Are you noticing a sour smell or stubborn stains every time you slip off your Birkenstocks? Birkenstocks are beloved for their comfort and durability, but like any well-worn shoe, they can trap odors and grime over time. If you’re wondering how to clean and deodorize Birkenstocks, you’ve come to the right place.

The design and anatomy of Birkenstocks, including their distinct cork footbeds and various strap materials like leather, suede or even ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), require unique care. Caring for your Birkenstocks can extend their lifespan dramatically and keep them looking new for years to come. But it’s critical to know the right cleaning methods and use appropriate cleaners to avoid discoloring or damaging your favorite footwear.

When we, at NuShoe, talk about reviving your beloved Birkenstocks, we’re not just focusing on making them look good—we’re also keen on making them smell fresh. With our guide on cleaning and deodorizing Birkenstocks, you won’t have to put up with that unpleasant odor anymore.

Now, before we dive into the specifics of cleaning and deodorizing Birkenstocks, let’s summarise some key steps for you:

Quick Steps on How to Clean & Deodorize Birkenstocks:
1. Inspect your sandals: Check the state of the soles and cork.
2. Clean the straps: The cleaning technique may differ for leather, suede, or EVA straps.
3. Attend to the footbed: Remove moisture and dirt using mild cleaners.
4. Deodorize: Use home solutions or dedicated deodorizers.

Note: Always remember to test any cleaning solution on a small, unnoticeable part of your shoes first to avoid potential damage or discoloration.

Let’s look at how cleaning, maintenance, deodorizing, and potentially professional repair can transform your Birkenstocks.

Infographic on cleaning and deodorizing Birkenstocks - how to clean and deodorize birkenstocks infographic pillar-4-steps

Understanding Your Birkenstocks: Different Materials and Their Care

Different Birkenstocks are made from different materials, each requiring a unique approach to cleaning. Let’s break down the most common materials and the best ways to care for them.

Leather Birkenstocks

Leather Birkenstocks are a classic choice, offering a blend of comfort and durability. When cleaning, it’s crucial to be gentle to avoid damaging the material. Use a damp cloth to gently wipe the surface of the leather, removing any visible dirt or grime. For stubborn stains, a mild soap can be applied, but always be cautious to avoid over-saturating the leather. Always allow your leather Birkenstocks to air dry naturally, away from direct heat or sunlight.

Nubuck or Suede Birkenstocks

Nubuck or suede Birkenstocks are known for their soft, velvety texture. To clean them, you need to be even more careful than with leather. Brush off any loose dirt with a suede brush or a clean toothbrush. For tougher stains, create a paste with baking soda and water, then use a cloth to gently scrub the stain in a circular motion. Let the paste sit overnight before wiping it off with a damp cloth. Always ensure the sandals are completely dry before repeating the process .

EVA Birkenstocks

EVA Birkenstocks are a more affordable, waterproof option perfect for summer wear. Made from ethyl vinyl acetate, they’re easy to clean. Simply run your shoes under some water, adding a dab of soap and working it into your shoes with your hands. Rinse the soap off and pat dry with a cloth or towel. For stubborn grime, a sponge or cloth can be used to work the suds into the nooks and crannies .

At NuShoe, we understand that each pair of Birkenstocks is unique and requires specialized care. Whether you own leather, suede, or EVA Birkenstocks, knowing how to clean and deodorize them properly is the first step to extending their life. Stay tuned for our next section where we’ll delve deeper into specific cleaning methods for your Birkenstocks.
Different Types of Birkenstocks - how to clean and deodorize birkenstocks

How to Clean Birkenstocks Without Ruining Them

Cleaning your Birkenstocks might seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right approach and a bit of patience, you can get your Birks looking fresh and clean in no time.

Removing Coarse Dirt

The first step in the cleaning process is to remove any loose dirt or grime from your Birkenstocks. If you have a suede pair, a simple suede brush can be used to gently brush away the dirt. For leather Birkenstocks, a horsehair brush will do the trick. This process helps to prepare the shoes for the next steps and prevents dirt from being rubbed into the material during cleaning (source: NuShoe).

Cleaning with a Damp Brush

Once you’ve removed the loose dirt, it’s time to give your Birkenstocks a deeper clean. This is done by using a damp brush. Be careful not to soak your shoes – a light dampening is all that’s needed. For suede and leather Birkenstocks, you can use a mixture of water and a small amount of leather cleaner or saddle soap. If you own a pair of Birko-Flor or Birkibuc Birkenstocks, a simple mix of soap and water will do.

Removing the Lather

After using the damp brush, it’s time to remove the lather. Take a wet cloth and wipe off the lather with lukewarm water. Ensure you remove all of the soap, as any residue left behind can damage the material over time.

Cleaning the Sole

Don’t forget about the soles! Use a brush to remove any loose debris or dirt. If needed, you can clean them further with a damp cloth, sponge, or dish brush, being sure to avoid getting the cork wet (source: Wirecutter).

