Best Tips: How to Dry Shoes Safely and Fast?


Being an active outdoor fan, I’ve come across a lot of wet shoes. Whether it was from getting caught in a sudden downpour during a hike or stepping into a puddle on a city street, I’ve faced the challenge of drying my shoes without damaging them.

Over time, I’ve learned some effective methods and tricks to speed up the process while preserving the quality of my footwear.

So, if you want to know how to dry shoes, this article is for you. In this article, I will show you how to dry shoes quickly and safely using practical and tested techniques. You will know how to use household items like newspapers, baking soda, hairdryers, and fans. 

After reading this, you’ll no longer need to worry about wet shoes ruining your day or your favourite pair of kicks.

Table of Contents

Why You Should Dry Your Running Shoes

How To Dry Shoes

Before you learn how to dry wet shoes, you should understand why you should. Drying your running shoes is important for several reasons. Read below to know what they are.

  1. Hygiene: Properly dried shoes help maintain the hygiene of your feet. Leaving shoes damp can lead to the growth of bacteria and fungi, which could cause foot infections.
  2. Shoe Lifespan: Wet shoes can weaken over time if not dried properly. The moisture can damage the glue that holds the shoes together and weaken the shoes’ material.
  3. Comfort and Performance: Damp shoes can be uncomfortable and may affect your running performance. They may also lead to blisters.
  4. Odor: Damp shoes can develop an unpleasant odor over time. Drying your shoes correctly can help prevent this.

How To Dry Shoes In Dryer?

Don’t dry all shoes in the dryer. Leather, vinyl, or shoes with delicate detailing should be air-dried to prevent damage. But with dryer, you can

Now, Let’s see step by step how to dry wet shoes below:

  • Start by removing any excess water from the shoes. I usually do this by blotting them with a dry towel.
  • Take off the shoes’ insoles and laces. This helps the shoes dry faster and prevents the laces from getting tangled in the dryer.
  • Next, use a dry towel or a pair of old socks to help reduce the noise that shoes can make in the dryer. Simply wrap the shoes in the towel or put each shoe in an old sock.
  • Now, it’s time to prepare the dryer. Use the lowest heat setting or the air fluff/no heat setting to prevent shoe damage. High heat can warp the soles of the shoes and weaken the adhesive that holds them together.
  • Add some dry towels to the dryer’s drum along with the shoes to further protect the shoes and minimize the banging noise.
  • Place the shoes in the dryer and set the timer. I usually start with 20-30 minutes and then check the progress.
  • After the cycle ends, check the shoes. If they are still damp, run another drying cycle. Always remember to check the shoes after each cycle to prevent overheating.
  • Once the shoes are dry, I let them sit at room temperature to cool down before wearing them.

How To Dry Shoes In Dryer Without Laces?

Dry Shoes In Dryer

First, remove any excess water with absorbent materials like newspapers or paper towels to dry shoes without laces in the dryer. Then, to limit noise and protect the shoes, you can either hang them from the dryer door or place them in a mesh bag. Keep the heat setting low to medium to avoid damage to the soles. After the cycle, let them air out before use. 

How To Dry Shoes In Dryer Without Noise?

Drying shoes in a dryer can be convenient, but it often comes with a lot of noise due to the shoes tumbling around. If you want to minimize the noise while drying your shoes, here are some steps you can follow:

  1. Utilize a Mesh Laundry Bag: Enclose your shoes before drying with a mesh laundry bag. This will limit their movement and reduce their noise from hitting the dryer drum.
  2. Include Towels or Dryer Balls: Add some clean towels or balls to the dryer and your shoes. The towels will serve as a cushion, minimizing the impact of the shoes on the dryer walls, while the dryer balls promote better air circulation, accelerating the drying process.
  3. Select a Low Heat Setting: Choose a low heat or delicate setting for your dryer. Not only does this result in less noise, but it also minimizes the risk of damaging your shoes due to excessive heat.
  4. Dry Similar Shoes Together: Always try to dry shoes of similar size and weight simultaneously. This helps to keep the dryer drum balanced, reducing noise.

