How to Remove Denim Dye out of Shoes

Updated February 21, 2017

A great pair of dark indigo denim jeans can do a lot for your look (the darker the jeans, the slimmer you look). However, the darker the denim, the larger the risk for staining. Many companies that sell dark jeans will add a warning that tells you to wash the jeans before wearing to reduce bleeding onto your clothing. If you've noticed that you have some denim staining on your shoes, there is a way to get rid of the stains.

Pour 1 tbsp of laundry detergent onto a clean, white cloth.

Rub the stain with the laundry detergent. For leather, scrub the stain until it's gone. For suede, rub the stain gently going with the pattern of the suede (not against the suede, pushing the suede forward) until the stain is gone.

Soak a different, clean side of the cloth with cool water. Remove the excess detergent with the water. For suede, blot up any excess water from the shoes to ensure there are no water stains.

Spray the denim stain with upholstery cleaner.

Allow the cleaner to soak into the stain for 10 to 15 minutes.

Rinse the upholstery cleaner off of the shoes. For canvas tennis shoes, you can simply run the shoes under cool water. For cloth shoes, soak a paper towel in cool water and use it to wash the cleaner off of the shoes.


To reduce the risk of bleeding, wash your jeans before wearing them. Also, always wash your denim separately in the washing machine to prevent bleeding onto other clothes.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 tbsp laundry detergent
  • Clean, white cloth
  • Cool water
  • Paper towel
  • Upholstery cleaner
  • Paper towel
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About the Author

Andrea Griffith has been writing professionally since 2005. Her work has been published by the "Western Herald," Detroit WDIV, USAToday and other print, broadcast and online publications. Although she writes about a wide range of topics, her areas of expertise include fashion, beauty, technology and education. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and English from Western Michigan University.