How to Dry Wet Running Shoes Super Quick

Running Shoes

couple walking with wet running shoes in the rain

If you're a frequent runner, depending where you live, it can be nearly impossible to avoid running when it's wet out. You're bound to run through some puddles or try to squeeze a run in before a storm, just to get caught in a downpour.

While the puddles and streams can create a fun obstacle course, your shoes are likely to get wet.

Also, if your trainers get muddy, you'll likely want to wash them, which will also require drying them. Your other option is to purchase some cheap new ones.

Fortunately, there are several methods that can speed up the drying process while also mitigating any chance of mold or a mildew smell.

We'll also provide methods you shouldn't use as they can put significant damage on your shoes.

Try These Methods

Using a Fan to Dry Your Running Shoes

The best method for drying your running shoes is to use a fan.

Removing your insoles and untying the laces will speed up the dry time, if that's an option for your shoes.

In addition to removing the insoles and untying the laces, stretch out the shoes’ tongues so they can stick out and make the inside of the shoe more accessible to the fan.

Then place the wet shoes as well as insoles and wet laces in front of your fan which is best set to max speed.

If your home has only a ceiling fan, get a dining chair or anything that is elevated higher from the ground and place your wet shoes on the elevated platform directly under the ceiling fan, with the fan on max speed. 

Drying Running Shoes with Wadded Newspapers

wet shoes stuffed with newspapers to dry

If your running shoes are drenched, getting them completely dry with a fan alone can become more time consuming. A surprisingly effective method is placing balled-up newspapers inside the shoes. 

First, remove the laces and insoles.

Then, fold sufficient pieces of newspaper to fill the entire cavity and let them sit for a couple hours.

If necessary, replace the newspapers once they become wet.

You can also place newspaper around the outside of the shoes, with rubber bands to keep them tight against the shoes. However, typically the outside of the shoes will dry on their own prior to the insides with supplemental methods.

Drying Under Shade on a Hot, Dry Day

If you don't have fans or newspaper, you can use the outside heat to your advantage during the hot summer months.

Placing the shoes in shade helps protect them from the sun’s UV rays while taking advantage of the outside conditions to dry as quickly as possible.

Simply remove wet laces and insoles from your shoes and dry them altogether in the shade.

Tempting, But Damaging Methods for Drying Running Shoes

If your short on time to get your kicks dry, there are faster methods out there, but be warned. These methods can be detrimental to the durability of your shoes.

Putting Your Running Shoes in A Dryer

shoes being placed in dryer

Few sounds are more off-putting than running shoes bouncing around the inside of your dryer. While this is without a doubt the fastest method to dry your runners, it can also ruin your shoes immediately.

First, the excessive heat can lead to pungent odors in running shoes that will refuse to go away no matter how hard you try. You don’t want everyone raising their eyebrows whenever you remove your shoes in public, would you?

Secondly, it doubles or triples your pounding mileage, resulting in the seams and other parts wearing out within a short period of time.

If you don’t want to have to set up a recurring purchase on Amazon every month for some working shoes, you should look for an alternative way to dry your running shoes.

Drying Directly Under the Sun

direct sun drying of running shoes

During the summer, leaving your wet shoes in the sun is a fast way to dry them out. 

If you're going to try this, remember that the sun can harm the synthetic or rubber material used for the operation of your shoes. Direct UV rays can lead to quick deterioration of the seams and any glue in your shoes.

Further, many hours under the sun can lead to your shoe’s colors and designs fading.

Drying out your shoe in the direct sun once or twice in its lifetime won’t be the end of the world but if you're a cyclist or runner, you should refrain from making this your go-to method every time they are wet.

Hair Dryer

When you need to dry something that's wet, it only makes sense to use something called a dryer for your tool. However, this is highly advised against.

If you have the patience to hold the dryer for the entire time, which you won't, you could actually melt the rubber parts of your shoe if you're not careful. And because you'll get impatient holding the hair dryer, you may feel inclined to stick the dryer into the shoe and leave it there, creating a fire risk. Again, do not do this!