How to: Dry Out Soggy Sneakers

running in the rainAnyone remember what the weather was like in Toronto on Tuesday evening? I’ll give you a hint. It wasn’t sunny.

In typical Toronto fashion, a thunderstorm rolled in literally seconds before the Nike Central Run Club set out on our 5K run. Nike had their mobile trial truck onsite and we were all decked out in brand new Nike sneakers to take for a test drive. A few drops of rain were not going to stop a group of intrepid runners like us!

The drops of rain quickly turned into heavy rain, and soon transformed into literal sheets, at times coming down so hard that it was tough to see. I tried to dodge puddles to keep the new Nike Air Pegasus shoes I was trialing a bit dry, but it proved impossible and my feet were completely drenched. Puddles became ankle deep rivers and they were impossible to avoid. Water was rushing down streets and pouring off buildings. People huddled under awnings and patios looked at us like we were insane.

When we got back to the truck, we swapped our soaked shoes for our own, and headed home. There aren’t many times you can drench TWO pairs of shoes on one run. Once we got back, I set my shoes against the wall in the hallway to dry. Turns out, this isn’t the most effective way to dry your shoes. Here are a few tips for drying out soggy sneakers:

Step 1: Remove the liner. This is the part that has the most potential to hold bacteria so take it out, wash it with soap and lay it out to dry.

Step 2: Find some newspaper, crumple it up and stuff it in your shoes. The newspaper will absorb the water and help it dry faster. Don’t have paper? Try a towel.

Step 3: Place shoes somewhere to dry. Preferably overnight. If you have a fan, angle it at the shoes.

What not to do? Don’t put your shoes in the dryer, or take the blow dryer to them. Putting your shoes in the dryer can damage them, and it makes a ton of noise. The blow-dryer is just a waste of time and electricity and the heat can increase the stinkiness of sweaty shoes.

Also, don’t put them out in the sun to dry. As tempting as it may seem, putting shoes in the sun to dry can decrease their lifespan significantly. It causes them to fade and dry out way sooner than usual.

Now you know. Even if it’s raining, wet shoes are no excuse to hit the treadmill.


  1. Joey August 30, 2013 / 2:37 pm

    I’ve even put my shoes over the air vents in my house with newspaper in them

    • Miranda August 30, 2013 / 9:35 pm

      Oh, that’s a great idea! Thanks for the tip!

  2. Erin Willet August 30, 2013 / 10:12 pm

    Great post! I live in the South and we get the same type of rain that you just described – the kind where it starts out as a trickle then quickly turns into blinding sheets. haha Thanks for posting!

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