How To Waterproof Sneakers: 6 Best Methods (2022)

Whether you’re a hiker, a biker, or just someone who wants to keep your feet dry when it rains, learning how to waterproof sneakers is a must. Fortunately, it’s an easy process that only takes a few simple steps. In this article, we’ll show you how to do it. So whether your old sneakers are looking a bit worse for wear, or you’re just getting ready for the rainy season, read on for instructions on waterproof sneakers like a pro!

How to waterproof sneakers?

how to waterproof sneakers

Waterproofing spray (e.g., Scotchgard)

1. What You’ll Need

  • Waterproofing spray (e.g., Scotchgard)
  • Waterproofer’s laundry marker (optional)

2. Remove the Laces and Soles

First, remove your shoelaces. Next, remove the shoelace eyelets (when applicable). If you’re waterproofing sneakers that don’t lace up, you don’t need to remove the shoelaces, but it’s a good idea to do so anyway. Also, make sure to remove the soles. If waterproofing sneakers have been resoled before, you’ll need to go ahead and take out the stitches holding your soles in place.

3. Remove Any Dirt, Salt, or Grime

Give your sneakers a quick wipe-down to remove any dirt, salt, or grime. Then place a waterproofing sheet on top of them and press down. This will ensure that there’s an even coating on the surface area of the shoes. Let the waterproof sheets remain in place for 15 minutes as they soak up all the grime.

4. Prepare Your Sneakers for waterproofing them

Make sure to spray your waterproofer evenly on all surfaces of the shoe, including its insides and outsides, as well as soles and shoelace eyelets (when applicable). Give it a few extra sprays around the toe area for added protection against water absorption.

5. Let the waterproofing process work its magic

Now, place your waterproofed sneakers out in direct sunlight for an hour or so to activate waterproofing on them. This is where a waterproofer’s laundry marker comes in handy; you can use it to write down the date on which you watertight your shoes (in case they start to lose waterproofing before you waterproof them again).

6. Bring Back the Soles and Laces

Once your waterproofed sneakers have dried, place their soles and shoelace eyelets (when applicable) back into position, then lace up those waterproofed sneakers! You now know how to waterproof sneakers like a pro. Now go waterproofing!

Waterproofing Shoes With Silicone Spray

Waterproofing shoes with silicone spray is the most common method.

  1. ​For this method, read the instructions on a waterproof spray, and apply it to your shoes by spraying the material.
  2. After this is done, wait until they have fully dried. This is an effective method if you do not want to go through the hassle of submerging your sneakers in water with laundry soap and scrubbing them. However, this is a less permanent form of waterproofing as it can wear out with time and will need to be reapplied after a certain period of time.
  3. Wetting your sneakers with water and laundry soap can be a very effective method as it is waterproof and will not wear out easily. However, it can take a very long time and will be a tedious job if you have many pairs of sneakers to waterproof.

Waterproofing Shoes With Wax 

  1. Waterproofing shoes with wax is probably the least effective method. For this, you will have to apply waterproof wax to your sneakers by hand. This can be time-consuming and is not waterproof. 
  2. For this method, you will need to use a sponge and apply waterproof wax onto your sneaker, buffing it as much as possible. This will be effective for a short period of time, but depending on the weather conditions, you may need to reapply the wax every few weeks.
  3. After the wax has dried, you will need to apply a leather protector spray on your sneakers, so that they are protected from any more damage. This method is non-permanent and will work well in the short term.

Waterproofing Shoes With Oil

  1. Waterproofing shoes with oil is not a common method, but you can do it with the right equipment. This is effective if your sneakers are made from synthetic materials or nubuck. Make sure that you have black oil, a cloth and the sneakers to be waterproofed.
  2. To apply oil to your sneakers, first use the cloth to rub the oil onto the shoe. You will need to apply an even coat of oil, turning the cloth frequently so that you can cover the entire shoe. After this, wait for the oil to dry. You will need to repeat this step a few times until all parts of the shoe have been waterproofed.
  3. To finish, you will need to apply a protective spray over your shoes and leave them overnight to dry out. This form of waterproofing is non-removable and will have to be reapplied after a few months to ensure that your sneakers are protected.
  4. After the sneakers have dried out, you will need to test them out. You can do this by getting your feet wet and checking if the sneakers leak. If there are still some wet spots, then reapply the oil and wait for them to dry again.

