How To Wash Hey Dude Shoes (The Easy Way)

When my daughter asked for a pair of Hey Dude shoes, I was happy to oblige. Their wild popularity and sturdy craftsmanship mean they should last her for a while. Unfortunately, after a few months of daily wear, I needed to find a way to clean them without ruining them.

In this article, I’ll pass along all the information I got about cleaning Hey Dudes without ruining them and how to take care of them so you won’t need to wash them as frequently.

How To Wash Hey Dude Shoes

Can You Wash Hey Dudes?

Like most shoes, you should wash your Hey Dudes by hand to keep them looking their best. Although some blogs give instructions for using the washing machine, the manufacturers tell you not to do this. Putting Hey Dudes in the washer can make them look misshapen and ruin the material.

Can You Put Hey Dudes In The Washing Machine?

Although you can find instructions on certain blogs, you should never put your Hey Dudes in the washing machine. The manufacturers say that these shoes should only be spot cleaned by hand. If you put them in the washer, you can ruin the shape and material of your Hey Dudes. 

How To Clean Hey Dude Shoes by Hand (Recommended)

Hand washing is the best way to clean your Hey Dudes. Just follow this step-by-step guide to keep your shoes looking their best.

hand washing hey dudes

Items Needed:

  • A bucket, sink, or bathtub
  • Laundry detergent
  • A soft-bristled scrub brush
  • Cold to lukewarm water

1. Take Out The Laces And Insoles

Removing the laces and insoles from your shoes will make handling and cleaning them easier. Set the items aside so you can clean them later.

2. Fill Your Bucket With Water And Add Detergent

Fill your bucket, sink, or bathtub with cold to lukewarm water. Add the right amount of laundry detergent to the water, then stir it with your hand to mix it through.

Use a gentle detergent if you can, and be sure to avoid stain fighters that contain bleach to prevent damaging the material (for blood stains the process is different).

3. Spot-clean Your Shoes With A Scrub Brush

Remove all loose dirt from your Hey Dudes with a dry, soft-bristled scrub brush. Once the dirt is off, you can dip your brush in the water and scrub the stained areas of your shoes.

4. Soak Your Shoes

If there are too many stains to remove by spot-treating or the entire shoe looks dingy, you can place your shoes in the water and allow them to soak for 15 minutes.

Scrub any stubborn stains with the brush and a little bit of extra detergent.

5. Rinse Your Shoes

When you’ve removed all the stains from your Hey Dudes, replace the dirty, soapy water with clean water. Dunk your shoes a few times and rub them with your hands to get the soap off them.

Depending on how much detergent you use, you may have to repeat this step a few times to get all the soap residue off them.

How Often Should I Wash My Hey Dudes?

You should spot-clean your Hey Dudes as soon as you see a new stain. If you don’t have time to look for new stains each time you wear them, you should check them once a week to make sure they’re still looking their best.

Spot cleaning your shoes frequently will reduce the need to go through the lengthy process of soaking, scrubbing, and air drying them.

Can You Put Hey Dudes In The Dryer?

No, you should never put your Hey Dudes in the dryer. To avoid damaging your shoes, you should always allow them to air dry.

When choosing a location for air drying, you should avoid direct sunlight, as it can fade the color of your shoes and break down the material.

How To Dry Hey Dudes Fast

Air drying Hey Dude shoes can take a long time, especially if you have to soak them to get them clean.

Here are a few ways to speed up the process;

1. Squeeze Water Out With A Towel

When you remove your Hey Dudes from the water, place them on a dry towel. Gently roll your shoes up in the towel and squeeze lightly to get out as much water as possible.

2. Absorb Moisture With Microfiber Cloths

When you’re finished removing the majority of the water from your shoes, you can stuff microfiber cloths inside them to remove some of the remaining moisture.

Putting microfiber cloths inside your Hey Dudes can also help them retain their shape as they dry.