Why You Shouldn’t Rely On Your Dryer?

Using a dryer can be convenient, but there are better methods for drying certain items, including shoes. Certain fabrics and materials can shrink, warp, or weaken under a dryer’s heat and tumbling action. 

This is especially true for shoes, as the heat and constant spinning can cause sneakers to shrink and warp. Overloading your dryer can also be counterproductive. 

Moreover, it can cause damage to the machine and your clothes.

Moreover, dryers can be a fire hazard, particularly if they’re not properly maintained. 

Items like bath mats with a rubber back can potentially cause a fire, and dirty lint filters and dryer vents are other common causes of dryer fires. 

Also, consistent repairs to your dryer can become expensive and may not justify keeping an older machine. Finally, items left in your pockets could melt or leak all over your clothes, leading to potential stains. 

Therefore, it’s advisable to use alternative methods when possible, such as air drying or specialized shoe dryers, to ensure the longevity and quality of your items.

Different Methods To Dry Shoes

Different Ways To Dry Shoes

There are multiple methods to dry your shoes effectively. Air drying is the safest option, as it poses the least risk of damage to your shoes. Another effective method is stuffing your shoes with newspaper, which can absorb significant moisture. Using a fan or a shoe dryer can also expedite the drying process. If you’re in a pinch, uncooked rice or dehumidifying shoe inserts can draw out moisture. Let’s explore these methods below:

Method 1: Drying Shoes With Newspapers

If you wear running shoes daily, then knowing how to dry shoes with newspaper will come in handy. This is a simple and efficient method. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Start by ensuring your shoes are clean. This step is crucial to prevent dirt or grime from damaging the shoe’s material.
  2. Next, remove the insoles and laces from the shoes. This will allow the newspaper to absorb more moisture from all areas of the shoe.
  3. Crumple up pieces of newspaper and stuff them inside the shoes, from toe to heel. Make sure not to squeeze the newspaper too tightly, as this could distort the shoe’s shape.
  4. Leave the newspaper-stuffed shoes for about an hour. After this, remove the damp newspaper and replace it with dry newspaper.
  5. If the shoes are soaking wet, you may have to replace the newspaper several times. For best results, you can also wrap the outside of the shoes with newspaper and secure them with rubber bands.
  6. If you change the newspaper frequently, the shoes typically take around twelve hours to dry completely. But if they’re wet, leaving the shoes stuffed with newspaper overnight might be necessary.
  7. Once the shoes are dry, let them sit at room temperature to cool down before wearing them.

Remember, this method works best with athletic shoes or other shoes made from materials that can withstand being wet for extended periods. Always consider the material and construction of your shoe before choosing a drying method.

Method 2: Drying With A Fan

Another way to dry your shoes is to use a fan. It is an easy way. Just hang your wet shoes in front of the table fan. 

Drying shoes with a fan is a safe and effective method that can help protect the material of your shoes from heat damage.

  1. Remove Excess Water: Start by removing as much water as possible from the shoes. Use a dry towel to blot the shoes and absorb excess moisture.
  2. Remove Insoles and Laces: If possible, take out the insoles and laces from the shoes. This allows for better airflow and faster drying.
  3. Prepare the Fan: Position a standing or table fan in a way that it will blow air directly into the shoes. Choose a location where the moisture won’t affect any surrounding furniture or items.
  4. Position the Shoes: Arrange the shoes on a dry towel before the fan. If possible, prop them up so that the shoe’s opening faces the fan to allow maximum airflow.
  5. Turn on the Fan: Switch on the fan at a moderate to high setting. The constant airflow will speed up the evaporation process.
  6. Wait and Check: Allow the shoes to dry before the fan. It might take several hours, so be patient. Check the shoes every hour or so to see how they’re progressing.
  7. Rotate the Shoes: If necessary, occasionally rotate the shoes to ensure all areas get dried evenly.