Waterproofing Shoes In The Washing Machine

  1. Waterproofing shoes in the washing machine is one method that can work very well, but is not for shoes that have delicate parts or small details. For this, you will need to read the instructions on the waterproofing spray and place your sneakers in a washing machine with cold water and some laundry soap.
  2. After you have added your sneakers to the washing machine, set it to a normal cycle with cold water. Make sure that you read the instructions of your waterproofing spray carefully so that you can use the appropriate setting. If you do not, then the sneakers may get damaged and will not be watertight at all.
  3. After washing your sneakers, it will be time to let them dry. You can do this either by using a drying machine or placing them near a fan and allowing the wind to dry them. If you use a drying machine, then make sure that it only has the settings for air dry and not heat dry. This is necessary so that your sneaker does not shrink.
  4. After the sneakers have dried, you will need to apply waterproofing spray onto them by hand, ensuring that you cover every part of the sneakers. This is a waterproofing spray, so you should allow it to dry for around twelve hours before wearing your sneakers again.
  5. It is advisable that you do not machine dry your sneakers, as this can cause damage to the fabric and make it less waterproof.

Waterproofing Shoes With Heat 

  • Waterproofing shoes with heat is one of the most effective ways to ensure that they are protected from water, but it will only work on leather sneakers. 
  • You will need to use a heat sealing iron, which has adjustable heating plates. This is similar to the clothing iron that you might have at home, but it has a heat plate that is made from smooth metal.
  • waterproofing sneakers overnight with a heat sealing iron is the best way to protect them from water damage. Start by using a cloth or paper towel to cover the entire shoe, and then use an iron to set the surface of the fabric. Continue this process until you have covered every part of the shoe, and then allow it to cool.
  • A heat sealing iron is a very effective way to waterproofed your shoes and will ensure that they are protected from any water damage. You can also use shoes that have been made from synthetic materials such as PU to waterproofed them. Make sure that you follow the instructions on the shoe packaging carefully

How can I waterproof my sneakers?

You don’t have to break the bank buying new waterproof shoes every time it rains – just follow these steps below! 

  1. Get some waterproofing spray. There are waterproof sprays for just about everything these days, so pick up a spray designed specifically for shoes. Most waterproofing sprays come in either aerosol or liquid form. The liquid is more commonly used in boots because it can result in better waterproofing, but the same principles apply to waterproofing sneakers – read the directions on the bottle before applying!
  2. Protect your clothing. If you’re worried that waterproofing your sneakers will get them wet or cause them to stain, then protect your clothes by wearing an old pair of socks over your new ones – this provides extra protection against stains and keeps your shoes from getting wet. Wear waterproof boots if you want to keep water off of your pants & legs too!
  3. Spray waterproofing liquid on the outside of each shoe. Make sure you give a good spray to all areas of the sneakers . Start from the top and work your way down, holding the can about 5-8 inches away from your shoes as you spray. If possible, try to get an even coating over every area of leather or fabric on each shoe.
  4. Wait for the liquid to dry before wearing sneakers again. This varies depending on what kind of liquid you use – some sprays take 15 minutes, while others take an hour! The bottle will usually have instructions for how long it takes to dry – just follow them carefully so that you don’t ruin your shoes by accidentally getting them wet too soon after waterproofing them.
  5. Get shoes! There’s no limit to the amount of waterproof sneakers on the market today. A waterproof sneaker is a great alternative to waterproof boots, especially if you want something lightweight and breathable for warm weather or indoor use – waterproof hiking boots are much more heavy-duty and will help you stay dry even during harsh conditions, but they’re not always necessary. 
  6. If your waterproof sneakers still get wet from rain or water exposure, buy some waterproofing spray . Sprays meant for other materials work just as well on sneakers , so just choose your favorite spray and apply it liberally to the outside of the shoes. Let them dry for 15 minutes before wearing sneakers again.
  7. To protect your shoes from stains, wear waterproof socks or waterproof shoe inserts . This will add an extra layer of protection against dirt and mud – just make sure nothing gets inside your watertight shoes when you remove them! 
  8. Just because watertight shoes get wet doesn’t mean they’ll stink. Using a deodorant stick (like a deodorant), wipe away any dirt that may be lingering on your shoes and give your sneakers a good once-over with the deodorant stick to keep shoes smelling fresh. Deodorant sticks are also great for waterproofing boots, so pick some up today and feel free to use them on any clothing you have!
  9. If your waterproof sneakers do begin to stink after getting wet, don’t worry – you can clean shoes. Learn how to clean sneakers in this article so you can avoid ruining your favorite footwear.
  10. Buy waterproof shoe inserts or waterproof socks . Either of these options works well for waterproofing sneakers , since they help prevent water from getting inside. 
  11. Don’t wear waterproof sneakers in the rain! Most people don’t realize that even if their watertight shoes are 100% dry when they head out into wet weather, getting caught in a downpour can still ruin their favorite pair of running shoes. The best thing to do when it’s raining is to just stay indoors – then you’ll never have to worry about how to clean wet sneakers again! Well, sneakers can’t keep you 100% dry even if they’re waterproofed
  12.  shoes only protect against rain and splashing, not walking through actual puddles! If you want to stay completely dry in wet weather, wear waterproof pants or waterproof hiking boots along with your waterproof shoes for full protection.

