Can You Wash Wellies In Washing Machine?



Can You Wash Wellies In Washing Machine

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No, it is not recommended to wash wellies in the washing machine.

Wellington boots, affectionately known as wellies, are beloved for their durability and ability to keep your feet dry in wet and muddy conditions. However, after a day of outdoor adventures, these trusty boots can become quite dirty, prompting the question of how to clean them effectively. While washing machines are often our go-to for cleaning clothes, they might not be the best option for wellies. In this article, we’ll delve into the reasons why washing wellies in the washing machine is not advisable, explore alternative cleaning methods, and provide insights into maintaining the longevity of your beloved wellington boots.

The Case Against Washing Wellies in the Machine:

Although wellies may seem rugged enough to withstand the rigors of the washing machine, the reality is quite different. The tumbling action inside the machine can potentially damage the boots and cause scuffing, leading to a less desirable appearance. Wellies are designed to withstand outdoor conditions, but the mechanical agitation and abrasive movement of the washing machine can compromise their integrity.

Dos and don’ts of When Washing Wellies


  • Regularly inspect your wellies after each use to prevent dirt buildup.
  • Clean your wellies by hand using a gentle cleaning solution.
  • Use a soft brush or cloth to scrub away dirt and grime.
  • Rinse the wellies thoroughly with clean water after cleaning.
  • Allow the wellies to air dry naturally, away from direct sunlight and heat sources.
  • Consider applying a specialized conditioner or protector to maintain their flexibility.
  • Store your wellies in a cool, dry place to prevent mold and mildew growth.


  • Avoid washing wellies in the washing machine, as the mechanical action can damage them.
  • Do not use harsh detergents or chemicals that could deteriorate the material.
  • Don’t expose your wellies to direct sunlight or heat sources for extended periods, as this can cause cracking.
  • Avoid using abrasive brushes that could damage the material during cleaning.
  • Do not use excessive force when scrubbing, as it could lead to scuffing or other damage.
  • Don’t store your wellies in a damp or humid environment, as this can encourage mold growth.
  • Avoid folding or bending your wellies unnaturally, as it could affect their shape and fit over time.

Alternative Cleaning Methods for Wellies:

  1. Hand Cleaning: Fill a basin with lukewarm water and add a mild soap or wellie-cleaning solution. Use a soft brush or cloth to gently scrub away dirt and grime. Rinse thoroughly with clean water.
  2. Rinsing: After scrubbing, rinse the wellies with clean water to remove any soap residue. Ensure all traces of soap are gone to prevent potential damage to the material.
  3. Drying: Allow the wellies to air dry naturally in a well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Hanging them upside down can facilitate air circulation within the boots.
  4. Conditioning: Depending on the material of your wellies, consider applying a specialized conditioner or protector. This can help maintain the material’s flexibility and prevent cracking.
  5. Storing: Store your wellies in an upright position to maintain their shape. Consider using boot shapers or stuffing them with newspaper to help them retain their form.
  6. Mild Vinegar Solution: For wellies with strong odors, you can create a solution of equal parts water and white vinegar. Wipe the interior of the boots with this solution to help eliminate odors.
  7. Baking Soda Absorption: To combat persistent odors, sprinkle baking soda inside the wellies and let it sit overnight. Shake out the baking soda the next day.

Remember to follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturer for your specific wellies, as different materials may have varying cleaning requirements.

Final Words

Your wellies are more than just footwear – they’re companions that accompany you through various outdoor endeavors. To ensure their longevity and continued performance, it’s crucial to treat them with care during the cleaning process. While the washing machine might be a trusted ally for laundry, it’s not suited for wellies. Opting for gentle manual cleaning methods not only preserves their appearance but also safeguards their durability and structural integrity. Remember, wellies that are well-cared for can continue to be your reliable partners in countless outdoor escapades.


Can I wash wellies in the washing machine if they are extremely dirty?

Answer: No, it’s not recommended. The washing machine’s tumbling action can damage the wellies and cause scuffing.

What type of soap or cleaning solution should I use for cleaning wellies by hand?

Answer: Use a mild soap or a specialized wellie-cleaning solution. Harsh chemicals can deteriorate the wellies’ material.

Can I use a brush to scrub my wellies?

Answer: Yes, a soft brush or cloth can be used to gently scrub away dirt and grime. Avoid using abrasive brushes that could damage the material.

How should I dry my wellies after cleaning them?

Answer: Allow the wellies to air dry naturally, away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Stuffing them with newspaper can help absorb moisture and expedite drying.

How often should I clean my wellies?

Answer: Cleaning frequency depends on how often you wear them and the conditions you expose them to. Regular inspection and prompt cleaning after muddy outings are recommended.

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