Can You Dye TOMS Shoes: A Complete Guide

TOMS shoes are known for their unique style and comfort, but what if you want to change up their color?

Yes, you can dye your TOMS shoes! Whether you want to revive an old pair or customize a brand new one, dyeing your TOMS can give them a fresh and personalized look. TOMS shoes are typically made from canvas, which is a fabric that can be dyed.

However, it’s important to note that TOMS shoes often come pre-treated with protective coatings or dyes, so you may need to remove these before dyeing. To dye your TOMS shoes, you can use fabric dyes specifically designed for canvas materials.

Can you dye them?Yes
Best dye typeFabric dye (e.g., Rit Dye)
Pre-dye preparationClean thoroughly and remove insoles if possible
Dyeing methodImmersion or spray dyeing
Drying time24 hours (varies based on method and conditions)

Can You Dye TOMS Shoes

Can You Dye Toms Shoes

With their comfortable fit, stylish design, and commitment to social impact, TOMS shoes have become a popular choice for many footwear enthusiasts. But what if you want to switch up the color of your TOMS? Can you dye them yourself?

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the process of dyeing TOMS shoes, including the materials you’ll need, the steps to follow, and the potential risks and benefits of dyeing your favorite pair.

Materials Needed for Dyeing TOMS Shoes

Guide to Dyeing TOMS Shoes

Before you proceed with dyeing your TOMS shoes, it’s essential to gather all the necessary materials to dye. Here are the items you’ll need:

  • TOMS shoes (preferably made of canvas or fabric)
  • Fabric dye in your desired color
  • Rubber gloves
  • Plastic containers or bowls
  • Dye applicator (sponge, brush, or spray bottle)
  • Salt (if required by the dye manufacturer’s instructions)
  • Water (hot or cold, depending on the dye type)
  • Newspaper or plastic sheeting to protect your work surface
  • Paper towels or old rags for clean-up

Step-by-Step Guide to Dyeing TOMS Shoes

TOMS shoes are made from canvas, which can be dyed to give your shoes a new look. To dye TOMS shoes, follow these steps:

Step 1: Prepare Your Work Area

Before you start dyeing your TOMS shoes, it’s crucial to set up a suitable work area. Lay down newspaper or plastic sheeting to protect your surface from potential drips or spills.

This will also make the clean-up process much easier. Gather all your materials and place them within easy reach.

Step 2: Prepare the Dye

Follow the instructions provided by the dye manufacturer to prepare your dye solution. This may involve dissolving the dye powder in hot water or mixing liquid dye with water and other additives.

If the dye requires it, add salt to help the color adhere to the fabric of the shoes. Stir the dye mixture well until everything is fully dissolved.

Step 3: Prepare the Shoes

Begin by removing the laces from your TOMS shoes, as they may interfere with the dyeing process. Next, dampen your shoes with water to help the dye penetrate the fabric evenly.

If your TOMS shoes are not pre-washed, it’s a good idea to wash them before dyeing to remove any dirt or oils that could affect the dye absorption.

Step 4: Apply the Dye

Put on your rubber gloves to protect your hands from staining. Dip your dye applicator of choice (sponge, brush, or spray bottle) into the dye mixture.

Start applying the dye to your TOMS shoes, working in small sections and making sure to saturate the fabric thoroughly. For a more even color, you can go over the same area multiple times.

Continue until you have covered the entire shoe, including the soles if desired.

Step 5: Let the Dye Set

Once you have applied the dye, allow your TOMS shoes to sit for the recommended time specified by the dye manufacturer.

This could range from a few minutes to several hours, depending on the dye type and desired color intensity. During this time, the dye will bond with the fabric, giving your shoes a vibrant new hue.

Step 6: Rinse and Dry

After the dye has set, rinse your TOMS shoes under cold water until the water runs clear. This will help remove any excess dye and prevent color bleeding.

Be gentle to avoid fading or damaging the newly dyed fabric. Once rinsed, gently squeeze out any excess water and allow your shoes to air dry completely. Avoid direct sunlight, as it can cause fading.

Tips for Dyeing TOMS Shoes

 If your TOMS shoes have any leather or suede parts, those may not be suitable for dyeing, as the dye may not adhere well to these materials. Check below for helpful tips.

1. Choose the Right Dye

Select a fabric dye that is suitable for the material of your TOMS shoes. Most fabric dyes work well on cotton canvas, but it’s important to check the dye instructions to ensure compatibility.

2. Experiment with Colors

Dyeing your TOMS shoes gives you the opportunity to explore different color combinations and create a unique look. Mix different dyes or apply multiple layers to achieve your desired effect.