Letting Your Birkenstocks Dry Completely

Finally, it’s crucial to let your Birkenstocks dry completely before wearing them again. Never put your Birkenstocks in direct sunlight or on a radiator to speed up the drying process. This can damage both the cork and suede. Instead, leave them in a dry spot away from direct sunlight and allow them to dry naturally.

And there you have it! That’s how you clean your Birkenstocks without ruining them. Regular cleaning and deodorizing of your Birkenstocks will not only keep them looking great but also extend their lifespan. So, why wait? Give your Birkenstocks the care they deserve today! And if you need any further advice or assistance, remember that we at NuShoe are always here to help.

How to Deodorize Your Birkenstocks

After a thorough cleaning, the next crucial step in how to clean and deodorize Birkenstocks involves addressing any remaining odors. Here are some simple yet effective ways to deodorize your Birkenstocks.

Using Rubbing Alcohol or Lemon Juice

One proven method to eliminate residual odor involves wiping the footbeds and undersides of the straps with rubbing alcohol or lemon juice diluted with water. Rubbing alcohol effectively eliminates a wide range of foot odors. To use this method, dampen a small towel or paper towel in a bowl of rubbing alcohol, and wipe off the inner parts of the Birkenstock sandals where the foot typically comes into contact with the sandals. Allow the solution to rest for 4-5 hours, then remove the towels and let the sandals dry completely before wearing them again.

Alternatively, you can use a solution of lemon juice diluted with water. Lemon juice has natural deodorizing properties and can leave your sandals smelling fresh. Be sure to let your shoes dry fully before wearing them again.

Using Baking Soda

Another effective method of deodorizing Birkenstocks is by using baking soda. Prepare a paste by mixing 2 tablespoons of water and 1 tablespoon of baking soda. Spread the mixture on the footbed and scrub gently using a soft-bristled brush or an old toothbrush. You can leave some paste in the footbed overnight for tough and persistent stains. The baking soda will absorb any remaining odors, leaving your sandals smelling fresh.

In fact, you can even soak your sandals in a baking soda solution overnight to tackle severe stains. Scrub the sandals the following day and let them dry for 24 hours before using them again.

The key to a successful deodorizing process is to allow your Birkenstocks to dry completely after each treatment. This will ensure that all moisture, which can contribute to odors, is eliminated. And as always, if you need professional help with cleaning or deodorizing your Birkenstocks, don’t hesitate to reach out to us here at NuShoe. We’re more than happy to lend our expertise to keep your beloved Birkenstocks in top shape!

How to Clean Birkenstock Cork Footbeds

As the heart of your Birkenstock sandals, the cork footbeds often bear the brunt of heavy use and can get a tad smelly over time. But don’t fret, we have some simple yet effective ways to help you clean and deodorize these footbeds without any damage.

Using Baking Soda and an Old Toothbrush

Baking soda is a wonderful cleaning agent that not only removes grime but also tackles odor effectively. An old toothbrush, on the other hand, allows you to reach every nook and cranny of the footbeds. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to clean your Birkenstock cork footbeds using these tools:

  1. Combine about half a cup of baking soda with enough water to form a paste.
  2. Spread the paste all over the footbed using a spoon or your fingers (You might want to put on cleaning gloves for this step).
  3. Use the toothbrush to scrub the footbeds in a circular motion.
  4. Wipe away the paste with a damp cloth (not too wet, though).
  5. Repeat the process for the other shoe.
  6. Leave your sandals to dry in a cool, interior location for at least 24 hours.

It’s crucial to let the sandals dry completely before wearing them again. Wet Birkenstocks can lead to discomfort and even more unpleasant odors.

Using Birkenstock’s Cleaner and Refresher

Birkenstock offers its own care product, the Birkenstock Cleaner & Refresher, to keep your sandals looking and smelling fresh. It’s easy to use, too:

  1. Spray the cleaner on the footbed.
  2. Wipe away any excess moisture and dirt with a cloth.
  3. Let the sandals dry naturally.

This cleaner is specifically designed for Birkenstock footwear, making it a safe and effective option for maintaining your sandals.

In conclusion, knowing how to clean and deodorize Birkenstocks, particularly the cork footbeds, can significantly extend their lifespan and keep them fresh. At NuShoe, we believe in the power of regular maintenance and proper care, and we’re here to help you every step of the way. So, don’t hesitate to reach out if you need further assistance!

Care Tips for Birkenstock Footwear

Birkenstocks, like all quality footwear, require regular care to maintain their comfort and longevity. Here are some crucial steps to follow.

Avoiding Extreme Heat

Cork footbeds and EVA soles in your Birkenstocks can be damaged by exposure to extreme heat. Avoid leaving your shoes in direct sunlight for extended periods, or in closed cars on hot days. Keep them away from campfires, fireplaces, and indoor radiators. If your Birkenstocks get wet, allow them to air dry slowly, away from direct heat.