How To Clean Waterproof Sneakers?

When your shoes get dirty (from exposure to dirt & mud), just follow the instructions below:

  • Prepare a bucket filled halfway with water. If it’s really dirty outside, use two buckets of water so that you can rinse off both sides of the footwear at once.
  • Add some washing pod (or regular detergent ) into the bucket of water. The amount isn’t very important – just make sure you have enough liquid soap to form a few bubbles.
  • Soak shoes in soapy water for 5 minutes. This will loosen any dirt or mud, allowing it to be rinsed off more easily.
  • Use a waterproof brush (or scrubbing sponge ) to gently clean sneakers. Don’t use too much pressure – just apply slight pressure, then rinse your waterproof shoes carefully with fresh water.
  • Let shoes dry completely before wearing them again. You can speed up this process by using a hairdryer on low heat, but don’t aim the hot air directly at your footwear! 

Why Waterproof Shoes? 

There are many reasons, including safety, comfort, and money-saving. Learn how to waterproof tennis shoes so you can decide how to make shoes waterproof. If you do decide waterproof sneakers are for you, just follow the above instructions to start waterproofing today!

Use waterproof spray on your shoes. This is probably the best way to ensure that wet weather will never damage your footwear again.

Put together an emergency kit for hiking/walking in bad weather. This will waterproof your shoes & pants so that you’re ready for wet weather emergencies!

Tips people commonly give on waterproofing sneakers:

  1. Use hairspray to waterproof your sneakers!
  2.  Go to a shoe repair shop and ask them to waterproof your sneakers
  3. Use vinegar and water solution or simple green to clean your sneakers, let them dry, and apply Liquid Kiwi shoe polish to waterproof them
  4. Salt, water, and tea bags can be used to darken light colored sneakers
  5. Use baby powder or Gold Bond to absorb sweat and keep your feet dry in your sneakers!
  6. Sneakers can be waterproofed with mink oil!


What do waterproof sneakers have to offer? 

The best sneakers are breathable, durable, supportive, lightweight, protective, slip-resistant, and have an anti-microbial layer for odor control. Most shoes also have a quick-release feature so they can be easily undone when your feet swell from humidity or if you feel the need to take them off after being out in the rain all day.

Can you waterproof any shoe?

Nowadays, it seems like many shoe companies are marketing shoes as “water-resistant” or even “waterproof.” But the truth is that there is a wide range of shoes that can be waterproofed and some that simply cannot. That being said, all is not lost for those who want to keep their feet dry. In this article, we will show you how to waterproof a large variety of shoes, including sneakers, leather boots, and even dress shoes.

Do waterproof sprays work on shoes?

Nowadays, sprays can be found in most stores that sell shoes. And while these sprays will work on many pairs of sneakers, the truth is that they are not ideal for all types of footwear. For example, waterproof sprays will ruin suede shoes and other products made from leather and fabric. This is because the spray traps liquid into the surface of these materials, which can damage them if left long enough.

Additionally, sprays will not work on shoes that aren’t made of fabric and leather. Many shoes, such as hiking boots and winter boots, are made of rubber or other materials that waterproof sprays cannot penetrate. With this in mind, it’s important to note that water-resistant sprays are not the same as waterproof sprays.

Water-resistant sprays simply coat shoes in a layer of liquid which makes them resistant to water and moisture, but these coats eventually wear off, and the shoes simply become wet. So while using a water-resistant spray may protect your sneakers from the occasional rain shower, they will not protect them in a downpour or if you stand in a puddle of water.

Does WD 40 make shoes waterproof?

WD 40 is a common household item that many people use to lubricate locks and hinges. But the truth is that WD 40 will not make shoes waterproof. To be more specific: while WD 40 can repel some moisture, it will not protect shoes from prolonged exposure to water. Using WD 40 on shoes will also make them more slippery, which can be dangerous if you are hiking or biking through wet terrain.


How to waterproof sneakers? Waterproof sneakers are not only great for keeping your feet dry in heavy rain, but they may also help prevent the spread of various diseases. Some of these diseases include foul foot odor and athlete’s foot. These issues can be especially prevalent in places with high humidity like Singapore where it rains daily, therefore it is best to wear waterproofed shoes to avoid all of these nasty infections.

What are the benefits of having waterproof shoes? In addition to keeping your feet dry, there are several other reasons why you should invest in a pair of watertight shoes. First and foremost, being able to hike through the rain without getting wet is a great morale booster for hikers and outdoorsmen alike. Traveling through the rain without getting wet also allows you to keep your luggage light since you can bring fewer shoes when you are able to wear the same pair in both dry and wet conditions. Finally, having waterproofed shoes gives you peace of mind knowing that whatever adventures may arise, your feet will remain safe and comfortable.

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