How to Remove Gum from Shoes: A Comprehensive Guide


The weather is perfect and you’re about to get outside for some fresh air. Your playlist is set and you have on your favorite pair of running or walking shoes. But then, you step out onto the sidewalk and your foot sticks a bit. You check the bottom of your shoe and find a big wad of bubble gum that’s going to stick every time your foot hits the ground.

Here are a few simple ways to get that gum off your shoe so you can enjoy your walk or run without a sticky, stubborn distraction.

How to Remove Gum from Shoes

Fortunately, you can use a number of basic household items to remove gum from your shoes. These methods are easy and effective if you need to get a pesky piece of gum removed.

  • Freezer or Ice Cube

Once gum hardens, it becomes much easier to remove from the bottom of a shoe. The best way to get sticky gum to quickly harden is to put the entire shoe in a large plastic bag. Make sure the bag sticks to the gum, and then put the bag in the freezer. Leave it in the freezer for two hours, and the gum should stick to the bag and come off your shoe as you take it out.

If you’re short on time and don’t have two hours to wait, use an ice cube instead. Press ice against the gum for 10 to 15 minutes until it hardens. To avoid getting your shoe wet, you can put the ice cube in a plastic bag before pressing it against the shoe. Once the gum hardens and loses its stickiness, scrape it off with a toothpick.

  • WD-40

Typically used to lubricate surfaces and prevent rust, WD-40 may seem like a strange choice, but it will harden gum almost immediately. The key is to spray both the gum and the space around it. The gum can then be pulled off or wiped off with a paper towel. You may have to repeat this if the wad of gum is particularly big. Once the gum is gone, use a damp paper towel to wipe away any remaining WD-40 residue.

  • Hair Dryer

Another common household item that can help remove gum from your shoe is a hair dryer. While freezing gum helps it harden, heating it up will soften it and make it less sticky. To remove gum this way, aim a hair dryer directly at the gum, and as it heats up, test the gum’s consistency with a butter knife. When the gum is hot enough, it will lift off easily when you try to remove it with a butter knife. If any gum is left behind, you can aim the hair dryer at it and then wipe the shoe clean with a paper towel.

  • Peanut Butter

While adding another sticky substance to the equation might seem counterintuitive, peanut butter can work. Peanut butter helps soften stubborn gum so it can be peeled away more easily.

To remove gum from your shoe, put two tablespoons of peanut butter over the gum so it’s completely covered. Let it sit for 20 minutes. Then, use a spoon to scrape the gum away. If the gum is stuck on a textured sole, you may need a wire brush to get into the crevices of your tread.


On-the-Go Gum Removal

If you end up stepping on gum while you’re out and about, look to your surroundings for a solution. Dirt or dry sand can help remove the gum. Do your best to coat the gum in the earthy material. Grab a stick or another object that you can use to scrape the gum off your shoe. You may have to do this a few times until the dirt dries the gum out and the mixture lifts off completely.


How to Remove Gum from the Sole of the Shoe

How do you get gum off a shoe? Well, chewing gum is your shoe’s worst nightmare! We’ve all been there. You’re walking down the streets in your brand-new trainers, you’re feeling great! What could possibly go wrong you wonder? You take one step and tragedy strikes. Next thing you know, your brand-new kicks have ended up in a sticky mess. It’s gum wedged into the soles of your shoes. Nightmare! Now what?

Don’t fret! This simple guide will help you to solve this infuriating dilemma step by step- you’ll never have to dread this moment again. It’s easy when you know how. So, follow this handy guide on how to get gum off a shoe with the help of WD-40, and save the soles on your best pair of shoes!

Remember, always patch-test any products before using them on your shoes, and be sure to protect your working surface and hands!

How to Get Gum off  Shoes without Leaving Signs of Damage

There are few worse feelings than stepping out in your new favorite pair of shoes just to come to the realization that you stepped in gum. While silently cursing the person who audaciously disposed of their chewed wad on the ground may offer some internal validation, it’s not going to do much for your shoes. Luckily, there are solutions for how to get gum off shoes without leaving residue and damage.

In fact, many of the solutions for how to get gum off shoes exist with the use of common household items. For example, ice, peanut butter, and WD-40 all offer tricks for removing gum. In addition, specific leather or suede polishes and cleaning techniques present more options for restoring your shoes’ glory.

Here at Foot Fitter, we aren’t going to leave you to figure out how to get gum off shoes alone. To make the process a little less sticky, we compiled a list of items and products you can use to solve your gum problem.

How to get gum off leather shoes

When it comes to getting gum off your leather shoes, polishes and creams may be useful for restoring their finish after you handle your sticky situation. In fact, to find out more about that process, “Shoe Shining Tips to Maintain the Longevity and Luxury of Your Leather” breaks down just how to create the intended mirror shine.

But, first things first, you still have to get the gum off. If the gum hardened, you can start by scraping it away with a credit card or plastic tool. However, sometimes this method is ineffective or the gum is still in its sticky form. Don’t stress, hope isn’t lost. In fact, this is where the objects lying around your house prove to be pretty useful.

How to get gum off shoes with ice

The reason this method is effective is because exposing the gum to ice will cause it to harden and make it easier to remove.

Ice offers a couple of options depending on how much time you have to spare.

If you are in a time crunch, then rubbing a single ice cube for 10 to 20 minutes on the affected area should do the trick and make the gum easier to remove.

However, the more effective option is to stick your shoe in a plastic bag with the plastic pressed firmly against the gum. After leaving it in the freezer for two hours, the gum should be pulled off with the plastic.

How to get gum off suede shoes

When it comes to getting gum off your suede shoes, other methods are in order. After all, when ice melts, which it tends to do when you’re rubbing it against your shoe for 10 minutes, it turns into water. Since water is also not too great for your suede and can cause stains of its own, freezing away your gum may not be the best method.

Rubbing peanut butter on the sensitive surface may also cause further damage to the suede so softening the gum seems to be out of the question too.

On the other hand, using a credit card or knife to carefully scrape away the gum without scraping the top layer of your suede should be your first step. After that, using a special eraser for suede shoes will be your best bet at returning them to their original look.


From our article, you can tell removing gum from your shoes doesn’t have to be a sticky situation. With the methods we have explained above, you can say goodbye to the pesky gum on the bottom of your shoe and hello to a clean sole.

Whether you prefer classic gum removal methods or choose a more creative way to get gum off shoes, we hope you have found one or two methods to stick by. If everything else fails, remember to keep a reliable pair of our Vessi shoes on hand for those days when you just can’t avoid the gum-covered sidewalks.