3. Protect Non-dyed Areas

If you want to dye only certain parts of your TOMS shoes, use painter’s tape or a water-resistant barrier to protect the areas you wish to keep in their original color.

4. Consider the Shoe’s Design

Keep in mind that dyeing your TOMS shoes may alter their original design or pattern. Evaluate whether the dyeing process will enhance or detract from the overall look before proceeding.

5. Test on a Small Area First

Before dyeing the entire pair of shoes, test the dye on a small, inconspicuous area to ensure you are satisfied with the color and its application.

6. Be Mindful of Colorfastness

While the dye may be colorfast once set, it’s important to note that intense sunlight or exposure to water may cause fading over time. Limit exposure to these elements to prolong the vibrancy of the dye.

Whether you want to refresh the color of your worn-out TOMS or give them a whole new look, dyeing your TOMS shoes is a creative and fun way to customize your footwear.

By following these steps and tips, you’ll be able to transform your TOMS into a personalized fashion statement that reflects your unique style. Enjoy the process of giving your shoes a fresh and vibrant update, and step out confidently in your one-of-a-kind dyed TOMS creations.

While exploring how to dye Toms shoes, you might also be curious about other footwear customization options. If so, discover the techniques for dyeing other brands and materials by checking out our guides on Can You Dye Vans Shoes and the intricacies of dyeing Velvet Shoes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our FAQ section where we answer some common questions about dyeing TOMS shoes!

What types of dyes can I use to dye my TOMS shoes?

When dyeing TOMS shoes, it’s recommended to use fabric dyes that are specifically formulated for canvas materials. These dyes are designed to penetrate the fabric and provide long-lasting, vibrant colors.

Some popular types of dyes that can be used on TOMS shoes include reactive dyes, all-purpose dyes, and fabric spray dyes.

Reactive dyes are commonly used for dyeing natural fibers, including canvas, and can provide excellent color saturation. All-purpose dyes are versatile and can be used on a variety of fabrics, including canvas.

Fabric spray dyes offer a convenient alternative and allow for more control over the dye application. Regardless of the type of dye you choose, make sure to carefully follow the instructions provided by the dye manufacturer for best results.

How do I prepare my TOMS shoes for dyeing?

Before dyeing your TOMS shoes, it’s important to prepare them properly to ensure optimal results. Start by thoroughly cleaning your shoes to remove any dirt, dust, or stains.

Use a gentle cleanser or mild detergent with warm water and a soft brush or cloth to gently scrub the surface of the shoes. Rinse them thoroughly and allow them to dry completely.

If your TOMS shoes have any protective coatings or dyes, it’s crucial to remove them before dyeing. You can do this by using a color or dye remover specifically designed for fabrics.

Follow the instructions provided with the remover and ensure you rinse off any residue before proceeding with the dyeing process. Once your shoes are clean and free of any coatings, you’re ready to proceed with dyeing.

Can I dye my TOMS shoes a lighter color or only a darker color?

While it’s generally easier to darken the color of your TOMS shoes when dyeing, it can be possible to dye them a lighter color, depending on the original color of the shoes and the dye you’re using.

It’s important to keep in mind that dyeing a lighter color over a darker one may result in a blend of the two colors and not a true lighter shade. Additionally, if your TOMS shoes already have a pattern or design, dyeing them a lighter color may not completely cover the existing pattern.

If you’re attempting to dye your TOMS shoes a lighter color, it’s recommended to choose a dye that is specifically formulated for lightening or bleaching fabrics. Follow the instructions provided by the dye manufacturer and keep in mind that the results may vary depending on the original color and material of your TOMS shoes.

Will dyeing my TOMS shoes change their texture?

When dyeing your TOMS shoes, it’s possible that the texture of the fabric may change slightly. This can occur due to the dye penetrating the fibers and affecting their structure.

The extent of the texture change will depend on the dye you’re using, the original texture of the fabric, and the specific dyeing technique you employ.

It’s important to note that dyeing may also affect the breathability and water resistance of your TOMS shoes. Some dyes may create a barrier on the fabric and reduce its ability to breathe, which can affect the overall comfort of the shoes.

Additionally, the water resistance of the shoes may be compromised, so it’s advisable to avoid exposing your dyed TOMS shoes to excessive moisture. If maintaining the original texture and properties of your TOMS shoes is crucial to you, it may be best to explore other customization options or consult with a professional dyeing service.


You can dye TOMS shoes by following these steps: clean them, choose your dye, apply it with a brush, let them dry, and enjoy your customized shoes! Remember to protect your workspace and use non-toxic dyes for safety reasons.

Dyeing TOMS can be a fun and creative way to give your shoes a new look without having to buy new ones. Just make sure to follow the instructions carefully and be patient while waiting for the dye to dry. Happy shoe customization!

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