced fashion professionals, cobblers, backpackers and hiker experts. You can learn more about us from the About Us page and how full details on how we create our content.

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