Method 3: Air Dry Your Shoes

Air Dry Your Shoes

Air drying your shoes is a simple, cost-effective method requiring no special equipment. This is the process if you want to know how to dry shoes overnight. Because it takes the longest. Also, it’s ideal for shoes made of delicate materials that could be damaged by heat or excessive moisture. Here’s how to do it:

  1. If your shoes are soaking wet, use a towel to blot them and remove as much water as possible.
  2. If you can, remove the insoles and laces from your shoes. This will allow for better airflow and faster drying.
  3. Crumple some newspaper or a dry cloth and stuff it inside your shoes. By doing so, the shoe will be able to absorb moisture and maintain its shape while drying.
  4. You should choose a place with plenty of air circulation but not directly exposed to the sun. Your shoes can fade in direct sunlight, and certain materials can crack and dry out.
  5. Place the shoes with the opening facing downwards if possible. This will allow gravity to pull the moisture downwards and out of the shoe.
  6. Every few hours, rotate the shoes to ensure they’re drying evenly. You may also need to replace the newspaper or cloth if it becomes too damp.
  7. Let the shoes dry naturally. Depending on their wetness, this could take several hours to a few days.

Method 4: Use Dehumidifying Shoe Inserts

Dehumidifying shoe inserts are an excellent way to dry shoes without making noise or damaging them in a dryer. These inserts are typically filled with silica gel or another desiccant, which absorbs moisture. Here’s how to use them:

  1. Remove any excess water from the shoes by patting them dry with a towel.
  2. Insert the dehumidifying shoe inserts into each shoe.
  3. Leave the shoes in a warm, dry place for several hours or overnight until completely dry.

This method works well for all types of shoes and is particularly useful for those that can’t be exposed to high heat. It’s also a quiet method, unlike using a dryer. However, it may take longer than other methods.

Method 5: Add Rice To Dry Shoes

Using rice to dry shoes is a popular and effective method. The rice acts as a desiccant, absorbing the moisture from the shoes. I have tried this process 1 or 2 times to dry my shoes. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Clean your Shoes: Make sure to remove any dirt or debris from your shoes before you begin the drying process.
  2. Fill with Rice: Fill a couple of socks with uncooked rice. Make sure to fill them appropriately – they should fit inside your shoes easily.
  3. Insert the Socks: Place the rice-filled socks inside each shoe, pushing them in so they reach the toes.
  4. Wait: Leave the shoes with the rice-filled socks overnight. The rice will absorb the moisture, helping to dry out the shoes.
  5. Remove and Check: In the morning, remove the socks and check the shoes. If they’re still damp, repeat the process.

How To Dry Wet Shoes Without Them Smelling?

How To Dry Wet Shoes Without Them Smelling?

Dealing with smelly wet shoes can be a nuisance, but thankfully, there are solutions available to tackle this issue. If you’re wondering how to dry your wet shoes while also eliminating odor, here are some strategies:

  1. Use Dry Newspaper or Paper Towel: Use a dry newspaper or paper towel to stuff them with newspaper or a paper towel. This helps absorb the moisture and speeds up the drying process.
  2. Wrap a Towel Around the Shoes: Wrapping something soft and absorbent around the outside of your shoes can help dry the outer areas.
  3. Use Baking Soda: To deodorize the shoe, consider using baking soda. Let it sit overnight inside the shoe. Baking soda has long been known for its odor-absorbing properties.
  4. Freeze Your Wet Shoe Overnight: An unconventional method is to put your shoes in a plastic bag and freeze them overnight. The cold temperature kills odor-causing bacteria.
  5. Vinegar and Water Spray: You can also spray a mixture of vinegar and water on the shoes before letting them air dry. Vinegar is known to remove odors.
  6. Use Uncooked Rice: Another method is to remove odors from shoes by using uncooked rice. Fill an empty box with uncooked rice and place your shoes in it, leaving enough space for air circulation.
  7. Use an Enzyme Solution: Products such as Odor Ban or Febreze can be sprayed on and in your shoes. They contain enzymes that can break down the bacteria, causing the smell.
  8. Dry Them in Sunlight: If you’re not concerned about the color of your shoes fading, drying them in sunlight can be effective. Sunlight has natural sanitizing properties that can help eliminate odors.

