How to Remove Gum from Shoes

We’ve all been there: walking down the sidewalk, minding our own business, and then —squish— you’ve stepped in a piece of gum. It’s a frustrating and sticky situation, isn’t it?

But don’t fret! Removing gum from shoes doesn’t have to be a stressful affair. Here is your step-by-step guide to gum discarding without spoiling your favorite pair.

The Issue of Gum on Shoes

It’s not just the gunk itself that’s annoying, but it’s the residue it leaves on the bottom of your shoe. If not properly removed, it can damage the shoe, leave stains on floors, and even pick up other debris. But why worry when we have solutions right at your fingertips?

1) Things Needed to Remove Gum

Physical Items

  • A plastic bag
  • A butter knife or similar tool
  • A toothbrush

Chemical Items

  • Ice cubes or freeze spray
  • Some everyday kitchen ingredients
  • Commercial gum-removing products

2) Gum Removal Methodologies

2A) Freezing Method

Start by locating a plastic bag, preferably a resealable one, and place your shoe inside it. Ensure that the gum is in direct contact with the plastic surface. Once properly positioned, carefully seal the bag, making sure no air can enter or escape.

Now, it’s time to transfer the bagged shoe into your freezer. Leave it there for a few hours, allowing the cold temperature to solidify the gum. Freezing the gum helps it harden and become less sticky, making it easier to handle and remove.

After the designated time has passed, retrieve your shoe from the freezer. With the gum now frozen, you can use a suitable tool, such as a blunt knife or a plastic scraper, to gently pry and scrape off the gum from your shoe’s surface.

Be careful not to damage the shoe’s material while doing so. As the gum has lost much of its stickiness due to the freezing process, it should come off more effortlessly.

Remember to discard the plastic bag and properly clean your shoe to eliminate any residue or marks left behind by the gum.

2B) The Wrapping Technique

One helpful tip to remove gum from your shoe is by using duct tape.

Start by taking a strip of duct tape, making sure the sticky side is facing down. Carefully wrap the tape around the area where the gum is stuck, ensuring it fully covers the gum. Gently press down on the tape to ensure a good seal.

Once the tape is securely in place, simply lift it away from the shoe. Due to the sticky nature of duct tape, the gum should adhere to the tape and easily come off the shoe’s surface.

This method is effective because it allows the adhesive properties of the tape to bind with the sticky gum, facilitating its removal without leaving any residue on your shoe.

2C) Kitchen Ingredients Method

One effective approach is to create a mixture using baking soda and vinegar.

Start by combining these two ingredients to form a paste-like consistency. Then, apply the mixture directly onto the gum-covered area of your shoe and let it sit for a few minutes. The combination of baking soda and vinegar will work together to harden the gum, making it less sticky and more manageable to remove.

Once the gum has hardened, you can use a blunt object, such as a spoon or a credit card, to gently scrape it off your shoe’s surface.

2D) Creamy Peanut Butter Method

Another alternative method that many people find helpful is to use creamy peanut butter. This pantry staple contains natural oils that can effectively break down the gum’s stickiness.

Simply apply a generous amount of creamy peanut butter onto the gum and let it sit for a few minutes. The oils in the peanut butter will work their magic and cause the gum to harden.

Afterwards, you can use a cloth or a paper towel to wipe away the peanut butter along with the gum residue. This method not only removes the gum effectively but also leaves a pleasant aroma behind.


Removing gum from shoes can often be seen as a daunting task, but fear not!

There are numerous practical methods available to help you tackle this sticky situation with ease. Whether you opt for the tape method mentioned earlier, the baking soda and vinegar combination, or the creamy peanut butter approach, it’s important to choose a method that suits your preferences and the materials of your shoes.

Once you have successfully removed the gum, it is advisable to take preventative measures to avoid future occurrences.

Making a conscious effort to keep your shoes clean and adopting preventive steps, such as avoiding gum-infested areas, regularly cleaning your shoes, or using protective sprays, can help maintain the cleanliness and longevity of your footwear.

By taking these proactive steps, you can minimize the chances of encountering gum-related mishaps and keep your shoes in top condition.

Quick FAQ’s

Can I use hot water to remove gum from shoes?

Yes, but it might soften the gum, making it stickier and more difficult to remove.

Does vinegar remove gum?

Yes, vinegar can help in the removal of gum.

Can oil be used to remove gum from shoes?

Yes, oil can be used, but it might leave stains on certain types of shoes.

Can commercial gum removal products damage the shoe?

Some might, it is always advised to check the label for warnings.

Do I need to clean my shoe after removing gum?

Yes, cleaning ensures that no gum residue is left behind which might attract more dirt or dust.

Thanks for reading. Always remember, the cleanliness of your shoes reflects your personality