When it comes to cleaning your shoes, it’s typically recommended to hand-wash them to preserve their integrity and shape, whether that’s with a toothbrush and dish soap or a rag and water. However, more brands have started to create machine-washable shoes for all occasions—from those early morning runs to nights out on the town—making this process a little bit easier.
To help navigate the online shoe market, we’ve scoured machine-washable shoes to find the best ones, and we aren’t just talking sneakers—we found machine-washable loafers and heels, too. For expert insight, we chatted with style coach and stylist Leena Alsulaiman about how machine-washable shoes differ from their counterparts and some of her tips and tricks for washing them safely in the washing machine.
Ahead, discover Byrdie’s picks for the best machine-washable shoes.
Meet the Expert
Leena Alsulaiman is a style coach and fashion stylist based in the San Francisco area.
Best Overall: Cariuma IBI Knit Sneaker
Made from bamboo and recycled plastics, these knit sneakers from Cariuma are the best overall machine-washable shoes. These lightweight shoes are the ideal everyday shoe for everyone with their classic look and comfortable fit. When they get dirty, toss them in the washing machine, and you’re all set.
Material: Bamboo and recycled PET, lightweight memory foam, cork, Mamona oil, sugarcane, recycled plastics | Size Range: 5-13 | Colors: Rose, Sun Yellow, Raw Red, Green, Black, Navy Mineral Blue, Off-White +more
Best Budget: Keds Chillax Twill Washable
Not looking to spend a lot of money on a pair of machine-washable shoes? You’re in luck with this pair from Keds that can be cleaned in a wash bag on a gentle spin. With a slip-on construction, these shoes require no break-in time and can be paired with those casual everyday outfits.
Material: Cotton canvas and rubber | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: Light Blue, Light Pink, Light Yellow, Peach
Best Flats: Rothy’s The Point
Slip your feet into these pointed flats for a comfortable fit that works well for casual and formal looks. The flexible upper part gives your feet room to breathe while receiving support from comfortable insoles. If they get dirty, toss them in the washing machine, and you’ll have a fresh pair each time. Available in classic and seasonal colors and patterns, there’s a style for everyone.
Material: Rothy’s signature thread (spun from plastic water bottles) | Size Range: 5-13 | Colors: Black Solid, Maritime Navy, Big Cat, Fawn, Chili Red, Ecru, Driftwood, Blush +more
Best Slip-Ons: Everlane The Forever Slip-On Sneaker
We’ve all been there when the last thing you want to do is bend down and put your shoes on. Well, say no more with these slip-on sneakers that you’ll never want to take off. Wear these sneakers to the grocery store, out to brunch, or to the office for a business-casual look that’ll leave your feet happy. Available in black and white, these will match nearly anything in your closet.
Material: 100% cotton upper and natural rubber sole | Size Range: 5-11.5 | Colors: Black, White
Best for Work : Vivaia Square-Toe Patterned Loafers
Ditch the heels for the office and opt for these square-toe loafers instead. Made from six water bottles, these loafers feature an intricate stitch design that is professional enough for work while also letting some of your personality shine through. After a week at work, toss them in the washing machine for an easy wash that’ll make them look brand new.
Material: Knit upper (made from plastic bottles) and carbon-free rubber sole | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: Deep Ebony, Natural Brown, Light Khaki +more
Best for Travel: Skechers GO WALK Arch Fit
Time is of the essence when it comes to traveling, and your shoes shouldn’t hold you back. Slide your feet into these sock-like sneakers that offer lightweight cushioning and special technology for support that helps distribute weight evenly for more comfort (and less pain).
Material: Breathable athletic mesh | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: Light Pink, Gray, Black, Navy, Taupe
Best Sneakers: Allbirds Wool Pipers
Every wardrobe needs a classic pair of sneakers, and these shoes made from renewable materials fit the bill. Available in a plethora of neutral and warm colors, these sneakers can be worn with everyday looks or even on long walks in the park. The best part: The cushioned midsole keeps your feet supported for extended wear, whether standing all day or just on the go.
Material: ZQ Merino wool | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: Natural Black, Natural White, True Black, Dapple Grey +more
Best High-Tops: Everlane The Forever High Top Sneakers
These high-top sneakers are great for taking any outfit to the next level. This classic style lends itself to outfits of all sorts, whether that’s a crop top and jeans or a floral midi dress. After a few wears, toss these sneakers into the wash for an easy clean without the hassle.
Material: Organic cotton upper and natural rubber outsole | Size Range: 5-12 | Colors: Ecru, Bronze, Black
Best Outdoor Sandals: Keen Footwear Whisper Walking Sandals
These best-selling sandals are ideal for active individuals who are always on the go. Find a contoured arch for midfoot support and an EVA midsole that provides a comfortable cushion for your feet. Wear them at the beach (the lining is quick-drying) or out in nature for the stability you’ll need for long wear.