3. Use A Fan

If time is of the essence, you can set a fan by your shoes to speed up the drying process.

How to Wash Hey Dudes Insoles and Laces

Washing Hey Dude insoles and laces is simple. Follow this process to easily remove stains and odors.

1. Soak Your Insoles And Laces

Fill a sink or bucket with warm water and add an appropriate amount of gentle detergent. Swish the water with your hand to mix the detergent through, then submerge your insoles and laces.

Allow them to soak for 15 minutes.

2. Scrub Them With A Soft-Bristled Brush or Microfiber Cloth

When your insoles and laces are done soaking, you can scrub them with a brush or cloth to remove the stains.

Since they are small, it may be easier to fold the laces in half two or three times, then scrub the material against itself to clean them.

3. Rinse Your Insoles And Laces

When you’ve removed the stains, replace the dirty, soapy water with fresh water and rinse your insoles and laces. Be sure to squeeze the insoles under the water to ensure you’ve got all the soap out.

4. Allow Them To Air Dry 

When your insoles and laces are clean, place them on a dry towel, roll them up, and squeeze gently to remove excess water.

After removing as much moisture as possible, choose a location that’s out of direct sunlight and lay them out to dry.

Consider placing a fan in front of them to speed up the drying process. If you’re short on time, the laces for your Hey Dudes can go in the washer and dryer.

Just put them in a mesh laundry bag to avoid losing them. You should never put the insoles in the washer or dryer, as doing so can cause them to become cracked or misshapen.

Hey Dude Shoes Care Tips

Here are a few tips to extend the life of your Hey Dudes and keep them looking great.

Hey dude care tips
  • Handwash only: Although the internet is full of blogs with instructions on washing your Hey Dudes in the washing machine, you should follow the manufacturer’s instructions and wash them by hand instead. You don’t want to ruin your shoes just to save a little time.
  • Always air dry: You should never put your Hey Dudes in the dryer; doing so will cause your shoes to become misshapen and will make the materials break down faster. Instead, leave them air dry, using a fan to speed up the process when necessary.
  • Avoid direct sunlight: When choosing a location to air dry your Hey Dudes, make sure they won’t be in direct sunlight, as it can make the colors fade and cause the material to break down.
  • Store on shoe trees: If you keep your Hey Dudes on a shoe tree when you’re not wearing them, they will retain their shape and won’t get creased.


Can I use bleach to clean my Hey Dudes?

No, you should never use bleach on Hey Dude shoes. Using bleach will cause permanent stains in the material.

Do Hey Dudes stretch?

No, you should never use bleach on Hey Dude shoes. Using bleach will cause permanent stains in the material.

Are you supposed to wear socks with Hey Dudes?

You can wear your Hey Dudes with or without socks. Their canvas upper is very breathable, and their soft, cushioned insole will keep you comfortable if you choose to forgo socks.

Can I get my Hey Dudes wet?

Most Hey Dudes can go in the water, except for the suede, leather, or wool varieties.

How long do Hey Dudes last?

Hey Dudes are made of sturdy material that’s designed to last for years with proper care. However, if you’re reckless with your shoes, they may start to wear out after only a few months.

Conclusion: Best Way To Clean Hey Dude Shoes

Hey Dudes are sturdy, comfortable, and wildly popular. If you care for them properly, these shoes will last for years.

Although many blogs suggest throwing your Hey Dude shoes in the washer, washing them by hand is the best way to clean them without risking ruining them. It may take longer, but it will preserve the appearance of your shoes and make them last longer. 

Putting Hey Dudes in the washer will also void the warranty and prohibit you from returning them. If you spot-clean your shoes at least once a week, you won’t have to give them a full cleaning as often, which will save quite a bit of time.

When it’s time to dry your Hey Dudes, you should always let them air dry out of direct sunlight. The harmful ultraviolet rays of direct sunlight can fade the color of your shoes and damage the material. If you need to speed up the drying process, you can place a fan in front of them.

Shauna Stone