Why Do Birkenstocks Turn Black?

Don’t you just hate it when your sunny, happy bright shoe suddenly turns dull? You want your red door painted black, not your Birks! What causes this and is there any way to stop this?

why do birkenstocks turn black

Why Do Birkenstocks Change Color?

Dirt is what causes discoloration in Birkenstocks. You put your bare feet in them. You walk around in grassy or dirty areas outside. A little dirt and grime is going to settle in and turn them black.

How Do You Get Black Stains Out Of Birkenstocks?

Every few weeks you should wipe your Birks out with a damp cloth. Do it as soon as you get home if you have been in muddy or grassy areas. Particularly nasty stains can be scrubbed out with baking soda and water. An old toothbrush can be used to do the scrubbing. Let it sit overnight and rinse it off in the morning. Do not leave them in direct sunlight.

Why Are Birkenstocks Turning My Feet Orange?

The sole or the straps might be oiled if this is the case. It’ll wear off after a while. Give your shoes a good cleaning to get rid of excess oils.

How To Stop Birkenstocks From Staining Feet?

To keep Birks from staining your feet, you need to clean them. If the shoes are suede start by clearing of debris with a brush. Get some leather cleaner and rub a dime-sized bit of it onto a clean, soft cloth. Rub the cleaner gently onto the shoe. Allow them to dry.

If they’re leather, you’ll need more cleaner; about a quarter-sized bit. Remove the scuffs while trying not to get them too wet. Scrub the entire surface. Buff the shoe with a clean, soft cloth. Let them dry and then polish them and give them another buffing.

If you have synthetics, brush them with a stiff bristle brush to get rid of extra dirt. You can hand wash these shoes with fragrance-free soap and water. Rub the soap into the soap. They must also dry away from direct sunlight.

Is It Bad For Birkenstocks To Get Wet?

While it is a good idea to prevent any extended exposure to rain or other moisture, it is fine for Birkenstocks to get wet on occasion. They will last for several years as long as they are properly cared for.

What To Do If Birkenstocks Get Wet?

All you have to do is set them aside to air dry. Keep them away from heat sources and direct sunlight.

How To Waterproof Birkenstocks?

There is a spray made for the express purpose of making shoes waterproof. You could try rubbing beeswax on them and then turning a hair drier on them. It will dry clear. However, the shoes may feel a bit stiff. Mink oil works well.

You can also make a paste out of baking soda, water, and laundry detergent, apply it with an old toothbrush and allow it to dry overnight. Birkenstock makes a cork sealant that will work on the footbed. Any of these solutions might work.

Can Birkenstocks Get Moldy?

They can develop a layer of dusty green-grey mold if neglected for too long. You will need diluted vinegar to clean them up.

How Long Do Birkenstocks Take To Mold?

This really depends. Mold needs moisture and a food source. Because cork is difficult to really get wet, it can be hard for mold to form on it. However, cork can develop mold if left a few years in humid conditions. The leather may go moldy even more quickly.

How To Stop Birkenstocks From Smelling?

Baking soda is a great odor killer. Make a paste of it with a little water and scrub the problem areas (usually the whole footbed.) with an old toothbrush. Leave it overnight and the odors should be gone.

Can You Clean Birkenstocks With Soap And Water?

It is recommended that you use specially made Birkenstock cleaner. You can use soap and water on stubborn stains.

Can You Put Birkenstocks In The Dryer?

Do not do this. Birkenstocks should not be exposed to excessive heat. Let them air dry away from heat and sunlight.

How To Clean Birkenstock Footbed?

Unbuckle the sandals to get full access. Mix two tablespoons of water with a tablespoon of baking soda to make a paste. Use it to scrub the footbed with a toothbrush. Scrub in a circular motion and get into all the areas. Rub the paste off with a slightly damp washcloth. Let them dry someplace cool and dark.

How To Clean Birkenstocks Straps?

Birkenstock makes a water and stain repellent that protects the straps from being stained or water damaged. A damp cloth can be used on Birko-flor and Birkibuc uppers.

How To Clean White Birkenstocks?