Material: Polyester and rubber | Size Range: 5-12 | Colors: Smoke Blue, Red Dahlia, Black/Magnet, Navy/Birch +more
Best for Running: Allbirds Wool Runners
Whether you’re training for a race or going to the gym, exercise without a worry in these wool runner shoes from Allbirds. Not only are they soft and cozy, they also provide a comfortable and thermoregulating interior for your feet. When they need to be cleaned, just toss them in the wash, and you’re good to go.
Material: Recycled plastic bottles, ZQ certified Merino wool, sugarcane-based green EVA | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: True Black, Natural Grey
Best Insulated: Allbirds Wool Runner-Up Mizzle Fluffs
When it’s cold outside, opt for this pair of cozy shoes from Allbirds. Find soft, fluffy wool on the inside to keep your feet warm, while its bio-based shield serves as a water repellent to keep your feet dry (ideal for snow and slush). To top it off, these machine-washable shoes are carbon neutral as a result of sustainable practices used during the production process.
Material: Certified natural rubber, ZQ Merino wool, recycled polyester, and wool | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: Calm Coral, Thrive Crimson
Best Platforms: Charleston Shoe Co. Balboa Sling Back Wedge
Give yourself some height with these sandal-style wedges ideal for summer with their criss-cross and slingback straps. These machine-washable platforms offer an additional 3 inches and feature a padded insole to keep feet supported and comfortable. Wear these platforms with your favorite sundress for happy hour or a swimsuit and coverup for a beach weekend.
Material: Elastic upper, faux braid, and cork | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: Linen, White, Pink Multi-Stripe, Black +more
Best for Hiking: Allbirds Women’s Trail Runners SWT
It’s easy for your shoes to get dirty when out in nature, like on a hike. These shoes are designed to provide stabilization on the rockiest terrain, whether a mountain or steep hill, making them the best machine-washable hiking shoe. Plus, they are water-repellent, so don’t worry if you step in a puddle.
Material: Merino wool, FSC-certified TENCEL Lyocell, recycled polyester, and natural rubber | Size Range: 5-11 | Colors: Natural Black, Medium Grey, Hazy Pink, Hazy Cobalt, Diablo +more
Best for All-Day Wear: BALA Twelves Flow White
BALA listened to what nurses had to say when it came to what they wanted in a sneaker, and the result was BALA Twelves. These machine-washable sneakers are supportive, sleek, and boast a fluid-resistant outer layer ideal for nurses on the go and exposed to fluids, IVs, and other medications all day long. With a supportive insole, they are designed to keep you comfortable if you’re on your feet all day—whether you’re a nurse or not.
Material: KnitFit upper, ShiftShield outer | Size Range: 5-12 | Colors: White, Daybreak Blue, Shade Gray, Nocturnal Black
What to Look for in Machine-Washable Shoes
Alsulaiman suggests looking for brands that clearly state they are machine washable, so you don’t accidentally end up ruining a new pair of shoes. “Look for shoes made from canvas or cotton or even polyester and nylon,” she adds.
Don't just pick any pair of machine-washable shoes. Whether you're needing an everyday washable sneaker or something for outdoor adventures or even the office, there is something for everyone on this list. Consider why you're looking for machine-washable sneakers and base the style you choose off of this question so you can get the most wear out of your pair for ultimate versatility and value.
What types of shoes are machine washable?
While it’s the safest route to check a brand’s website to see if a pair of shoes are machine washable, there are a few types of shoes that generally are safe in a washing machine.
“Tennis shoes and sneakers are made from fabrics and materials that allow them to be cleaned and washed in a washing machine,” says Alsulaiman. “Many shoe brands also use fabrics in their shoes, making them machine washable.”
With that said, Alsulaiman says to never put leather and suede shoes in the washer.
Does putting shoes in the washer shorten their lifespan or durability?
Alsulaiman says that putting shoes in a washing machine won’t necessarily decrease their lifespan. “With the proper care, you can extend the life of your shoe and how long you keep using it," she says. "But if you were to throw your shoes in the washer without taking the extra care steps, you are shortening their lifespan."
Some important steps to cleaning your shoes in the washer:
Remove the insoles and the shoelaces. You can place the laces in a garment bag in the same wash cycle, so they don't get tangled up, but the insoles should be hand washed separately and air-dried.
And never run your shoes through the dryer! Drying shoes in the dryer can warp them and loosen the glue that holds them together.
What setting should I wash my shoes on?
Many brands will have care instructions for their shoes on a website or the tongue of the shoe, but a good rule of thumb is to put them in a gentle cycle with cold water and liquid detergent.
To keep your shoes in the best condition, Alsuiman suggests doing the following before washing and drying:
“Remove the insoles and the shoelaces. You can place the laces in a garment bag in the same wash cycle so they don't get tangled up, but the insoles should be hand washed separately and air-dried.”
Why Trust Byrdie
Casey Clark is a Byrdie contributor and has written about fashion for other publications like StyleCaster, Reviewed, and Buzzfeed. She aims to make industry knowledge more digestible and easier to understand for every reader.
According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find any machine-washable shoes from a Black-owned and/or Black-founded business. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will evaluate the brand ASAP.