Applying Birkenstock Cork Sealer

Your Birkenstocks come with a light coating of cork sealer. This helps to protect the cork and prevent it from drying out. If the cork starts to look dry, apply a thin coat of Birkenstock Cork Sealer. This will shield the cork from the elements and maintain the integrity of your footwear.

Using Birkenstock Cleaner & Refresher

To keep your Birkenstocks fresh, we recommend using the Birkenstock Cleaner & Refresher. Spray it on the entire footbed and wipe away excess moisture and dirt with a cloth. For suede and nubuck footbeds, use a Nubuck/Suede brush to restore the nap.

Using Birkenstock Water & Stain Repellent

Regularly apply Birkenstock Water & Stain Repellent to protect the upper Leather, Suede, and Nubuck from water and dirt. This will help in maintaining the look and feel of your Birkenstocks. To remove dirt and dust, brush the uppers with a Nubuck/Suede brush.

Cleaning Birko-flor and Birkibuc Uppers

Birko-flor and Birkibuc uppers are straightforward to clean. Simply wipe them with a damp cloth. For stubborn stains, you can use soap and water.

Any cleaning or treatment can change the look and finish of the materials. So, approach each cleaning session with care. At NuShoe, we’re always ready to provide expert advice on how to clean and deodorize Birkenstocks, ensuring they stay in top condition for years to come.

The Role of NuShoe in Extending the Life of Your Birkenstocks

After learning how to clean and deodorize Birkenstocks, you might be wondering if there are other ways to ensure your beloved pairs last longer. That’s where we at NuShoe come in. As experts in handcrafted shoe renewal, we can breathe new life into your worn-out Birkenstock sandals.

NuShoe’s Expertise in Handcrafted Shoe Renewal

We are proud of our mastery in renewing and repairing Birkenstocks. With our Birkenstock Sandal Renewal program, we meticulously restore and resole your Birkenstocks, making them look and feel like new again. Our skilled craftsmen are well-versed in handling different shoe materials, so you can trust that your Birkenstocks are in safe hands.

Apart from renewing your Birkenstocks, we offer a host of other services such as shoe repair and shoe care tips to help you prolong the lifespan of your footwear. We believe that the better you care for your shoes, the longer they will last.

NuShoe’s Commitment to Sustainability

We at NuShoe are not just shoe specialists; we’re also staunch advocates of sustainability. By choosing to repair and renew your Birkenstocks instead of buying a new pair, you’re making a conscious effort to reduce waste and contribute to a more sustainable future.

Our Sustainable Shoe Repair initiative is a testament to our commitment. We strive to help our customers extend the life of their shoes, thereby reducing the environmental impact caused by the production of new shoes.

In conclusion, knowing how to clean and deodorize Birkenstocks is an essential part of maintaining your footwear. But when it comes to extending their lifespan, let us at NuShoe help you. With our expertise in shoe renewal and commitment to sustainability, we can ensure that your beloved Birkenstocks remain in top-notch condition for years to come.


Recap of Cleaning and Deodorizing Steps

To keep your Birkenstocks looking as good as new and smelling fresh, it’s crucial to clean and deodorize them regularly. Here’s a quick recap of the steps:

  1. Removing Coarse Dirt: Use a dry brush to remove any dirt or debris on your Birkenstocks.

  2. Cleaning with a Damp Brush: Use a damp brush or cloth, mild soap, and water to gently clean the surfaces and footbed.

  3. Removing the Lather: Rinse off the soap and pat dry with a towel.

  4. Deodorizing: Use home remedies like baking soda, vinegar, or rubbing alcohol to remove odors.

  5. Cork Footbed Cleaning: Use a mixture of baking soda and water or Birkenstock’s Cleaner and Refresher to clean cork footbeds.

Avoid exposing your Birkenstocks to direct heat or sunlight to prevent damage.

Importance of Regular Maintenance for Longevity of Birkenstocks

Maintaining your Birkenstocks isn’t just about keeping them clean and free from odors. It’s about extending their lifespan and ensuring they provide the comfort and support they’re renowned for. Regular care and maintenance can prevent wear and tear, keep the materials in good condition, and save you money in the long run.

In addition to home care, it’s also essential to consider professional maintenance services. At NuShoe, we specialize in handcrafted shoe renewal, helping you maintain your Birkenstocks for years to come. We understand the unique materials and construction of Birkenstocks and provide tailored services to ensure they stay in top condition.

The key to understanding how to clean and deodorize Birkenstocks is to remember that it’s a worthwhile investment in comfort and longevity. By giving your Birkenstocks the care they deserve, you ensure that they’ll continue to support your every step for many years to come.

For more tips on maintaining your Birkenstocks, check out our blog and learn more about our shoe renewal techniques.

shoe care - how to clean and deodorize birkenstocks