Always check the care instructions for your shoes before trying these methods, as some materials may not react well to certain treatments.

How Long Do Shoes Take To Dry?

The drying time for shoes can vary greatly depending on the material of the shoe, the method used for drying, and the level of dampness. Here are some general timelines:

  • Air Drying: This is the safest method to dry any shoe but can take time. For lightly damp shoes, it might take around 10-12 hours. Thoroughly soaked shoes could take 24-48 hours or even longer.
  • Drying with Newspaper or Towels: If you stuff damp shoes with newspaper or towels and change them every few hours, this can speed up the drying process to around 12-24 hours, depending on how wet the shoes are.
  • Using a Fan or Hair Dryer: If you’re using a fan or hairdryer (in a cool setting), this can reduce the drying time considerably, potentially drying your shoes in a few hours. However, be cautious, as heat can damage certain materials.
  • Using a Shoe Dryer: Specialized electric shoe dryers can dry shoes in 1-3 hours, depending on the model and the settings used.

Can I Dry Wet Shoes In The Oven?

While it might seem like a quick fix, drying shoes in the oven is not recommended. The heat from the oven can warp or shrink the shoes and damage the glue that holds them together. 

It can also cause certain materials, like synthetic fabrics or rubber soles, to melt. You can also air dry them, use a fan, stuff them with newspaper, or use a low-heat setting on a clothes dryer if the shoes’ care instructions allow it.

Always check the manufacturer’s instructions before choosing a drying method.

How To Dry Your Shoes In 10 Minutes?

First, remove excess water using a towel to dry your shoes quickly. Next, fill them with absorbent material like newspaper or rice, which will soak up moisture from the inside. If you’re in a hurry, use a hairdryer in a cool setting to blow-dry the shoes, focusing on the soles and any other wet areas.

Always check the shoe manufacturer’s guidelines before applying heat to avoid damage. This method should only be used occasionally as frequent heat can degrade shoe materials.


You can dry shoes using air, a dryer, shoe inserts that dehumidify, or a desiccant like rice.

Each method has its benefits and drawbacks, so the best depends on your specific needs and the type of shoes you’re trying to dry. For example, how to dry shoes fast? Then go for the dryer. 

It’s essential always to consider the material and care instructions of your shoes to prevent any damage. 

You can effectively dry your shoes with the right approach while preserving their longevity and comfort.


How do you dry shoes in 15 minutes? 

It’s challenging to completely dry shoes in 15 minutes. However, using a hairdryer on the cool setting or placing them in front of a fan can speed up the process.

How do you dry moisture out of shoes? 

Remove the insoles and laces, then stuff the shoes with newspaper or dry towels to help absorb the moisture. Placing them in a well-ventilated area will also help.

What is the safest way to dry shoes? 

The safest way is to let them air out in an area without direct sunlight or heat sources, which can damage the material.

Is it possible to dry shoes with a hair dryer? 

Yes, but use it in a cool setting to prevent damage. Direct the airflow into the shoe, moving it around to avoid concentrating heat in one area.

How to dry leather shoes? 

Wipe them down with a dry cloth, then let them air dry. Avoid heat and direct sunlight, which can warp and crack the leather.

How do you absorb water from shoes?

Stuffing shoes with newspaper or dry towels can help absorb water. Replacing the stuffing every few hours can speed up drying.

Does baking soda absorb moisture from shoes? 

Yes, baking soda can absorb moisture and also helps eliminate odors. Sprinkle inside the shoes and let them sit overnight, then remove them before wearing them.

Are shoes ruined if they get wet? 

Not necessarily. It depends on the material and how you dry them. Leather shoes, for example, can be damaged by water if not properly cared for. Always dry wet shoes immediately and avoid exposure to heat or direct sunlight.

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