White can be hard to get clean. Oxi Clean Gel is the recommended product for this situation. Use an old toothbrush to apply a thin layer. Let it sit for five minutes. Make a paste of dish soap, baking soda, and water and brush this over the coat of Oxi Clean Gel. Use a wet cloth to wipe it all off. Lay aside the shoes to dry overnight.

How To Clean Rubber Birkenstocks?

First, brush off as much dirt as you can. Put two drops of liquid dish soap in a cup of warm water and stir until mixed well. Use a sponge and this solution to clean your shoes thoroughly. Allow the shoes to air dry.

How To Clean Plastic Birkenstocks?

Vinegar can cause the rubber to pit but it’s safe to use on plastic. Dip a clean, soft cloth in white vinegar and wipe it over the plastic. The old reliable toothbrush will get into the crevices. Let it air dry. If there is any residue, a damp cleaning rag will take it all off.

How To Clean Metallic Birkenstocks?

To quote The Bard “All that glisters is not gold.” The leather Birks that have a veneer of metallic gold foil are just about impossible to clean or restore. It peels easily and there’s just no preventive measure for it. The metallic Birks look pretty but they won’t stay that way for very long at all.

How To Clean Birkenstocks With Baking Soda?

It is recommended for many Birks, particularly the footbed. Make a paste with a little water and you can use it to scrub away most stains.

How To Remove Rust From Birkenstocks?

Salt and lime aren’t just for margaritas! You can also use them to remove rust stains. Sprinkle the stain with a little salt and squeeze some lime juice over it until soaked. Let it sit for two or three hours. The rind of the lime can be used to scrub away the stain.

How To Get Oil Stains Out Of Birkenstocks?

You may try the baking soda paste trick. If you have suede Birks, sprinkle baby powder or cornstarch on the stain instead. Brush the powder away after an hour or so. Repeat as needed.

How To Get Sticky Residue Off Birkenstocks?

Personal story here. I once touched a fly strip on accident and found that hand sanitizer worked better than soap at getting the sticky stuff off. You could try that. If it’s in the footbed and is rather gluey, maybe try acetone nail polish. Be warned that it may discolor suede. If you have wd40, that could do the job.

How To Get Sand Out Of Birkenstocks?

If your Birkenstocks have insoles, take them out first as sand may get trapped under them. Beat them about a little to loosen up the sand and knock some out. With some sandals, you can just rinse them out, but with Birks, you might want to trot out the baking soda again.

How Often Should You Clean Your Birkenstocks?

Every three or four weeks should do it.

Can The Cork On Birkenstocks Be Fixed?

It is possible. Birkenstock will perform this service using heat molded cork. This sounds like a dangerous and difficult process that should be left to the experts. It is recommended that you use a cork sealer so that you don’t need to get them repaired.

Does Birkenstock Cork Sealer Work?

It does come highly recommended.

How Do You Seal Cork Birkenstocks?

Use the applicator brush to apply a thin layer of the sealant all over the cork surface. If some gets on the leather, quickly wipe it off with a towel. It should dry clear. Let them dry for twenty minutes and put on another coat. Let them dry overnight before wearing them.

How Often Should I Seal My Birkenstocks?

Do this at least once per season.

How Do You Make Birkenstocks Look New Again?

The best way to do this is to keep them clean. Wipe the footbed down with a damp cloth every few months. Remember to use a suede brush on the straps. You have to be gentle here so as to not ruin the finish. Make sure to remove all of the grass and mud particles when you clean your Birks.

How Long Do Birkenstocks Last?

It really depends on how often you wear them and in what conditions. Some people have had them for decades. They should at least last quite a few years. You will find that the longer you wear Birks, the more comfortable they become.

How To Make Your Birkenstocks Last Longer?

The way to make Birkenstocks last longer is to keep them clean and protect them. The cork sealer will protect it from the elements. Spray the footbed with the Birkenstock Cleaner and Refresher to keep them fresh and use a clean, soft cloth to wipe away residue. Water and stain repellent can keep the uppers looking good for a very long time.


Birkenstocks may turn a darker color if they’re allowed to get dirty and stay dirty. If you clean and maintain your Birks, they should stay in good working condition for a very long time.

If you enjoyed this post, read our article to see if Birkenstocks are good for your feet.


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