Drying shoes is an essential part of keeping your footwear in good condition. Wet shoes can lead to various problems, including foot odor, discoloration, and even infections. Whether you’ve gotten caught in the rain, walked through a puddle, or just sweated through your shoes during a long workout, it’s important to dry your shoes as quickly as possible.

The fastest way of drying your shoes without damaging them is by using an electronic shoe dryer. Other alternatives include using a newspaper, a hair dryer, a towel, or a fan. Using a cloth dryer or radiator is strongly discouraged as it can cause damage to the shoe.

Here is a quick list of the fastest ways to dry your shoes, ranked from fastest to slowest. Remember that the time it takes to dry your shoes depends on multiple factors, like humidity, how wet the shoes are, the material they’re made of, etc.

1. Shoe Dryer

A shoe dryer is a device that uses heat to dry your shoes. There are several types of shoe dryers on the market, including electric dryers that plug into an outlet and portable dryers that use disposable heat packs.

Shoe dryers are generally the fastest way to dry shoes, as they can remove moisture from the inside and outside of your shoes in just a few hours.

However, it’s important to use caution when using a shoe dryer. If the dryer is too hot, it can damage the materials of your shoes, causing them to crack or shrink. You should also follow the manufacturer’s instructions for your specific dryer, as different models have different temperature settings and drying times.

For example, the Manledio Electric Shoe Dryer (Amazon) is one great option. It’s portable, and you can take it along wherever you go for on-the-go shoe drying.

Now let’s see how to use a shoe dryer. There are a few steps you need to take:

  1. Remove the insoles from your shoes. This will allow the air to circulate inside your shoes and help them dry faster.
  2. Place your shoes in the shoe dryer. Most shoe dryers have a compartment for each shoe, so you’ll need to place one in each compartment.
  3. Set the temperature and drying time on the shoe dryer. Consult the manufacturer’s instructions for your shoe dryer to determine the appropriate temperature and drying time.
  4. Turn on the shoe dryer and let it run until the drying cycle is complete. Most shoe dryers will have a timer that will automatically shut off when the drying cycle finishes.
  5. Remove your shoes from the shoe dryer and let them cool for a few minutes before wearing them.

2. Hair Dryer or Fan

A hair dryer or fan is another option for drying shoes.

To use a hair dryer, set it to a low or medium heat setting and hold it about 6 inches away from your shoes. Move the dryer around the inside of your shoes to evaporate the moisture.

If you’re using a fan, switch it on and place the shoes in front of it. Rotate the shoes occasionally to ensure all sides get dry. This method is relatively fast but can take longer if you live in a humid area or your shoes are soaked.

Like a fan, a hair dryer is a relatively fast way to dry shoes, but it’s less effective than a shoe dryer. It can take several hours to fully dry your shoes using this method, and you may need to rotate them periodically to ensure that all areas are exposed to the air.

Additionally, it’s important to use caution when using a hair dryer, as the heat can damage your shoes’ materials if you set the temperature too high.

3. Dehumidifier

A dehumidifier is a device that removes moisture from the air. By placing a dehumidifier in the room with your shoes, you can help remove the moisture from the air inside them, speeding up the drying process.

Here are the steps for using a dehumidifier to dry your shoes:

  1. Place your shoes in a room with a dehumidifier. Ensure the dehumidifier is set to the right humidity level for your shoes.
  2. Leave your shoes in the room with the dehumidifier for several hours or even a whole day. The dehumidifier will remove moisture from the air inside the room, which will help dry your shoes.
  3. Check on your shoes periodically to make sure they are drying properly. You may need to rotate your shoes to ensure that all areas are exposed to the dehumidifier.
  4. Remove your shoes from the room when they are fully dry.

While a dehumidifier can be an effective way to dry shoes, it’s not the fastest method. It can take several hours or even a whole day to dry your shoes fully using this method, and you’ll need to ensure that the dehumidifier is set to the right humidity level for your shoes.

Additionally, a dehumidifier is not portable, so it’s not practical for on-the-go drying.

4. Towel

A towel is a simple and convenient way to dry your shoes. To use this method, stuff a towel inside your shoes and use it to absorb the moisture. Then, replace the towel with a dry one and repeat the process until your shoes are dry.

Here are the steps for drying shoes using a towel:

  1. Remove the laces from the shoes if possible. This will allow the water to drain out more easily and help the shoes dry faster.
  2. Take a towel and blot the wet areas of the shoes to absorb as much water as possible. You can also use a paper towel or cloth if you don’t have a towel available.
  3. Stuff each shoe with a dry towel. Stuffing the shoes will help to absorb any remaining moisture and help the shoes keep their shape as they dry.
  4. Place the shoes in a well-ventilated area away from direct heat sources. Avoid placing the shoes directly in front of a heater or in the sun, as this can cause the leather to crack or get damaged.
  5. Remove the towels and repeat the process until the shoes are completely dry. This process may take up to a day, depending on the humidity and the material of the shoes.
  6. Once the shoes are completely dry, you can replace the laces and wear them as usual.

While using a towel is a fast way to dry shoes, it’s not as effective as other methods. It can take several hours or even a whole day to fully dry your shoes using this method, and you’ll need to use a lot of towels to absorb all the moisture.

Additionally, using a towel can stretch out the shape of your shoes, so I don’t recommend it for shoes with a specific fit or structure.

5. Newspaper

Newspaper is another option for drying shoes. To use this method, stuff the newspaper inside your shoes to absorb the moisture. Then, replace the newspaper with a dry one and repeat the process until your shoes are dry.

Here is the step-by-step procedure:

  1. Stuff each shoe with a crumpled ball of newspaper. The newspaper will help absorb moisture from the inside of the shoes.
  2. Place the shoes in a warm, well-ventilated area. Avoid placing them in direct sunlight or in front of a heater, as this can cause the shoes to dry too quickly and become stiff or damaged.
  3. Check on the shoes every few hours and replace the damp newspaper with fresh, dry newspaper as needed. It may take several hours or even an entire day for the shoes to dry completely, depending on the humidity and temperature of the room.
  4. Once the shoes are dry, remove the newspaper and allow them to air out for a few more hours before wearing them. Air drying will help remove any remaining moisture from inside the shoes.
  5. If your shoes are particularly wet or soaked in water, you may want to stuff them with multiple layers of newspaper and repeat the process until they are fully dry.

Like a towel, using newspaper is a fast way to dry shoes, but it’s less effective than other methods. It can take several hours or even a full day to fully dry your shoes using this method, and you’ll need to use a lot of newspaper to absorb all the moisture.

Additionally, a newspaper can leave ink stains on your shoes if it gets wet, so I’d suggest avoiding this method for light-colored shoes.

Additional Tips for Drying Shoes

No matter which method you choose to dry your shoes, there are a few tips you can follow to get the best results:

  • Avoid drying your shoes in direct sunlight. The sun’s heat can cause your shoes’ colors to fade.
  • Remove the insoles from your shoes before drying them. This will allow the air to circulate inside your shoes and help them dry faster.
  • Avoid using heat sources like a radiator or fireplace to dry your shoes. Extreme heat can cause the materials of your shoes to melt or become damaged.
  • Avoid wearing your shoes until they are completely dry. Walking in wet shoes can cause damage and lead to foot problems like blisters.

Final Remarks

Drying your shoes is an important step in keeping them in good condition. Whether you use a shoe dryer, a fan, a hair dryer, a dehumidifier, a towel, or a newspaper, be sure to follow the instructions carefully and avoid using heat sources like the sun or a radiator.

With the right drying method, you can keep your shoes looking and feeling great while also keeping your feet dry and free of infections.

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