How To Clean White Vans That Turned Yellow

White canvas gives the classiest appearance in every attire; however, keeping white and yellow vans clean is the biggest challenge. White vans indicate that they will be covered in dirt or could discolor if overused at some point.

White vans

If the upper body of your canvas is made with rubber or leather, that wouldn't be a problem, but the real challenge is cotton as it easily traps mud or dirt on cotton. Sadly, most of the canvas upper is made with cotton and if you fail to maintain them clean, your shoes will be ruined forever.

You are saved though, because there are a few ways to make vans white again by which you can easily clean dirty white slip-on vans.

how to clean white vans that turned yellow? 

Why are my white vans turning yellow?

Why do white shoes turn yellow? Have your white vans turned yellow after washing? Then this could be because of oxidation. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that occurs when you wash your vans with stain remover or any other hash solution and then keep it directly in the sun.

Another reason why your white canvas shoes turned yellow after washing is sweat, dirt, and stain. If you keep your shoes uncleaned for a longer period the stain gets completely absorbed in the body of the upper van and does not come off easily. Accidental spills on the canvas can be prevented with quick washing, but your white vans may turn yellow pretty soon if you let it go.

How to clean yellow vans?

How to make white vans white again? Seeing your clean, fresh white vans turning yellow can be disheartening. So, if you want to save your shoes from further damage, try out one of these methods that will help if you're wondering how to clean white vans that turned yellow. There is no high-end method you have to use; you can easily clean your yellow vans with simple household items.

Method 1: Using Detergent and Vinegar

Yellow stains are hard to get rid of, so how do you get yellow stains out of white vans? Follow the steps below;

  • First, remove the shoelaces from your vans.
  • Prepare a bucket or sink where the vans can fit with lukewarm water.
  • Pour 1 tsp of detergent and mix it with the water.
  • Now soak the vans in the detergent solution for a minute or two.
  • After soaking, take one shoe out and using a soft toothbrush, start scrubbing around the areas of damage in a circular motion. Do not apply vigorous pressure on the brush; take it slow.
  • Now, do the same process for the other pair of shoes while keeping the first or already scrubbed shoe back in the solution.
  • Once both the shoes are scrubbed well, set your washer to a low spinning cycle and keep them inside the washer.
  • In the washer compartment, pour 1/2 cup of vinegar and close the lid. This process will remove the remaining stain on your vans.
  • After getting rinsed in the washer, take them out and let them air dry or use a low heat dryer.

Method 2: Make a homemade solution

You don't need to trouble yourself running to the grocery store to make white vans white again. You can make your DIY solution and get the work done.

  • Take 1 tsp hot water, 1 tsp of liquid soap/shampoo, 1 tsp of baking soda and vinegar in the cup.
  • Mix them all well until you get a paste-like consistency.
  • Remove the shoelaces.
  • Damp the vans a bit and apply the paste on the affected areas using an old toothbrush.
  • Once the stains are gone, wash them off with warm water.
  • Let the vans dry naturally in a ventilated room, not directly under sunlight.

How to clean white slip on vans?

When the white slips on vans turn black or yellow, that's the most disturbing part. Nevertheless, there are methods to clean white vans to look box-fresh again. Here's how to clean white slips on vans;

white slips on vans
  • Start by removing the shoelaces if there are.
  • Prepare a soapy solution in a bucket or sink.
  • Drop both the shoes in the bucket and let them sit there for a few minutes.
  • Take a sponge or a toothbrush and start scrubbing over the exterior parts of the shoes. Once done, take a damp cloth and clean off all the soap from the exteriors.
  • Mud and dirt would not come off quickly with a sponge, so try using a toothbrush; it will work.
  • If the stain still did not get removed, you must try the same procedure again.

This is how you can keep the white canvas slip-on vans clean.

How to clean canvas vans?

Canvas is the most common van available for public use. Here you will get answers to the frequently asked question- How to clean white canvas shoes without turning them yellow? Cleaning canvas vans is more accessible than other types of vans. So, here's the method to clean;

How to clean canvas vans
  • Take a brush and remove loose dirt or mud from the vans before the actual cleaning part.
  • Make a soapy mixture and clean the tops, laces, and rubber strips on the vans.
  • Using a fresh damp rag wipe down all the mixture and air dry.
  • If this does not work, you can opt for intense cleaning that first includes loose dirt cleaning of mud or dirt using a toothbrush.
  • Spot clean each stain using a stain remover. Apply the stain solution directly over the affected part and leave it for 30 minutes at max.
  • Remove the insole and laces, then soak the vans in warm water having little shampoo or detergent.
  • Wrap the soaking wet vans in a dry towel and press the towel until all the moisture from the shoes is removed.
  • Leave the shoes to air dry for the next few days.

How to clean suede vans?

Suede vans can last for decades when taken proper care of. So, here's the method if you want to know how to whiten vans.

  • Brush any loose dirt on the vans.
  • Remove any dark stains with a towel dipped in little vinegar.
  • You can use a Magic Eraser to clean the rubber strips on the edges.
  • Now leave them to air dry.
  • You can choose a deep cleaning method for better and more effective results. For that, you need a soft suede brush to clean loose dirt, and other particles stuck on the vans.
  • Use a suede cleaner on a toothbrush and gently apply over stained areas.
  • Using a soft-bristled brush cleans other parts such as laces and insoles.
  • Leave the vans to dry naturally.


1. How to dry white shoes without turning yellow?

White sneakers turning yellow is a sign you have not cleaned them properly. Remember to air dry them to avoid high heat treatment or direct sunlight or else your shoes might appear yellow.

2. How to wash white vans without them turning yellow?  

White vans turning into yellow canvas shoes is a common phenomenon named oxidation. To avoid this problem, you must frequently clean your vans with soap water. You can use baking soda, vinegar, or even stain remover for heavy stains.

3. Can I put my vans in the washing machine?

No, this is a bad idea because you would not get the expected result. Washing machines cannot remove stubborn stains. In addition, there's always a risk of damaging or tearing off the skin of your vans in washing machines. 


If you wonder why white shoes turn yellow, try treating them with any of the listed methods. You will not be disappointed with the final result. Vinegar and detergent are the best ways to get off hard stains and tough dirt.

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