White fabric shoes don't stay white for very long, because the fabric absorbs soil particles and the light colour does not hide anything. You can chuck them in the washing machine, but that is hard on them and your shoes won't last as long as they should. Canvas, the fabric normally used to make white fabric shoes, is woven from cotton, so to get your white fabric shoes clean, you need to use products that are effective for cleaning cotton.
Remove the laces from the white fabric shoes. Put them in a pillowcase and place it in the washing machine with a load of whites. Add 1 cap full of liquid washing powder and run the washing machine on the warm setting. Air-dry the laces.
Brush the surface of the fabric shoes with a scrubbing brush or old toothbrush to remove loose dirt.
Spray a heavy coat of stain remover on the soiled areas of the shoes to treat stains. Let the stain remover soak into the fabric for at least 15 minutes.
Wet a soft cloth and pour a 1 cm wide drop of liquid washing powder on it. Wash the surface of the shoes by rubbing the wet cloth back and forth over the fabric. Re-wet the cloth and add more detergent when it starts to feel dry.
Dip the scrubbing brush or toothbrush in the water and scrub the soapy fabric using a short, rapid back-and-forth motion to remove tough stains.
Wet another soft cloth and wipe the soap off the fabric shoes. Allow the shoes to air-dry completely before replacing the shoestrings.
- Protein-based stains require the longest soaking time for stain remover to work.
- For dye stains, such as grass, you will need a detergent containing bleach or oxygen wash to get the shoes clean.
- DAJ/amana images/Getty Images